How to deal with people who think they know it all about diabetes


About that “eye contact” thing . . . speaking as an experienced communicator and public speaker, it’s absolutely right on. Sustained eye contact can make people either fully engaged and listening, or uncomfortable—or both. And both, either separately or together, can help get you noticed and remembered.

Here’s a way to make it even more powerful: don’t blink until you absolutely have to. An unblinking stare really rivets people’s attention, and usually they don’t even know why. It shouts “authority” at a subliminal level.

As far as the nutrition “experts” are concerned, if they won’t take a tactful hint, I usually say something like, “Never argue nutrition with a diabetic. We know more about it than anyone else. We have to; our lives depend on it.” There’s a great deal of hyperbole and generalization in that statement, of course, but it usually does the job.


I like this.


I got this visual of your dad doing the stare down and I had to laugh out loud. I keep thinking of a tall, Swiss man marching forth on my behalf.:joy:


Good advice.:joy: My Bullboxer seems to help with these situations too when he’s allowed in. He looks rivetingly scary but is insanily friendly.


My diabetes has taken a back seat to my diastolic heart failure. These days, I treat my diabetes almost on auto-pilot. No one notices and my wife is supportive.

The heart problem has changed my life in that I have to go very slow doing anything. It will take me a little time to get equally okay with my left ventricle as I am with my diabetes. It just takes some time for me to accept change. I am not there yet.


Prayers and hugs Robert17

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How to deal with people who think they know it all about diabetes

People who think they know it all really annoy those of us who really do.


Amen !!!



You are lucky to have such a friend, wish it was the same with me. It is hard for me to keep a ‘nice face - nice voice’ when the person voicing his opinion is my spouse of 47 years.


I like to placate those people; by telling them further unbelievable information. What I shouldn’t eat this? I thought donuts were a health crazy the way the rest of you monsters attack them. Wait what? there are no vitamins in these things? Why is your butt growing then? I usually live on pixie sticks, boxes of nerds and milk shakes from McDonald’s.

They will gasp and then I say so you want to guess my A1c? How about the fact that I only have had one cavity in my mouth. What ever the guess is; doesn’t matter. Then I tell them I am at 5.3%. Reminding them that there is little to no way to cheat that test. I dare half of them to go and get an A1c; I can probably beat most of the un-diagnosed diabetics in the office.

They just don’t understand and remember its not their fight. Its ours; they will never get it until they have to walk in our shoes. Some of these same folks that gasp at us still smoke a half a pack a day or more. Let it go and just take care of yourself the best way you know how. If you want a milkshake and your numbers are alright; work your math and enjoy! Life is to short; we could get hit by a bus long before we have diabetic complications that take us out.


I struggle most with not getting snappy at people who offer food more then once.

Would you like to try a cookie ?

No thank-you

Are you sure ?

Ya, I have diabetes and I know I don’t a cookie right now.

The are you sure question gets to me.

Add to this my thin build and the double standard. Pester a thin person to eat cause there appearance is “defective” and more food would help is perfectly OK, they are only trying to help you, try telling an overweight person that maybe they have had enough to eat and don’t need another plate from the buffet and they will in all probability get hostile with you !


Oh gosh, dealing with ill-informed doctors and nurses is absolutely the worst. Back in 2010 I had a stroke. The hospitalist insisted that I lower my basal settings on my pump. Since I had aphasia from the stroke, I ended up just totally messing up my settings and having to go on shots. When my PCP (who is also an endo) came in the next day, he was furious with the hospitalist.

Fast forward to 2018. I was scheduled for knee replacements, first the right one in April, and then the left one in August. My orthopedic surgeon knew I was on a pump and had no problem with it, but to make certain, my PCP went into the hospital immediately after both surgeries and wrote in my chart “Patient is to manage her own blood sugars, both testing and administrating insulin. Nurses are not to be involved in blood glucose management for this patient.” WOW! In fact, one nurse who wasn’t already familiar with pumps came in the second day after my first surgery to spend a few minutes learning about the pump from me. And, this is a local community hospital. The two times I was in a major Boston hospital since being on the pump, nobody knew anything about them.

Friends and family thought I was nuts to have major orthopedic surgery done locally instead of at the Boston hospital that specializes in orthopedics but, as I explained to them, I am very unlikely to die from this surgery, but I could very well die from someone not knowing how to manage my blood sugar during surgery and recovery even though they thought “they were the expert.”

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I am not sure this is always true as I have from time to time women behind my back, as well as direct to my face, complain “it is not fair that he weighs less than I do, it makes me feel so guilty” :yum:

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20 years ago I hired an acquaintance to do some work on my garage. One day when he there doing some work he brought his wife with him who happened to be a nurse. When he was done working we were sitting on the patio talking and I felt like I was going low so I went inside and checked it and sure enough it was 51. So I grabbed a candy bar and went back outside to join them and she said “arent you diabetic?”, I said yea, and she proceed to go on and on about how I shouldn’t be eating that candy bar. I told her not that it was any of her business but my blood sugar was low. She said “I don’t care! That’s like poison for you! Don’t you have any apples?” She just would not stop. Told me I must not want to be around to watch my kids grow up, etc etc. I mean it went on for over 15 minutes. It was unbelievable and I have not talked to them since.


@Baddog40 It’s irritating isn’t it? i had an acquaintance who was a chiro and before that a RN, that when I told her I was type 1 she tried to tell me I could take an herb and get better, that she had a friend do so. Well they can help a type 2 and I’m a firm believer in herbs, but in a type 1’s case they can’t “cure” a type 1. I asked her if her friend was a type 1 or or type 2 and she said type 2 and I told her it’s not the same thing, it won’t work I’m a type 1, and her reply was but you didn’t get it as a kid so you can reverse it. No matter how much I tried to explain that I’m a type 1, that people get type 1 as an adult, she just kept going on it wouldn’t hurt to try it. Arrgh!!! This was only about 2 years ago!


I love it when people say, “it couldn’t hurt to try.” Yes, it totally could hurt to try! Adding new things without knowing how they affect your specific blood sugar could cause dangerous low blood sugar, or leave you high for hours, depending. This disease is so complicated that adding new, unknown variables to satisfy other people’s curiosity is a fool’s mission. Its really hard to.convey that sometimes.


Ask these “experts” questions and let them dig themselves into a hole !!


Ritalin (and Adderall) logic: An imaginary conversation

  1. What do psychoactive drugs do?
    A: They change brain chemistry.

  2. Why do you want to change the brain chemistry of small children?
    A: Their brain chemistry is flawed.

  3. What biologically based test do you use to determine that this is so?
    A: We do not use such tests.

  4. Why not?
    A: There are no valid tests available.

  5. How then do you diagnose and prescribe?
    A: We use behavioral tests.

  6. Are you saying that merely by observing a child’s behavior you can tell exactly what problems he has with his or her brain chemistry and then prescribe the correct substance in the precise dose needed to correct it?
    A: That’s the theory.

  7. Why do you suggest to some parents that they give their children a vacation from these drugs on the weekends and on holidays, including summer vacation?
    A: These children have their biggest problems in the school environment.

  8. Are you suggesting that the brain chemistry of these children is different on the weekend than it is Monday through Friday?
    A: The problems are often more acute in the school environment.

  9. Why do you think it is that countries with better health care systems and longer life spans than ours (Japan, Sweden, and Switzerland, for example) prescribe almost no Ritalin or Adderall for their children and that the US and Canada consume over 85% of the world’s supply of these drugs?
    A: They are not as advanced as we are in the diagnosis and treatment of ADD and ADHD as we are.

  10. Since you have no biologically based test for the drugs you are prescribing and there is no scientifically valid evidence that proves these drugs are effective or even safe, how can you claim that your science on this subject is superior?

A: I’m an expert. How dare you question me? You are obviously anti-child and anti-progress. This interview is over.

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Who wants to make a Q&A for people who think they know all about diabetes ?

We could have fun with this.


just to play devils advocate here - I get what your saying and you are mostly right. But, I did have a friend in college for whom adderall absolutely saved him. He never would have graduated college or been able to work a job without it. I knew him before the adderall and after. Before, he couldn’t concentrate long enough to intake a whole sentence. He was extremely difficult to communicate with. Just had to repeat things again and again until he was able to intake all the parts of the sentence. He was a smart guy, just had the worst (and probably only) case of ADHD that I have ever seen.

He wanted to be a pilot because his dad was one. After he started meds, he would be prohibited from flying a plane. But, he could carry on conversations and got a great job at the airport. He was still the same guy, just a better version of himself. He struggled a lot less and is much happier. People adore him. He is a manager and has a girl friend and a huge circle of friends. He gets to travel all over the place with his friends from the airport because they get free plane tickets. He has offered me his employee tickets several times, but I don’t need. Nicest guy that you could ever meet.

There are good stories out there.

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It’s like this idea is locked into peoples’ DNA or something, it’s so hard to shift. Even medical doctors.

I used to work in a place that sold parts for Brit sports cars. In moments of high frustration, I learned you could go into the muffler dept, pick one up and scream into it as loud as you like and it wouldn’t make any perceptible sound whatsoever. Feels kinda like that.