The Power of Shame

I originally posted this blog on [] on July 7, 2015

I’ve written before about the shame I used to feel about having survived so long with Type 1 diabetes. Surviving while basically ignoring it for 4 decades. Surviving while so many didn’t or who’ve developed complications and worked so much harder at it than I did. But that is a personal shame, one that I put on myself.

The one I want to talk about today is a shame that people seem to inflict shame upon others without second thought. And I will personally accept the thoughts that this post itself is shaming. But guess what, I don’t care. No type of political correctness can excuse what happened. Several other bloggers have written about the Cross Fit debacle, so I’m not going to focus on it.

Instead this is about a second debacle then devolved into a second debacle where many Type 1 diabetics/caregivers actually joined forces with Cross Fit and started shaming the Type 2 community, which is part of my community of diabetics. That last statement is not because I am a double diabetic, type 1 since 1970 and being treated for Type 2 since 2008. It is a part of my overall health just like Type 1, depression, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, essential tremors and a humble-yet-always-correct-opinion. It was shaming, shaming someone because of their health.

It made me embarrassed for our entire community.

How many caregivers rebel against uneducated comments about “mommy must have given that poor child too much sugar”? The exact message cross fit fired you up about in the first place? Well, you did the exact same goddamn thing to the Type 2 community and you should be ashamed of that. You know who you are, don’t bother trying to justify your behavior. There is no excuse for bullying.

There was another example of this very recently, Jim Carey’s response to California’s recent legislation on vaccinations (legislation I happen to agree with) where he shamed parents of any child with autism who had vaccinations as a child. He blamed the parents for their child’s health, in effect saying they caused their child to have autism.

T1 folks? Paying attention? Would you accept someone saying you caused your child’s diabetes? There is really no difference between that and shaming the T2 community and blaming the person for having T2.

Yes the person, did you forget there is a person in the picture there?

But do you know what is really sad? The effect that those types of comments can have. People are already afraid to discuss their health since our culture is so quick to stigmatized and marginalize anyone considered “vulnerable” or “weak”. There are always playground bullies and the Internet is the biggest playground ever.

People become afraid to seek peer support, the very support we all extol as being so critical and a crucial part of any treatment regimen. Diabetes and autism are not the only places this happens. I’ve heard comments from someone I’ve always considered, and still do, as an
incredible healthcare advocate about not having any sympathy for lung cancer patients. Are these people simply not worth the same compassion that people with other health conditions have? What’s the difference between lung cancer and Type 2 diabetes in that context? How about cancer and Type 1? Or cancer and depression?


How about mental health? The stigma says I’m weak. The roadblocks in finding treatment say I’m not worthy of getting help. And those stigmas and roadblocks apply to any health condition.

Any. Of. Them.

You want to really improve health? Want to see lower, honest costs? Then help people find the care they need to be healthy and stop shaming people for bring human. Guess what?

I am a clinically depressed, Type 2 diabetic.

Think I’m not worth it?

Think it’s all my fault, that I chose this?

Think I’m weak?

Think patients are weak?

Bring it.


It isn’t always clear but Scott is a very long time member here and his words are his own. If you go over to Scott’s blog (which I recommend you do) you will see that these are his own words. I thank Scott for speaking so openly about his struggle with insulin resistance. I know I struggle with insulin resistance and it just makes things even harder.


Hi there, yes these words are mine


[quote=“Scott6, post:1, topic:47207, full:true”]
The one I want to talk about today is a shame that people seem to inflict shame upon others without second thought. And I will personally accept the thoughts that this post itself is shaming. But guess what, I don’t care.[/quote]Guess what, I don’t care either really except that I am sick of the Cross Fit debacle and how the diabetics reacted over it…without ever really knowing WHY the thing started. You say you are not going to focus on it, yet your post totally uses it to describe the shame and then goes on to shaming others. It’s a blogaganza - Shameful indeed!

I am ever fascinated by comments like “There are always playground bullies and the Internet is the biggest playground ever.” It’s true of course, but when the bullies are the high and mighty know it all bloggers, it paints a new definition of bully for me.

I hope the shame you want to spread and discuss can be put away at last. And please do not feel embarrassed for me or bundle me into the groups of “people” you talk about here. I’ve been a member of the DOC for a long time and the most shameful stuff I ever get to read is in the DOC. Guess what? Maybe I’m just one of the lucky ones, I don’t walk with shame, or feel vulnerable or weak and never have.

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I got flagged for being “offensive”, just for asking if the entire post was a quote or if the OP had added their own words at the bottom??? Seriously? That was an honest question, as I saw no quote marks. I was just curious. ALSO, I had NO IDEA the (entire) post was written BY THE OP. Which is why I asked.

It’s generally considered rude to capitalize entire words… That is known as “yelling” in written dialogue, and people do get upset by it and might interpret the spirit of a statement entirely differently when you say

Did YOU write ANY of this? Or is it ALL a quote?


Did you write any of this? Or is it all a quote?

See what I mean? SEE WHAT I MEAN?

Yes to clarify I think that is silly, but it is the world we live in when we type our thoughts instead of speak them.

I don’t capitalize entire passages. Just words here and there because many sites don’t have BOLD, so it’s a habit to quickly emphasize a word here and there. and again, the CONTENT of my deleted post was totally innocent and was completely misconstrued and therefore unilaterally deleted. I consider that action rude.

BTW, I capitalized just 3 words in the hidden post. What a crime!!

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This site does have BOLD, though. And italic, too! I had to sit on my own hands to keep from yelling in my reply to the OP - LOL!!

I know it has it, but I am on so many sites that CAPS are the only way to accentuate a word. Does no one understand my point?? If bold was available everywhere I go, I would use that as the first choice.

Oh, and further, it has been years since anyone has complained. I think I hear someone gripe about every 2 years, on average, about my intermittent CAPS. I never cap an entire post.

When I look at the OP, at the top of it, it appears written by a T1.

“I’ve written before about the shame I used to feel about having survived so long with Type 1 diabetes”

Near the end it seems to be written by a T2.
“I am a clinically depressed, Type 2 diabetic.”

Hence my wondering where the quoting ends.

Anyone get my curiosity about how much was quoted in the OP?

@Scott6, that it’s Type 1 or 2 is not the issue for me. Scott, thank you for your support.

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its not an “issue” for me either!! It just confused me when I read it and that is why I wondered what he wrote and what someone else wrote as there were not quote marks. geez everytime I try to explain why I asked, more of you come in here with snide comments about what I was asking about.

I feel like Dr. Kimble in The Fugitive. On the run because he was incorrectly found guilty.

I didn’t do anything wrong and you all misinterpreted my first post in this thread.

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@phoenixbound, I believe that Scott considers himself a person with type 1 diabetes that’s complicated by insulin resistance, a hallmark of type 2 diabetes. I’ve had insulin resistance on top of my T1D but I never considered myself a “double diabetic.” I’m not sure that clinicians use that terminology but I get the intended meaning.

@Scott6, I understand your anger with T1Ds who choose to defend themselves at the expense of people with T2D. I agree with you, that’s not right. It reinforces the ignorant bias of the larger society to shame and blame people with T2D when none is deserved. I’ve read studies that suggest that obesity is an effect of T2D, not a cause. Scott, I share your view and concern. Thank you for posting it here.

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Interesting post. I’d like to see Scott, who I met in Vegas, come chat about it more, as I’d say it’s a deep and emotive post however I have to say that I am not generally shamed by much about diabetes. The T1/T2 Crossfit thing didn’t embarrass me either. I’m acquainted enough with Crossfit to have been comfortable gently making fun of some aspects of it long time before their recent entanglement with diabetes [not to get too into that but I don’t like the vast number of Crossfit fail videos posted by people who should be spotting instead of filming. I find that pretty disturbing…]

Anyway, as far as diabetes goes, I agree with Scott that it is important that T1 people be knowledgeable about the issue of T1 and T2 (plus, while we’re at it, LADA, MODY [#variantchart], Type G, reactive hypoglycemia and a whole bunch of issues that come up for “straight” people that may not have to do with my type of diabetes. The more you know, the better you will be able to both set the record straight and help our fellow travellers with endocrine issues manage our mutual role in society which, despite our exciting growth prospects, is still dominated by non-diabetes people.

I don’t want to speak for T2 as I’m not them but I have come to want to support them as they face many of the same struggles faced by T1, haggling for tests, haggling for supplies, haggling for support and haggling for respect, which they deserve. Knowing T2 is important before you say anything about it. The correct response to CrossFitGate (or the first lady, or CinnamonOkra salespeople…) isn’t “I’m not T2!” but “Do you know anything about T2?” It’s a good thing to say and doesn’t require that much work to learn and share about.

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Thanks Terrry. So it seems that the entirety of the OP was written by Scott. Because it states at the beginning that “this post initially appeared at…” I thought that some portion of the OP was a quote. However: 1) there are no quote marks, and 2) the first sentence mentions T1, and near the end of the post, is a reference to T2. I scanned the entire post for quotation marks, and finding none, gave up reading, as I didn’t know what was from Scott and what might be from another person. I had no way of knowing he wrote it all.

And I wish I knew who flagged me!

@Karen57 Hi, thanks for the comment! I have no qualms about chastising or shaming a group of people because of their behavior. There is a difference between shaming someone because of their health and shaming someone because of their behavior.

Also, I’m a bit curious about your statement

It’s true of course, but when the bullies are the high and mighty know it all bloggers, it paints a new definition of bully for me.

Are you saying that I shouldn’t have posted my opinion because I blog? Or are you considering me a bully because I did criticize and shame a group of people for their behavior? The main reason that I took this approach is (1) to make others aware of the potential hurt their actions cause, even when they feel it is for the benefit of someone they love. (2) People should feel ashamed of their behavior in this case.

This type of thing, as you yourself alluded to, is an ongoing issue within the DOC. I’ve seen a lot of these over the years and almost all of them have been started by a Type 1, often a newly diagnosed one who is struggling to understand what his life is really like now compared to what the all the wives-tales they’ve heard have said. Personally, I was diagnosed in 1970 and one of the first things I learned was that I’d go bling, lose a leg and die probably before I got to college.

@phoenixbound Hi, I didn’t take any offense at anything you said… first of all, you are right that I should have made it clear is was not a quote but a repost from my own blog. and B, A few capital letters don’t BOTHER me a bit

@Terry4 Obesity has been shown to be a symptom of T2 in a few studies in the past few years

@acidrock23 Nice to see you again, you know I’ve found adopting new dietary (I like lower carb/higher fat) habits to be incredibly difficult to stick with, esp when I have insulin as a crutch to help when I over do it.

@LInda_G Thanks Linda!


Thx, Scott! Seems others have taken up the cause to paint me as “offensive” for my first post when all I wanted to know was what portion of the OP was from you and what portion was from another. As you indicated earlier today, I’ve known for some time now that YOU wrote it all. :slight_smile: That didn’t stop my post from being labelled “offensive”. when I got the email from a mod, I was flabbergasted.

And sorry that all this commenting about my supposed “offensive” post has disrupted your thread. That’s not fair and I lay blame on all those who took it upon themselves to pile on.

Now that I know YOU wrote all of the OP, I’ll go back and read it completely.



OK, I read the entire post and see where you said you are a double diabetic. Because I initially skimmed, looking for quotation marks, I didn’t see much content.

I actually feel lucky to be a T1 because in MY mind, it’s easier to control (some days, I would disagree with myself :slight_smile: ) than T2 but after all these years I still don’t understand enough about T2 to know what it’s really like. In any event, I think it sucks that you have 2 kinds to contend with. I know ZILCH about the crossfit references, but that’s OK–no need to explain.

Do you take any meds for depression?

the only thing I might think of as “weak” is when someone gives up, like my neighbor, who died because he lived (and died) by the idea that “what I don’t know won’t hurt me”. Denial killed him…along with poor Kaiser care. I would have loved to seen him fight for his life, taking care of himself instead of drinking Cokes and bragging about it.

Take care!

LOL @phoenixbound …that was not a snide remark in my part…merely said it’s not an issue for ME. I was not referring to anyone else but myself. Calm down.