I had an appointment with my Endocrinologist last month, and I had a pretty confusing and unfortunate experience. Let me share it with you.
During my diabetes appointment, I saw an Endocrine fellow (a fellow is a doctor who is training to become an expert in a medical specialty) instead of my regular doctor.
I came to the appointment feeling VERY annoyed at my blood sugars. After the birth of my son in December, I’ve had a hard time getting my baseline blood sugar fixed (I’m using insulin). Everytime I’d get my blood sugars under control, my basal (baseline) insulin needs would change and my blood sugars would be all over the place again! I had quite a few blood sugars in the 200s and 300s and I was excited to meet with the doctor to get some help with my insulin dose. I do know how to adjust my insulin rates on my own, but I get burned out pretty quickly with my diabetes, and it’s sometimes nice to have a fresh pair of eyes looking at my blood sugar log.
During my appointment I expressed my disappointment about my blood sugars to the Endocrine fellow, who looked at my log for a few moments and said, “Well, this isn’t that bad. Lots of patients have blood sugars that are way worse than this.”
Maybe he thought he was complimenting me. Or maybe he was trying to make me feel better by comparing me to other patients. Either way, I was gravely disappointed. I felt like I came to my appointment looking for blood sugar help, and I ended up getting dismissed by the doctor because my blood sugars weren’t bad enough to be interesting to him.
Am I reading too much into this?
I’ve been the patient he is comparing me to. I’ve been “worse.” I’ve had blood sugars in the past that were completely off the charts, and I’ve had, in my life, some truly terrible A1Cs. And what I can say is that once you get to that point, once you become “worse,” you stop caring, because it is SO much easier to pretend like you’re not diabetic than it is to address the problem head-on. For me, at that time, knowing that my doctor thought of me as "worse" would have caused me to stop visiting him altogether. And now, having an apathetic doctor who is pleased with “good enough” as defined by his experience with other patients is the least helpful endo consultation I could have experienced.
It is my hope that my BootCamp for Betics offering will provide folks with the motivation they need to fix their blood sugars in a way that doctors can’t. But, how do I reach those people who, like me years ago, have basically given up? I’m looking for suggestions. Have you ever suffered diabetes burnout? What did you do to overcome it? Please, help me figure out how to get BootCamp for Betics in touch with those who really need it.
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With Diabetic Love,