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Silly Questions

© 2013 Scott Strange, Strangely Diabetic and

I had an eye appointment the other day and as the nurse was taking vitals as such, one of the questions she asked was “What’s was the range of your glucose readings in the last 30 days?”

I hate questions like that. Personally, I really think that question is pretty much meaningless in the Type 1 world.  In 30 days, my glucose may go from 40 to 400 despite my best efforts.

So I said “oh, probably 40 to 400” and got a head shake at “how bad” those numbers were. It just irritated me & made me feel defensive so I said that my last A1c was X.X so my endo and I are happy with that. I also mentioned that there were things that can happen that are not entirely under my control.  Things like the 15 or so different processes in your body that can affect glucose readings, only 3 or 4 of which I can really influence. Bad site, miscount carbs, hot weather and skunky insulin, WTF days… hell, just being human

You know what the nurse wrote in my record?  

Type 1 diabetic, blood sugars fluctuate quite a bit per pt “as a type one diabetic” blood sugars “are not under our control”.

Reading that, it seems like I am not even trying. JFC, I get tired of that crap. The uninitiated expect so much without even realizing it. I have plenty of self-esteem issues all on my own, I really don’t need any help from any one else, thank you very much.

Listen, I’m about worn smooth at the moment. I try really hard to just let people do their jobs as I know they don’t write these questions. I just don’t think I’m going to answer it next time.  I’m sure, they will pressure me to. I think I’ll just say:

That’s really a silly question, almost meaningless for a Type 1. The last 2 times I’ve answered it? I’ve gotten the “wow those aren’t good numbers” reaction from you guys. I’m just not going to answer it today because judging me on that basis is insulting.

 © 2013 Scott Strange, Strangely Diabetic and

  • scully

    I totally would have lost my shit.

  • Sean

    For next time, consider responding to that question with this: “How will my answer to your question affect the care I receive from you and your team here?”

  • I hate those questions as well. I’ve started just saying, “My average is (whatever the eag for the a1c is)” and not giving a range. It’s not worth the headache or judgement.

    I also hate that the dumb lady at my ophthalmologist’s office calls my dilated eye exam a “diabetic exam.”

    • Hmmm… I call it a ‘diabetic exam’ myself, not sure what else I would say

  • Mike Hoskins

    Thanks for the post, Scott. I feel the same way. Not only from docs and medical folk, though – from other T1 PWDs, too. Can’t stand it when I talk about those same ranges, and get “OMG” gasps and lectures from fellow Type 1s who claim to rarely deviate from 70-140. Annoys the crap out of me, being lectured by these so-called “perfect” diabetics who feel the need to judge. I get it; I don’t do a lot of D-management the way I should, but it’s so frustrating to try so hard to be in-range sometimes and not be able to.

    • I know what you mean but I guess we should be glad someone is out there being “perfect” to remind us how lazy and inattentive we are

  • Katie

    I never answer that question. I started asking, “why is that information helpful and how would you change the care you’re about to provide based on the answer I give you?” This is answered with a “errr, ummm” and we move on.

  • Colleen

    I like Katie’s answer! I don’t think I’ll answer that one anymore, either.

  • Mike Durbin

    My all-time favorite question that I get from my primary care doctor is: “What happened to cause these numbers?” My response: “Life!”

    • I especially like the ones where they pull one number out of a log from a couple of weeks ago. Seriously? Hell I can’t remember what I had for breakfast most days

  • Sara

    Is it bad that I’ve said “tell me how much you know about diabetes first” before answering questions like that.

  • Bravo!! I agree 100% and think you are completely justified to decline answering that question next time.

  • Carol, that’s a good description in your post: “fluid” kind of sums up how random it seems at times

  • Twice Diabetes

    Exactly! I have a whole blog post of stupid questions, it used to be “how are your sugars?” to which I say “they have their ups and downs” and yes they are now asking “what do your sugars range between?” supposed to be more specific. I just switch off when somebody asks me that because it shows their complete ignorance of type 1 diabetes.

  • Matthew Deets

    When I’m faced with stupid questions that that, I just laugh hysterically and point…. has worked for me. Besides that, diabetes related eye complications?! bwhaaaa…. #makessenseifyouknowme