I truly admire the fact that the DOC or Diabetes Online Community provides so many people with this feeling that their not alone- such a valuable thing. There are people in the DOC however, who feel alone. Lots of them. Any community out there can have elements like that of a High School where the kids that have bonded hang out, support each other publicly, have a large voice, and own the right gadgets. They don’t necessarily pay much attention to those who are more quiet or perhaps have been in the background for a while or are simply different and linger just outside the realm of the community.
Well, I’m typically fine with feeling alone, although I’ve been catching a lot of comments in the DOC environment lately and I’ve noticed that many are lonely and not liking it. I’m very different from most people I know so that probably has most to do with how I feel. Yet, feeling isolated isn’t fun for anyone. This is the sentiment many others are expressing out there. Part of me wants to find a way to turn some focus to helping those who maybe don’t have computers/internet connections at home, who don’t think they write well (probably the math wizards), or those who don’t have the confidence to post their thoughts, feelings, and opinions online-yet who desperately seek support of some kind.
I don’t quite know a way of doing this yet. This site now gets thousands of visits a week and very few comments and that is fine with me. I just hope people are getting something out of what I’m writing. I always knew I was an “advocate” because I’m not able to shut up when I have a strong opinion in mind. And my thoughts tend to linger on the subject of people and their rights and their wellbeing so I hope that makes me somewhat helpful in the DOC.
With this post, I hope to encourage those of you who do have the platform and confidence and writing skills to be open to figuring out ways to support the underdog or the forgotten one, or those who seem to be hiding a bit. I understand there is this thing about “survival of the fittest” and whoever wants to join in online is allowed to do so. Thing is, many people have certain limitations (shyness perhaps?) and diabetes can often weaken some of the fittest out there anyway.
And those of you who feel alone or ignored and who feel like you aren’t welcome by the DOC, I hope you’ll find a way to jump in or take part or even heck, start your own support group. In time, you’ll feel more comfortable and included.
And if anyone ever wants to email me, I keep things confidential unless permitted otherwise and I won’t ignore your emails, I promise. It’s happened to me plenty and it’s not a good feeling when so much great support is spoken of.
And if you are someone who needs a little push, a little help to start your own diabetes blog, stay tuned for my free How to Start A Diabetes Blog Series. It may be all you need to go ahead and let your voice be heard.
Much love to all the DOC and those just outside…