July 19, 2010
What movement? You ask. The movement here at DiabetesSisters that is fired up about serving women with diabetes around the world! That’s right! We’re the movement that says, “Diabetes IS different for women than it is for men and these differences need to be recognized and researched!” We are the grassroots movement that has women around the US excited about hosting PODS meetings in their local area, enthusiastic about organizing Quarterly Gatherings in their city, passionate about serving on a planning committee for one of our upcoming conferences, fervently sharing their lives through weekly blogs, actively using their professional training to answer questions posed by other women with diabetes, and talking energetically about DiabetesSisters to anyone who will listen! Are you one of these vibrant women who is rolling up her sleeves to help women with diabetes? If so, I applaud you! Thank you for taking time to make a difference that will impact your peers and you, not to mention future generations of women that are diagnosed with diabetes.
If you are a woman with diabetes, it doesn’t have to be explained that diabetes IS different for women. We are ‘wired’ differently from men which naturally makes us a bit more expressive with our emotions. With diabetes, this difference translates into women preferring to share issues and get support from those who understand their plight. On the negative side, this higher level of emotion when coping with chronic illness results in higher levels of depression, eating disorders, and body image issues. This coping style is much different from men’s response to a chronic illness. Most often, men turn inward and look for ways to solve their issues without “asking for help” -- which would be viewed as a sign of weakness. Women with diabetes must also deal with the fluctuating hormones of puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause, which cause erratic blood sugars. Nope, men don’t have to deal with the frustrating combination of hormones and diabetes—EVER! (That is, unless they are married to a woman with diabetes!) Women with diabetes are also at higher risk for some deadly health conditions, like cardiovascular disease and diabetic ketoacidosis. Unfortunately, these things aren’t discussed very often. And that’s why we’re here! Through the grassroots movement at DiabetesSisters, we will reach women with diabetes, teach women how to live happy, healthy lives with diabetes, and release them back into their own communities to positively impact those around them. Don’t you want to be a part of this exciting movement? Since the 2010 Weekend for Women Conference, we have dramatically gained traction. More and more women, professionals, and members of the media are visiting us to hear more about what we are doing! In fact, we are planning our 2011 Conference Series NOW. If you are located in/near Raleigh, NC or San Diego, CA, and would like to serve on the planning committee for one of the conferences in these cities, now is the time to let us know. Fill out a volunteer form here: http://www.diabetessisters.org/get-involved/volunteer or simply send an email to Tanya, our Volunteer Coordinator, at Tanya@diabetessisters.org. We have lots of other opportunities for you to join the movement and make your mark on the world- Blogger, Expert Column Manager, PODS Coordinators, Quarterly Gathering Coordinators, Newsletter Coordinators, Administrative Assistant, and many more. All we ask for is committed, dependable, passionate people (men and women, with and without diabetes) who want to be a part of SOMETHING BIG!