Wednesday, October 14, 2009

What's In A Name?

When babies are born, pets adopted, and businesses formed; a lot of emphasis is put on choosing a name. Often names are chosen based on family lineage, current media darlings, sports stars, description of services offered, etc.

I want to address a name that many people are given and sadly they many accept that name and let it define their lives or being. In the case of a family name, that may be acceptable; but not in this case. What’s the name you ask? It’s DIABETIC.

Many people are diagnosed each year with Type I or Type II diabetes. In most circles, they are immediately given the DIABETIC label. There aren’t many other, if hardly any, diseases which use the disease name and “ic” to label the person. You don’t hear of “canceratics”, “lymphomatics”, etc. Why diabetes? I don’t really know, but I can tell you I don’t like it.

The “D” word is not used in our household. If you don’t know, Momma Squire & I’s youngest son, Kyle, was diagnosed with Type I diabetes when he was 18 months old. Early on, I heard other parents talking about the use of the “D” word and how they don’t like it. After pondering on it, I finally figured it out about a year later why I don’t like it. Using it makes one prematurely define Kyle. It makes the disease front and center over all other things Kyle. Yes, diabetes does require a lot of effort and care, but Kyle is much more than his diabetes. We have tried to instill in him this thought – “you have diabetes, it doesn’t have you.” If he lets this disease define him, it has won.  My baby is more than diabetes.  I won't let him forget that.

What’s my point in this rant/blog? I don’t know. Maybe I can get one person to say “he/she has diabetes” vs. “He's DIABETIC”. Maybe I can get you to think about labeling people without knowing the person. 

Is there a term that you have let define you?

Zach, a Tennessee Squire


  1. That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet.

  2. good point the same could be said by the labels "divorced" or "widowed", they should be "single." It is something that happened to the person, not who the person is.