Today, in response to spending the day fighting traffic for yet another installment of “how long will I be in the waiting room?” at the doctor’s office, I’m revisiting a post from 2012 about love, PWDs, and permission. It still blows my mind that this book was published, and I remain appreciative of how far we’ve come.
See also: eff off, Morris Fishbein, MD.
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In Austin two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to finally meet Josiah Hammer (known affectionately across the world as “The Hammer”), who works at Dexcom and is my direct point of abuse contact at Dexcom for when I screw things up. [Editor’s note: Hammer is no longer at Dexcom but is now over at Tandem, which is half the reason why I wanted to switch to Tandem because Hammer is majorly awesome.]
During the course of an email exchange, The Hammer sent me a page from an old health book that he found – the Modern Home Medical Adviser: Your Health and How To Preserve It (edited by Morris Fishbein, MD [who, according to many online sources that may be less-than-credible-but-still-cracked-me-up said that Fishbein was originally aiming to be a clown, but realized there was more money in medicine], published in 1942) which included a chart, of sorts, dictating who should shag whom.
Of course. Because all decisions of love are made with diabetes in mind. There’s something about this chart that makes me both roll my eyes and then picture a diabetes Punnett’s Square. Love is a tangled web as it is – plotting decisions against a diabetes graph makes things even more complicated. Thankfully, good ol’ Morris was there to help people sort out who they should be smooching on. (/sarcasm.)
This book also featured “blameful” and “blameless” diabetes, helping to drive home the misconception that type 2 diabetes is something people should be beaten with a stick for having and that type 1 is the result of hereditary circumstances (just like in my case, where I”m the only diabetic in my entire family, of any kind … /sarcasm once again).
Sometimes I look at how diabetes is currently portrayed in books, television, and other media outlets, and I’m frustrated. It’s a potluck of misconceptions, facts, and always colored by opinion, but it is slowly becoming more accurate, and more “real.” People are learning about all different kinds of diabetes and the varying treatments, and the discussion about diabetes entering the mainstream is increasingly credible. But iooking back at the so-called “medical books” from the early 1940s has blown my mind in a way that Steel Magnolias never will.
We have come a long, long way. And I’m grateful for that.