Saturday, May 07, 2011

Diabetic abuse

I truly wish some professional non-diabetic would take this on as a case study.  But I wonder if a diabetic and their families would acknowledge it as a whole.

Here's what I'm thinking.

Most women/wives who are abused deny that they are abused.  Verbal abuse is the use of words that threaten, harshly criticize, ridicule, or harass a person.  It's a pattern of behavior that can seriously interfere with one's positive emotional development and can lead to significant detriment to one's self-esteem, emotional well-being, and physical state.  It has been beenfurther described as an ongoingemotional environment organized by the abuser or the purpose of control.

Emotional abuse - any kind of abuse that is not physical. It can includ constant criticism, intimidation, manipulation, refusal to ever be pleased.  Just google the terms and see what you come up with.

I found this discussion thread and know there are many more of us out there.
and this article about mood swings in men with diabetes.

You can read about anger issues, personality changes, relationship problems and more in discussion threads here

Some days, the more I read, the more "sick-to-my-stomach" I become.  It hurts to rehash what I go through over and over in my own life.

Some days, I am struggling to keep his depression from becoming my depression. And I can barely function.  Let alone try to help someone else.  This is not abuse.  This is me allowing his depression to enter my emotional state.

Some days, his verbal onslaught sends me deep into a shell and no one can reach down and help me up.  That IS verbal abuse towards me.

Some days, I want to flee.  To just run away from everything.  This could be related to abuse, but more likely is related to how I handle the stress of living with a non-compliant diabetic.

Some days, I want to fight.  Fight for his life.  Fight for the life we used to have.  Fight for the life I had before I married him.  Fight him to get him to take better care of himself.  Again, not abuse, but self-imposed reaction to whatever the situation is.

Some days, I spend my entire day/week/month in denial.   Could be related to abuse.  Could be just my way of dealing with his diabetes.

I don't think I'm in denial about diabetic abuse.  It is abuse rendered by the diabetic towards their spouse, children, loved ones.  And it has the very same impact/issues as any other type of abuse.  Even if the diabetic does not remember what he said or did.  Verbal and/or emotional abuse can lead to physical abuse.  Regardless of whether the person is a diabetic or not.    It is when he tries to make me feel less than I am.  It is when he tries verbally to control me or manipulate me.  And I am accutely aware of when he tries to do that and simply address it immediately and tell him that it has to stop, that he does not have the right to verbally abuse me.  And yes, I use those exact words.

No one, diabetic or not, has the right to abuse another person.  And no one needs to allow themselves to be abused by another person.  It really is that simple.

In many abuse situations, the person being abused will not step forward, will not seek help, doesn't understand or know that they are being abused.  They feel that it is all their fault and if they mend their ways, it will stop.

So rule number one for a diabetic spouse.  If he goes into a low and starts verbally abusing you, I think you have 2 options.  1) inform him that he does not have the right to speak to you in that manner and 2) inform him that if it continues, you will leave until he has had time to realize just how valuable you are in his life.  And then if he continues, calmly walk away.

It has worked for me numerous times.  Keep in mind that if my husband ever indicated he was going to become violent in any manner, I would immediately call 911.  After all, my safety, my physical, emotional and mental health are critically important if I am to remain his primary caregiver.


Lilly said...

Thank you for these links. Obviously, we are not alone! Also for listing your "rules," which are always good to remember and act on in times of high-stress, abusive episodes.

I too have wished someone would do a well-documented study of this, but also have to wonder if everyone surveyed from diabetic families would be totally honest. I think that we are the "lucky" ones, as at least we are willing to call it abuse, and realize that it is not our fault. I shudder to think what it must be like for the spouse who doesn't "get" this.

Sandy said... hubby has never become violent in his lows per say but when he gets angry and yells, I out the soda in his hand, makes sure he has drank some and then I walk to the other room. I haven't have to do this to many times, as I noticed my attitude during a long reflects on his. If I stay calm, he also normally does...I think I am lucky though. He is usually pretty good. Great post!

sar said...

You said it all and so well.

They have no excuse especially if their rage is brought on by their lack of compliance.

Anonymous said...

you are brilliant, your comments are right on target....

breezysummerday said...

oh my lord! You've said what I've never been able to verbalize. I've been bouncing like a ping pong ball for years: fighting for his life...then dreading living with him. What the hell do I do?
Renal failure happened in '08. Now I have educated myself to help him. And he's still not happy. It's .......God grant me the strength...

Lilly said...

To breezysummerday:

I was a living kidney donor for my husband about 9 years ago. Check my blog in the next couple of days for the story on the surgery, and the complications I had as a donor. It is probably time to tell this story!


Annie Bresnahan said...

I have reached a point in my 6 year relationship with someone who has type 1 and I can't stand it anymore. Most of the time when he gets verbally abusive he says its because he is high or in some cases low. Is it just an excuse or is this ligit? I would hope that he is not using this as an excuse but I cant stand his usual statement anymore : " you know how I get when my blood sugar is high. How come you are being so sensitive."?
This is all hard to explain in one blurb but I have been so patient, and even if I need to be more understanding to his Highs and lows I cant say it doesn't hurt and weigh on my emotions.