Updated: Nov 16, 2021
Article in Issue 2 by Kristen Sinclair
Too many women and non-binary folk with invisible disability and chronic illness are penalised in work. Kristen Sinclair shares with us her experiences as a diabetic...
I am 23 and have been type 1 diabetic for 13 years. Throughout my student life, I worked part- time in the notoriously high- pressure retail and hospitality sectors. Throwing a disability into the mix only made life more challenging. Most disabled people are sadly used to ignorant comments made in passing, but one particular incident stuck with me.
Whilst on shift in a busy department store, I had taken a moment to test my blood sugar and eat a snack in the staff room after a rocky shift plagued with low blood sugar episodes. Feeling flustered from the drop in blood sugar and having already treated a previous episode on the same shift; my supervisor swung her head round the door and tutted. “Have you not got that under control yet?”
I was stunned. The ignorance to assume that diabetes is something that can ever be definitively ‘under control’ (and not something we diabetics spend our lives trying to do) and the suspicion that I was lying to take another break really hammered home the misconceptions that people have about the condition. This lack of understanding of its seriousness and the dismissiveness of this often invisible illness is dangerous.... Read the full article in Issue 2 of Conscious Being, page 38.