Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Chicken or the Egg: A Diabetes Debate

You know just after you've taken your first course in a subject and are convinced that you know it all?

Yeah, you could say I'm SOOO at that place. (best Patrick Dempsey impersonation)

So, in psych class we've been rehashing all the major theorists + boring doesn't begin to do justice to the term. The summer course was so packed, so intense, that I'm remembering all this stuff and listening to it again is like regurgitating a fine steak.(great the first time, NOT great the 2nd time) I like psych, I'm probably going to end up a psychiatric pediatric nurse at this rate. I am also ready to move beyond the basics- start solving the world's problems or at least understand them better.

But the one thing the prof said caught my attention, the issue of which comes first- the urge to change behavior(feelings) or the behavior itself. I can see both sides, in the tv show What not to Wear they give the contestants a $5,000 wardrobe makeover,new hair style, makeup- fixing the behavior first, and then the feelings of self confidence + initiative catch up.

And then diabetes(or another chronic disease) comes into the picture and things get so blurry you're not sure which theory is right. If the behavior comes first, you might as well forget about it because someone has to want to change. And if feelings come first, past good disease management doesn't necessarily have a positive impact if you're in that blue funk right now. Learned behavior doesn't mean you'll just automatically keep repeating it, regardless of how you feel. And doing it, does not make one happy about doing it. (it's usually the opposite)

I guess it's like Joe S. said in his FFL discussion group...feelings are important, but you can't run your management off them. It's non negotiable, diabetes management. You might displace your feelings of anger and non compliance into being the longest haired, most tattooed individual in your neighborhood but you can't cope with it by ignoring your disease. It has consequences far beyond one's own life- the family,friends, national and global impact of soaring health care costs. Being angry at diabetes is perfectly acceptable, learning how to channel that anger into a more productive end product is the challenge.
What are you guys thoughts on this?
(logic was never my strong point, these are just my weird ramblings)

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