I wrote this for My Diabetes Secret, but I figure it’s worth sharing here, too, since I repost a lot of stuff from that blog. For context, I’m constantly thinking about how I can improve My Diabetes Secret and My Chronic Disease Secret. Simply being is not enough. There are better ways to connect people with the blog, each other, and if necessary the proper resources they need. Am I doing everything I can to serve whatever mission I have in my head with all this stuff? Probably not, but I’m going to keep working to make it better. I can promise that much.
I don’t usually treat this blog as a platform for my own words, but I have a few enhancements to share with all of you who have turned My Diabetes Secret into an incredible place to be open and honest about what it’s like to live with this disease.
First, and foremost. Here’s what’s not changing: This Blog. My Diabetes Secret will continue to be a place for you to anonymously share what you’re feeling and how you feel about your life with diabetes. This philosophy will never change.
As for the new, this is what I’ve got so far…
1. I’m going to make a stronger push to highlight the resources page. I’m sure this may come as a surprise to some of you, but I curated some general mental health and diabetes-specific resources in case this blog is not enough. It’s not perfect, and at times it feels like I’m putting responsibility on someone else, but for now it’s the best i can do for a blog whose primary point of being is an anonymous place for all.
2. To that end I will be adding a link to the resources page, and submission form as the ‘source’ for every secret that gets submitted. I read each one of the submissions before posting, so adding a bit of text will not be a big deal on my end, and it will help inform people who are new to this blog about what’s what.
3. Over the past few weeks I’ve been reading more and more submissions that amount to someone saying “My name is X, and I am here if you need to talk.” As great as this is, I have not published those posts because that moves away from the anonymity I’ve tried to maintain on this blog. I don’t want any submissions tied back to the people who sent them in. For the logged-in Tumblr users that submit secrets, I resubmit them myself as anonymous so there’s no way I could ever connect the dots.
But, I recognize the value in connecting with my peers living with diabetes and feel I would be doing a disservice to the diabetes community on Tumblr if I didn’t do my part to build something…more. Therefore, I will build out a separate page of Peer Resources listing every person with diabetes on Tumblr for you all to help find other people who know what it’s like. While I could go through the notes and grab everyone who has interacted with this blog, I want this to be a truly opt-in decision. So, if you want to be included in this Peer Resources list, please tell me. Tell me in a Fan Mail, or an Ask, or a Submission. I don’t care how you do it, so long as you explicitly state you want to be included on the Peer Resources list.
Once the initial group is large enough, I’ll publish the Peer Resources page and update it as regularly as needed.
My Diabetes Secret will always be a place for you to share what you’re feeling without the fear of stigma, or shame, or guilt. But I believe in the power of the diabetes community, and that these changes will help contribute to something more meaningful and worthwhile.
I welcome your feedback on this, and any other aspect of how I’m handling all of this.
Thanks again for your honesty.
Christopher Snider, PWD since 2002.