I've just started at a new job and I'm not sure how to break the ice about my diabetes to the people around me and my bosses. I cannot feel highs or lows at all and so I frequently require help or become sick/pass out rather suddenly. I've been working there for about a week and no one knows yet because I'm not sure how to bring it up naturally...but today I started getting sick and wasn't able to do as much work as I would've liked for an afternoon. I'm worried I might have a really severe low and no one would understand what's going on.
I would like people to know, but I'm still new and I don't want anyone to think it was a mistake hiring the "sick girl". I also don't want to scare the people sitting around me by telling them I might pass out at any second or need help! Is there a tactful way of doing this? Should I tell just my bosses or just the people around me or both? Tell them differently or the same way or how? I've got a meeting coming up with my manager this Friday where he checks up on my progress and I figure I could tell him then, but I'm not sure how to do it without sounding like "woops I forgot to mention this while we were interviewing!"
Well, there are, of course, many different ways to approach this. I tend not to advertise the fact that I am T1. I would never send out an email like Jackie did. But, I also don't try to hide it. However, I do have the luxury of not being overly sensitive to highs and lows (i.e. I have never passed out *KNOCK ON WOOD*... that's not to say I don't feel sick with highs and shaky/disoriented with lows), so perhaps I have never felt that I *had* to tell anyone. I have a test kit at work and don't try to hide when I use it. I also have a jar of glucose tablets and snacks there. Also, because it is better to be safe than sorry, I did tell my boss but I did it in a very off-hand way. I was out for lunch with my boss and a co-worker. I gave myself a bolus and just mentioned to them that I wasn't being rude - I wasn't checking my cell phone or anything - but that I was giving myself insulin. Because I didn't make a big deal out of it, they didn't either.
I find taking a shot, testing, or bolusing in front of everyone is a good way to break the ice. We T1's have no right to complain about ignorant comments from non Ds if we spend our lives keeping it a secret.
It can also work to your advantage. They may be afraid to fire you after you tell them, for fear of appearing discriminatory.