“I Have Diabetes.”

In this episode of True Life “I have Diabetes”, three individuals are documented about their lives and how having diabetes affects them daily. Each person in this documentary has their own separate problems to deal with on top of suffering from diabetes. Kristyn has horrible debt because of all the expenses that are associated with having chronic diabetes and because she can’t afford to live alone and pay for medical expenses, she lives at home with her parents. Matt’s problems arise because he is also a guy who likes to drink a lot, and this causes many problems with his diabetes. Lastly, Jen is pregnant and deals with the problem of trying to eat healthier and ignoring her cravings.


I believe that even though all three individual are involved with the chaos narrative, Matt stands out the most to me. With his continuing of drinking even after knowing how it affects his health I feel that he believes that because his illness is chronic already, it can’t get any worse. Even after being told the issues from his doctor, he continued to put his life in jeopardy and this could stem from social suffering as well as frustration.


Quest narrative is also a part of all of these individual cases because of the self changing improvements that are resulting in these tough times. They are being challenged in ways that affect their personal and social lives. In the end with a quest narrative, all are involved in self reflection and self change. This narrative allows us as viewers to see the trials and tribulations that make each of these people better in the end; whether it’s physically or mentally.


Illness narratives can be helpful to all parties involved in certain health diagnosis because they allow you to be able to pinpoint the problems and ways to fix them. For example, the way the sick person handles their illness allows their family to help them in areas that they lack in dealing with it. This could be financially, emotionally, or spiritually. All parties are involved in the healing process, which I think is very important and beneficial.

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. saarine3 says:

    The video i watched was a very different experience from the one you described, in that Molly is still a little girl whose mother seems to be taking the full brunt of the disease. You explained that the people in the show were examples of chaos theory and I can see why. Matt seems almost like he has a death wish. Molly on the other hand I believe is on the quest narrative in that she believes that one day there will be a cure. There situations are allot different from hers in that she is still so young so her parents take care of her and pay for all her medication. I don’t think that in mollies case she is using the disease as an excuse to gain advantages from people, rather she tries to act as normal as possible and just be a normal kid. This is similar to Matt in a way, but she does it in a safe way that doesn’t in danger her life. Again molly has a really big support team so I feel that her family always being there for her are a huge influence on the way that she views her disease and how to manage it. All and all the two experiences have their similarities as well as differences.

    Living with Diabetes: Molly. Perf. Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. YouTube. N.p., 7 Dec. 2012. Web. .

  2. christopher reed says:

    Quest narrative is definitely exemplified by the girl in the video I watched. She is a very driven individual who did not want to let her disease slow her down, so she adapted to her new situation quickly and has taken full responsibility for her treatment. There are many factors that could have made her experience different. First, she is a child. She has the support of her family and friends if she needs it. Second, the family seemed to be well off. Her home was nice and they did not seem like they were having trouble paying for therapy. At least there was no mention of this in the interview. Fourth, there were no other conflicting medical conditions. A combination of diabetes and alcoholism can be deadly. I have seen it kill people at my summer job in Pine Ridge, South Dakota. Alcoholism is a tough addiction to break, but effective diabetes treatments require you to change your diet. If you can’t, both conditions will worsen. The same goes for the pregnant lady who may crave different foods. I would say that this situation is not as serious as an actual addiction but it can certainly complicate your life and make the condition all the more uncomfortable.

    Johnson & Johnson. “11 Year-Old Irish Step Dancer – With Type 1 Diabetes”. Mar 15, 2012

  3. Megan Bergeron says:

    I found an illness narrative of a teenager named Erika who has the same medical condition as Kristyn, Matt and Jen, diabetes (http://kidshealth.org/teen/diseases_conditions/growth/diabetes_erika.html). I think that Erika’s experience is different than that of Kristyn, Matt and Jen. Although they have the same medical condition, their experiences vary greatly. Erika suffers from juvenile diabetes. She was diagnosed when she was 12. At first Erika was embarrassed and slightly intimidated by her medical condition. She did not want anyone knowing, especially at school. Having diabetes put limits on her life. She was not allowed to have sleepovers until she was a sophomore in high school. Erika admits that diabetes could make dating a little difficult, but if you find the right person they will, and should, be willing to help you manage their diabetes. Over the years Erika has learned to manage and embrace diabetes. She wears an insulin pump with plenty of accessories and attends camps with kids just like her. She wants to help other people that have diabetes. By having the same illness as someone you are helping you can better understand their feelings, thoughts and concerns. Erika believes that this medical condition has helped her grow.

    Dowshen, Steven. “Diabetes: Erika’s Story.” KidsHealth – the Web’s most visited site about children’s health. http://kidshealth.org/teen/diseases_conditions/growth/diabetes_erika.html (accessed July 28, 2014).

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