I believe illness narratives are actually very useful not only for the patient that is receiving treatment but also for the healthcare providers and friends and family of the patient. Illness narratives help people to really understand the overall impact and effects of certain illnesses. They help with understanding the effects on the patient but also on friends and family. The patient and healthcare providers work together by coming to a specific treatment plan according to the patient’s signs and symptoms.
For this week’s activity I chose to watch the “I Have Diabetes” episode of the show True Life. This episode followed three different people, each with their own specific issues and ways of dealing with their diabetes. One person was simply a college student who was trying to do just that, be a college student. Due to his diabetes, however, he had a hard time trying to stay healthy and keep track of his sugar levels while at the same time trying to drink and party. Another person we are introduced to is actually a young girl who is pregnant and develops gestational diabetes. She has to deal with her own health and illness while also trying to make sure that her baby stays healthy and that her illness doesn’t compromise the pregnancy. The last person is also a young woman in her mid 20s who is having trouble with her diabetes and trying to stay healthy but is affected by financial problems. She has multiple jobs and ends up moving back home in order to save money. All of these people are young and trying really hard to take another step forward to be healthy and manage their illness. Ultimately because of this I believe this is a quest narrative. It is sad but also empowering to see young people work hard everyday to try to combat this illness.