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Mum of a Diabetic.

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Mum of a Diabetic.

Post  keatingschick on Sat Jul 02, 2011 8:35 pm

I notice a message from a couple of years back (if only I'd known about this forum then) from the mother of a diabetic child, talking about how it feels, how scared she was/is. How I TOTALLY understand her post.

My daughter is 13 years old and was diagnosed 3years ago this next coming week, and what a rollercoaster it has been. I have to admit that when she was diagnosed I was sort of "ok" with it, thing was I actually virtually diagnosed her myself because I had done first aid cos of my job and I recognised the symptoms and I just had this nagging feeling (funnily enough it turned out that I found my google history and found I had searched childhood diabetes 12 months previous), so when she was diagnosed I didnt take it that bad cos I sort of expected it - my husband on the other hand fell apart. The night she was diagnosed he went to pieces, the diabetic nurse specialist said it was very common for dads to feel that way because they feel they should protect their children and when something like that happens they feel so helpless. The thing was, I knew very little about diabetes even though I had suspected it, I actually thought AND PLEASE DONT THINK THIS IS FLIPPANT OF ME - JUST IGNORANT LIKE MOST PEOPLE WHO DONT KNOW ABOUT IT - I actually used to think that it was a case of an injection a day (like taking the contraceptive pill), and that was it (horrible I know but like I say ignorance). I had no idea of the dangers, the hypos, the need for constant blood monitoring, the different doses, keeping an eye on the levels, ANYTHING, I truely had no idea what was involved at all until the day atfer when they took us into the parents room to discuss everything and to make us inject ourselves. At that point I broke down, it hit me like a ton of bricks what was happening to my little girl. My husband was having his own battle holding everything together, my daughter was going through it all and so I just had to stiff upper lip and deal with it, but I was a bit up and down, on one hand I told myself that we were very lucky, there could be far worse things to deal with, but on the other hand I was devastated and scared and didnt know how we'd cope. When we first brought her home from hospital it was like bringing a new baby home, I was terrified, I kept asking her if she was ok CONSTANTLY, I was scared to go out of the house with her, I couldnt face going anywhere where I wasnt minutes from home. When they finally let her back in school that was so hard, giving up responsiblity of her to the school, I was terrified they couldnt look atfer her the way I could. Her first hypo, my God....she told me she felt ill, I rang my hubby in panic, he calmly told me to test her, I could have passed out when she read something like 3.4 and he calmly talked me through it but I begged him to come home, on the outside I was calm and collected but inside I was terrified.
Gradually we became more and more relaxed, we sort of accepted diabetes as part of our lives, at times its hard as she is a real choco-holic and struggles to accept she cant just eat chocolate the way she would like to (I often think she craves it more since she became diabetic), at times she would lash out as to why her? She'd be angry at why it happened (mainly after a refusal of chocolate), but generally we were doing ok, she recognised her hypo's and dealt with them great, we'd started to relax about letting her have a little freedom and didnt wrap her in cottom wool so much. Then one night we had a scare, it was just before Xmas, I was upstairs wrapping prezzies my hubby was faffing about with something and all of a sudden there seemed to be a clattering at the bottom of the stairs, my daughter was crying coming up the stairs and sounded like she was bouncing off the walls, we thought she was rowing with her brother, then she got to the top of the stairs and collapsed in a heap. The next 20 minutes passed by in a frenzy of me screaming at my hubby to bring things to me as I tried to keep her awake and get glucose into her, it seemed like hours before I could get her back up and yet it was really about 20 minutes. My husband and I were dazed after, but then the day after I broke down it was like delayed shock. After that we said we needed to tighten our rein again, we'd relaxed a little and we got scared that that could have happened while she was out with her friends or at school etc. and so we became protective again. Over time we have realised we have to give her some freedom, and TOUCH WOOD she has never had that kind of hypo since. She is very good at recognising her symptoms and dealing with them.
I don't think people realise whats involved with diabetes until they have first hand experience, when my daughter was diagnosed there seemed to always be someone who knew someone and they were "fine"...but no one realises what its like living with it. I have a friend whose 6 year old daughter was diagnosed type 1 at about 18 months old, and we have supported each other and comforted each other at times. Its so good to have someone who understands how scary it is. I get angry at times at how insensitive people can be - her friend bought her an easter egg "because it doesnt seem right not to buy an easter egg at easter"....this friend was one whose mum wanted to be so involved when my daughter was first diagnosed, but to be honest now I feel it was more for the glory, not out of compassion, because if that was the case then the mother surely would explain how inconsiderate it would be to buy an easter egg. But as I say, she deals with it, she recognises her symptoms, she seems to take everything in her stride, its ME that thinks of the future and I'm scared. She is talking about going to university in a couple of years, she has been to see a university and likes it, likes the living quarters, but the idea of her moving away terrifies me. I want her to grow up and live her live, but I also want to keep her close and protect her.
Anyway, sorry to waffle on and on, but....I just wanted to share my story with diabetics or parents of diabetics.

Lorraine x

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Re: Mum of a Diabetic.

Post  Clare on Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:07 am

Wow! Thank you for sharing your story.

I'm lucky really, I'm the wife of a T2 and although I worry constantly that he's not looking after himself (he works away), I know that he's a grown man and he can "handle" any problem that comes his way.
We've had a couple of scares in the last year (he's now minus one big toe because he neglected a blister). I think that he now takes things a bit more seriously - it could have been so much worse.

There is a huge difference between T1 and T2 - I always thought they were pretty similar.
I went to school with a couple of T1 girls and got pretty used to them have "biscuit breaks" and testing and injecting. I always made sure that when we "played out" (yes, I'm that old), I always had digestives and juice at the ready.
So I was expecting to have a fridge full of Insulin and even forced myself to get over my needle fear - Something I didn't really need to do because to start with, his Diabetes was controlled by diet and drugs. That regime wasn't working and he now has Insulin as well as the diet and drugs Rolling Eyes

Have you spoken to your daughter about your fears? I know what young teenagers are like (I've had four), they often shrug things off on the outside but are feeling your fears on the inside.
She would be quite welcome to join us here - She can stay totally anonymous if she feels the need to open up to people that aren't directly connected to her family.

I hope you stay with us, it may take a day or so to get a reply from one of our more knowledgeable members, but I'm usually around if you need to vent or have a virtual scream Wink

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Re: Mum of a Diabetic.

Post  keatingschick on Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:42 am

Hiya,
Thanks for your reply. Sorry the post was so long, I suppose sometimes its like an outpouring cos although people try and understand/support no one really understands until they go through it.

My daughter is an amazing girl and handles it so well, like I said at times she does lash out, I suppose it doesnt help that she is at "that age" and often we're not sure if its her hormones or what, but she is generally such a pleasant, happy girl then she can just fly off the handle (very common when she is low).

When she was in hospital we met a girl who was admitted the same day, and her mum, and we've been in contact and the girl was a couple of years older than my daughter and she has offered to chat to her, but she's never contacted her that I am aware of. I don't know if she deals with it in a different way than me. We are very VERY close and she says I am her best friend, and she will usually tell me how she is feeling - but I suppose our fears are from different angles, I think its different when its happening to you than watching the child you want to protect and never let go. I was once out and my husband introduced me to someone he knew who was diabetic - he knew her and her dad. She started talking to me and was telling me to "let go", sort of give her some space. I wanted to slap this woman - sorry Embarassed - I told her to look at how she felt about her baby that she had just had and put herself in that position and see if she could just switch off. I know she needs her freedom, and I know she will deal with her diabetes herself and she is a very very clued up girl and hope she will be sensible about it and understand the need for good control. (her downfall will be chocolate)

I have to admit I get angry at people, especially her friends mum, she has always made out she is my friend and wants to be close to us etc, but I've come to realise thats just for the glory. Like I said on Xmas's birthdays etc she will buy her chocolate, if my daughter goes to her house she will put out sweets and choc and popcorn etc. I get so mad, my daughter says that I cant expect people to change things just for her, but its not that. If she had a friend who had diabetes or some kind of dietary requirement, I would ensure that if I was going to invite them around to the house I'd accomodate their needs - the point I made was what if it had been a nut allergy she had? Would her friend still have thought it seemed wrong not to buy and Easter egg? Mad But then my daughter has had alot of time off school, she has suffered alot with some unexplained nausea which she has had lots of tests for but drawn blanks, and her friends mum always makes some kind of sarcastic comment about SHE sends her daughter if she feels sick - yeah sure but her daughter isnt diabetic and often when she is sicky she cant inject in the a.m and obviously I cant send her without an injection ( and she WONT inject at school, but even if she would I cant randomly send her with her injection as there is no plan in place as so far she has refused.)

Anyway, yeah thanks, its great to have people who understand, I've got a pretty good understanding of it now and have 3 years experience under my belt now. I'm very lucky as she has always recognised her hypo, my friend with the young daughter, since she was diagnosed so young, she doesnt know any different, she doesnt recognise her hypo and just drops like a stone unconcious and fits. She has been living with diabetes longer than me, but she said she takes comfort in knowing that my daughter recognises her symptoms and she hopes her daughter will in time.

So, I'd like to have somewhere to vent, but also I'd like to be here for other people who maybe need that bit of support which I know we all do.

Thanks x

p.s. sorry my posts get long, I am a typist by trade and I dont half waffle when I get going Laughing

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Re: Mum of a Diabetic.

Post  Clare on Sun Jul 03, 2011 10:21 am

We like waffles here.....You'll fit in just fine Very Happy

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