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From Valencia, California, USA:

I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in February 2003. I know a lot more then most diabetics my age know about diabetes. Every time I go to the doctor's for my three month check-up, my numbers have always been high, around the 11s. So, my doctor and my parents told me I had to knuckle down and take care of my diabetes. They both are pushing me to test more, which is understandable, I know that is what I need to do. So, I have been testing a lot more then what I used to test. I'm testing about four to five times a day and when I'm low. My parents get frustrated with me when I don't test more than that, so I try to test more.

Tonight, we had an episode. I was babysitting my neighbors and I felt I was going low. I didn't have my meter on me, but I am well aware when I am going low, so I drank some juice. Afterwards, I was not hungry and didn't feel like eating dinner that night. Around 8 p.m., my parents called for me to come eat and I said that I wasn't hungry. They got upset and made me test in front of them. My blood sugar was then 479 mg/dl [26.6 mmol/L]. They were furious, but I was too scared to tell them that I had a sugar low and didn't test when I was supposed to. They don't understand how difficult it is to be testing more and trying harder when all parents do is yell and make kids upset. Tonight, I was contemplating suicide. This wouldn't of been the first time. I'm just so confused on how to handle situations like these and how to tell my parents that they just need to give me some space and let me deal with my diabetes how I need to. What should I do? Should I seek help elsewhere?


Living with all of the demands of diabetes is extremely difficult, and you have described the frustrations of this disease very well. Parents often worry about their children (just as yours seem to be doing), but many times their children hear that worry and concern as nagging and yelling and as completely unpleasant. Many times these interactions can be improved upon by working with a mental health professional (e.g. psychologist, social worker) as a family.

Toward the end of your e-mail, you state that you have thought about killing yourself more than once. These thoughts are very serious and should not be ignored. If you do not feel that you can talk about these thoughts with your parents, then please call your diabetes team. Speak to whoever it is on that team that you like OR call your pediatrician's office, OR call the local teen suicide hot-line. The important thing right now is that you speak with someone who can help you. Please talk with your parents right now or make that phone call. The faster you reach out, the faster you will feel better.


Original posting 18 Aug 2005
Posted to Mental Health and Daily Care


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