Our 11 yo daughter was just diagnosed this past Monday. She’s been a rockstar already with the medicinal end. As her mom and we are dad emotional, but pasting a smile on. She’s hitting some emotional pockets. Worrying she’ll embarrass us, or people won’t understand, that she’s “different”. My heart breaks for her. I know it will pass and she is a warrior, but she’s eleven.
I’m not sure if this is helpful or not since I’m not a parent and can’t relate to a child being diagnosed. However, I was also 11 when I was diagnosed (now 25). The five day stretch in the hospital learning I had it is by far one of the most emotional chapters of my life. What she’s feeling is completly normal and as she starts to adjust to a new routine she’ll start feeling lEss like that (there were definitely still be some why me days ahead even at 25 I occasionally still wonder this). What really helped me was meeting other kids my age who had it. At first, T1D can make You feel so alone. Just being able to turn to someone and say you know what sucks finger pricks suck helps so much. Most endocrinologists offer support groups and jdrf also hosts events. I believe the American diabetes association also offers camp (there was a camp called camp needle point). Regardless, your daughter sounds like a champ and you and her dad sound like your offering her awesome support! Don’t be afraid to dry her tears but I think she’s going to do great. Please let me know if you have any questions and hang in there! I promise it gets better.
I’m writing this to try and help you with a few things! I’m aT1D. Diagnosed almost 5 yrs ago. At the age of 57! Special I know.
But here’s the thing. Your daughter is diabetic! She had no control over this happening nor did she want it. All she needs from you right now is to be her rock! Doesn’t matter if she says or does stuff wrong! Don’t worry about being embarrassed, getting embarrassed or anything else! Just do what has to be done to make things as easy and as smooth as possible to help her manage this disease!
She is gonna get an attitude, say things she doesn’t mean, lie, cheat on her diet, all the things your afraid of happening!! This much I promise you. No matter what she does, the most important thing you can do is teach her WHY she should not do these things, her body will punish her for doing a lot of the stupid things that are gonna come up!
But by teaching her how to react to the situation and what to do is the important thing. Don’t be afraid to tell her how serious this disease can be! She needs to know that if she doesn’t take care of herself that being hospitalized or worse(death) are real possibilities.
It’s a terrible thing to say, but she must be made aware of that fact. Too many people don’t want to face that fact, those possibilities are real and factual. Children are resilient and a whole lot smarter than we as parents want to admit to. But by giving her the real facts, without scaring the crap out of her, you will be doing her a favor. You will also be helping yourself too!
With care and paying attention to her needs, she can do anything she wants in life. She, you will have to figure out how to get there! She needs to know that she can tell you anything and that you will discuss it without fear or trepidation that your gonna give her the straight truth.
Life has changed for all of you! Starting out this way will make things better for all of you! This way you can go thru this together! You will be able to help her more because she won’t hide things from you or you from her.
I do understand that many things must be age appropriate and not all details need to be revealed at certain ages. But can be discussed at a later time when that information is relevant. But if you follow that path, you will create an environment in which she is unafraid to talk to you and you to her. That will be best for both of you! She won’t feel like she’s alone in this battle. You will feel like your helping and you will be.
I’m sorry she is diagnosed as T1D, but it now life for you. It’s gonna be a fun ride with chills and spills and I want to help you make as smooth as it can be. Cause it may not be a smooth ride, it can be bumpy as all get out.
Hope I said it the right way and you take this as a helpful dialog. Problem is information is too easy for children to get a hold of and that can bite you in the butt if your not careful. Cause she’s gonna check it out. Then your gonna have to be ready to talk about it. Like it or not!
While my daughter is older (23) and not diabetic, I discuss all the good and bad with her. Because it may never affect her, but what about her children? Gotta keep an eye on the future!
Any questions, concerns, advice etc. I’ll help as best that I can. I try not to sugar coat things, but be as factual as I can. Tactful, I hope so, but if I’m not, just understand that I mean to be, just not always successful at it.
Good luck, hope to hear from you! She’s gonna be ok, just changed a little.