Bad Doctors Visit

I am feeling really discouraged by my last doctor’s visit. First of all, I should say that I am 18 so this was my first time seeing my endocrinologist alone and the second time seeing her overall (Moved from pediatric to adult). She was 40 minutes late and I was so overwhelmed and anxious about going already. She looked at my numbers and freaked out. I thought I was doing well and although I had some highs here and there I was fixing trends and watching what I ate and exercising. My old doctor always told me that having random highs off and on was normal. Anyway, she kept saying that she thought for sure my a1c would be over 7 and while we waited for the nurse to finish with the results of the in-office test, she was freaking me out. I still use finger pricks but I use an app that said that my numbers showed having an a1c of 6.38 and so when she said that, I felt like I had done something very wrong. Turns out my in-office a1c test came back as 6.3 and then she was attacking me over one-morning blood sugar and a few others and I was so overwhelmed I thought I was going to break down in the office. I can take criticism on my blood sugar, but it was like she was telling me that I could not even have 10 high blood sugars a month. I immediately went home and found a new doctor. Now I have hit this cycle where I punish myself for every low or high blood sugar and I am in the process of finding a psychologist/therapist who I can see.
Does anyone know in the meantime how to cope with things like that situation and how to stop punishing myself for every high and every low. I have had diabetes for almost 4 years now and I have no complications and my a1c has always been 7 or less. I don’t know how to stop stressing out so much about the situation. Any tips?


OMG, that endo sounds like a nightmare! Good for you for firing her and getting a new dr., and good for you for getting yourself a good therapist to help you get over what she did to you! Sheesh.

Honestly, it sounds like you’re handling it brilliantly. Keep on doing what you’re doing, and keep on posting here. This forum has some amazingly supportive and incredibly knowledgeable people on it, some of whom have been successfully living full, happy, healthy lives with T1D for decades. We’re all here for you, and you’ve got this!


Hi @fieldiez . I’m so sorry and angry about this experience with a new doctor. Her behavior was completely unprofessional and you did the wise thing by looking for someone else as soon as that visit was over.
As you know, diabetes management depends primarily on what we do on our own - of course there will be occasional “outliers” but if our numbers were perfect all the time we wouldn’t have diabetes. That might be an exaggeration but bear with me. Try to focus on the success you’ve had this far - without her “help” I might add - and focus on continuing. Don’t doubt yourself over one disastrous visit (which was no fault of yours). Look at how closely your numbers matched with the A1C prediction from your app - you’re doing what you need to do, and doing it well. Don’t allow this doctor to steal that from you.


Hi Danielle @fieldiez , keep in mind that there are doctors, and that there are doctors and no two are alike even if credentials are very similar. I agree with you that the doctor you just saw does not fit you. Some doctors do everything “by-the-book” and expect that EVERY body performs exactly how the book anticipates - very much not so when it comes to diabetes.

Please know in your mind, that you have gained knowledge about diabetes and that you are managing your diabetes as best you can while you enjoy life and growing toward leading a healthy and productive life - and accept the occasional swings in body glucose levels and that you are learning something from your observations. Yes, you are learning that when you eat “that something” that you need to adjust insulin accordingly. Hopefully that doctor will learn that she too makes mistakes, like thinking your 90 average body glucose level exceeded 150 mg/dl when actually your body averaged 129 mg/dl during the last 90 days - the difference between an HbA1c of 7.0% and 6.3%.

Important is how you feel physically, that you are managing your diabetes sufficiently so that you can do what you want to do and need to do and that you are not letting diabetes cause damage to your body. More importantly, that you are comfortable with what you have been doing and that you are seeking advice from a professional doctor for ways that you can improve your technique.

Be strong, keep informed and continue your good work.


@fieldiez I’ll keep this short. Given the excellent advice so far. I’ll limit this also to my own opinion. Your doctor was a jerk and did not deserve to be on your medical team I am so happy to hear you fired them!

Your a1c is excellent if you aren’t having too many lows. Random highs and lows are part of using insulin and in my experience of 40+ years completely impossible to avoid.

Only if you feel like it should you consider a CGM. Otherwise what you are doing is working so KEEP DOING IT. Cheers and continued good luck :four_leaf_clover:

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@srozelle Thanks, it is really nice to hear that I did the right thing and that I am doing the right things. Sometimes it can be hard to realize so thanks for your response.

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@wadawabbit Thanks Dorie!! I really like what you said about trying to focus on my success and I completely understand what you are saying about if 'our numbers were perfect we wouldn’t have diabetes." I think I forget that to be true sometimes so it is really great to hear it. I am really thankful for your advice and support!!

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@Dennis I am super grateful for your response. It is definitely about learning about yourself and your body. I am glad that you brought up that some doctors are by the book and others are more realistic about expectations and numbers. Again, really grateful for your advice and support, Thanks!!

Danielle @fieldiez during my 60+ years living with diabetes, I’ve experienced doctors with different skill-sets, some of which really have helped me learn about diabetes and myself. For instance, tomorrow when I visit with my endocrinologist, I expect the first thing she will say is, “Tell me what you have learned”.
Yes, she like all good doctors, is a listener who encourages me to live life fully.

Keep in mind Danielle, that diabetes will not hold you back from fully living your life, you "“Can do it”. Know your own body, know how foods and activity affect you and teach yourself how much insulin YOU NEED to effect a proper balance. Certainly you will make mistakes in calculations, that is expected and you can use that as a learning tool. The unknown and unpredictable element is the human body; today it may not respond to insulin the way it did yesterday, or last week on a day when you ate and did exactly what you did today. Live life as it should be lived.

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Danielle, You should be very proud of yourself for realizing a new doctor is in order. BG readings will vary with everyone and some will stand out for no understandable reason at all. That seems like such a devastating experience for a new adult endo visit. Ask for recommendations from others in your area for a good doctor. Try and find a C.D.E. that might have T1D, too. Give yourself a big hug.

The first thing I suggest is to realize that you are punishing your self and you obviously have already done that. Then you should try to talk to others that might under stand and you have done that. So then you should tell yourself," Hey, I am a diabetic, what does this mean? well this means that I have higher blood sugars than some others. So I am perfectly fine." It is just part of diabetes. Just pick your self up and realize that you are okay. Just continue your drinking water and exercising and keep updating us. Good luck.

You are doing OK. Yes, your doctor should want to help you smooth out your highs and lows, but this is not the way to do it. It’s important for you to find a supportive endo that will be your team mate in living with diabetes. If there are multiple endos in the office, you could try talking to office staff about which one has the best bedside manner. In my endo’s practice there are excellent ones and one like yours. If not, is there a local group such as JDRF that could suggest a different endo? Your primary care doctor or a clinician at school or work?

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I’m sorry you have to experience that. The way this doctor treated you was totally unprofessional. Please don’t get discouraged by what she told you since you are doing the best that you can. Is the doctor’s responsibility to educate you in a better way if she prefers those number to go down, but she shouldn’t have to treat it you like that.
My advice: take every day as a brand new day and do the best that you can. It seems that you are exercising, which is great, and watching what you also are watching what you eat. In my opinion, it is normal to have high and lows even when you are doing everything by the book. After all, it is diabetes, and there are a million things that can influence your numbers.
I hope that you can find a better doctor.

I am sorry for your experience with that type of Dr. I am glad you found a new one. I would like to remind you this is your diabetes not there’s, even throw they are a Dr they might not be the right Dr for you.

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Doctors are people too, some are good and can deal with people, some cannot do one or the other. About thirty years ago when I was in my mid twenties I went to a new endocrinologist who wanted to do a major change up on the insulins I was taking at the time. I had been on a similar regimen for more than 10 years at the time so I asked him why he wanted to do this. He told me “Because I am the doctor!”. I was a little more hot headed in my younger days, so I told him to kiss my A#@$. Ultimately a few years later I went to a different endocrinologist who took the time to explain things and I went on a regimen similar to what the first doctor had suggested. Only you know what your body feels and what is happening to you, The doctor will not be with you 24/7 so you need someone who can work to enable you to help yourself take control of your diabetes and be willing to give you advice not criticism when you fail. Dealing with diabetes is tough, you do not need a doctor to be a judge. you need someone you can work with… I am about to run off to something so forgive tyhe run on sentences…

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I agree with everyone else here. My doc’s office always sends out a “how did we do” survey after each visit. Make sure to fill this out truthfully if you get one and if not, it might be worth a letter to the office. That doc really needs to change her style or she is not going to have any t1d patients; maybe that is her intent.
You are doing very well!! The avg A1c in T1d is well over 7%.

Hope you find a better Doctor! A book that really helped me and that that Dr probably really needs to read is by Adam Brown called Bright Spots and Land Mines. You can buy it cheap on Amazon or get a free download copy off the diatribe website here.

Adam has great tips for thinking in healthy ways about your diabetes and numbers. He takes a very low carb approach to managing. My son limits his carbs per meal and I think is doing great! My son is low carb but not super low. Anyway, highly recommend Adam’s book.
Mom of a Type 1 and Nurse, who continues to learn how much she didn’t know about Type 1 diabetes.

I was thinking the same thing. Emotions can get heated and people may say things that come across as perhaps threatening. I suggest sticking to the facts of what happened and the outcome, finishing up by saying she has decided to find a physician more suited to her needs.
I would suggest parents and/or counselor help compose something to the point.
I had to fire an office many years ago - the doctor was great but staff failed to pass on increasingly urgent messages about rising blood sugars that weren’t coming down with pump or shots. I was scared of going into DKA and needed guidance on whether to go to the ER. Doctor finally got the message several hours (and detailed messages) later and he did apologize - he did not get the message until late in the day. Even so I decided to rethink using that practice and sent him a letter along the lines of this:
On [Date] I called the office multiple times and left messages each time that I was increasingly worried about my numbers [which I provided], was growing increasingly anxious about the possibility of DKA, and needed guidance as to whether I should go to the ER. Thank you for finally returning my call but I have decided to find another office - I have concerns about the delay in your receiving important messages.

No name calling or drama - just the facts.

That was a really great message, Dorie. Exactly as you said: no name calling, no drama, just information that office needed to hear in order to learn and improve if it wanted to. If only everyone took that approach! Thank you for being such a wonderful role model.

Thank you for your kind words!

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