Boyfriend Issues

So, I was just diagnosed 2 weeks ago, and my boyfriend has tried to be supportive of me, but I feel as if he doesn't understand what I'm going through. He said at first when I was in the hospital that he would be helping me out by trying to change his diet and see somewhat how I feel. Yesterday was his birthday and though I know if I just took medicine I could have had a piece of his cake, I got really annoyed because he was trying to push me to have a piece and I just did not feel like taking another shot just for a piece of cake. His family not only had cake, but ice cream and a lot of it! They seriously all had their plates filled with junk.

I was wondering if anyone had any advice as to how I could explain things better to him so that he understands how hard this has been for me. 

Courtney, you've come to the right place!  Being diagnosed with a chronic illness like diabetes not only requires some drastic life changes, but also as much support from others as possible.  In the case that you have described, your boyfriend's birthday, I think the key is to come right out and explain the reasons for your choices: "I really don't feel like taking another injection just to be able to have cake but if I don't take a shot and have a piece, my blood sugar will soar and I will feel like crap!" 

Unfortunately, you're stuck with this for life, 24/7 and you can't just take a vacation from it.  Your boyfriend and his family may try to support you a lot of the time, but it is too easy for them to take a vacation from that responsibility.

I was diagnosed at age 4 and I'll be turning 40 next week, so I've been on a lot of emotional roller coasters in my lifetime, believe me!  I've always found that having a box of tissues in my bedroom is helpful!  It just feels good to have a good cry sometimes.  Some may say that's a sign of weakness...  I don't!

Hang in there!  Remember you've got a fantastic support group right here on Juvenation!


Thank you. My father is diabetic and my mother is on a diet so my whole family watches what they eat, but in the case of my boyfriends family they eat whatever they want whenever they want and I don't think they understand how hard it is to sit there and watch them eat all this stuff. Even before meals they will snack on bread or something and they don't understand it's not that easy just to snack especially since I hate taking more shots than I have to.

I cried yesterday and my boyfriend got mad at me, crying is not something I can ever do around him.

I went through this with a boyfriend when I got diagnosed in February last year.  His birthday was 2 weeks after I was diagnosed and I was over for his birthday and I got pressured into having a piece of cake.  I guessed insulin for it but since I was still very new I guessed horribly wrong and ended up really high and felt so sick after.  He was really good about cooking things from the American Diabetes website after a while.  There are a lot of good receipes for cookies and cakes and things in diabetic cookbooks and online, maybe he could try some of the receipes or you could bring them over and leave it there?  It took my boyfriend at the time a while to get used to it all and understand what was appropriate and what wasn't for me to be eating, so hopefully things get better for you!

Courtney, I have one thing to say:  "Aaaarrrgghh!  Men!!!"  LOL

On a serious note, I would suggest you get in touch with Mandi on Juvenation  (Go to the Members section and at the bottom, there is a search engine for the members).  She is the girlfriend of a guy with Type 1 diabetes.  She may be able to offer you some valuable advice, coming from a different perspective.

Yea, sounds exactly like my story, it's been about two weeks now. I almost guessed and took some insulin and ate it but my parents have me write down everything and report everything to them and my doctor and I didn't want to let them down on my first week doing it by myself, haha. That sounds stupid but it's the way I think. He offers a lot to cook me something different than his family is eating, but I want to be normal and eat what they eat so I always say no. I think after the talk we had last night and this morning things will get a little better. I think he felt bad for treating me different because I said everyone was treating me differently. But, I really just want him to understand my situation better and such.

Hi Courtney,

Enough men bashing :) It just takes time for whoever your boyfriend/girlfriend is (and their families) to understand what you go through and what you can and can't eat...well not what you can't it, but what is more difficult to process with your insulin injections. When I was first diagnosed back in 2005, my gf at the time didn't have a clue what to do, and I'm sure your boyfriend isn't the only person not to completely understand a disease that their loved one has just been diagnosed with.

You're still new to having Diabetes, so it's understandable that you would feel that way. Everything will get better and easier to control in time. You've always got the people on here to talk to, and I'm sure your boyfriend could probably google it to get a better understanding of what you're going through and what your life is going to be like.

Be patient with everyone and keep your chin up! :o)


I'm not bashing anyone. I love my boyfriend to death, he's just a little annoying :)


Thank you for the advice, maybe i'll have a little bit of a talk with him soon.

Hey Courtney,

With this being my first day (heck, first 10 mins) on Juvenation, seeing your message is a relief. I have had the big D now for about 5 years, and when I was diagnosed I had just met my then girlfreind about a month earlier. Needless to say she didn't have the slightest clue as to what to do - but how could she, even I didn't know what to do! It did take some time for her to adjust to my schedule and what I needed, but she is now my fiancee and my biggest supporter. So if I can say anything about this guy (without knowing him) it would be to give him some time to learn WITH you. You have to teach him everything you are learing yourself if he is expectedto be able to get to the point that he feels like he understands what is going on. And you'll be really impressed when he starts doing his own research to learn more about it.

On another note, one thing you said in your message really stood out to me. I was lucky when I was first diagnosed to have gotten a doctor that understood my life an how diabetes needed to fit into it - not the other way around. I was playing college football at the time, and certainly wasn't going to quit just because my pancrease decided it wanted to leave town. Because of that, eating less was not an option. I had to maintain my defensive lineman size, so I learned to make diabetes work for me. If I wanted to eat something I "shouldn't", I learned how to properly manage my insulin so that I could eat it responsibly and stay healthy. Now that I work with groups and am a large advocate, the first thing I ever tell someone new is exactly that - if you're ever going to get to the point that you feel like you control the diabetes, and not the other way around, you need to figure out how to make it fit into your life and not change your life.

That being said, if there is ever any advice you need, or just somone to bounce any ideas off of, please don't hesitate to shoot me a message - helping people learn to conquor their diabetes is what I love doing.



The hardest thing for my situation is that my father is diabetic, so I already know almost everything about the disease. Whereas my boyfriend and his family know nothing, it's hard to explain things to them when they aren't really interested in what you are saying. The other hard thing is the fact that at dinner they will eat a ton of food while I'm there with my measuring cups. And when his mother makes dinner she always throws away the packaging and I wind up having to dig through their garbage, this is after asking her about 4 times to save the packages for me.

Some other problems that I've been coming across being in college is finding time to eat. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I have 4 classes back to back and about 10 minutes to walk from one class to the next. I haven't found any way to fit lunch into my routine. I feel that if I had started this semester with diabetes it would have been easier, but I was just diagnosed right before midterms and it changes everything!

Maybe i'll figure things out. Thank you!!

I have a few suggestions that hopefully you will find helpful...

Bring over a pamphlet or two, explaining the basics about diabetes, to your boyfriend's house.  You can pick some up from you CDE, doctor's office or even from the JDRF of ADA.  Then, just casually mention:  "Oh, I brought these over in case you were interested" and leave them on a table.  The parents will most likely pick them up and read them, but probably only after you're gone.  Then, maybe a week or so down the road, you could ask, again casually "Did you happen to get a chance to look those over?"  If they have any questions for you, they'll be a little more prepared.

When your boyfriend's mother is making dinner, insist on helping her!  Most people wouldn't turn down some help with, for example, peeling potatoes!  Besides creating a closer bond between the two of you, you can keep an eye on her and when you see her about to throw out some packaging, just mention "Oh, before you throw that out, could I have a look at it?  I'll write down on a piece of paper how much I'll be able to eat at dinner...  You know, that whole carb thing...  Hah!"  Make it almost seem like a game and I think she'll eventually get it.  Remember that as much as this is relatively new to you, you have the experience with your father, whereas it is completely new to them.  It's a matter of creating new habits, which can indeed take time!

It certainly sounds like you class schedule is hectic!  The only thing I can suggest is to always have something quick on you to eat, like some granola bars (I like the Nutrigrains!) and maybe some cheese strings.  I'm sure if you also approached your teacher/prof about finishing up a light meal during the beginning of class, it wouldn't be a problem, given the circumstances.  Granted, I'm not talking about a huge piece of pizza (you would have a lynch mob after you!!!), but maybe a sandwich.  As long as it didn't interfere with the teaching, I'm sure he/she would understand.

Good luck, Courtney!

Those are all really good ideas! I will definitely try them.

This is taking a lot of getting used to and you all have been very helpful! Thank you! :)

If you can't cry in front of your boyfriend, and he is unsympathetic to your feelings, dump him. He's not worth it.

This is very new for you, and you have experience with someone close to you being diabetic.  Bringing printouts could be helpful if your bf would read them.  It may be easier to answer questions as they come up.  Or to use uncomfortable situations to remind your bf he said he would "change his diet" and "try to feel how you feel".  If all he does is get angry when confronted with diabetes, he is not living up to his word.  I don't know how your body reacts to lots of sugar, I get sick.  So the birthday incident may turn out to be a good precedent, now everyone knows you are putting your well being first.  Keep it up, let others know you don't compromise when it comes to your health, and they will come to understand it.  Diabetes is not something to apologize for, hang in there.

I had a talk with him the day after his birthday which seemed to help a bit. It's hard to sit down and have a long talk with him about it since our lives are all over the place. Finding time to talk is the biggest issue. I told him bout how tired this has been making me and he seemed to understand that.

We had left over cake from his birthday so yesterday when I was at his house for dinner I told him that I would work in a piece of cake with my dinner and I did and he really liked that. I think planning ahead for the kind of thing is the key.

I have two doctors appointments during spring break which I would like him to come to one with me and meet my doctor so if he had any questions I think it would be a good thing for us.

hey courtney

i am verry new to this whole bloging thing and this site you should take time to get every thing together and focus in you and your health but also try to talk to your BF its hard believe me I have been a diabetic for just over 20 years and it is not easy i no and i no it hard and it makes you upset and even maybe angry but as i said give it time and maybe things will work them selves out


you can contact me any time either on here or by my e-mail at




haha, Thank you.

I don't know how people get used to being diabetic! I hate the fact that I went almost 20 years doing whatever I wanted and now all of a sudden things have been turned completely upside-down. 

wow, you and I are too much in common with this...I had a terrible couple of months where I was in a bit of denial and tried to fight it and really let it ge me down. But I can PROMISE you if you make it work for you, and don't let it change or run your life you will get to the day when it will be weird to not take a shot or have a pump on your hip!

I try to be so optimistic about it, and I see first hand from my father that it does get easier. But, it's so hard to get past the initial shock and frustration. When I was in the hospital I would just look at my parents and start crying because I had no words to explain how I felt.

[quote user="Courtney"]

I had a talk with him the day after his birthday which seemed to help a bit. It's hard to sit down and have a long talk with him about it since our lives are all over the place. Finding time to talk is the biggest issue. I told him bout how tired this has been making me and he seemed to understand that.

We had left over cake from his birthday so yesterday when I was at his house for dinner I told him that I would work in a piece of cake with my dinner and I did and he really liked that. I think planning ahead for the kind of thing is the key.

I have two doctors appointments during spring break which I would like him to come to one with me and meet my doctor so if he had any questions I think it would be a good thing for us.


I can definitely understand Cindy's statement, but being in a very complex relationship dynamic myself, I know that things are never black and white.

Living through the initial stages of something like this is definitely an ongoing process. I think that it's awesome that you're beginning to figure out what each of you needs, because yes, you're not the only one who needs support right now! I'm sure the both of you will become increasingly well informed together, and will learn to tackle this challenge as a team. Keep in mind, however, that you need to respect your own needs and your own guidelines, and if he is not respecting those, let him know. He needs to know that it's not that easy to just do something because you want to anymore.

The having him meet your doctor aspect is a fantastic idea, and I think you have the situation well in hand. You've got experience in your family on your side, you've got a good plan, and you definitely have the promise of a fantastic future even with the complications this brings.

Good luck to you!