One of my daughter's older brothers is having anxiety since she was diagnosed. He is afraid she will die and that he might get it too.

The first thing the brothers asked me about when she was in the hospital was is if it's true she will not live a long time. They were pretty distressed and the younger one is becoming clinically depressed. People need to be careful what they say around children. Between diabetes, bullies, a new school etc. this has not been a good year. Dealing with his anxiety is even harder and more worrisome than type 1 so far.

Terry, please tell these young people that you know a man who has been type 1 for 65 years, and he is very healthy. My diabetes has not prevented me from doing the things I wanted to do in my lifetime. I was diagnosed in 1945, when I was 6, and I have no diabetes related complications. If they take good care of themselves, then they can have long, healthy lives like I have had, and am still having.

Good luck to you and your family.


Terry, I understand exactly how you feel.  I have twins, one diagnosed 8 months ago. My son is especially worried that he will also be diagnosed, like his sister.  In the hospital, the endo assured him that he only had a 5% chance of getting  diabetes, not much more than the general population.  And she also told both kids that "diabetes sucks" (crude, yes, but perfect for two 15 year olds!) and that it is really a disease of inconvenience. Unfortunately, my son already has issues with anxiety, but he is doing much better.  It's only been 8 months, but we have all relaxed just a little bit. 

 I wish you and your family the best.

I have an identical twin sister, and when I was first diagnosed almost 10 years ago, they said she did have a higher chance of developing the disease as our bodies are made up the same since we're twins. They even wanted to do a year long study about us since it was strange that I developed diabetes and she didn't. Diabetes doesn't run in our family though; I actually got it from the flu when my body shut down my pancreas instead of fighting the flu. I pray that she will never develop the disease, and she's still not showing symptoms (I watch for signs all the time! ;) )

I would think twins have an even higher chance of developing the disease then brothers and sisters. Maybe that would make them feel better to know that my identical twin still doesn't have it. Hopefully your sons will get through the anxiety, and it sounds like they really care for their sister so that's a good thing! Best of luck to your family!!

Richard, I was just diagnosed at the age of 50 with Type 1 3 years ago. My numbers are all over the place high one minute low the next. My average A1c is 6.8. The highs and lows are zapping my energy. Do all Type 1's have this happen? I am having a lot of muscle issues and think these high/lows are contributing factor. According to my Dr they do. But I wonder.  I'm currently using a dexcom sensor (have gasteoparis) and Omnipod pump. When I go low I have trouble getting my blood sugar to go up and it is terrifying. Especially in the middle of the night.

Since you seem to be successfull how do you do it?

Appreciate any advice you can give me. Cheryl

Though I'm not a parent myself, I get that this must be incredibly tough to deal with...  I know from my own experience that the psychology surrounding something like chronic illness is often harder to handle than the illness itself.  And bullies...  omg, bullies...  *sighhhh*

I'm sure you're already educating and reassuring your sons and making up for the negative and scary things they've heard from others, so all I can really say is keep that up.  Show everything in as positiver a light as possible.  When you're treating your daughters diabetes, talk about how great it is that insulin and diligence will give her live long and happily.  If she uses the pump or the pens, talk about how cool that technology is.  No one wants to get diabetes, but if they're told repeatedly that it's not only not a death sentence, but also surrounded by some cool stuff (I impressed people with my cool insulin pens that were soooo easy, and I feel kind of like my pump is an exclusive high tech gadget that not everyone can have!), it might make things seem like a lighter topic and a little bit less scary in general.

And come to think of it...  You might want to ask them specifically what has them scared and address each thing.  Is it that getting D meant DKA and a trip to the ER and ICU for your daughter?  Well, you now know the warning signs of D and it's much more likely that he'll find out at the doctor's office before it ever gets really bad.  Is it that they keep hearing their sister will die young or go blind?  Tell them about Richard, who is not only long-lived and healthy but can totally rock the online message boards better than some people half his age!  :)

Sorry to be sort of rambling...  They're just things that come to mind.

They have tests that can be done to see if a sibling of someone with type 1 diabetes is at a higher risk of developing the disease.

For instance: "Another more expensive test can be done for children who have siblings with type 1 diabetes. This test measures antibodies to insulin, to islet cells in the pancreas, or to an enzyme called glutamic acid decarboxylase. High levels can indicate that a child has a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes." (

Tests like these may put their minds at ease.

I believe the stat for identical twins is that if 1 has it, the other has a 50% chance of developing. That is still pretty good in my opinion, since, the same DNA would seem to indicate that both *should* develop it.

For fraternal twins, the chances of both having DNA is the same as regular siblings, since genetically, they are the same as any other brother/sister pair, just happen to have the same birthday. :) We were told our daughter has about a 10% chance of getting it, which is higher than the general population, but not by much.

Hi Cheryl, I did have much trouble with many highs and lows for so many years. There was no basal/bolus control and no advice on proper dieting, except to avoid sugar. I did the best I could, but all those highs and lows cause shock to the nervous system and fatigue is definitely a side effect. Depression is also a side effect. I managed to survive and lead a rather normal life despite those side effects. It was a matter of coping and adjusting, which I did very well. My using an insulin pump and a Dexcom CGM has helped me have more stable control. I still have the fatigue, but now it is due to old age instead of diabetes. Lol!

Elizabeth, I never considered myself a rocker of the message boards. I actually prefer country music, instead of rock. Lol! (Just kidding)