Would like to help my spouse with depression related to type 1

My husband has had type 1 diabetes for 25 years and he has never accepted it.  He is very depressed and angry and I'm wondering if there are any spouses out there that are going through a similar situation? I guess I'm looking for ways I can possibly help him, he is opposed to therapy or help of any kind.

Shar that is a tough one.  I was depressed for  avery long time and there was nothing anybody could do to change that.  When things got bad (for me) I did go to therapy and it made a world of difference.   most guys don't want to hear it, but talking about the feelings of anger and shame can be really helpful.     There's abook called "Diabetes Burnout What to do When you Can't Take it Anymore" by Willliam Polonsky that can give you some insight about the trials and issues with this disease.    Good luck!

Shar, I only have experience with my teenager having type-1. Maybe this could apply for an adult also. It seems to help my daughter to be aquainted with other people who have type-1. They can relate stories and share experiences that people who don't have t1 can not totally relate to. You might also see if you can get the name of a really good therapist to help him and you to get through the rough times. His depression may be related to a chemical imbalance, having nothing to do with having type-1.

Please keep us informed.



Hi Joe, thank you so much for replying to my post!  I really appreciate you taking the time.. just hearing that someone else has gone through what my husband is going through is comforting. May I ask you how many years you have been living with type 1?  I have suggesting therapy, but he is strongly opposed, however, I am going to by that book you recommended, and at very least, I will read it and who knows, he may want to pick it up evenually.. (I hope).  Again, thank you!

Thank you Rebecca, for taking the time to read and reply to my post.  I agree and wish he was open to therapy or speaking to someone else with the disease..  I am hopeful.. 


Hi Shar,

I agree with Joe, both on the resistance we have to seeking help because of the percieved stigma and and blow to what remains of our self esteem, and on the temendous relief it can bring by finally being able to unload all the bad feelings we have carried ever since our childhoods were ripped away from us at diagnosis.

I found that it took a series of serious events, both related to and unrelated to (but probably influenced by) my diabetes to make me seek help. I hope your husband can be encouraged to at least reach out to others like himself (we are many) through this site or other channels (check out JDRF.org for local and online support) before he gets to such a critical point.

B.T.W., I was diagnosed T1 45 years ago.




Hi Larry,

Wow, if only I could get my husband to see these posts, he could know that others have felt the same feelings & frustrations that he feels.  Your post (and the others) are great for me to read, and I do want to do all that I can on my part to 'try' to help him. Thanks so much for taking time out of your day to help me out, and I will definitely check out JDRF.org for the support groups. I've been to their site, but never searched the support areas.  And thank you also for sharing how long you've had type 1!



I have had diabetes for 8 yrs and I have gone through some major battling of depression over that time. Diabetes is a hard thing to deal witht because its chronic and sometimes you feel overwhelmed by the disease. Reading Polonskys book will help you to know what he may be going through and maybe you will be able to say things to him that will make him feel better after reading it. It stinks that he doesn't want to go to therapy. It would really help him to get his frustrations out. I went and I felt the same way as him.

Maybe you can get him to come on Juvenation at least so he knows that we all have felt like him at one point and maybe he would want to join? Or does that sound like something he would never do?


HEy Shar! I'm 33 now, and i've had type 1 Diabetes for 20yrs now... i know some of the thoughts that really go thru his mind because i've had them too... the way i beat it it i PUSH back with using "what was meant to destroy me" to help others. Depression means be "pushed down" so the way to beat it is to PUSH BACK!! does that make sense? Tell your husband if he ever wants to talk, to hit me up anytime!! that's what i live for right now.. inspiring diabetics to make their lives count!! -JMIAH.com

PS) when you get a chance, read my "Story" on my page!

Hi Gina,

Yep, I am definitely going to buy that book and read it myself.  I can't relate to how he feels and it would be wonderful if I could get him to read some of these posts, I am going to bring it up and see what he says.  I am thankful to everyone replying to my post, and regret not finding out about this organization sooner!  Thanks again!

Hi Larry, I was on jdrf.org and read the feature story 'Depression in Adults with Type 1 Diabetes' and am wondering if you are the same Larry featured in this article. I see many similarities with my husband and am planning on printing the article and highlighting certain things that I know he would benefit from hearing..  thanks, Shar

[quote user="Shar"]

Hi Joe, thank you so much for replying to my post!  I really appreciate you taking the time.. just hearing that someone else has gone through what my husband is going through is comforting. May I ask you how many years you have been living with type 1?  I have suggesting therapy, but he is strongly opposed, however, I am going to by that book you recommended, and at very least, I will read it and who knows, he may want to pick it up evenually.. (I hope).  Again, thank you!


I am 43, I have had diabetes 31 years.  I was in untreated depression for at least 17 years.  Things had to get really bad for me before they got better. 

Could be. I am not an exception in my experience, I am  unfortunately more of the norm for longer term type 1s. It is especially bad for those of us diagnosed as teens, since we remeber what life was like "before", and can see how  "after" made high school, college and young adulthood so different than what we could have expected.

I still can't let go of the loss I feel sometiimes for what could have been. So a psychologist is truely a path to releasing these chains.


Sometimes our loved ones need a little push in the right direction! hopefully your hubby will like what he sees here and want to join ANNOYMOUSLY! Thats the best part noone knows who you are unless you want them to.

Unfortunately last night he made it crystal clear there is no possible way he will seek any type of help whether it be a therapist or go online to view these forums.. I suggested it and shared some of the points you (and others) made and the fact you can relate to what he is going through.  Unfortunately to even keep my marriage, I'm going to need to shut my mouth now, which is very sad. He does not want help, and I can't force it, and it makes me very sad myself. We have a child too and wish he could see the good around him for the time he is here. Very very sad.  Well again, I want to thank you all very much. I wish all of you nothing but happiness and commend you for reachign out to those who need help!

HI Shar,

I am sorry he is unable to accept this type of support at this time. Hopefully he will be able to reach out more some time in the future.

Please do not leave this community yourself, however. As a partner of a type 1 (sometimes referred to as a type 3 diabetic), you are a part of our family and can find support and help in coping for yourself. It sounds like you need this right now.

Please stay,


Thank you Larry, that means a lot to me.  I actually DO need the support, it is very hard for me dealing with the anger, rage and misery.  While I told him I would not try to 'help' him anymore (as he requests) I can help myself.. being involved with this community.. I definitely do need help and I know I keep thanking you over and over but I'm truly sincere.

I'm new here (just joined today), but I have had type I diabetes for 21 years now.  I can relate to how your husband feels, I have had many points in my life that I didn't "need" anyone's help.  I can also remember the things I have put the people I love through.  Just try to let him know that you're there for him eventhough he says he doesn't want you to be.  I remember thinking when I was younger that no other person could possibly know what I was going through so I wasn't even going to try to explain it, let alone get help.  Please feel free to ask me anything you want to, I hope to be helpful...:)

I don't have a spouse that has type 1, however, my 10 year old daughter does.  Do your husband use technology?  Such as an insulin pump?  These devises allow so much freedom.  You still have to check your blood sugars and count carbs, however, you can eat and snack like everyone else.  We are actually considering a new pump called the OmniPod.  Check out their website!!  It has no tubing and is controlled by a cell phone sized remote!!  My daughter is very excited about this new tubeless option.  Hope that helps!

Thanks Jana! wow, you must have been very young when you were diagnosed? My husband was 13, so it's been 25 years.  I've been with him for about 14 years now, but am noticing over the past few years, he has been feeling the effects more than when he was younger.  I'm curious if you had a parent (or any other fam member) that had type 1? I know it's usually passed on and am curious.  Very good to hear from you, thanks for posting!!