Help Son lying about tests and sneeking hypo treatments

I can’t begin to understand what my son is going through. He is a ten year old boy who has had type 1 for just over a year. He has been sneaking his hypo treatments. Which I’m finding very frustrating as I can’t put them out of his reach. He has also started telling me he has done tests when he has not, even giving me a reading, which he has plucked out of the air. I ask him to do his injections and he does not. Then when asked later can’t remember if he has done them or not.

I need help. Please help me understand my son and be more supportive. I have two other children and I’m struggling to give them all the attention they need.

I am not an organized person. I struggle to have an orderly day at the best of times. I’ve tried charts and timers but never keep them up. I’m not disciplined so how can I show my son how to be disciplined?

This is so important for his health. Please help?

Set up a reward system with him. Say if he checks his sugar for a week, (you should be able to view his readings on his monitor) then he gets a reward. Maybe an extra video game or a night out, something he enjoys. If he doesn’t then he doesn’t get the reward. Also I read this someplace about giving him a free night with foods. Letting him eat his favorite junk foods as long as he will cover it with insulin

Dear Vonda,

It might help if you can get a good glucose monitor like the Ultra Smart OneTouch. This way you can check your son’s blood sugar’s & kindly let him know, he can’t put one over on mom. Maybe he is afraid to let you know his results if you have been emotional about it. Like raising your voice or getting nervous, he might not want to scare you by telling you when it is low. Honesty is always the best policy, just let him know by not telling the full-truth he is putting his life at risk and just explain in detail how. Sit down and ask your son how it makes him feel being diabetic, maybe he will open up to you.

Good-Luck! I wish you the best.

Vonda, reading your post really makes me feel for you. I did the same thing to my mother when I was diagnosed and I have been diabetic over 21 years - I’m 27 now.

Your son may be telling you waht you want to hear because he knows what the “right” readings and things to tell you are. As someone else said, honesty is the best policy. Does he really understand the ramifications of what can happen to him if he does not test or makes up the “right” numbers? Maybe you can tell him - without scaring him of course.

Also, if he can, have him attend a diabetic camp next summer. Being around other kids lets him know that he is “normal” - he just has to deal with diabetes, just like they do. His attempts to tel lyou want you want to hear is so he can get on with whatever it is 10 year old boys do - basically, his attempt at being like everyone else and not facing his disease.

And him sneaking his hypo treatments (is it candy or something?) - introduce him to the wide variety of sugar free desserts and candies that are out there. When you are that young, it sucks to hear that you can’t have this that or the other. The day I came home, I headed straight to the cookie jar! If he knows there are things he can have - in moderation of course - maybe he won’t feel the need to sneak them.

Finally - sorry so long winded - you are right to an extent about being disciplined and on a schedule - two things essential to being careful about when you are diabetic. Incorporate your other children somehow into the schedules and that way, you work on being more organized, your diabetic son does and your other children are not left out of everything.

Good luck - it will work out!


Your boy is doing the kind of thing boys of that age do about EVERYTHING. My son had a terrible allergy to poison oak which would require huge doses of prednisone or he’d be covered with weeping welts for months. He was ordered to stay out of the woods. So what would he do? He’d go out in the woods, tell us he hadn’t gone into the woods, and then wear long pants (in summer) to hide the developing rash until it was completely out of control–resulting in weeks of misery! He would also do things like throw out his report card and tell me that the report cards hadn’t been sent home ignoring the fact that I would, eventually, call the school and find out about the report cards!

It was like he just didn’t get the idea of cause and effect and thought he could override them with his will.

My advice would be not to expect your son to be able to manage his diabetes at this age. You test, don’t rely on his report. You administer the injection. Explain to him that his life depends on this being done right and it isn’t safe for him to manage it as he has shown he doesn’t have that ability. That is the truth!

My son has turned into competent adult and yours will too, but it can take a long time. My son was still doing things at age 19 that were beyond dumb.


As two posters have said before me, your son is being a boy. If it weren’t his test results and his Low BG Treatments it would be something else.

The fact is he’s too young to manage by himself. He needs your help but you also have to be level-headed about it. If he’s afraid of your reaction to a high reading, he will try to hide it from you. EVERYONE gets high readings sometimes. it’s doesn’t do me any good to freak over my high readings and it doesn’t do you or your son any good to freak either.

Make sure your son knows that you can check his readings just by looking at his meter, so lying is fruitless. Set up a reward system for getting a good average over the week, two week or month period as opposed to a reward for each reading. Provide snacks other than his BG Treatment. These snacks, by the way, should be for EVERYONE, not just him. Setting aside ‘special’ snacks will only make him feel isolated and different. He wants to feel normal.

You don’t necessarily need charts and organizers and timers. Set up a simple program to test at certain events, rather than at certain times. e.g. wakeup, after breakfast, before lunch, after lunch, before dinner, after dinner/bedtime.

It is rare to find a diabetic with a perfect system for caring for themselves, or who does everything right and everything they should do every time. Finding a 10 year old boy who does it would be a miracle.

What’s most important is that he knows you care, that you’re paying attention and that he’s not going to be punished for having a disease he didn’t ask for and doesn’t want. Focus on rewards. Rewards. Rewards.

Oh, and the diabetic camp or support group is a good idea. Even an on-line group. it’s helpful to know that he’s not alone. I’m sure there’s a thread somewhere by a group of 10 year old diabetics entitled something like “Help! My Parent’s Freak if I Miss a Blood Test.”



I agree with a lot of what other people have said here.

When I got diabetes at 13, it was hard to be different. I didn’t want t the disease, the testing, the shots, the constant nag of having to take care of myself. I’ve had diabetes for nearly 25 years now and those things still get to me some days (though now I use an insulin pump, continuous glucose monitoring and test at least 8 times a day and I feel rewarded that I don’t have many complications). Diabetes is frustrating. You can do everything right and still have highs and lows. You can do everything right and you still will have things be complicated by just the fact that you have it. You have no choice but to be organized if you are going to manage diabetes well.

You need to get yourself and your family organized to help him. I remember my mom helping to count out crackers into baggies and varieties of things I could have for snacks so it was easy to know how much to eat. Involve your other kids. Be fair about what food is available to all of your family (it totally sucks if the other kids get candy you can’t have at home as well as everywhere else).

And the tip about diabetes camp is great. I went to diabetes camp and I learned more from the rest of the kids there than I ever learned from a doctor at that age. There were little kids who were better at their shots and testing than I was and I realized that I was being a wuss to not be able to do it if they could. There were kids who had great tips about how to cover if you ate something off the list (this was back in the days of exchanges for those of you who remember). And they taught me how to be active and test for it and not make a big deal. I loved camp and I became a counselor. It was great to know I wasn’t alone and it wasn’t so weird.

There is a lot of information for parents and kids at the site- There are lots of other kids there who are willing to write and talk.

The other thing I would recommend is having a conversation with your son. Ask him if he wants to take care of his diabetes or whether he wants you to. He is right at that age when he might be too young or not confident enough. Explain that it is his disease and he knows how he feels better than anyone else. It might be better for him to want to take care of it with your help. Or it might be better for you to manage it until he feels ready. But he needs to be involved in that decision. And he needs to understand that you aren’t going to let him not take care of it. His life is at stake. You want him to be healthy as he can.

Good luck and know we’re all here to support you.


I was 15 when I found out about my diabetes and acted somewhat like your son. I never tested for years. So who knows how many highs and lows that I had. He is not going to be perfect, I still sometimes forget to give myself insulin for stuff that I ate, but you need to encourage him and try to find what works for him. I finally started to test when I found a tester that I liked. The insulin pump has really helped me manage things. The good thing about the insulin pump is that if someone brings a treat to school he can still be included by adjusting his insulin then and there.

Hi Vonda: (cool name) :smiley:

I’m so sorry that you are going through this. Stressful…DEFINITELY!! I was dxd.
at age 3, so I can Very well understand what your Son is going through. My
Daughter had a condition (not Diabetes) but scary also. So I know also how
closely you want your child to be in the Safe zone, as we did and any Parent would.
Also my Parents had me and my 2 Brothers both dxd. Very young also so believe me,
I heard about our Parents points of view. :smiley:

Most children are immature, think they are invincible(that won’t happen to me), think
they know way more than their Parents could EVER know, try to get away with whatever
they think they can(whether well-planned or not). Been there, done that. :wink: It’s a below-
smart frequency. :wink:

I wasn’t educated Diabetes-wise much(country Dr., wee town, no library or support for
Diabetes since no one there had it at the time). Also no meters, so fudging a urine test
was way too easy. We were never told to write down test results or anything. Really weird
compared to what Kids do today. Our Dr. told my Mom to test our urine before we went to
bed and draw the Insulin each night according to the urine test to be given in the morning. :o@
We’re always amazed that we made it safely out of childhood with that treatment. Way too many
seizures and highs. Also we tested our urine twice a day and had shots twice a day.

Kids also are “normaly” born with a sweet-tooth(sugar addictive). Although our house was 99.0%
sugar-free we still found sugary stuff somewhere in our travels. Not to mention other foods that we
didn’t know at that time that resulted in high sugar levels. A piece of bread? No sugar there.

I realize your Son is more educated in Diabetes…but he is still a Kid and still feels he is invincible.

I worry more about People who are dxd. in their 30’s, 40’s, etc. since their bodies are more worn and if
they seriously don’t care to control their sugars then the longer term high sugars will seriously harm their
bodies and organs more quickly.

Good idea to get the Ultra Smart so you can see his testing and maybe bribes would help or grounding.
Then again depending on the Kid, he/she may rebel . “Most” not all, Kid’s brains aren’t advanced enough
to see thoroughly past a few days or weeks thus consequence is meaningless to them.

I just wish you an “easy” on this Hun. Although it doesn’t sound Nice or appropriate, most Kids(unless they
have something else crappy in their genes or if they severely go out of control long-range)will survive the highs
and lows of Juvenile Diabetes(Type 1) without damage as we did. Children’s body’s are very resilient.

Quite simply, 90% of children are immature as they should be. That’s why they
are children and can’t do things they want to before the age of 18(here)since their
decisions are usually not situation logical. Just go with the flow. Sorry, I can’t think
of anything useful to tell you.


Thank you everyone for your helpful and supportive responses. It’s means a lot to me to be able to have advice and empathy available as we go through life with Diabetes.

Joshua is scared of having lows. He woke up the other morning early with a 3.5. He felt funny and did a test. He did not wake us but did the right things to treat it. It showed us thought, by what he said to us, that he was worried about having lows in the night. It freaked him out. I wonder now if he is sneaking food and drinks to keep his blood sugars up.

I know that not all the taking will be because of this, some of it will just be because he is a kid and can.

We have both been better at doing and checking injections and test. We have had talks about how we can work together to make this better for both him and I. I must say I would not wish diabetes on anyone but it has brought my son and I closer. We both know each other more than if he did not have diabetes.

So he is in more control of sweets and things we have set up a system where he brings home any sweets that he gets given and he gets to swap them for his favorite sweets (maltesers at the moment) and eat them at his next meal. Also we give him a small packet on the weekends that he gets to choose what meal he has them with. He likes this and is very prompt in reminding me at the start of a weekend to get him a pack.

As for his hypo treatments. We have changed them to something that he likes enough to eat them for his hypos but not enough to want to take them in between. This seems to be working for now.

We have also set up a chore chart for him with things like tidying up his diabetes kit. He gets paid for all his chores at the start of the week into a jar. When I see jobs not done and have to do them myself I pay myself for doing the job for them out of his jar. All the kids are on this with equal amounts of jobs to do. They are excited when Sunday rolls around and they get paid out. We are finding that it is a great incentive for them to get their chores done. Also now instead of me having to remember all the jobs they are meant to be doing I can just say “Check your chore chart. Have you done everything on it?”

He went to diabetic camp last summer and it was a great boost in him wanting to take care of himself more.

We have always tested at regular times so we have not changed that. He tests on average four times a day at breakfast, lunch, dinner & before bed.

And the sweet tooth thing I hear recently is a survival thing, from our hunter gather past, to protect them from poisons plants. Children are born to dislike bitter things (thats why they dont like vegies like broccoli and spinach).

Thanks once again for all your help

Oh and…

An insulin pump is not an option here even though Joshua wants one. Even though we could afford to pay for one we could not get one for him because the NHS (National Health Service) here in the UK is in debt and not willing to pay out for the meds for a pump unless it is absolutely necessary. Or so I was told by the diabetes nurse. Our health insurance does not cover Diabetes.

Hi Vonda,

One diabetes parent once gave me a great idea-- everytime you or your son test and his blood sugar is high, you say “I’m glad we caught that!” and correct with insulin.

I tried doing that for myself as well-- it’s strange but it does make a difference that instead of being mad and frustrated about highs, I force myself to at least for a minute look on the positive side!

Also, I have even caught myself convincing myself or my husband why I should eat the chocolate bar. I have a similar attitude about hypo food-- it shouldn’t be TOO good!

I think that it is a good idea to talk to him about how much he wants you to do. I don’t think that you should be doing everything. You can’t be with him 24 hours a day.

Also about the snacks etc. for the other kids, I think that is good to keep things equal as much as possible. But I would emphasize to your other kids that the snacks they can’t have are because they are not healthy-- not because their brother has diabetes. They could become resentful of his diabetes.

I live in Hungary and I know here that the national health insurance covers 90% of the pump and supplies… (and the hungarian system is in major debt too). It’s worth looking into how much they cover, even just to know for the future.

Best wishes!!!


I’m almost 26 now, but I remember starting to get into trouble because of my diabetes when I was 11 or 12. There’s so much social pressure to be like other kids, and sometimes it’s hard to feel different. It can be tremendously stressful to be the kid at the party who can’t eat the birthday cake, or who is the only one drinking diet soda.

And I don’t know what your diabetes management style with your son is, but I can tell you about my own mum…sometimes I’d get yelled at for having high numbers, even if it was for no good reason, and it definitely hurt me on the inside to see the near-panic in her eyes when I’d be low. Is he sneaking the hypo treatments because he’s low and he won’t tell you? Maybe he just needs to know that no matter what happens, you don’t think any less of him, you just want to figure out what the problem is so you can work on it together. Then he won’t need to lie about numbers anymore.

I love that idea of looking at the positive side, Kristin. I’m going to try that with myself.

I agree with all of the above comments… I was diagnosed when I was five years old and I can remember plenty of times where I lied to my parents about my numbers or about testing at all. I think a big part of that was seeing my mother’s reaction when I had a high number… I began to think - i shouldn’t report a high number even if it meant reporting a fake number (one I made up). Never say that a number is “bad” or “good”. We can’t control our numbers easily so it’s not fair to state a number as “good” or “bad”. Not that I’m saying you do this, but my mother did. I also think that sometimes, I felt that I didn’t get “treats” like all of the other kids did. Halloween was a big bummer for me. I think if you can give him other kinds of “treats” that would be great. As far as the lows while sleeping, my parents gave me 25grams of cheese before bed as a slow burning fuel to keep my sugars stable - this may not work for everyone. I also might suggest keeping a baby monitor - (one that preferably looks more like a walkie-talkie or at least doesn’t look babyish) to keep in his room so that you can monitor him during the night - My parents did that with me and they were able to rush at a moments notice to help me when I was low - it also made me feel better because I knew that they could come quickly if I needed help. It saved me quite a few times. Know too that your son appreciates everything that you do (I’m sure of this) and take comfort in how so many of us are here and getting old with our diabetes - it won’t limit what he can do!!

Hi Vonda!
I’ve had type 1 for 31 years, my 14 year old daughter has had it for 9 years.
We went through similar situations last year, She ended up hospitialized a few times in DKA b/c of her choices
I put my daughter on “probation” after that, and took her off of her pump and then,
EVERY time she tested I sat and watched her do it, which at 13 was not her favorite…
but it worked, as she became more trustworthy again, I gave her some space back & would then just double check her meter’s memory to make sure I was given the right numbers by her.
I would give her the opportunity to do her own shots if she fought with me, then I would give them for her
and I had to watch her take the insulin as well, she would shot the insulin into the toilet or on the floor at times.
She also ate an entire jar of glucose tabs (50 count!) I made her do chores around the house at a dollar a piece to earn the money to buy another jar.
It took her awile, but she got sick of mom being right on top of her every move, so she started doing things right-
and earned back being able to go out with her friends and going to their houses for dinner and sleepovers.

I put her back on her pump in Sept, her A1C was 9.6 on her start date, and just one month later at her follow up it was down to 7.4 and in Dec it was 7.0
a little dedication from the team goes a long way :slight_smile:
good luck!!

Hi Vonda,

I was diagnosed at 17 months so I never knew life without shots, which I think is a blessing. BUT, it was the invention of home glucose monitors that I despised. I got my first meter when I was about your son’s age, and I absolutely hated testing. It was not the lancet sticks, it was the inconvenience of just having to take the time of of my “busy day”. Plus the fact that my mom was somewhat of a hypochondriac, looking back I can say it was her constant bearing down on me that added a lot of rebellion towards my diabetes care. And at that age, of course nothing bad can happen to you, so all the stories from people with diabetes about how they went blind, lost their kidneys, feet, etc. did not and would never, of course, apply to me.

My advice to you is to try to ease back on him a bit and see how it goes. Also, I’m not sure what type of hypo goodies you are using, but I highly recommend getting those glucose tablets instead, they are definitely not something you want to snack on for leisure. Another thing I can suggest is to have a sit down talk with all his friends and their parents, and explain to them what signs to look out for for highs and lows, how to treat lows, and the importance of him keeping good control (then encourage sleepovers). Once my friends and their parents became involved in my control, it was a LOT more “natural” and comfortable than either of my parents. I hope you can gain something positive from this, and God bless you and your son.

Hi there,
I am going through the same thing with my little girl. She was dx’d almoxt 9 years ago and she is also 10.
For the passed 2 years she has been lying about testing and she to, will pull a number out of the air. I found this site because I’m looking for some kind of help as well. I sure hope we will get through this.Because I’m not sure how much more of this stress I can take!

It’s rough being a child with diabetes. I did the same thing around his age (I’m 26 now). I wanted to be “normal” and eat candy like all my friends were doing.

Have you tried telling him that you ask for his blood sugar levels because you love and care about him so much? He can eat what he wants if he covers it with insulin. I think it’s okay to be gentle but firm when it comes to your son’s health. He’s too young to know how to handle it on his own.

Take him to a diabetes educator who enjoys working with children and can teach him about the illness. He may also be encouraged if you sit in with him on sessions with the educator; it may make him feel less alone with his diabetes. Please message me if you want to talk about this further. I would love to help!

There are no solid answers to this question. Every child (person) is different. I was 11 when diagnosed and rebelled more than once. And that is what it is, a form of rebellion. My suggestion is that you try not to get too upset by it. Kids will be kids. As long as he is not getting so high he is DKA or extremely dangerous, then don’t ride him too hard. For me, that only made it worse, just like any other rebellion. Also, consider a pump. I am pretty sure the government has a program to help families afford pumps for kids. Not sure how you find it, but it is out there if you search for it. At least if he had the pump, he wouldn’t have to inject every time. It is obvious that you love your son. There is no doubt about that and I’m sure he knows it too. Keep loving him and giving him support and eventually he’ll come around.