Me: hypo, "I want to be alone for 15 minutes", boyfriend reacts by feeling neglected

I’ve been dating this guy for over a year. I was explaining to him what I did for hypo treament, because sometimes he is too helpful and I wanted to communicate to him the process and the why’s. He wanted to sit with me while I waited my 15 minutes. But he wanted to touch me, talk to me. Yeah, maybe I can be a ■■■■■ when I’m low, but can’t I ask to be left alone? So now he’s feeling rejected. I find his feelings are easily hurt and I’m finding this whole “communication” thing a mine field.

Thanks for letting me rant. Any advice appreciated.

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They just don’t understand, how can they unless they have seen you a real mess? Some people are more sensitive to it than others though.

With menopause I kept trying to explain to my husband why I would get so irritable with a hot flash. What finally worked was telling him to sit in front of the car heater put it on high and then don’t move no matter how hot you get and think how irritable you will feel.

I don’t know a good comparison for a low, especially since we respond differently. But maybe try to tell him any voice you hear at that moment that makes you think of a response is just irritating and it doesn’t matter who that voice belongs too until you calm down? I know my husband can tell from my responses that he will ask are you low? lol…I have no patience for reexplaining, repeating or even explaining period.

They soon learn if they are around long enough. Some will always be better than others of course, people are different. If they can’t learn to deal with something that you can’t inherently change maybe you need to know sooner than later.

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My suggestion is to explain again and ask what would help him comply with your request. He wants to be helpful, so describe how him talking, touching is not helping, so what else can he do? Take a walk, read his mail, play game on phone/computer? Give him a chore to do?

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@Frantastic, I see no fault in your behavior whatsoever. On the contrary, I wish I would know more people like you. Your clarity about what is going on is refreshing. Not everything in the life of a T1 is related to T1. Ignore for a moment that this was T1 related. This incident might give insight that otherwise you would get years down the road.

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@Frantastic:

Excellent user name, by the way …

It is my understanding that the tendency to immediately want to jump in and solve ANY problem is preferentially found on the Y-chromosome.

So, I would appeal to his problem-solving nature with:

  1. You already understand that low blood sugar is a dangerous situation.

  2. Stress and anxiety tend to drive blood sugar lower.

  3. Your anxious hovering in these conditions increases my stress and anxiety …

  4. So, if you REALLY want to help, the best thing you can do is to give me 15 minutes of quiet time by my self.

Listed as 4 numbered points as only a man would do …

Good luck and stay safe!

John

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Srsly

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I’m normally super sweet to my husband, but I get a free b!tch pass when I’m low! I’m a MEAN hypo. I don’t begrudge him wanting to keep an eye on me, though. He’s better than any CGM at detecting how I am. He’s hyper observant and can tell based on how often I stop to breathe while talking and how my eyes blink. And it’s nice to make him fetch me more sugar, if I want.

When I’m sick, though, I’m just like you. He wants to comfort and pet on me, which I know is sweet… But I just want to be left alone to die! I don’t want to be looked at, scrutinized, or judged. I wind up telling him point blank, “I’m not mad at you, but please just leave me alone.”

It’s probably best to explain to your boyfriend when you’re NOT low, that it’s extremely irritating/frustrating when you’re low, and nothing he can do can help. You don’t have the wherewithal to be kind in that state of mind, and he’s got to learn to not take anything that happens when you’re low personally. Next time he gets moody about how you acted, remind him it wasn’t you talking, but the hypo beast with a free b!tch pass.

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Tell him that you are not always fully in control of your emotions when you are hypo and that you do not what him to be the focus of the raw emotions you may exhibit. Its best he stay clear for the sake of your relationship.

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My husband will literally go, I’ll wait to talk to you when you’re better, if he sees me sit down he will ask me if I need him to get me anything. He’s learned lol.

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Exactly! He so wants to help.

Good point. I’m wondering if these neglected feelings of his go a lot deeper. Food for thought! :wink:

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Yes!

It takes years to figure out a diabetics moods. Before cgm I was a bear. I would get moody when low and completely forget the whole thing when my sugars went back up.
But probably being alone isn’t the best place to be if your blood sugar is out of control.
I think all diabetics should make a diabetic friend so we can see what our husbands and wives deal with.

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Some great advice above. If I’m not too late … When you talk to him, explain clearly that when you are low you get moody, you might say the wrong thing or your behaviour may send the wrong message, and the best thing is for you to have some time out. Make sure you use “I” statements – “When I’m low, I need …,” etc. – making this about you, so he doesn’t feel you are blaming him. Thank him for being concerned and caring (this is a good thing in a partner!) but stress that it’s better for both of you if you’re left alone for 10 or 15 minutes, and then you’ll be fine.

One thing you might say you’d appreciate is if he could come back and let you know when your 15-minute wait is up so you can test again (even if you have a watch and you know when to do it). Hopefully in this way he can stay in caring mode while at the same time giving you your needed space and not feeling pushed away.

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I think that all of the advice you have been given is really good. The only thing I might suggest is that you also let him know that when you are low, you are tired. You do not have the physical energy to interact with ANYone or any thing. You dearly appreciate his immediate help, but then he needs to observe from afar since your body is in survival mode and is using all of its energy to climb out of that low. I don’t know how long you have been dating, but he may be worth keeping around and training. Fair warning though: my husband of 44 years can tell when I am going low, and he still tends to hover. He shows his love by making sure I am going to be all right. That really is part of his “when I see a problem, it is my responsibility to fix it” personality.

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Thank you for all your great replies. I’m thinking about letting him read this thread, because everyone has explained the situation much better than I ever could. Again, thank you.

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You may want to work out a sign just in case you are not well.
e.g. I just give my family a “wave” to let them know i’m on my way back. No words. Also, let him know what to do if you don’t wave.

Tell the BF that sentences and thought process and judgement isn’t even at 10% so thinking/responding to complex questions like, “can i get you anything?” is frustrating. The only thing that is close (don’t want to offend anyone) but a sloppy drunk.

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I’m sorry - he’s an adult so you should not have to plan activities for him to fill in his time so you can get through one of the worst feelings you can have. If he’s mature enough to date you, he should be mature enough to understand “I feel awful and will for the next half hour so please entertain yourself and don’t worry about me - I will be okay if just left alone for a few”.

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Ooooh boy.

This makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up! I spent (too) many years trying to “help” someone “understand” why when I said something along the lines of “This is what I need” that it wasn’t an affront to his person, it was because I needed that thing- whatever it was- because I was an equal human being who also had needs and wants of my own, and sometimes he’d have to take the ‘losing‘ end (which by the way, was ALWAYS about his feelings being hurt because I wanted some solitude, maybe 15 to treat a low, maybe 40min to take a bath, maybe for no discernible reason and he felt neglected and abandoned.)

My advice to my younger self would have been to ditch that dude post-haste, anyone who doesn’t understand they cant always get what they want and reacts with hurt feelings that are then your job to appease isn’t worth the effort. EVER!

However, Ive had 10 years to reflect on that dismal time in my life, and so with more gentleness than I would give my self, my advice to you would be to check out CaptainAwkward.com and read some of her writings on Boundaries (which asking for 15min of solitude to treat a low certainly counts as), Communication, Dating, and way more fraught topics that are all interconnected and that might help you figure out how to deal with the bigger problem of his feelings than just trying to convince him to give you 15min every now and then…

Good luck, Frantastic, Ive been in your shoes, and I can tell you my life improved by leaps and bounds once I “outgrew” that pair!

(Not to derail your story, but a crafty dirty form of manipulation my Former Ill-Fiiting Shoes came up with was to remind me- regularly, esp any time my BG was out of whack and I was not very peachy to be around- the he was so magnanimous as to not even mind that I had diabetes, and look how he was putting up with me and my monster mood from hitting 350 from a failed infusion set or whatnot, and surely I could see what a strain I could be and I should be so grateful he didn’t mind my diabetes? Surely I knew that made him a one-of-a-kind catch and I should be grateful to have found him? I believed him, because I had no reason not to… I thought diabetes was annoying, so surely it was reasonable that other people would think my diabetes and I could be annoying… But it turns out that was a giant manipulative load of hooey and people who are actually kind and loving and accepting don’t have to remind you all the time how great they are. Just throwing that out there as another giant lesson I learned the slow hard way, in case you have any of that complete BS in your life also.)

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Thank you @Skye for sharing. I checked out Captain Awkward and could spend some time down that rabbit hole! :wink:

While I do have reservations about this relationship, I want to learn from it to make myself a better person. I believe my BF is a genuine good soul and he is also willing to talk and learn. This has definitely put a magnifying glass to one of the biggest problems in our relationship in that things that I do, or don’t do, easily hurt him and make him feel neglected. However, it’s also the best part of our relationship. My 20 year marriage didn’t have a lot of affection. I was also not really accountable and it was acceptable to do whatever I wanted. So it’s not surprising that I’m operating out of my comfort zone, so to speak.

I will be moving into the upper part of a house above my BF next month. I definitely need to examine “boundaries”. I’m not a very assertive person so some homework would be an excellent idea.

BTW, I showed this thread to my BF. His first reaction was “well, of course they all take your side”! The male brain. IDK! :laughing: I perhaps won’t do that again, but please know that everyone’s input has been incredibly valuable. With this pandemic, I’ve been feeling very isolated and my self-esteem has taken a real hit as I’ve been struggling to feel motivated. The validation is much appreciated. :blush:

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