I was recently diagnosed and single… My doctor told me that I should move home or with someone so I was not alone while I am adjusting to this disease. I am having problems with my parents being an adult because they are now treating me like I am 15 years old. They are trying to help but it is driving me crazy!!! For example: I had a couple of drinks when I went back to college for alumni weekend. I felt like crap for a couple of days which probably was from having too much fun but like 5 days later I had a couple of lows from working, and they keep nagging me about the weekend before… It has nothing to do with the following weekend but they keep on nagging me. I will also make my lunch/dinner, and they will bring up the diabetes even though I can take of the carbs with insulin to equal it out… Does anyone have any advice on how to deal with over protective parents and being an adult. I am about to move out because I can’t too much more of it. Any help is much appreciated.
Wow, this is tough. I say, take your parents with you to a Diabetes Education Class. This should give your parents some answers and some guides on carbs as well.
And about the alcohol, maybe you should stay away for awhile on alcohol till you adjust to all of this. Also, get your parents to sign up on this site so that they can learn from other parents as well as other diabetics.
It will be fun to have your parents involved, than you can see how much they care for you. If they didn’t care they wouldn’t be nagging, but after some education and involvment on their part…it’ll get better.
Stay in control, patti
Patti Thanks for your for your advice. My mom came with me to all of the edu classes in the beginning so she knows a lot on the topic… I would actually prefer them to not be on this site so I can have a place to talk/vent to other diabetics. I know they are only trying to help and care about my well being, but it is hard enough to adjust to the 4 injections and 7 bs testings a day… I am sure it will get better with time, but in the mean time we are all really stubborn and they only go by only what they have read and not expericened no matter what I say. My numbers have been perfect so far(first a1c was a 6.0) so there is no reason for them to question my decisions. If I ever screw stuff up enough where I have to go to the hospital then I will listen but as of now it is just annoying…
They’re worried and are trying to rebalance themselves. They’re unsure of what the future might hold for you and are probably trying to piece together and assimilate a plethora of information they feel bombarded with into a manageable lifestyle for you and a radical change in situation for them. Some people have even said that a period of mourning sets in following a diagnosis of T1 diabetes. Remember that although diabetes is our disease that we have to manage ourselves, its effects have a far-reaching impact on our nearest and dearest. I guess it’s worth remembering that as far as your parents are concerned, you’re still their little boy whose life has only recently been radically altered.
Give them time, let them see that you can self-manage well enough on your own and they will then hopefully feel more confident in themselves.
As a parent I can tell you that there is nothing more fearsome than having your child diagnosed with a life threatening disease like T1D. I know my son is only 2 and you’re a grown man, but they’re still your parents and to a certain extent they’re still going to feel the same as I do–terrified, imagining losing you to this disease, and wanting to do anything and everything to prevent that loss and protect you. No child EVER took care of him/herself as well or as carefully as a parent wants! But you’re a grown man, and it may come down to simply setting aside some time to lay down the facts with them: They’re there to back you up in case you need them, not to hover. You can and will take good care of yourself. You have no interest in dying young or experiencing nasty complications, so they need to trust you to make sure these things don’t happen. You understand their fears, now they need to understand your need for independence. Keep it calm, rational, and quiet, and let THEM do any screaming and crying that needs to happen; maybe get a diabetes educator or a therapist familiar with family issues in diabetes involved if you think your folks aren’t amenable to hearing it from you. But ultimately, this is reality: you’re an adult and it’s YOUR responsibility, not theirs, to manage your health.
Tell them to trust you? I was single and living alone when diagnosed, but luckily nobody acted like I could no longer live that way. I’ve never had a single problem w/ passing out or not being able to take care of myself. The one thing that does make me sleep better (although after the first few months, I had no problems sleeping) is the CGMS.
I would also suggest that you get a new doctor. No doc should tell somebody that they can’t live by themselves b/c of diabetes. That’s just whack.
I am a parent of two diabetics. However, both of my kids are young. I have to say, I feel for you. I think it’s a good idea to have help and a double check, but you are going to have to reach some middle ground with your parents. Stress can affect your BS levels and from my personal experience during exam week, the swing can be huge. You have a lot of learning to do and you need to be able to focus to get that accomplished. There are many similarities with all diabetics, however there are just as many differences and you need to be able to pay attention to them. For example: how does stress, lack of sleep, certain foods affect your BS levels. What does it feel like to be low or on the way down. You have to be able to tap into that and but quick. Being a new diabetic is emotional and if you are constantly at odds with your parents or thinking about it, then you can’t focus on what your body is telling you.
I assume you are on ratio’s for your food intake. I would say to have a healthy diet just like you would if you weren’t diabetic. You can eat starches and occasional sweets, as long as you measure correctly and truly keep count. But the part you mother has to understand is you can eat just like they do, healthy. You might decide as you get older and you realize that you can’t get your A1C down, to restrict certain carbs at certain times of day. But again, you have to be able to be focused on yourself to make those decisions.
Now, I have to say…you have absolutely no business drinking until you have a huge chunk of time under your belt being a diabetic. If you are still adjusting to understanding the physical messages your body sends you and managing what foods work and which don’t, adding alcohol to the mix is going to back fire on you. I know you feel you are fine, but we aren’t talking about mental state. We are talking about how it affects you physically. There is a lot of sugar in alcohol. You take the chance of having a huge low. On top of that, if you have one drink too many…you raise the chance that you haven’t been paying attention to food intake or takin the wrong shot. My recommendation on alcohol is wait until you have a good grasp on how YOUR body handles diabetes. Then you also need to be with people you can trust and who pay attention to what’s going on with just in case you miss the signals. Then they need to be trained to help you.
My suggestion, have a sit down with your parents. 1. This is what I need from you. 2. Thank you for being so involved, but it is stressing me out and that isn’t healthy for either of us. 3. This is how we can both take a step towards the center. 4. I promise I won’t drink again until I truly understand how diabetes affects my body.
That’s a tough one because no matter how old we are we’re still little kids in our parents’ eyes. They love us & they worry. I can’t get my husband to stop fretting & worrying either.
Your parents are still coming terms with this. Since they can’t fix it, their love & concern takes the form of nagging. Yea, not very helpful or positive. I’ve found the best way to deal with this is to acknowledge the fears of my family. If they won’t/can’t talk about it, I can. Instead of going through the endless rounds of their nagging & my continued annoyance at this, I told my loved ones point blank that I knew they were scared & worried. Helped a lot to get everyone’s cards on the table. After much coaxing, we discussed their fears. I did my best to approach each of their fears & concerns rationally. Also told them, of course, I can handle diabetes & tried to educate them. I said that their worries (nagging) undermined my confidence & I needed all my confidence to cope with diabetes.
With my husband, I kept showing him my logs so he had evidence I knew what to do. He likes written records:)
If it gets to be too much, maybe you should move out.
I can understand what you are going through. I was diagnosed at the age of 21 and I lived with my parents for one month (it was during the summer when I was home from college anyway) and then moved back to college.
It was a strange situation because my parents wanting to give advice, but they didn’t know nearly as much about how to take care of my diabetes. I had learned a lot right away.
One day I came home and my mom had made a carb free dinner. My blood sugar was low when I checked before dinner and so I ate bread and tried to explain to my mom that sometimes i need carbs. For years (and still now), it’s clear that they don’t really understand what I live with.
My best advice is to remind them that your diabetes is here to stay with you and you know that they have good intentions, but you need to make the decisions.
Keep us posted on how you are doing!
I am a parent of a 6 year old but my thoughts are that I cannot watch him every day of his life to make sure he is making the right choices. I am going to have to trust him to do what is best for himself. So the best thing I think for your parents is to let you understand things on your own first if that is what you want. When I say on your own its not by yourself but with people who understand what you are going through and it may not be them. You may get more answers in this forum than from them and they need to understand that. As parents we have a tendency to want to hang on but we need to let go also. Sometimes it may be that we fight the battles on our own as diabetics but know we have support of our parents when we need it. Diabetes for me has been about choices and no one will make those choices but you. Wether those choices are good or bad we can only be responsible for our choices. Also dont let the doctors scare you in to thinking you cant be an independent person who can not take care of himself. I say move out if the parents cant chill out. What are they going to do when you decide to get married and move on, come live with you. Also if the doctors are so concerned about what may happen then tell the doc to get you a constant monitor so you can know what is happening at all times. When I was first diagnosed I wanted to figure out things on my own so that I could take care of myself. I am a type 2 but I was on insulin for 9 months after my diagnosis, so I have some idea of the routines of doing insulin.
My wife does not really participate on my treatments and that is ok with me. I like to plan my meals and worry about my food intake on my own and not make it a family function. My family did pick up my better eating habits so a positive. I do make bad choices sometimes but the wife does not nag me about it. Also I know the family worries sometimes when I am low and start acting weird but I want to prove to them that I may have a disease but I can take care of myself. I guess its the father in me. With time you will learn what is good for you and what is bad. We all make bad food/drink choices and we pay for it one way or another. If you are here to me it means you are looking for answers and you are trying to learn how to deal with the big D. Lows and highs are a part of it all. I hate them like everyone else in here but I am just trying to deal with them as they come. I learn from the causes but I try not to dwell. Take care
I can totally understand you Eric. My Mom was the same when I was first diagnosed too. I do not have a father anymore but an older sister stands like one for me. Considering that I am married too. At first it was pretty annoying… but I came to understand that they do this because they care for me so much. It took them awhile before they can get over the feeling of “denial”. You see…my Mom is a nutritionist and my sister is a physician…so healthy living was inculcated to us since youth. Im also not the stereotyped type 2 diabetic since I was very physically active with average weight. It came as a big blow to them at first. I interpreted their constant nagging, doting and food policing was the fact that they cannot control nor manage MY diabetes…only I can. And the fact they cannot do anything about it anymore…they felt helpless. So in turn they wish to control and manage my diabetes through me. What I did was show improvements on my condition, I try to be responsible and disciplined enough to manage my lifestyle. They can also see my progress. It wasnt long before they have totally “trusted” me on taking care of myself. Well, there will be occasional…“youre gaining weight, watch youre diet” or “Have you taken your pill today?”. In fact, my husband does that too sometimes. Their support is always there. But parents will always be parents regarless of our staus or age. In their eyes they would always want to take care of us. Simply because they love us.
First let me say that I am sorry you are going through this and I am sorry if I sound like the parent that I am. My words are meant to help you see your parents differently which might help you to understand that you cannot control their actions. What you can control is your reactions to them.
Try to understand that your parents’ actions are directly related to their fear and has nothing to do with reality or how competent you are. In some ways you might look at this as though you are the parent and they are the children in need of guidance and reassurance. I say this because until they learn to manage their fear, you will need to exercise loving patience. They will have a tough time trusting themselves to trust you to manage your D until they have a little more time and experience under their belts. Have faith though…they will learn to manage their fear as they see you learning from your mistakes and making good choices. They will get to this point just as they learned to trust you when you reached every important milestone in your life. Believe me…the fear was there for every milestone (even some of the earliest like taking your first steps). This is just another, although unexpected and scarier, milestone they cannot control and maybe not even influence. So staying with them helps them to learn how to manage and provides you with the support you need for now…a win, win situation.
And…if you haven’t already, you might want to think about the possibility that they could be dealing with some guilt…thinking (irrationally) that…somehow…they might have done something to cause your D. There is nothing you can do about these kinds of irrational feelings, nor should you try since its their burden to work out. Its just that recognizing what might be lurking under the surface provides the opportunity for greater understanding and more peace in your heart.
OK I said more than I ever intended and I’m sorry if it’s already been said. Good luck!
Hey Eric! As you know, I was diagnosed just a month after you. I think my parents were definitely uneasy with the fact that I had signed the lease to the apartment I am currently living in by myself just 2 weeks before diagnosis! I am younger than you (I’m 21) and I WAS at home for my summer break from college, so I guess I was living with them right after I was diagnosed, but just 2 months later I was all moved into my glorious new apartment, living on my own, and happy! There’s something to be said for (1) having someone around you in the event something “happens;” (2) feeling like you can vent to someone like your mom or dad; and (3) having parents make appropriate food. But other than that, I’m happy on my own and I take very good care of myself. Of course I have a support system of friends if I were to ever need anything. I check my BG ALL the time and have never had a “dangerous” situation. I’m sure if you’re the same then you should definitely be able to live by yourself. I mean, we were diagnosed at the same time, and I’m younger than you! Tell your parents you know of a 21-year-old student who’s doing it… you can too!