No happy answer

I’ve never been in such a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” place in my life! :frowning:

I’ve been feeling pretty blue the last few days, and it always reflects in my diabetes care. And it always results in NOT wanting to do any of the self-care that I NEED. For me, part of it is craving for sugary carby foods AND not wanting to take any insulin for them (which would at least mitigate the high). So either I don’t eat the ice cream (refrained from going to the store last night), and then spend too much time thinking about it, or I DO eat ice cream, and spend hours trying to get my BG down, or DON’T try to get it down, whereupon, it just goes higher. That’s a danger spiral, and as you know, I’ve been there, and it ain’t pretty.

So the result is that I’m just spending time STRUGGLING with those feelings.

I wonder how many diabetics really DO achieve that legendary “it’s just like brushing your teeth every morning” kind of acceptance vs. those who struggle their whole diabetic lives. Or is the brushing your teeth aphorism just something invented by some well-meaning CDE who didn’t know what the hell they were talking about?

I really believe in the low-carb philosophy – it makes a lot of sense to me (and I guess that’s part of why I’m writing), and it’s NOT the giving up of carby food that bothers me, but the issue of having to regulate my food intake AT ALL. That’s where the DIYD, DIYD comes in. I’m really not dealing well (and never have) with the necessity of evaluating every morsel I eat in terms of my carb goals, much less how much insulin do I have to take if I DO decide to indulge.

We’re having a folk-dance party tomorrow night, and people always bring goodies, and there are 2 EXCELLENT pastry chefs among our crowd. Bad news for Natalie. Especially when she’s not in tip-top emotional shape. (Part of which is still dealing with the pain, although it’s definitely improving little by little)

Don’t you get tired of always having to think about food, too? Do you ever throw caution to the winds, knowing full well that it will get you in the end?

It’s bad enough just having to deal with the “normal” vagaries of diabetes – what do you do when you just want to FORGET about it?

I don’t even notice most of the time, I’m like “how much am I going to eat” and fire up the pump. I have found that I get decent results as long as I count the carbs accurately. It’s definitely a chore and I agree that eating less carbohydrates are often a good way to achieve better results with less work, which is always a good thing. At the same time, I enjoy some “heh heh heh Solo Wookie heh heh heh”



First, I hate my diabetes, with a passion. Pure, uandulterated hate. And, is there a diabetic who wouldn’t understand what you are going through? I would hope not. I don’t know what that legendary “it’s jst like brushing your teeth” because it has never, ever been like that for me. I never have the opportunity to ferget about my diabetes, and that IS the worst part about it.

In 25 years, I’ve been through the whole 1) control every aspect 2) burn-out 3) denial. Now it’s just acceptance. In a nutshell, my GF does tell me that I obsess over my diabetes management, but from my perspective, which is really the only one that matters for my mental health, I do what needs to be done without stressing the details too much.

Even though I don’t do low-carb (well, Bernstein’s version anyway) my diabetes management does require dedication. Luckily for me, I love to work-out and enjoy the time I spend in the gym and on the track. Still, if I have to take a week off, I take a week off and do what I have to do to maintain. That’s the best I can do.

Hang in there Natalie. You’ll find the answer for yourself. Maybe it won’t be the happy answer, but it will be a satisfactory one.

Couldn’t have said it better FHS.

Sorry to hear you’re having a rough day, Natalie. Definitely been there. For me, I can honestly say I don’t really struggle that much emotionally with diabetes, but that has a lot more to do with my life up to this point. I’m 62 and have found that most things in my life are MUCH easier for me as I get older. I’m just not in conflict with myself as I was when I was younger. My entire life was a battle with myself, and nothing was EVER easy, for pretty much the first 30 years of my life. So when I came to peace with all the demons that had been chasing me, it pretty much covered everything including the diabetes that popped up for me at age 58.

About having to obsess about food. For me, that’s a pretty ironic thing. I’ve mentioned on here that I have 16 years recovery from an eating disorder. When I got into recovery I learned a lot about my relationship with food and ways in which it had come to have significance for me that had nothing to do with nourishing myself. Part of my healing from that was to basically, with a few exceptions, eat whatever I wanted, and to make sure I ENJOYED what I did eat and not to obsess, weigh measure or restrict the way some people who have had eating disorders do. That worked well for me. I love to cook and found that eliminating only one thing - sugar - still left ample room for creativity and enjoyment. When I got diabetes I had to reverse many of the things I’d learned. I had to obsess about food basically. To measure, count, limit, etc. That was a big adjustment. But I kept the same principal. I don’t eat sugar. I’m a vegetarian. I don’t eat in between meals. I limit my carbs to under 100 a day. But I do NOT feel deprived. I make yummy things to eat, and enjoy every meal. I require myself to do so! I now know the carb counts of some of my common foods so it doesn’t take a lot of time for me, it’s become routine. I don’t exercise much, just walking which is a part of how I get around in Berkeley, so it doesn’t feel like “exercising” which I’m not into.

Do I have “just like brushing your teeth” acceptance? I guess I sort of do, but I don’t think of it as something heroic and I am FAR from perfect. My last A1C was 6.3 which is good but could be better. Under 100 carbs is good but could be better. But for me, I have chosen my current level of care. I’m 62 so don’t have decades to accumulate complications. I’m a vegetarian and a foodie and have chosen those pleasures for myself over better control.I don’t like food “substitutes”, don’t bother with artificial sweeteners and don’t like cauliflower much as a vegetable let alone as fake potatos (don’t eat “tofurkey”) No offense to people who do, but to me if I can’t have the real thing I don’t bother. I have the time for the management I do, but I also consider it a fun game and a challenge and don’t freak out at high numbers, but only consider them a puzzle to solve. So to me “acceptance” in general is a relaxed peaceful thing. It’s not a saintlike “embracing of my burdens” nor is it a constant struggle against them. It’s a quiet thing of doing what I need to do so it will recede into the background and I can live my life. I don’t struggle because to me it is the struggle that is exhausting not the diabetes. Hope that makes sense.

Hang in there, Natalie. Do something fun for yourself. That is something I also do regularly because I don’t do well if I’m feeling deprived. Go to the beach if it’s beach weather for you, or take a small child for a walk in the woods and watch all the things they discover. (dogs are good for that too). Watch an indulgent movie or tv show. Buy something you don’t need. Remember the parts of you that are more than a DIABETIC. Invite a friend to Saturday brunch. Keep track of how late it stays light tonight. Sleep till 10 and don’t get dressed till 12 tomorrow. Waste time. Don’t multitask. Enjoy life - it doesn’t last.

Oh, Natalie, I can identify - I’ve been there too. Last year I was eating and dosing for a food that I really liked and it still spiked me. I eventually sat down and ate way too much without bolusing, kind of a SO THERE!

The last few months I’ve relaxed my demands on myself some. I aim for about 40 carbs a day. Last week I had an ice cream cone from a local farm, bolused for it and thoroughly enjoyed it. I don’t think of it as cheating or falling off the proverbial wagon, rather as an indulgence, as you said. It doesn’t happen often, but for me it makes the rest of the attention and OCD’ing every - single - day a little easier. If it were me, I’d sample the pastry and bolus for it!

Hope you’re feeling better physically. I’m sure that whole trauma has contributed to how you feel emotionally.

The other thing I wanted to add is that for some of us, sugar and to some extent many carbs are physically addictive. I haven’t eaten sugar in a very long time and don’t miss it at all. But when I was first trying to stop eating it, it was hell! So if you can get past the craving stage (takes about 30 days) it gets a lot easier.

Hi Natalie. The problem I find with carbs is that they are so addicting. I can go just fine without them for days, and then when I indulge in some sugary or starchy delight, I start my slide down that all-too-familiar slippery slope. The carb cravings lead to obsession which leads to depression, or at the very least, frustration. It’s the start of that ugly downward spiral with which those of us blessed with D often become entrapped.

I know that you’ll find and press the reset button soon enough. I’m sure you have done that many times before. Until then, hang in there. Better days are surely ahead. BTW, I appreciate your frequent posts. I often find them very beneficial and positive.

I’ve been diabetic for like two months, but I was diagnosed with celiac disease 3 years ago. So while I don’t have as much experience with the meds and finger sticks, I have experienced my fair share of celebrations where I had to just sit and watch everyone else enjoy food. Some well-meaning soul always says, “you can have salad!” GRR. I’ve brainwashed myself to think of wheat flour as poison. I’m working on doing the same thing with sugar! I’ll have to let you know how that works out. :wink: Hang in there!

I think I posted a discussion a while back asking if anyone truly accepted their diabetes … I know there are some people out there who say it’s had a big positive impact on their life. I’m nearly at 20 years and, while it hasn’t ruined my life or anything, I haven’t found anything positive about it, either.

I struggle a lot with diabetes emotionally. I am MUCH less angry about it than I was in my early 20s. I really feel like my whole “stages of acceptance” were spread out over the past 20 years, and I’ve only recently reacted some sort of acceptance. And right now, when things are going smoothly, I can say that I just do what I have to do and it doesn’t bother me much. But the next time I have a roller coaster day, I know that will change instantly!

I definitely have a Jekyll & Hyde personality. Throughout the week I am a saint. On weekends I pig out. I need this outlet. It gives me the strength to be a saint for the next 5 days. On weekends I eat all the wrong foods. I still try to be smart about it. I don’t go into a “I don’t care” mode. Rather it is a “I will be a bad boy and I will not be caught” mode. I do my best to bolus the right amount at the right time. I feel invincible when it works out. I feel like a fool when it does not. I don’t psychoanalyze my motives. I am doing fine. I am my own worst critic and I approve of my actions.

“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”

I’m sorry, Natalie. Diabetes sucks.

“Life is pain, Highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.”

I’m sure every diabetic feels this way. Food used to be “fun” for me; now it’s a complicated nuisance. My determination to stay off medication & insulin (since 1-09) keeps me in line & also prevents re-gaining the 70 lbs. I’ve lost.

Oh, Natalie, Honey…I soooo understand. I did fantastically well for about 6 months. Then, I hit a bit of a wall with the carb control. It started, I think, oddly, with my FANTASTIC A1C of 5.2. I felt as though I had it nailed. So, I started testing a bit less often. Then just a few times a day. Then I skipped a day or two.

Then, I got tempted by fresh guacamole at the store…and I could not have it without tortilla chips. Now, I found the best ones…with only 16 gr of carbs per serving of 8…but I had about 12. I stopped there and it WAS my entire dinner…BUT.

The road to perdition…

I just got more lax after that. I began testing in the middle of the night a few times and got some awful readings for me - close to 150 and then my morning fasting BG’s were in the teens (115 for example). I was great during the day…but the evening meal was my downfall and I was adding too many carbs. I got sucked in by a serving of Pad Thai noodles one night.

It was all the things I’d denied myself but that I had so enjoyed prior to dx.

Ugh. So, finally, I got worried and took an at home A1C. It showed 6.1 - so a big change for the worse…which I am sure my doctors would chalk up to the hypothyroidism you know that I have been dealing (MY emotional roller coaster…which may, in fact led a bit to my lack of control on the carbs…I was just so TIRED…and the food was such an appealing treat…). But I WILL KNOW that I have wandered off the path.

Not horribly…I mean seriously, I am really very controlled most of the time…and part of that is because I do NOT have insulin to compensate with. I can’t just inject to bring my BG down…so if I over due, I am STUCK – and I also have symptoms when I go high and it is not pleasant. Headaches and peripheral neuropathy symptoms get worse…so it’s not fun and the recriminations set in and have BIG regrets.

So, I’m towing the line much better in the past 5 days since the A1C. I’m back to testing more often. I did have more carbs last night than I should have (the guacamole and chips…have decided I cannot bring them into the house anymore except when it is for a party and others are here).

So, that was a terribly long answer to your question…the SHORT answer is, of course…YES…I DO feel that way and NO you are not ALONE.

And we really need, both of us, to pat ourselves on the back and give ourselves a break for being good so much of the time. I’ve chatted with you enough to know how diligent you are most of the time…so, in this situation…perhaps you are being overly self-critical.

Perhaps you need to find ways to be kind to yourself right now…perhaps ways that do not involve food. Perhaps you need to find a way to address the root cause of what is causign your malaise. Or just go out and have a manicure or buy a new shade of lipstick! (Not to minimize whatever is going on…)

I certainly wish you all the best.

Hugs from the Midwest,


honestly, have a pastry, take some insulin, dance extra-hard, and don’t sweat it. one sugary treat will not kill you, nor is it a moral failing. diabetes never goes away, but the silver lining in that is that you don’t need to be perfect every day to enjoy long-term success.


Not a mocking laugh Helmut but I just read this and it absolutely hits home.

"I do my best to bolus the right amount at the right time. I feel invincible when it works out. I feel like a fool when it does not.’

I’m going to engrave this quote on my refrigerator door. Actually, my weakness is In-n-Out cheesburgers with Animal fries. I have to have one a couple of times a month. I’ve dissected boluses, carb ratios, corrections factors, and dual wave JUST to cover this meal. When it works out, which I hit about 75% of the time, I feel like Hannibal Smith from the A-Team. When it doesn’t, I feel like Moe, Larry, and Curly all rolled into one.

Your folk-dance party, I guess it is tonite- Sat. sounds like fun. Just go planning to eat 2 of the “goodies” baked by the pastry chefs. Don’t beat yourself up over it, just enjoy. When you get home and check your BS, make a correction to account for the goodies. That should be the end of it. That’s what I do. Life has to include some fun for you without feeling guilty all the time. When you are home and make your meals, that is the time to stay on the “straight and narrow” with your food. We all know how you feel and feel that way sometimes. Go have a good time !!!

Lynne…yes, I KNOW I have some nerve calling 150 HIGH. But I go for very tight control and believe it or not do get symptomatic when I go higher.

My diabetes was caught very early because my dad was a late onset insulin dependent diabetic (and an MD) and his sister was too - though she died of complications after an amputation…she did not take care of herself.

SO, when I got the warning shot across the bow…I took things VERY seriously and got on top of it fast.

I am not a Type 1 (as no antibodies have shown up yet). But not insulin resistant (per C-peptide test). I very sensitive to carbs, so just really don’t eat very many…so am controlling the D with Onglyza and carb restriction.

But, my BFF is a T1 (though diagnosed in DKA at age 48!!!) but - NO INSULIN, on a pump. And YES…I’ve talked to her when she’s - inexplicably - woken up well over 200, had to cancel her whole morning until she could bring her glucose down and feel better.

And I have had to run back to our lake cottage for her glucose tablets when we were a mile from the house and she forgot them and had miscalculated her bolus for lunch and the little bit of exercise the walk would represent. And with my dad when he got into his 80’s and would take his long acting insulin, but forget to eat lunch…not good…

Anyway…I’m sorry, I should not have mentioned the number at which I went HIGH. Because for some people it’s just disgustingly low and they say “WHAT THE HELL IS SHE WORRIED ABOUT.”

But there are also people who have told me to my face “You could NOT have peripheral neuropathy symptoms, it MUST be something else…” Yet my endo and my podiatrist have confirmed that my symptoms ARE neuropathy, though it appears to be early days and probably reversible at this point. Oddly, it was my FIRST real symptom of high BG. At my annual physical, my doc asked me if I were okay and I said the only thing new was this “weird pins and needles that comes and goes in my feet that is uncomfortable and tingling in my fingers.” She just shrugged.

Then my fasting glucose came back high and we were off to the races.

So, Lynne, I DO understand exactly what you are saying and I am SO very thankful that I am in the situation that I am in…that my numbers are as low as they are. That I have none of the complications - except that my silly LDL cholesterol has gone out of whack high since DX and I cannot figure out why so the Endo has put me on a statin, which I dislike…

But other than that…I am blessed.

I send you good thoughts and wishes and apologize for any griping that appeared to be whining or complaining “for nothing” to people who have it much worse.

I’m just trying to do the best I can to keep my numbers as close to Non-diabetic numbers as I can because if I can…I am just convinced that it has to be good for me. At some point, it just may not be possible any more…but until then…


You are NOT alone Natalie!! Accept it like “brushing your teeth every morning”? (and yes, no one else but a cheery CED who didn’t know what she/he was talking about could have thought that one up!). The big difference is…after you brush your teeth you can be almost 100% sure they are clean.

I honestly don’t mind putting the time into the thinking, planning, weighing, calculating, physical activity, boluses, testing…if I could get positive results a higher percent of the time. I calculate that I get positive results from my diabetes related behaviors about 75-80 percent of the time. If an employee only showed up for work 75% of the time he would be fired. If my cell phone only worked 75% of the time I would pitch it. You get the idea.

I tend to get totally bummed when I do the right thing and don’t get the right results. My bg can spike over 100 points when I get up in the morning and have a cup of coffee. Sure, I bolus…but it’s not like I’m getting out of bed and hitting the M&Ms. Even if I skip the coffee there is a spike and I still have to cover it.

And yes, I think this disease has the potential to set us up for a very strange relationship with food. Some days I can deal with it better than others. I have found that I do better when I only do what I know I can maintain. I don’t go from one extreme to another. When I do eat a high sugar food I just make sure it is “bolus worthy”. I’ve learned to hold out for the really good stuff, I don’t waste insulin on a Twinkie. And when I do indulge I allow myself to not feel guilty and really enjoy it.

People without D get to use their own insulin to cover the sweet foods that they get to enjoy…shouldn’t we really be allowed to do the same? And the fact that is much less often is even more reason we should be able to do so without guilt!!