Sharing success can be tricky

Continuing the discussion from NYT on stem cell trials for islet restoration:

I happen to be really good at adjusting my insulin for normal bg’s (not as good as some others here who frequently boast about flatlining) but others are not so lucky.

As we all know, managing our glucose metabolism well is just plain hard. I suspect it is one of the reasons that a community forum like this one appeals to us.

With the advent of different styles of eating like low carb or plant-based high carb, low fat and the various technology advances like newer insulins, CGM, and automated insulin dosing systems, we can sometimes enjoy glucose control that was rare in former generations.

Even with these technical and dietary advances, using these new tactics well takes curiosity, experimentation and persistence. What worked yesterday may not work today.

When the planets align and all your tactics pay off in an almost too-hard-to-believe normal glucose trace, it seems normal to me that pride arises. Is pride misplaced in achieving a healthy goal that more often than not frustrates you?

When does the celebration go too far and become excessive or boastful? That’s a harder question to answer but I can only hope that community members will extend tolerance – the grease that makes any community work.

One of the benefits of community is that you can share your successes and failures with people who care about you and understand how things in life can impact you.

Sharing glucose management success here makes sense to me. It would be a rare gluco-normal person who can appreciate just what is involved in painting an in-range glucose trace over many hours with your CGM. People here get it; that’s why we participate.

Yet, I’m painfully aware that success can discourage others who are currently struggling even though they are giving it their all. Does this mean that success should not be shared? No, I don’t believe so, but I think doing so with an awareness of how others may see it can help. I also think tolerance can be exercised.

I have consciously held back many times when I view some particularly good-looking glucose trace and I do try to limit posting that line simply due to its beauty. I try to only post those traces when they fit the conversation. For several years the Flatliners Club provided a segregated thread to post CGM traces. For better or worse, the last active comment on that thread was almost two years ago.

We need an outlet for success as well as one for failure and problem-solving.


Terry, an earlier version of the Tudiabetes discussion board had a great place for boasting/bragging/sharing called, I think, “The Flatliner’s Club” or similar.

But realistically the most frequent posters on tudiabetes are already in the top 1% of well controlled diabetics, if I compare self-reported A1C or TIR vs the distributions of these measures in the medical literature.

I can tell you sometimes I myself am a little put off because I’m only in the top percent or so and not in the top 0.1%.


I think it’s somewhat similar to group of friends or siblings. In healthy relationships, there is caring, understanding and empathy. This is more difficult online, and not knowing sufficient background on who we are “communicating” with.

Personally, I improved my A1C tremendously from what I learned from others here, much of it in flatliners topic. I doubt I would have learned it otherwise. But mostly it encouraged me to “think outside the box”, rather than just following doctors orders (at one time, the “exchange list” for diet and dosing guidance).


What always surprises me, and it shouldn’t, is the number of people following a topic who don’t otherwise comment. I liked the flatliner’s thread but my enthusiasm for it was tempered by the antipathy felt by some other members. I guess there’s no perfect scenario and we should be happy for the positive effects while hoping the negatives are minimized.

I always hoped that celebrating success, as in the flatliner’s thread, created good ripples in the community. Yet I also knew that others could view this “success” as just showing off in a selfish “all about me” kind of style. The use of the word, boast, confirmed for me, again, the dark side of success statistics.

Thank-you, @MM1, for pointing out the good that success celebration can create.


Maybe I don’t completely understand, but would it be allowed for those people who are fortunate enough to have more ‘good days’ than ‘not-so-good’ to tell what works for them? Lately I’ve met with more bad than good days to the point where I am considering a return to MDI (and I’ve been on a pump for almost 15 years).

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We all live with diabetes and each of our experiences is legitimate and worthy to share. The point I tried to make with this post is that when you experience and share particularly good days, your report may discourage other members. That’s not your intention or motivation but it’s the reality of social interaction in a forum like this.

Have you ever had an experience where very good news in your personal life, like a new job, house, promotion, or other piece of good luck, produces sadness or discouragement in some friends or relatives?

Nothing wrong with shaking things up and returning to MDI if things are not going well for you. Every time I’ve made fundamental changes to my treatment mode, I’ve learned useful things that added to my overall knowledge. In my opinion, all of us on pumps should switch to MDI for a month or two every few years, if only to prove to yourself that you have a viable back-up plan should the need arise. Good luck with whatever you decide to do! Keep us posted.


It’s certainly possible for you to start a new post asking for help with your situation. You will likely hear from many, as most if not all of us have “good” and “bad” days often with no clear association.

Hormones, stress, and other factors can impact your BG, but most are taught to just consider food and exercise.

In general, those using pumps have more flexibility, with ability to change basal insulin throughout the day, where as those on MDI have different tactics. Having CGMS would also make a difference in how to respond.


And, of course, everyone on Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok and other social media are all happier, healthier, wealthier, and wiser than any of us could ever dream to be :rofl:. I understand that perception is causing deep depression, especially among our younger population.

I am eternally grateful to all the posters on this website who over time have helped me with the information needed to keep my diabetes under the best possible control. Happy holidays to everyone here and let’s look forward to the new medical and technological advances that may launch next year. Peace to all!!!


I will confess to some envy when I hear about “100% TIR” ( which I’ve NEVER experienced) but then I become curious: how do they do it?
Some of it is our variable metabolisms, our different dietary needs and choices, and our overall commitment to managing diabetes.
But there are tricks that MDI er’s and pumpers have that the share, and each learning point makes the best control we can hope for, achievable.
So boast! I don’t care! I’m competitive but there are races I’ll never win, and that’s okay too.


I can tell you that watching the graphs and numbers of some of the better BG managers over the years influenced me to lean in that direction. I started to think that I might be able to produce numbers like that. Once my brain began to think that better numbers were possible – then better numbers were possible!

Don’t get me wrong, I still had to experiment, sustain helpful changes, and follow through with all the little things. Belief that better was within reach is a potent mindset change.

The only race that counts is the one against yourself. Comparison to others is just not valid. We live within different bodies and hormone systems. Our genetics are different. We are humans, however, and just can’t resist comparing our lot with another’s. Just try to tamp that urge down, it’s not fruitful and will not drive you to persist.


I know what you mean.

On the other hand, on this forum is where I learned that you could aim for better numbers than I was being told to aim for. I learned what people did, how they did it. Things I had never been taught. I learned you could aim for better control and it was thanks to this forum that I learned that! So it becomes a fine line somewhere, because all those tidbits of information I soaked up and used. And thank you all out there that I learned from!!!

It is so helpful to be able to share with people that know what you are talking about. People just don’t get it, even my husband who sees any ups or downs still doesn’t “get” it sometimes. Don’t get me wrong, he’s great, but he still will sometimes make that invariable comment that shows you he doesn’t truly always completely get it or he forgets. And we can’t forget, well we can, but we pay a price somehow for it.

And yes, I was one of those that read and didn’t post or ask for a while.


I thought having an a1c under 6% was not only impossible but dangerous.
And yet here I am running 5.5% because I came on here and saw how everyone else does it.

I manage to work it out taking tips and tricks and all that to fit with what feels right for me.

Technology plays a big part for me, but I also learned a lot about pumps and sensors here that helped me make a decision on that.

I see people here in the 4.5% a1c range and think, nope! Im happy where I am, but I admire those who can do it without crashing.


Personally I appreciate the posts from flat liners and all who have found ways to use all the d tech to improve BG management and overall health. I think the common thread is it takes time to get things dialed in. Many people don’t have the time (or money) to spend.

For me, my BG always is harder to tame when life throws an unexpected curve ball. We just have to power through those times as best we can and get back to our D routines as smoothly as possible. I empathize with every diabetic who is struggling though a life of constant curveballs when a busy life gets in the way of lowering the A1c. Shooting for the moon (in BG management) has to be one step at a time for those with busy lives.


Woo Hoo! And I thought it couldn’t be done!

For this, I dosed / guessed my Chinese food dinner at 100 grams of carbs. Pure dumb luck, never to be seen again.


Well done! Did you do anything different this time?

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Alot depends on the goals YOU set as your range.
And you don’t have to use 100% as goal, or change goal based on circumstances. When I travel, vacation, etc, I always lower my goals.

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I’m afraid I’m derailing this conversation, directly contrary to the original poster’s intentions! Sorry.
In answer to the questions: I gave a larger dose (by about 40%) than I would have for non Chinese food takeout. I think it’s got a lot of sweet in the sauce and a lot of simple carbs otherwise AND a lot of fat.
By goals I leave it at factory settings 4-10 mmol/L. That way I’m comparing real to real. And while I’m usually around 80%, I’ve had days at 50%. I’d like to see two weeks straight, meeting the 70% TIR goals. I am nearly there now.

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I encourage you to add glucose variability as one of your goals. This statistic is measured by standard deviation (SD) and coefficient of variation (CV). A metabolically healthy non-diabetic maintains a low glucose variation and is often around 1 mmol/L (18 mg/dL) SD.

A relatively low glucose variability is required to safely lower an average glucose and A1c level. Time in range will also increase with a decrease in glucose variability.

Unfortunately, glucose variability is overshadowed by A1c and time in range. Focus on this goal can produce better statistics with all other measures.

Paying attention to your glucose statistics engages your brain on a sub-conscious level and can often improve your numbers. This tactic is not for everyone as some people are averse to math. I am motivated by numbers and this focus serves me well. Good luck!

I say share away. Your successes are yours? You worked very hard for them! And if it can help someone else, more power to you! And if it makes someone else feel like a failure, I would feel bad, but all these goals are individual not for everyone.
I see they people who are in the upper 90% in range and think, do I need that? Nope. My goals are set for me and my life. I only worry about my numbers. I don’t do a lot of sharing except for clinical trials to show people that there are things in the works that might help to make things better.
And whenever I share something I am doing, I always say this works well for me but your diabetes may vary! So if 100% is your goal and you feel good reaching for it each and everyday, great! But remember not everyone is looking for those kind of numbers.
Every goal I have had has changed over the years. I have gotten smarter due to places like this, conferences, workshops, support groups and yes my medical team! I have more technology that has made things easier so the goals have adapted. Diabetes is a moving target. Things change daily. So celebrate! Enjoy whatever little success you have.


Thank you, all of you, especially Terri, who have the courage and empathy to wade into topics that others will not. Thanks to all of you for your detailed posts on what worked for you in this endless quest for better blood glucose control. You probably have no idea how many of us follow your posts and the ensuing discussions with great attention, but in the shadows. Collectively, you are what changed my BG control to the amazing 6.5 that it has been consistently for the last two years. Unfortunately, at 65, with 35 years of T1D behind me, I am in stage 4 CKD; but I am enormously grateful for what you share in this forum. May you continue to have the strength and perseverance to continue to so generously impart your knowledge on this platform!