My son was diagnosed on 2-27-18. He just turned 17. We all have alot to learn and changes to make.
Hi chris @sdkid,
YES, your son will need to learn lots of stuff - he is now embarking on a lifelong learning adventure. He will be hearing many very little bits of information which may help him along the way and he will also be bombarded with myth and useless bits of information. From my experience gained by living with TypeOne diabetes [T1D] for over 60 years is that the first step is gathering a knowledgeable diabetes care and support team; the team should include an Endocrinologist who understands T1D - not all do and a Certified Diabetes Educator [[a CDE]. Family, like you, are his best support and it would be most helpful for you to learn along with him. Stay positive and don’t dwell on the negative - let him set high goals and let him live a full, active life without letting diabetes hold him back - he will learn to manage his diabetes to fit his lifestyle.
You say you will need “to make changes” - there isn’t really any reason that a health family life should need change. T1D was not caused by anything that he did, or didn’t do - T1D is an autoimmune condition that most probably could not be prevented [yet]. For him, just eat healthy nutritious [normal] food, continuously engage in all activities and learn to balance his activity and food with the right amounts, and timing, of insulin.
You and he will learn that there isn’t any “one size fits all” with T1D - his body is unique. There are many good people visiting here who all have some wonderful tips and suggestions for living with diabetes - I’ve learned many really helpful “tricks” on here for making my life more enjoyable. Read and learn and apply what fits; I’m not a medical doctor - I just share what has worked for me along with mistakes I’ve made over the years.
Thank you Dennis. Your advice is very much appreciated. The last few days have been insightful for us. Learning the equations and counting carbs, we are learning along side him.
@sdkid, hi Chris, i’ve had t1 for a while welcome to our web site. I hope you have access to medical help and we are here for the practical experiences if you need any.
sorry to hear your son got a cold welcome to adulthood with a diagnosis of t1. There are a lot of college age people online here I hope you and your son can get in touch for some perspective. The JDRF has local chapters, maybe one near you where you can meet others and other parents as well. You can click the “Resources” Tab at the top of the page.
stay in touch!
Hello Chris, I was diagnosed in 1945, when I was 6. After 72 years with Type 1, I have good diabetes health, and no serious diabetes related complications. With good care, your son has an excellent opportunity to experience good health and a great life for many many years. In the US the life expectancy of newly diagnosed type 1 diabetics is almost as good as it is for non diabetics.
I was 17 when I got mine, but that was way back in 1969, so I have had it for 49 years and have done well with really no long time complications. I was in college for just a few weeks when diabetes hit, and my folks really wanted me to come home for a semester and learn my disease before I went back to school. I refused and went back to school 2 weeks after my diagnosis. 49 years later I feel it was the smartest thing I could have done, because it forced me to own my diabetes. To learn my way around it, to see what worked for me and what didn’t and to face it head on. Care today is much more complicated than it was back then, but it is a thousand times better. It isn’t easy and it isn’t fun, but my suggestion to your son would be , take ownership of the diabetes. Read and learn what you can, talk to people, try what you have to and if something goes wrong one day, don’t worry about blame. Shrug your shoulders, learn from the mistake and move on. Blame is not of value.
Best of luck to him and to you.
I don’t wish T1D on anyone, and I pray every day that they find a cure. However, it’s a disease that can be managed, and with so many advances in technology, it’s a lot easier now than it used to be. I’m a college student, about to graduate, and I don’t let diabetes interfere with my goals. It’s not an easy path, but it’s not impossible. If you have any questions, I would be more than glad to answer them. Good luck to you and your son!
Hello. My son was also 17 when he was diagnosed. He is now 27. Never thought he would have it this long - we’ve been waiting for that “ever so close cure!” Thankfully diabetes is a manageable disease although it is a 24/7 job. You will find it is somewhat harder on us parents because we hurt so much for our kids but they are resilient and you will find he will do fine with your support and understanding. We have found being on a CGM. Very very helpful he has not wanted to use a pump and still gives himself shots via a pen. All my best to you and your son