My 9 year old daughter was diagnosed 6/30/09


(Daddy1234) #1

And I'm scared to death.  My job is to protect her and I feel helpless.  I don't know what to do next.


(Anonymous) #2

Hey there.
I've longed for years that I could tell my own Daddy how well he did with me when I was diagnosed. I'm 15  -- I was diagnosed when I was 11.

This sounds simple, my friend, but all you can do is be there for her. Learn with her, hold her when she cries, smile to make her laugh -- be the Daddy you've been all these years to her.

I'm willing to bet you're about to say it's difficult to be strong when your baby girl's broken and you can't put her back together again. That's the key: you don't have to be strong, bravery is more than enough.

My daddy cried for me when I was diagnosed.
My daddy visited with me in the Hospital.
My daddy helps me count carbs, give insulin shots.

But most importantly are his Daddy hugs.
I'm fairly sure I am not explaining this very well - for that I apologize. But to be honest, the only thing left to do next is be the Daddy that you are. Your daughter loves you, and just because she got diabetes doesn't mean you haven't or can't protect her. It's your love that does that, not your ability to stop the inevitable.


(Anonymous) #3

Juvenation has issues on my computer, I don't know if its just me but I apologize if my entire message doesn't show up.

But, Daddy1234, I'm here if you want to talk it out. I know my last message didn't make much sense :D


(puns_and_roses) #4

It'll be ok. I know it's scary now, but it will get easier. She'll adjust fairly quickly and so will you. First off, just breathe. Don't smother her, but let you know you love her and that you are there to help and care for her. It's early, but in a few days, you will see her gaining the lost weight back and gaining life again. Take it one day at a time and know that we are all here to help you and your daughter.

Take care and good luck!

~Carrie


(FFA_RodeoStar) #5

be there for her. be the kind of dad that i couldn't have. he didn't show up until two days after i was diagnosed and then all he wanted to do was leave. cry with her, hold her, read stories till she falls asleep, sing to her, love her. :)


(Anonymous) #6

One of the things that touched me most was a gift from my father -- it was a hat he loved and had recentley purchased. On the underside of the bill he wrote "Stave Brave." That is the message that has got me through the 4 years of diabetes that I have.

When I was in the Hospital, he brought me a carebag, basically. He purchased things to keep me entertained, recorded my favorite show to a disc so I wouldn't miss it.

Just small things to let her know you love her. And let her know you're there for her, and that you two are stronger now.


(Savs) #7

Oh, I'm so sorry ):

I know this is probably a tough time for your whole family, and all of us here on Juvenation definately know what you're going through! Like others above me have said, just be there for her and let her know that she can always come to you if she needs help. If I hadn't had the support, advice, and guidance of my parents throughout my ten years as a diabetic (and the 5 before that, too). There would be no way I could live with this disease. Another thing is to not go overboard making this a huge deal. make sure she knows that she will likely have the disease for the rest of her life (unless we find a cure!), but she is still no different then you, or her friends, or anyone else. Again, I know this can be a very scary time, but just show her how much you really do care!

If you ever need any advice or just someone to talk to, feel free to leave me a message on here! I'll do my best to help you.


(jrapier) #8

My 10 year old was diagnosed June 1st, so I know the feeling you are describing.  I am still scared, but not as much as then.  I think my daughter is dealing with it better than I am.  I don't really have advice, but know you are not alone.  You will feel better, by degrees in a month and I am hoping it gets better from there.  I really like the book Everythings guide to juvenile diabetes (written by a parent of a Type 1 diabetic) and am in the middle of type 1 diabeties for dummies (written by a doctor) and like it as well.   Having as much information as I can seems to help me.

This site has helped tremendously as well.  It helps me feel less alone.

Jill

 


(Anonymous) #9

Another thing you can do is pull a Paul 'n' Max; see if your daughter is interested in coming on Juvenation with you, have a father/daughter account.


(Savs) #10

yea, having her come on and read some of the stuff we've posted will really help her understand what she's going to have to look forward to - the good and bad times alike. It will also help her remember that she is not the only one with this disease.


(Savs) #11

it'd also be a good time for some quality bonding time!


(Anonymous) #12

And, building on what Savs said (which I strongly agree with, for the record :D), not only will it show her that she isn't the only one in terms of people that deal with it, but also in terms of family. By taking the time to sit down with her and go over these sorts of things, it's going to create an ever-lasting bond that is stronger than ever. It has with me and my dad.


(meme) #13

Hi,Everything I just read helps me,even now,this is why Juvenation is such a blessing to me. I would say who would not be afraid,I sure was.And the guilt,it can take a person so low.Get help,everybit offered.Read as much as you can,learn.Take things slowly,if you feel it's too much coming your way at once.Live life as normal as you can.All I wanted to do at first was to put time in reverse and go back to normal.Today this is our normal.Take a good look at the fantastic,smart,wonderful people here.They have this condition in their lives and yet they soar like eagles.They do everything they set their minds to .They give me strenght everyday.This is my child,this is your child too.


(R_S1392) #14

This is a tough time. But the most important thing for your daughter would be your love and support. Try to adapt to the changes along with her. help her to learn, to take insulin, count carbs, blood glucose monitoring, etc.

Let her know that you love her, and will be there to help her in whatever life holds ahead.

Your love and support can make a great difference in her life. It will certainly helpher to gain the confidence she needs to manage diabetes.


(Monique H) #15

Hey, Daddy1234!

First, there's no reason to think your daughter is not going to be fine.  This is NOT a death sentence, and medical complications are NOT inevitable.  All the scary stuff we think about when we hear the word "diabetes"...don't let that freak you out.  Management has come sooo far, just in the past 10 years, there is no reason to believe your daughter will not live a full, happy, healthy life.  And, WHEN the cure comes, she'll be able to put T1 behind her, and be stronger for the experience.

The training I received in the hospital when our 8-year old son was diagnosed in May - well, it was pretty terrifying.  It was like when we had our first child in the hospital, and then they sent us home with this brand-new life, and were expected to be able to take care of it (what? US?!?).  But, we did.  All of the preparation for blood sugar "crashes", all the equipment, all the ins-and-outs of day-to-day management.  It's an overwhelming amount of information, and it's really intimidating in the beginning, but don't let that get to you.  Just learn everything you can, so you can help your daughter learn, too. 

The "transition", as they call it, is daunting.  It's difficult.  It's emotional.  Be sure you are getting the support you need so you can keep your head on straight.  Don't be timid about reaching out for support, whether from folks on Juvenation, or from a counselor if you feel you or your daughter need it.  But, most important, let your daughter know, through your words and your actions, that you are doing this together.  This is a family gig, and you're doing it together.

My heart goes out to you.  It's really tough in the beginning.  It's going to take some time to adjust, but you will find your "new normal".  You'll figure everything out, and it's going to be okay.  Really. 

Drop me a line anytime you need to chat.

Mo

Hueyhome@msn.com

 


(Laxmom10) #16

My son Michael was dx on Father's Day.   He is 14.  It's important to let your daughter know that she can and will be and do everything she wanted prior to being dx.   I feel your fear and pain......lots to learn.......stay positive for her sake.   So glad I found this site. 


(Gina) #17

Daddy,

We are all scared to death at diagnosis. I was diagnosed at 25 and my parents were scared for me as well. What they did was learn everything they could about diabetes along side of me. So I wouldn't have to deal with it alone. Get yourself as educated as you can about it. Make appointments with an endocrinologist, nutritionist and certified diabetes educator. These 3 people will help you to make healthy choices and to learn about the steps you need to take to help your daughter live a long healthy life.

Of course if you need anymore help and support you can always ask us!


(Angie13) #18

I don't think I breathed for a month after my son was diagnosed.  Now it's been over two months.  He is off at parade grounds and fireworks with friends and spending the night at a friends' house.  Cannot believe that we're to this point.  I'm nervous and I don't think he is making the best decisions (overguessed the carbs in the junk food, dropped to 61, treated it with lemonade and a funnel cake).  But, and I clearly recognize that there is a big difference between 15 and 9, I educate and love and guide, but I cannot smother him and keep him locked in the house.  He has a cell phone, he's with friends who a knowledgeable, and we call each other often (just got off the phone with him at 8:45--pre-fireworks---and he's to call again at 10 when he checks his blood sugar before his Lantus shot).

Okay, I realize I'm drifting.  What I did at your stage was to make sure I knew more than he did.  I really got a lot out of Type 1 Diabetes for Dummies.  And we had fabulous training from all the nurses and doctors who worked with us in the hospital.

What to do next?

1.  Read, read, read, books and this list and other things you can get your hands on.  I spent my  lunch-time at work for weeks getting the dummies book read.

2.  Helping with carb counting (and I do mean helping---I don't do everything for him because I won't be with him always, but I'm always teaching) and snack prep---always having a cache of snacks ready.

3.  Stay on top of those prescriptions.  We ran out of test strips before the first month because they had us testing so much.  Had to go through a lot of money (buying strips without insurance helping), hassle, phone calls,  tears to get more with insurance help.  (Hello?!?!  They told us to test before and after breakfast, lunch, dinner; he dropped low 2nd period every school day--had to test then and after correction; before a dance class and every hour during dance; and a midnight and 3 a.m.  And they had the audacity to question how he could possibly go through 300 strips in less than a month?  Do the math!!!)  Anyway, stay on top of those prescriptions.

4.  Stay on top of those blood sugar readings and communications with doctor's office.

5.  Don't get so caught up in the all the details that you forget to ask her how she's doing with all this new stress.  Keep checking in on that every once in a while (not every day).

6.  Do some things with her and have conversations that are completely unrelated to diabetes.

7.  Does she have i.d.?  We bought something cheap and boring at the drug store to make sure it happened immediately, then with our son ordered something online that he liked better.  (We actually bought him two i.d.s---silicone bracelet and dogtags.  He lost the dogtags within 24 hours.  Boys!)  Our endo emphasized i.d. that states "insulin-dependent diabetes," not just diabetes or type 1, because the terminology is confusing even to medical people.  I don't really get that, but complied.  We special ordered a silicone bracelet with dyed embossing that includes our cell phone numbers, his name, his diagnosis.

I figure you have plenty to do.  I figure you probably still find that your heart is up in your throat or that you feel like vomiting or crying.  The folks on this list as just as sweet and supportive as can be, but many of them have been dealing with this for a long time.  If anyone seems like "oh, c'mon, she'll be okay," well, it's probably true.  And you may realize that in another couple of months.  Keep on writing.

 

 


(Daddy1234) #19

I really appeciate the help from all of you.  I know after just a few days there are alot of you/us out there that know the fear & feelings I'm having.  The thing is, she seems fine with it.  The hardest part for her is she can't have some of the favorite things she likes (she LOVES milk, ice cream. etc.).  My 10 year son's birthday is coming up, and I don't want to have a cake (if she can't have any), but it's hard with 4 kids.  I know I have to adjust to what the whole family eats now, I just don't want the other kids resenting her after time because "they can't have it if she can't have it".  And I know she can always have what she had before, but in moderation, but I can't give her even a sliver of cake or ice cream if her blood sugar is at 200+.

 

If anyone can help or suggest what I can give her (33g of carbs for a banana!?!?), I'd appreciate it.  She's already getting tired of sugar free jello :)  


(Anonymous) #20

Alright, man, I've got some ideas but it may take a while to explain lol. I can PM you if you want, I sent you a friends request.

But here's one idea:

Ask your daughter's opinion. One thing I hated at 11 years old, and still do, is when people override my choices :D Take her aside, explain to her about the cake at the birthday party, and tell her she can pick to have a little of it with everyone else, or you and she can go to the store and pick a special treat. I mean, there has to be something healthier that she likes; ie, frozen yogurt with berries or something. That way she has a choice if she wants it or not, and I'm willing to bet that your daugther will pick "Daddy's special treat" if you play it up as the better option.