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Re: [IP] reflections of being single and diabetic (long )
Your posting really struck a note with me. I've had diabetes since I was
12, and went from never-living-alone at home and college into marriage with
a man my mother had taken aside and given the 'you have to take care of her
because she can't take care of herself, poor thing'
diabetes-family-member-101 lecture. At the time we were married, it was
still the age of glucose testing meant little test tubes and urine, and she
felt, rightly at the time, that it was important that anyone who married me
understood why, for example, it was not advisable to plan on having children
(the stats at the time were diabetic mothers had a 50% chance of carrying to
term, and even if they did, only a 50% chance that the child would be
normal). When we separated and then divorced last year, the hardest thing
for me was handling/getting free of the fear that I would die in the night
sometime and no one would find me for days (although why I would care at
that point, I'm not sure! :)
Seriously, though, although diabetes is not a cake walk, it only has to be
as much of a burden to a spouse/significant other as the two of you are
comfortable with. It took me a long time to believe that I was ultimately
responsible for taking care of my diabetes, and that it was something I
could do by myself. The pump helps, and I'd like to have someone to vent to
sometimes who knows what I'm talking about, but I hope I would not return to
the fear and child-like dependancy I experienced a lot while I was married.
As for complications, I figure how does anyone know what the future will
bring? Someone who appears perfectly healthy, and who you expect will be
the 'well' one in your relationship, may have a stroke tomorrow, or be hit
by a bus, or pick up maleria on a trip abroad, or have a tree fall on her
head and go blind, or any number of things that would leave them dependent
on you. Life is short, so tell other people what you figure will answer
their questions at the time, and don't torture yourself (or them) with all
the it-could-happens. Diabetes is part of who you are, but it isn't
something you are responsible for protecting the world from.
I went to a support group for people who are 'living single again' (through
death, divorce, or other misfortune). It seemed that there was general
agreement that starting relationships over again (a.k.a. dating) was a very
difficult task -- in fact, they recommended that people wait for a long time
before they even started thinking about it, to get used to and convinced of
the idea that living single was both possible and can even be enjoyable.
The consensus in that group was that it takes a couple of years to get
comfortable with aloneness, and these were people without the baggage of
Sorry this is so long. Take it for what it's worth.
46, dx'd at 12, pumping for a whole week now!
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