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    I'm not sure what inspired the question, but i've been diabetic since age 3. I'm now 47 yrs. old. The only complications from my diabetes are retinopathy andvery mild neuropathy. The retinopathy has been present and treated very successfully since'84. My vision is very good for anybody aged 47.
    I'll second Jeff Weiss's line...we ALL die of something. It may or may NOT be diabetes. When i was growing up, all i heard when people talked about diabetes was... "my mother/father/sister/aunt/uncle/etc. had diabetes and lost thier legs/vision/kidney function(choose any one or more). Talk about hopelessness. I was sure i was going to die before i was 20 or 25. Well guess what...NOT!
    People with diabetes can live LONG, useful lives providing we do a proactive management program. That proactive program is EXACTLY what i read in these postings.
Diabetics taking a VERY active part in their own diabetes management is the ONLY way to ensure our healthy survival.
    The importance of finding the BEST endocrinologist can NOT be underestimated. Having had diabetes for 44 yrs. ...i've been to MANY really bad endos and physicians in general.  I now have the very best endo around my area. The fact that he is diabetic and on a pump himself is surety to me that the man keeps up with the latest developments in diabetes research and treatment. He's director of the local Joslin Center for Diabetes. That's an excellent reference in my book.
    My sense of terminal uniqueness as a child could have been helped in a MAJOR way with Juvenile Diabetes Support groups which can be found in most areas now. There are plenty of online juvenile support groups. Diabetes Summer Camps are VERY helpful too. I went to one of the first back in the 60's. It was the first time i'd NOT felt different than the rest of the human race.
    I'm VERY happy that i have diabetes and NOT some other untreatable disease.
Life is VERY good!
Best of Luck!
Michael O'Brien