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[IP] What to tell kids

I didn't grow up with diabetes and don't have any kids, so my own 
experiences may not apply.  But seems similar, in my view.

My dad had a heart attack while I was an early teen and ended up 
in ICU and having his first bypass operation.  I was terrified that he 
would die.

I asked my mom if he would die, and she burst out in tears and 
said, "I don't know."  And we cried together and cuddled on the 
couch for an hour or so and were able to support each other and be 
strong for him. (He's still alive, 25 years later and after 2 more 
surgeries, plus a stroke and hepatitis C from his second surgery)

On another issue....  an old old old old friend of my mom passed 
away when I was about 5 or 6 y/o.  She took us (my brother and I) 
to the funeral.  I watched mom lean over and kiss her friend 
goodbye and I asked her what she felt like.  Mom said I could 
touch her hand, and demonstrated and talked with me about it 
while I stroked her hand.  To this day, seeing death is not a fearful 
nightmarish thing to me as it is to some of my contemporaries.

I thank her for her forthrightness in both subjects.  She didn't 
protect me from reality, but showed me how to face it with courage. 
(Courage doesn't mean you don't fear, it means you keep on going 

I think matter-of-fact, genuine, warmhearted honesty is always a 
good thing.  

In our case, the honest answer is: We can't yet predict with 
certainty who will get the complications and who won't.  All we 
know is that keep your blood sugars as close as possible to a non-
diabetic range will lower your risk, and if it should happen that you 
do get some complications, there's a lot we can do to ease it and 
we'll stick together and never abandon you to it.

If he's researching it on his own, it means (to me) that he's ready to 
hear about the uncertainties.  You don't have to be fearless or 
emotionless for him.  Instead seeing you handle your emotions can 
show him how to handle his own, it can show him that you really 
do understand what he might be feeling and that he's not alone with 
his emotions.

That's just my take on it, as a former kid myself. :-)
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