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Re: [IP] Six Months and still clicking...

On 27 Mar 98 at 9:32, email @ redacted wrote:

> Randall,
> Congrats!!!!!
> Just wondering if you could offer me any advice on my 4yr old daughter.
> I've been on the pump for almost 2 mos, but my daughter seems to be
> showing some anger towards me. She understands that the pump is a very
> good thing and keeps me healthy. She often says to me that she doesn't
> want me to leave when I drop her off at her activity,she wants me to
> stay and wait. I think she is scared of losing me for real. Maybe she
> notices that other mommies don't wear a pump? I constantly reassure her
> that I love her and would never leave her, mommies always come back. I
> also tell her I'm going to be around for a long long time. I don't know
> what else to do. My 6 yr old thinks my pump is totally cool!!!

Part of that may be normal - at her age and developmental stage there 
is some separation fear.  Last month when I was on a business trip 
for four days the boys both acted glad to see me and mad at me when I 
got back.  It took them a couple of days to get over it.  One day  I 
took a vacation day to take one of the boys to the doctor.  When I 
took him back to the day care center the other one asked me to stay 
there with him - so I stayed for a couple of hours.  He was thrilled 
and introduced me to all the other kids (even though I've known most 
of them and their parents for years!) and kept telling everyone 
"That's my Daddy."  I sat down on the floor and read some books to 
the kids and played with them until time for lunch, then I left to 
have lunch with my wife.  Since then we've had less separation 
problems when I drop them off at day care.  

As far as the pump goes, Joseph is the one that pays more attention 
to it.  I tell him to stand back while I'm actually inserting the 
infusion set because it is sharp and I don't want him to get stuck.  
I let him help pick up the paper and stuff when I'm done and I've 
even let him "pat down" the tegaderm.  I tell him thank you for 
helping me and he's happy.  He just wants to help, so I get him to 
help, even if it's just holding the old resevoir and tubing after I 
take them out of the pump.  I leave the old set in for a couple of 
hours and I try to make sure that he doesn't see me remove the 
infusion set, or if he is around I have a band-aid handy to cover the 
site so he doesn't get concerned that the infusion set "hurt" Daddy.  
I don't make a big issue out of it and just try to make it a normal 
event like everything else around the house.  The idea is not to 
frighten the children but to let them see that since I'm not upset or 
fearful there's nothing to worry about. 

The boys don't understand how the pump works - but Joseph has been 
calling it my "medicine box" since early on.  Right after I went on 
the pump he wanted to know what was in it and I told him it was the 
same medicine that I had gotten in shots, only now it was in the box 
on my belt.  That's a concept that he could handle - simple, accurate 
enough and non-threatening.  When the pump beeps and he asks "what's 
that?"  I've told him that the box is telling me it wants new 
batteries, or that it's done giving me medicine for my meal, or that 
it's telling me it's still awake.  The key is to make the answers 
relatively accurate and simple enough (few words, little 
abstraction) for easy remembering.   We've also discussed the idea 
that nobody touches Daddys medicine box, not even Mommy, unless Daddy 
asks them to touch it.  That was followed by letting Joseph hold the 
pump and push the backlight button to see the light come on.  After 
that he has been very good not to pick up the pump (so far!)  

Hope this long post has given you some ideas about how to help your 
daughter accept the pump.  My thoughts are that since I accepted the 
pump as normal for me the boys have too.  They know that not 
everybody has a pump, but that a few of Mommy and  Daddy's
friends do.  There is a girl at church who went on the pump a few 
days ahead of me and we've often talked about how things are going 
with our pumps after church.  She showed Joseph her pump one day and 
we talked about how she had a medicine box like I did.  He thought 
that was OK and wandered off to see what else was going on.   I think 
that he's accepted the pump the way he's accepted the fact that some 
people drive trucks and others drive cars - just a part of the world 
that may interest him for a moment until something else comes along 
to catch his eye.  

Randall Winchester

* The views expressed here are mine and do not necessarily *
* reflect the official position of my employer.            *
* There's no guarantee on anything said here...
* If I say I understand something completely the only thing
* we can both be assured of is that I must have completely
* misunderstood something. 
Insulin-Pumpers website   http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/