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Re: [IPk] exam Stress? management

Hi Karen
As always, there are a lot of different ways to look at these things!

On 03/05/2011 03:16, email @ redacted wrote:

> Di... I really cannot believe you are comparing having a child with diabetes
> to having a diabetic pet!!!

Of course, I wasn't saying it's exactly the same, and of course the 
death of a child is more serious than the death of a pet! All I said was 
there are *some* similarities, and that in both cases, it's hard to tell 
if they are hypo and hard to get them to eat if they don't want to, for 
example! In both cases, you're having to care for something/someone that 
can't help themselves and can't easily let you know what's wrong. Which 
is not the case for an older child or adult. In both cases, you have to 
adopt techniques (which may or may not be the same!) to deal with this.

> I am surprised that your extol the virtues of being left to care for your
> diabetes alone from age 7, even though that meant poor control and of being
> thrown out on the streets at 18.

The reason I had poor control was nothing to do with looking after my 
own diabetes, it was to do with the fact that I was on one injection a 
day and that we didn't have home blood glucose testing, MDI or pumps! 
Later, it was partly my own fault as a teenager and adult when I gave up 
trying to get good control as I just couldn't see a way to do it. 
Nothing to do with my parents.

And as for being thrown out on the streets at 18, it's not as if I was 
actually living on the streets! I got a job over the summer, then went 
to uni and then finally into the world of work. I have no issues with 
this and I'd strongly encourage my children (if I were going to have 
any) to leave home at 18 too. But I don't see what that has to do with 
diabetes control. I'd been living away from home at boarding school 
since I was 10 anyway, where again I'd had to manage my own diabetes.

Mind you, it does explain a lot!    I am
> not going to let my daughter find out the hard way about what poor diabetic
> control will do to her eye sight, kidneys etc.. .. I'd rather she takes a
> bit longer with her studies and is able to read the paper afterwards and
> keep her own two feet to stand on, rather than take the high ground with an
> "I told you so attitude". I would put up with a hundred tantrums to give her
> a hundred extra days of vision or life.. my duty and role as her parent is
> to protect her and keep her from harm. To give her the opportunity to live
> life to its full and the education and knowledge to care for herself
> independently. When she is an adult she will have the freedom of choice of
> whether to care for her diabetes or not, but no child will choose to be
> finger pricked or injected or to not eat sweets or readily accept the
> various restrictions of good diabetic management. The whole concept of
> expecting a child to learn the hard way on something as important as
> glycaemic control is quite frankly ridiculous. I wonder, when you were a
> child if you were about to get run over by a bus, would your parents have
> let that happen on the basis they had told you to always look left and right
> before crossing the road? Or let you touch the fire so you could at first
> hand experience first degree burns?  At the very core of being a parent is
> not only wanting what is best for your child/ren (and we don't always get
> that right) but the desire that they should benefit from life and learn from
> your own mistakes. It is what progression is all about. Some mistakes are
> reversible..but diabetic complications are not. In my opinion any parent who
> would sit back and watch their child put their health at risk or willingly
> and knowingly let them go out without life-saving medical provisions should
> quite rightly be prosecuted for neglect or child abuse!

Of course, there's a fine line between letting your children run into 
danger and letting them learn for themselves. Of course I'm not saying 
you should let children run into the road and get killed, or let them 
knowingly set themselves up for complications in later life and lose 
their sight. But life is not black and white. As a parent, you know as 
well as anyone that there are some decisions you make for your children, 
and some you let them make, and as they get older, you let them make 
more of their own decisions. Of course my parents taught me how to cross 
a road and would stop me if I was about to run out in the road. But at 
the same time, I - as most kids - was allowed to go out in the streets 
and go off cycling for the afternoon on my own. If I had a hypo while I 
was out and had no glucose tablets, or ran over the road as a car was 
coming, then yes I would have been in trouble!  But at 7 I was old 
enough to understand the consequences, so it was up to me whether I took 
the necessary precautions or not. At what age you let a child do things 
on their own and - yes, risk getting squashed by a bus or having a 
serious hypo - is different for everyone depending on the maturity of 
the child and the parenting style. For me, certainly from the age of 7 I 
was allowed to do all these things on my own, just as I was allowed to 
decide my own insulin doses and testing regime (in consultation with the 
doctor, obviously).

Having lost some of my sight, yes I would do things differently if I 
were to live my life again. And yes I would give almost anything to have 
my sight back. But I wouldn't wish to have been treated any differently 
by my parents in that respect. Other than their attitude of keeping 
illness to yourself and not discussing it with other people (which I 
don't agree with) I think their dealing with it was the right one for 
*me*. It may not be the right approach for everyone. As I said, everyone 
is different, people have different parenting styles and children have 
different levels of maturity.

Hope that explains it better.
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