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Best Way to start independence?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by missjene, Jul 26, 2016.

  1. missjene

    missjene New Member

    Jul 26, 2016
    Hello all my daughter is 8 and was diagnosed 2/2012 at age 4. She has been doing everything old school a while now, Finger checking and us or the nurse administrating her insulin. I can't complain her AC1 been between 7-9 the past 4 years, but I am ready for her to be able to do this on her own a bit more. I am getting Dexcom and we will this is a good first step for her to know when to either eat something ( if she is running low) and give us the peace of mind and sleep at night knowing we will be alerted.

    My question is how did everyone do transitioning to the pump? Or continuous meter? Is this the best way for them to learn responsibility or do I teach her how to constantly check her sugar and learn how to correct herself?

    Thank you.
  2. quiltinmom

    quiltinmom Approved members

    Jun 24, 2010

    Is SHE ready? That's an important question to answer...which could go either way at age 8. It struck me that you said YOU are ready, but that doesn't mean she is. I get how tiring it is, how constant it is, but you must put her needs above your own.... Just something to think about. Maybe I'm just being too literal about what you said. :)

    As for the question, it's tough because each child is so different, and without knowing anything about her it's hard to get a sense of what she's ready for. But here are a few thoughts. Brand new devices may help in allowing her to do more and understand more, but I would recommend waiting until she is used to it before putting more care responsibilities on her. It may be a week, maybe months. Some kids adapt quickly, others don't.

    Some kids need a little gentle nudging, others beg to take on more self care. Listen to your gut on this; you don't want to push her too hard (if she is the former) and stress her out. At age 8, she can be asked what she thinks should be done with a situation (for example, how many carbs she needs for a low) but every decision should be overseen/confirmed by a competent adult. Maybe have her pick one new thing to do every week or every month, but let her pick which thing (give her 3 or 4 choices if it helps). Diabetes care is a mature activity for any child, and even my 14 year old makes dumb choices sometimes. I expect he won't do everything on his own until he leaves the house, but he does most of his own care now. Don't let burnout cloud your perspective.

    It is definitely a process that you should expect to take many years. It happens a little at a time--first maybe they push the button for the finger prick, then they test with no help, then they may give themselves a shot that someone else drew up, then they can draw up a shot but have it checked by an adult, etc. all the while teaching them about carb counts and dosing, explaining your decision making process and letting them talk it through with you. As time goes by, you can trust them a little more and a little more until they are ready to go somewhere without mom (super scary!). it takes teeny tiny baby steps to get there.

    For us, the pump transition went very smoothly. (He was 9 I think.). It was a huge game changer for us--it made life soooooo much easier. It was something he really wanted, and he still loves it. Not everyone likes it as much as he does, though. pump or shots is one thing I would leave up to the child (you'll probably still have to decide which pump to get, but she deserves to have some say since she is wearing it, even if she is just picking the color. They are all good pumps so you can't really go wrong.)

    Hope this is helpful. Don't hesitate to ask more questions. :). Self care is a big step! I had many questions (and still do) when it comes to the transition.

    Good luck!
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016

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