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Newly Diagnosed 15 Teen Male

Discussion in 'Parents of Teens' started by kktype1, May 6, 2013.

  1. kktype1

    kktype1 New Member

    May 5, 2013
    Diagnosed February 2013. Things are going pretty well. He does not like to talk about it. He does not want to change his life style much.

    I've been trying to work with him to teach him about the importance of nutritional choices. I don't want this disease to be all about the insulin. This is about blood glucose stability.

    Any tips and tricks to move him in this direction?

    Yea, I know, he will still want to eat what his friends are eating. I don't want to restrict him. Just light the light bulb so that he can begin to make better choices in the future.

    I've been tucking the speeches and have introduced new foods.

    I just feel like I am not creating the atmosphere that is conducive to change.
  2. MomofSweetOne

    MomofSweetOne Approved members

    Aug 28, 2011
    Welcome (though we wish none of us were here!). There's another mom with a son diagnosed as a teen that I think will chime in. My daughter is a young teen, diagnosed 2.5 years ago at 11. T1 definitely puts an interesting spin on the separation process.
  3. KatieSue

    KatieSue Approved members

    Oct 5, 2010
    Mine was diagnosed at 13, she's now 17. She has always been the worlds pickiest eater so actually it wasn't all that difficult to do carb counts as she basically eats the same 10 things.

    I'd give him some time. Make adjustments gradually. He's already got a lot to deal with just figuring out the shots, and carb counting and everything else.

    Mine has definitely learned that some foods are a problem, ice cream and movie popcorn are two of them. I don't tell her no but I make sure she's done what she can to make it a little less crazy after.

    They catch on pretty quickly. I think if you just provide good choices at home and work on the rest with friends as it comes.
  4. Lee

    Lee Approved members

    Oct 5, 2006
    Unfortunately this disease is ALL about insulin. If you wouldn't restrict his eating prior to Type 1, then why restrict it now?

    He has so much on his plate right now, just by recently being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. It is a major life change. I wouldn't make it about food, instead, I would focus on testing and dosing accurately. Those are the biggest hurdles T1 Teens face. No matter what he does, his blood sugar will never be stable again. He will always have highs and he will always have lows. There are tools that help us get on top of those, but since his body no longer makes insulin, it needs it.

    I think that making it about food for a 15 year old boy is a battle that is not worth the fight.
  5. nanhsot

    nanhsot Approved members

    Feb 20, 2010
    My son was also diagnosed at 15, and also in February, but we're going on our 3rd year now. It's a journey, and you'll see lots of twists and turns and good days and bad. The teenage years are hard enough without this, but you'll both soldier on and it'll be OK.

    Food, ah food and teenagers. Here's the thing. He really CAN eat what his friends are eating, he'll need tons of insulin and he'll make mistakes and he'll be high and miserable. He'll learn what's not worth eating all on his own (for my son it's pizza and French fries...not to say he never eats them, but he avoids when he can).

    My advice: cook good wholesome foods, research GI foods and provide low GI choices AT HOME. Model good choices, provide good options, but don't force it. I have found that my son has to come to this knowledge on his own power. He can clearly see that when he gorges on chips and fatty foods he feels pretty awful, and he sees highs...when he eats fairly low carb and healthy it's all easier to deal with. I can (and HAVE!) told him this, but truly they have to come to it on their own.

    Diabetics CAN eat whatever they want, as long as they dose for it. But the bottom line truth is that NONE of us, diabetic or no, need to eat the way typical Americans eat.

    Provide good choices, be indulgent at times, allow him to make mistakes, coach and research and be there to educate but know that he'll get there in his own timing. Right now be proud if he's bolusing for every meal and testing regularly. That's huge, and an adjustment all its own. Educate about pumping and begin to make moves to that direction if he's interested, pumping makes teenage eating habits much easier to deal with (eating 20 minutes after a meal, yup, btdt!).

    Don't judge, by action, facial expression, or words. That is HARD, I know. Seeing him reach for junk when he wakes up high and needs to drift down, it's oh so hard. Don't ask his number before you ask how his day was, or about the math test, or whatever. That's hard too!

    It's important to remember that insulin is not the enemy. He needs what he needs. I see folks often worry about the amount of insulin needed, and I had that fear once too. But he's using the same amount of insulin per food as before, it's just now externally adminstered! So don't think in terms of insulin, think of terms of how he feels, and how he manages. If he figures out how to eat pizza and not go high/feel miserable, that's great. My son never could, so he pretty well avoids it now, totally his choice.

    Good luck, know you're not alone, there are lots of parents of teens here ready to help you!
  6. Amy C.

    Amy C. Approved members

    Oct 22, 2005
    I would give up this goal to move in this direction. Your son does not need to change the way he eats, but should learn to give the proper amount of insulin for what he does eat. That is the primary goal of managing life with diabetes.

    Once he gets the hang of that (after many years) and can make the choice to eat more healthy.

    Right now, you should be working with him to be sure he gets the insulin needed to keep the blood sugar under control.

    Testing is helpful as well.
  7. Sarah Maddie's Mom

    Sarah Maddie's Mom Approved members

    Sep 23, 2007
    I agree with all the previous posters who encouraged you to work with your son to learn how to cover normal foods and strive to make insulin work for him as he adjusts to having Type 1.

    In the long run I do believe that some self-imposed dietary restrictions are advisable for older teens and adults with type one but at least for us, its been a very gradual process. My 15 year old dd will often (not always, nor world I want her to) take a carb count into consideration before making a food choice.
  8. Helenmomofsporty13yearold

    Helenmomofsporty13yearold Approved members

    Oct 5, 2008
    I believe that the less diabetes influences his life, the easier it will be to accept. Work the diabetes into his life, not the other way around. At 15, it is so important to blend in with your peers. The more he feels in control, the better.
  9. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    I so agree with this advice. You want to make it possible for him to eat what he wants to eat. Time enough for him to worry about nutrition later on.. :cwds:
  10. Swifty

    Swifty New Member

    Apr 30, 2013
    I'm the father of a rebellious 14yr old T1 son. From my experience I have found that my son wants to fit in with his peers. The secret of this is easy blood sugar control and staying at reasonable bloodsugar levels. We do this by providing low-carb snacks and meals. He will often choose low-carb alternatives when he eats with his mates. At least then if he hasn't had insulin his levels aren't high enough to make him sick.
    Its all a big comprise and the more I interfere the worse the control, finding the balance is the hard bit.
    I take my son on overnight fishing trips, amazing what you can talk about round a camp fire away from home. Good luck
  11. lovemychild

    lovemychild Approved members

    May 14, 2013
    My son was DX 9-30-11 at age 14 and that November he turned 15. He has a twin sister who is NOT Type 1. He was in DKA and was rushed to the childrens hospital and we stayed there for 3 days. We were in shock and sometimes I think we still are in shock. None of us plus our entire family will never ever forget that day. Our son is a good,quite young teen but when this happened boy oh boy. The day before Chirstmas he ran away from home and it was getting dark and we were scared to death. Now remember he was just DX so he knew there was going to be food and lots of it and he was so mad bc he thought he would have to do without all the good stuff and he was so mad about having Type 1 Diabetes. We found him later after he cooled down up the street just walking around and around. He had been in the woods just thinking over and over why GOD would have punished him like this bc he said he had never really done anything wrong. Well we all cried and cried. Our family was so upset and we tried to explain our best to him that GOD wasn't punishing him. We had good days and then we had bad days and when we had days oh my they were really BAD. Me and my husband were always asking him questions about his blood sugars and write it down and what would you like to eat and don't forget this and don't forget that until finally one day actually several months he would just scream at us for no reason. HE WAS JUST PLAIN OUT MAD! He need to gain alot of weight so he could eat anything he wanted and still does just as long as he took his insulin. That alone helped just him knowing he could still eat anything he wanted and to do things that he enjoyed. He has gained 50 pounds and still has more weight to gain but he is growing alot and in time he will gain more weight. It was such a battle at first or I should say for the first year at least. September will be 2 years and this summer he is going on the pump. He is so tired of 6 shots a day. We can't wait until he gets the pump. I will say this, alot of his friends are drinking,smoking,smoking pot,taking pills and just about anything to get high. Our son is NOT doing any of this and he says he would never do that bc with being type 1 you have to take extra, extra good care of yourself forever. So, we have to think positive and encourage him in a positive way each and every day. Things will get better and there still will be those days. :)
  12. lovemychild

    lovemychild Approved members

    May 14, 2013
    Oh and as far as the light bulb well we didn't think our son's light bulb would ever come on but it has now but like I said he still has days that make him so MAD about having type 1 but together we all will get through this and be healthy. :)

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