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She doesn't want to tell her friends

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by The Spencer's, Aug 20, 2008.

  1. The Spencer's

    The Spencer's Approved members

    Aug 20, 2008
    Today we got on the topic of friends and D and I asked Courtney when she was going to tell her friends that she now had D and she said that she wasn't going to. I asked her why and she said that she didn't want them to know. She said that they are going to think that she is weird. How did your kids tell and explain to their friends about their D?
  2. Deannas mom

    Deannas mom Approved members

    Aug 22, 2006
    My DD was dx just before the school year in 4th grade. At first she didnt want to tell anyone, but it wasnt long before some of the kids saw her testing heself. sooo she decided on her own that she may as well tell the class being that there are going to be times that they are going to see her testing or having to go to the office to do a shot. a week or so after the start of the school year, she asked me to help her write down what she wanted to say. she got permission from the teacher and when it was time, the teacher said to the class that Deanna had something important she wanted to tell the class. she got up in front of the class and just started talking to them, she said her name, and that she was a type 1 diabetic. she told them what it was and how she needs to test her blood sugar and get shots before she eats. she told them how they dont need to be scared or anything because its not somthing that they can get from her. she let them ask questions and she said that the whole time she was talking you could of heard a pin drop. by the following week of school Deanna had at least 4 kids in the class that wanted to help her do everything..lol
  3. kiwimum

    kiwimum Approved members

    Mar 14, 2007
    At the time, we didn't really give Tyler an option. We told him that as far as we were concerned, his friends HAD to know. Our reasoning was that it would most likely be his friends who would notice if things weren't right and they needed to know what to look for and what to do in any situation. As much as he didn't want to be the school wierdo, having D and doing injections actually made him a bit of a hero in his mates eyes!
    We also encouraged Tyler from day one that D is nothing to be ashamed of and it is not a dirty little secret he has to hide. He has always been very open about it all, including injecting in public.

    However, now he is getting older (nearly 13) we are noticing that he is becoming more selective in who he wants to tell. He starts high school next year and he has decided that he only wants a select few to know. And that is fine.

    I think you need to point out to your daughter that there are people that will have to know so they are able to offer assistance if required. And I bet her friends will think she is still cool, if not cooler!
  4. MamaC

    MamaC Approved members

    Dec 9, 2006
    Ahhh, delicate age there. Tom still doesn't really want people to know unless they have to, but pretty much the whole world knows since the water episode. He has told people more since the initial diagnosis but he still plays it pretty close to the vest.

    I'm guessing her friends may get on her case a little if she declines activities or disappears at times to test...or if her eating habits are perceived to have changed...she may sooner than later find it better to let them know in her own way rather than be put on the spot.

    And anyone who is really a friend, won't care. But girls can be tough.

    TEXSONMOM Approved members

    Jun 10, 2008
    Just a thought... since your daughter is 11 years old and newly diagnosed. Have her do some research on Nick Jonas of the Jonas Bros. He has been doing alot of interviews lately about his Diabetes. She might find a connection or a way to talk to her friends using him as an example. just a thought...
    Mama Belle likes this.
  6. shirley83006

    shirley83006 Approved members

    Sep 14, 2006
    well you can say , is she embarassed to tell her friends that she is sick with a cold.? it like being sick, but you just dont look it. and she needs to take medicine Pehaps if you have a nurse in the school, and schedule a discussion with the class. only the nurse if your child wants and it means alot , to have support from the children in her class. it does a world of good. sometimes my daughter get ambarrased. she does not want to much attention on her. but she is so glad that everyone understands. and they watch out for her. and it kinda helps in the lonely department. and tell your child that he or she is a special kid, who needs special care thats all. i hope that something i said was helpfull. if your child wants , can pm me or go on the kids forum and they can talk to each other. she also has an email address i can give you. my daughter is 9 also. maybe she can help her.
    Sarah Maddie's Mom likes this.
  7. bgallini

    bgallini Approved members

    Feb 23, 2008
    We had to call one of Alex's friends from the hospital b/c we didn't have any other way to get word to the band director that he wasn't going to a band competition that day. But he was 15 at the time and obviously not as worried about what other kids will think.

    I would tell your daughter that it's ok not to want to tell them but that at some point, they will have to find out. It's not like she can hide it forever. But she can take her time and not tell anyone for now and then just tell closer friends at first.

    Alex's friends were curious about what diabetes was and all the stuff he had to do..testing and shots and that thing he does with his hands when he counts carbs....if you ever watch Monk, Alex's carb counting reminds me of Monk's crime sceme thing he does. One of his friends asked if diabetes is an STD!! LOL

    Anyway, I see that Courtney was just diagnosed last week! I'm sorry to hear about it. And these first few months are the hardest part so I can understand her wanting to keep it quiet. I also see that you live on the Outer Banks! We were just there last week. We (my extended family) rent 2 houses in Southern Shores every Summer.....it's a beautiful place!!!
  8. Mama Belle

    Mama Belle Approved members

    Jan 23, 2007
    all of my DD's classmates know about it, but she told them way back in first grade when all the kids thought her BG meter was really cool. To them it is just old hat. Some of her friends are really nice about going with her to the nurse, one friend even counted carbs with her at lunch for a period of time last year. These were 9 and 10 year olds, so a little younger than your DD.

    But this year my DD started playing for a new softball team where she knew no one and she didn't want to tell her team mates about it at all. Understandably so, she found out from another girl that the star player was saying mean things about Samantha after she found out Sam had D. This is a rough age, girls start to get brutal. People that were friends for 5 years all of a sudden don't talk over things like someone wearing glasses or being too skinny.

    I think that your daughter may come around after a while. Sometimes it is helpful to be able to talk to friends about this stuff. But she probably needs to do that at her own pace. That said, I would not allow her to go out with friends who do not know about her diabetes. If she wants to go to their houses or spend the night or hang out after school, then they need to know.
  9. caspi

    caspi Approved members

    Oct 11, 2006
    Oh, I feel for you and your daughter!! My son was dx'd at 7 so it was totally different for us. I'm so sorry she's feeling this way. I agree with the Nick Jonas angle..... That might interest some of her friends! ;)

  10. Mama Belle

    Mama Belle Approved members

    Jan 23, 2007
    This right here, is a fantastic idea!!!
  11. GabriellasMom

    GabriellasMom Approved members

    Apr 27, 2008
    I'm sorry your daughter is feeling this way! My dd is 6 so this was really a non-issue for us. Her teacher told her class and they all made her cards while she was in the hospital. So she returned to school with everyone knowing.
  12. misscaitp

    misscaitp Approved members

    Jul 26, 2007
    I told my close friends as soon as I got out of the hospital. This year, in high school (weird place to start confessing secrets), I finally told the majority of people I know. My started more of a project for biology, but then I started to think minus well show them the equipment and supplies. That's how I told my friends.

    But I think in 8th grade one of my teachers accidentally leaked it. But in the end it was a good thing, you have people to back you up.

    I can understand where she is coming from with not wanting to tell. But if her friends think that she is weird, then that is their problem. Like I say 'If you have a problem get in line'. I think it is weird that my friends actually enjoy the perks of having a diabetic friend. What other friends can get you out of class for five minutes, get your food in the cafeteria (sometimes), or always have food on them?

    I'm most greatful for my friends who do know.
  13. MissMadisonsMom

    MissMadisonsMom Approved members

    Feb 24, 2008
    Madison was diagnosed in October at age 11. I felt is was so important for her 'friends' to know, but the whole school didn't need to know. Her friends are the ones who were going to notice if she is acting different and suggest to her that she check herself. Or if she had a major problem, they will know to tell someone immediately. She is VERY private about testing and such, but all of her real friends do know that she has D.

    Your daughter is so new to D, but she needs to understand that she should not be embarassed, ashamed or or shy about the fact she has D. If her friends are anything like Madison's, they would be totally curious, interested and helpful.
  14. jane1218

    jane1218 Approved members

    Jul 8, 2008
    My DD is the same way, I told her make sure 1 person per class knows, just in case, and she has done that. She has some great friends, they have been very supportive of her.
  15. sarahconnormom

    sarahconnormom Approved members

    Mar 12, 2008
    My son was dx in the middle of first grade at age 6 1/2 so we have not dealt with this issue yet. His friends all thought he was so cool and brave because he pricked his finger and had to take shots everyday. We live in a small town so pretty much everyone knows already and he will be with basically the same kids until he graduates.
  16. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    Incredibly good posts here..

    I guess all I have to add is that I would suggest that it should be her call when to tell her peers, and whom to tell. If you force the issue by telling them or pushing her too hard, then you are likely to reap long-term resentment to no apparent benefit.

    I would encourage her to confide first in her closest friends, and then when she is ready others. But here at our end (even with DD 10 years old) we let her set the pace.
  17. BlessedIAm

    BlessedIAm Approved members

    Nov 28, 2007
    My DH was 14 years old when he was diagnosed. He was diagnosed in the middle of the school year and she said when he came back he didn't have to tell anyone b/c his teachers made such a big deal over it. We met 3 years later and my take on it is that he was always so secretive about it. He would go out to his car or to the bathroom to take a shot and he never checked his blood sugar. I know now that at least when he was at school her checked his blood sugar some because he had to go to the nurse to do it. I personally feel that his "secretiveness" was mostly due to his age. He just didn't want to call attention to himself. We had been dating for about a year, I think, before he would do a shot in front of me and that was only after I kept insisting he was being ridiculous running off to do it all of the time.

    Our DS was diagnosed at age 6 1/2, also in the middle of the school year. His teacher told his class. In fact, I think she may have sent a letter home to the parents. He doesn't really have a problem telling people he is diabetic. We've never tried to be secretive about it in any way either which, I think, helps.

    I don't think it needs to be shouted from the rooftops but I do think it's imperative to tell the people you spend the most of your time with. This rule also applies to my DH and I think it was harder for him to start doing this having been diagnosed as a teenager when kids are most sensitive to "not wanting to be different."

    I hope she comes around and realizes that being diabetic is nothing to be ashamed of and while it is fine to be a private person at least a few people need to be aware of her condition.
  18. valerie k

    valerie k Approved members

    Feb 19, 2008
    matt was DX'd in the middle of the school year, so it was easy for the teacher to tell the class when he was hospitalized. 2 months later, another boy one grade lower then matt was also DX'd. So our school does alot of fundraising for the JDRF and their pictures are used (with our permission of cource)
  19. kyles_mom

    kyles_mom Approved members

    Jul 7, 2008
    Kyle was dx'd 3 weeks before school let out, and at that time hospitalized for 4 days so it was obvious something was wrong by his absence. The kids all made a nice card for him to get better, which was nice. As I write this, I was discussing this thread with him because I've always stressed that EVERYONE he comes into substantial contact with needs to know. It's about his safety. He's only 9 though, so it's easier to lead him in that direction. Also he's always been very easy going and doesn't have a self conscience bone in his body, at least that I've found so far :)

    When he got back to school after dx and he would be in the office testing, other kids would be coming in to the nurses office for this and that and all I heard was 'hey Kyle can I watch?'. I think it helped his confidence immensly.

    I agree with the other mom's too that a true friend will understand......I know this age is hard, especially with girls grrrrrrr
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
  20. kierbabi09

    kierbabi09 Approved members

    Aug 20, 2007
    i was a freshman in high school when diagnosed and i only told my close friends (ie like 5 people) . it was extremely hard and it still is. i don't hide my diabetes, but i don't exactly "flaunt" it either. if someone see's me checking my blood sugars and catches on, that is fine. but i'm not just going to announce it for all the world. my freind does that. she will yell things like (dunring school for everyone to hear) "you can't eat that your diabetic" and i hate it. i think that it all depends on who your friends are and how confident you are. most people now know that i have diabetes and don't make a big deal about it. they are the ones that i can tell anything to:)

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