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Steel Magnolias

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Lize, Nov 8, 2010.

  1. Lize

    Lize Approved members

    Jul 14, 2010
    So - we watched the movie yesterday and I'm just sooo sorry that I did. If that is really what a low seizure looks like, I'm not sure I would be able to stay calm enough to help my daughter if it should ever happen to her. And the part after the funeral where the mother just loses it - I feel like that every day. And then Alicia had so many questions afterwards - will she be able to have children one day, will her kidneys give in, will she die at such a young age... I shouln't have watched it and I shouldn't have let Alicia watch it.
  2. Jessica L

    Jessica L Approved members

    Oct 9, 2010
    I dont think its bad to watch. They in my opinion over dramatized it but its good to see what can happen if you dont take care of yourself. As for seizures well they suck I wont lie. Its really hard to get that image out of your head and stop it from replaying over and over again. Riley has not had one and I hope it stays that way but my son has them often. I know he can hear me during them and while he is having one a seance of calmness comes over me because I know I have to be there for him. No matter how scary they are to watch it cant compare to how scared he feels while having one.
  3. GaPeach

    GaPeach Approved members

    Dec 29, 2007
    I haven't watched it since diagnosis so I can't remember all the specifics.

    Remember though, it is a movie so many things are dramatized and exaggerated to increase viewer interest. Also, diabetes management has changed dramatically since the era in which the movie was produced.

    I met a mom this weekend whose daughter was dx at the age of 16. She is married now with 4 children and her last A1C was 6.1. Victory!!!!!!
  4. miss_behave

    miss_behave Approved members

    Aug 28, 2006
    Oh my! Take a deep breath and remember that Steel Magnolias is a movie from 1989! Besides the fact that it is a movie, and intended to be as dramatic and shocking as possible with little regard for actual factual portrayals, diabetes care has progressed in leaps and bounds in the 21 years since this movie was made! There were no CGMS's, no carb counting, people were mostly on 2 shots a day, etc etc. Many, many women with T1 have healthy babies as can your daughter if she wants to one day. Complications are not a given. Your daughter can live a long, healthy, happy life! Please explain all this to her! :)
  5. Sarah Maddie's Mom

    Sarah Maddie's Mom Approved members

    Sep 23, 2007
    Please keep in mind that that's a movie, based on a play, based on a short story, based event that took place in the late 70's/early 80's. So that character's D was managed with the tools available 40 years ago. Not all that reflective of our children's lives.
  6. AlisonKS

    AlisonKS Approved members

    May 16, 2007
    That was the norm for my aunt who passed in the early 1980's-but they didn't have meters, insulin like we do now. When I moved back to Oregon my grandparents were amazed at how things have changed-probably bittersweet that the things that help Tony could have saved their daughter. But I do use that part in the movie where she refuses orange juice to explain how a person who is low can not always comprehend that they need something to help them.
  7. lauraqofu

    lauraqofu Approved members

    Apr 19, 2010
    I love that movie but haven't watched it since diagnosis...not sure if I could handle it honestly. As everyone else has said...it was filmed 20 years ago, based on a story written 30-40 years ago, and not based on our children's reality. Even amongst children diagnosed today, the children of the parents on this board receive exceptional care. We go far above and beyond what is basic care for today, not to mention what was basic care all those years ago.

    That said...the movie itself, if you take away the scariness of d, is just a beautiful movie with an amazing cast. I wouldn't want my daughter to see it at this point, because the d reference would scare her, but the relationships between the women in that movie are phenomenal, so it's likely that I would want to share that movie with her at some point. Maybe when she's older we'll have a chick flick cry ourselves to sleep movie night, with Steel Magnolias, Beaches and Step Mom....
  8. MamaBear

    MamaBear Approved members

    Jul 20, 2010
    I was just thinking about this movie,about giving my copy away. I have always loved it, like Lauraqofu said, amazing movie and cast,wonderful story. But now I don't see it the same way. I bought it at Walmart on a Saturday, sat down and watched it on Sunday, Tuesday my son began vomitting with no explanation and almost died. I know like you all said it's just a movie, but I really don't ever want to watch it again. It feels too close to home right now.
  9. McKenna'smom

    McKenna'smom Approved members

    Jan 5, 2010
    When we first heard of our daughter's diagnosis, the first thing I thought of was "Steel Magnolias."
  10. MamaBear

    MamaBear Approved members

    Jul 20, 2010
    I don't know how common the seizures are, but if she were to have one,you would be able to remain calm. It's amazing sometimes the way mommy instincts kick in and allow you to remain calm and do what you need to in order to help your child.
  11. Momto3

    Momto3 Approved members

    Sep 23, 2010
    Thank you for sharing that with us. DD having children weighs heavily on my mind because of this movie.
  12. Beach bum

    Beach bum Approved members

    Nov 17, 2005
    Just remember, this is an old movie. So, care/treament was much different back then. Also as pp said, this is a movie, so obviously the writers were going for the drama, and drama, and more drama.

    My good friend has had D for 43 years. She has two beautiful children and is pretty healthy herself.

    Yes, the movie is shocking, but try and take it with a grain of salt.
  13. tandjjt

    tandjjt Approved members

    Sep 14, 2006
    OK, I love the movie... always have and always will.

    There is a line in the script that has always made me think that she wasn't just battling "d" and perhaps had other health issues which combined with "d" and made matters more complicated for her -- goes like this:

    (julia roberts): "Diabetics have healthy babies all the time"
    (sally fields): "You are special, Shelby, there are limits to what you can do"

    After watching it over and over through the years, I've decided that its not a movie about a girl with D who dies from complications... I believe its about a girl who, in her much too short life, made a huge positive impact on so very many people because of her kind and loving spirit. We could all take a lesson from her... ;)
  14. twodoor2

    twodoor2 Approved members

    Oct 30, 2007
    When my daughter was first diagnosed, the first thing I thought about after the initial shock, was this film. It is very frightening, but the nurse assured me that with new insulins and newer technology, diabetes is much more manageable. T1D women get pregnant all the time and have successful pregnancies. In this case, the character Julia Roberts played was taking a big risk by getting pregnant. This film is based on the memoirs of Julia Robert's character's brother, and that was written a while ago. Times have changed, but it still is a chilling example of what can happen if T1D gets out of control.
  15. Gaia

    Gaia Approved members

    Jan 18, 2008
    Ok, stay out of my head you! LOL. Seriously, though, I was thinking just this same thing. And I didnt realize she was having a seizure. I thought it was just the combatative, irritated (for lack of better terms) way some people can get with a low. I just watched this movie not that long ago - the 3rd or 4th time since Joey was Dxed - and I cried as always but since then, I also cried during that scene because it hits home like never before. Joey doesnt get as bad as this when he's low ( he's high more than low) but still I know that its possible.

    Ive lost 4 babies before the 16th week of pregnancy, and I still watch shows or movies where one of the characters has a loss. (watching Dr Quinn now which gave me this thought) Maybe its not the same thing. Diabetes is an everyday battle. But to me, the losses were as hard for me as if Id given birth so I grieved them. It doesnt affect what I watch. But remember, this is me. My husband cant watch certain war movies with children in them because of what he saw and experienced. Everyone is different.
  16. sarahspins

    sarahspins Approved members

    May 5, 2009
    I think seizures are different for everyone.... my younger sister had one years ago as the result of heat stroke and it was the most surreal thing to be watching. We had no choice but to be calm and not freak out.. I think in the moment, no matter how you think you would react, you just know what to do, and freak out is not on that list - you can always freak out later!

    I've had diabetes for 10 years and I have not once had a seizure due to a low, and I have some wicked bad lows since I don't feel them until I'm close to 40 and often under... plus you have to consider that the movie was set in a time (not when it was filmed, earlier than that) when most diabetics were on only one or two shots a day, and they relied on clinitest tabs (urine testing) or testape (both of which you had to read visually) to try to guess what their BG was, and MDI was basically unheard of because home blood glucose monitors were just NOT available... I'm not even sure they were available in hospitals yet. So most people really had very little idea of what their BG was at any given time.

    I think it's pretty much assumed that Shelby's character likely had some underlying kidney disease BEFORE she got pregnant, and the movie just isn't very specific on letting us know this... but it puts a lot of things into perspective if you consider this, along with the limites of managing diabetes for the time, and watch it again. It's still not an easy movie to watch, but it's fairly accurate for the time.... but not much of the diabetes side is really relevant now. The movie is more abut the relationships between those women, than about any one of them.

    I had three healthy pregnancies and three healthy babies - there's really no need to assume that diabetes has to impact that as long as it's under control.
  17. deafmack

    deafmack Approved members

    Sep 22, 2006
    I totally agree with you. Being with my Nephew during his life-threatening seizures, being able to do CPR, call 911 and watch him being taken away on life flight, it amazes me how calm I have been able to remain during all this, how I have been able to hold it together and then once he leaves go in the bathroom and fall apart for a minute or so and then come out and act like everything is okay although in my heart I am scared to death.
    It never ceases to amaze me the inner strength you parents have in dealing with D in your children have every day.

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