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Upset after daughter's first post-hospitalization endo appointment

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by rgcainmd, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. rgcainmd

    rgcainmd Approved members

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    My 11-year-old daughter was recently diagnosed with T1D (January 24, 2014). She had her first post-hospitalization appointment today at the university diabetes center where she is receiving her care. My husband took her to this appointment because he is the [unemployed] stay-at-home parent and I couldn't really miss work so soon after missing several days when my daughter was hospitalized. (I arranged time off work for her next appointment to see her MD; her appointments today were with the diabetes educator and the diabetes team psychologist.) I had been feeling relieved that my daughter was going to see the psychologist because over the past 2 days she's been talking to me about how sad she has started feeling about having T1D…

    My daughter phoned me right after her appointment, in tears because the psychologist told her that she cannot join the military because she has T1D. (For the past two years my daughter has been talking about her plans to get her bachelor's degree, enter the military as an officer, and then join the FBI.) After some research, I now know that what the psychologist told my daughter is true, but I can't help but be angry about the fact that my daughter went in to this appointment feeling upset and left the appointment feeling distraught! I was depending on the diabetes team psychologist to somehow begin to help my daughter feel better about her T1D, not make her feel even worse. I am at a loss for how to comfort my daughter now.
     
  2. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    It's odd that that came up in conversation, don't you think? I'm not sure how the adults could have responded though, if your daughter asked point blank about a military career. I'm sorry she's upset. I hope she soon understands that the career limits on our kids are very few. ;-)
     
  3. Megnyc

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    Sorry she is having a tough time :(

    I think you can just talk about what your daughter can do with diabetes and other paths to working at the FBI. Maybe you could show her some videos of Kris Freeman talking about managing diabetes in the olympics? There are a lot of successful people with diabetes.

    Also, I think you mentioned in another thread that your daughter wants to pump and doesn't want to wait six months. I started pumping only 2 days in (straight off IV insulin) and have never had any issues with not having experience doing shots. If this is something that would make your daughter feel more in control with diabetes, you could definitely push for it. The waiting for a pump seems to be a regional thing since a lot of the endo's in my city send kids home from the hospital after diagnosis on a pump.
     
  4. hawkeyegirl

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    Tell your daughter to get an accounting degree and to learn Arabic in college. The FBI will be beating down her door. :)
     
  5. RomeoEcho

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    Most likely it came up in the context of the psychologist trying to tell her how many options she does have. I remember how many times I was told I could do anything I wanted except join the military, fly a commercial airplane or drive a school bus. However, if your dream is for one of the three things that are absolutely out, it's going to be hard to hear the positive message in there. I was one of those for a while, and mostly decided that there are other great paths to let me do what I wanted. For most careers, it will be a non issue. There are also a few for which it is possible but difficult. I chose to take one of those difficult roads. There are days where I regret it, and there are days I am grateful to be a fighter. Law enforcement and the FBI won't be easy, but are doable. If you'd like to know more about the road less traveled, PM me.
     
  6. LoveMyHounds

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  7. Mish

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    I bet it probably just came up in the general sort of questions that adults ask kids as a way of opening them up, "what do you think you might like to do when you grow up? Do you have any interests?" Your daughter probably blurted right out MILITARY as it is what she wants to do.

    And at this moment, the psychologist is probably sitting at home going, "OMG, I had to tell some poor little newly dx girl that she can't join the military."
    I suspect she feels as terrible about it as you do. I wouldn't hold it against her. ;)

    But honestly, at 11, kids want to do all sorts of things and some are impossible to most kids; play pro basketball, be a pop singer because they aren't tall enough or don't have the voice. Your daughter doesn't have the pancreas for the military. Oh well. I would focus less on the fact that this one path is closed, and more on all the other paths that are open. Not as a consolation prize, but as what is likely to have been the case anyway. There are a hundred other reasons why she wouldn't have been in the military 10 years from now.
     
  8. TheFormerLantusFiend

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    The FBI is not the military. You can't join the military with T1 (although you can sometimes stay in the military if you are diagnosed with t1 after joining), but many police forces do allow T1s to join.

    P.S. No United States military. There are other countries with armed forces that do allow (or even require) type 1s to join. Such as Israel and Finland.
     
  9. SarahKelly

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    I am sorry that happened.
    My husband was dx around the same age and having grown up on the military base with a father that was high ranking officer he believed he'd be following the same path. My MIL and DH both remember the nurse in the hospital that said, "well mom at least you don't have to worry about him becoming a soldier now."
    I believe that moment was worse than the actual diagnosis, so your daughter being upset is a perfectly normal feeling after somebody broke news to her that in my opinion she just wasn't ready to hear. I haven't told my son yet, yes he's 5 but he pretends to be a soldier often and I just don't assume that I can know what the future holds in terms of either a cure or what different career paths will ask of their applicants when he is of the age to apply. I feel like right now everything is open to him, who am I to tell him what he can/can't do when he's still just growing :) Take care and know that you're not alone in these moments of frustration.
     
  10. nanhsot

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    That was pretty much our MD's first words to my son in the hospital, of course he'd been admitted and hooked up to IVs and taken care of, but when she met him once he'd been transferred out of ICU, she said "you can do anything you want...except join the military". It was her way of saying that his limit was open to all possibilities, that life would resume normalcy, that he could pursue whatever ambitions he wanted...except that single one.

    I'm sorry the delivery of the news upset your daughter, especially when she was feeling low already. Have you considered getting her some regular counseling? We did that (with a T1 therapist actually) for just a few visits a few months after diagnosis and it really helped.

    As others have said, her career plans may not look exactly like she envisioned but she can still pursue her dreams.
     
  11. ksartain

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    We got a similar speech from the doctor at our hospital stay. It went something like "You can still do almost every job in the world, except military and being an astronaut."

    ETA: Like PPs have said, there are still ways to accomplish goals. :)
     
  12. virgo39

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    I can certainly understand your DD being distraught at the news--it is upsetting. Did your DH and DD feel that the psychologist was not helpful?

    If not, and it were me, I think that I would follow up to let the psychologist know how your DD reacted to that news (if it wasn't already obvious) and to ask for some ideas about helping her to feel better. In these circumstances, I try to validate my daughter's feelings, which are completely legitimate. I would not expect my DD to react well, at least initially to either that news or my efforts to make her feel better about other career paths or options. However, I would be optimistic that with a little time, she'd come around. I hope that happens for your DD.
     

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