Say Goodbye to Guilt

By GabbyPA Latest Reply 2012-08-03 08:53:42 -0500
Started 2012-04-29 21:20:16 -0500

By Janis Roszler, MSFT, RD, CDE, LD/N

You don’t have to feel guilty because you have diabetes. Here’s why:

Your diabetes is not your fault. Diabetes is a complex disease that is caused by many factors, many of which experts still don’t fully understand. What we do know is that people inherit the potential to develop it. Even if they are overweight and inactive, if they don’t have the possibility of diabetes in their genes, they won’t get it.

Diabetes can be unpredictable. At times you may do everything right and still have a blood glucose level that won’t behave. So forgive yourself. Everything you do to care for your diabetes makes you healthier and better able to handle those crazy moments when your diabetes misbehaves.

You can still reach for the stars. Don’t focus on what you can’t do, but what you can do. People with diabetes star in movies, write novels, run marathons, even win Olympic medals. You may have to do things with a bit more care and thought, but you can still accomplish many of your dreams and goals.

58 replies

Controlled 2012-07-04 22:33:53 -0500 Report

I agree with everything that you said; however, I honestly can't help thinking that we are all working so hard at managing our weight. It is indisputable that weight affects diabetes. While it may not be the cause and while genetic and other factors are important, don't you think that had we worked this hard to watch body weight before the diagnosis there was at least a possibility of not developing it? Losing weight improves BG. I've read that here a hundred times and proved it myself. By A1C is "normal" and has been for almost two years. I could possibly explore more carbs in my diet, but I'm absolutely not going to. That makes me continue to think that a little more care a little earlier and I very probably wouldn't have developed this.

Young1s 2012-07-08 03:44:23 -0500 Report

Not to rain on ur parade…but it's probable that u would have.

The fact is that the number of sources of how this annoyance comes to be is harder to pinpoint is even more than the experts care to think about. But the outcome may or may not have been inevitable. At least that's what I think anyways.

One of the reasons why I don't have guilt is because I did a lot of things in my most formidable years (as a young adult) that steered me towards this. But at the same time, I did a lot of things that should have staved it off for a while…go figure.

Just so u know, for years i was a cheerleader (both for neighborhood football & high school), played basketball (ok it was JV but i was the point guard, so u know i was working), and was in the service (Army Reserves) for a few years.

Not tooting my own horn but just saying that my past wasn't passive.

It actually wasn't until I was a few months in to about 6 that I found out that D runs in the family. Family secret and all. But hey…it is what it is.

I don't know about u, but this diagnosis has made me (okay forced me) to get my crap together. How is that a bad thing? ok, so i'm not in the dress that i wanted to be in by this summer… but i'm closer than i would have been.

To me…it's the little bonuses and smiles that I can find in all of this that make it worth while.

Hope you can.

Controlled 2012-07-08 13:56:49 -0500 Report

All good points. You're probably right. I have to admit, I am in better shape and better health than I was a year or two ago. I also was active: owned a karate dojo, raised kids actively, youth basketball coach, all the rest.

You haven't rained on my parade…but you were leading it for a while.

Young1s 2012-08-03 08:53:42 -0500 Report

hahaha…ur reminder of my comment made me smile…thank you for that! Seems like I need to take a long look at my profile quote…be blessed!

Set apart
Set apart 2012-07-02 06:19:16 -0500 Report

Thanks Gabby I needed this my one year anniversary is a month away am ready to reflect on the last year. Although I never felt guilt I just wondered why. I took care of myself always exercising only allowed myself indulgences once in while with portion control. Type II is strong in my family, but to be diagnosed as T1 totally blew me away. I learn every day new ideas how to beat this. The latest thing is one of the biggest, as anal as I am I realize now that there Are some days that just Are going to be crazy and there's nothing I can do and won't blame myself! Hugs!

robertoj 2012-07-01 20:42:32 -0500 Report

I have many factors that indicate a high probability of diabetes. When I was young I was extremely active but I was also reckless. I have no regrets and no guilt. One of the most important lessons I have learned about my issue both physical and emotional is to take a thorough personal Inventory. I take responsibility and own my part of it. It is extremely important to be nonjudgmental (I tend to be harsh). It is important to me to take immediate action on the things I can. Some things are too hard to change quickly so I take baby steps. It takes time to develop good behavior but practice becomes routine and the impossible becomes doable. Supporting others reinforces good behavior and provides tremendous motivation. I have two rules be kind and do no harm and that includes myself.

jesus reigns
jesus reigns 2012-06-21 19:31:43 -0500 Report

since i have been dealing with another chronic disease for the past 5 years (fibromyalgia), i already know how to deal with the guilt. i didn't ask for any of it, and if i could, i would be rid of it tomorrow. but for whatever reason, God chose me to go through this journey, and with Him, i know i will be ok. love and hugs, lisa

Young1s 2012-06-29 05:22:12 -0500 Report

This is what kind of urks my hubby. That I'm so okay with it all. Not that he's mad that I'm a diabeitc but that I'm not mad…if that makes any sense. I just figure that God has great things in store for me and this is just another test of will, endurance, you name it.

I keep telling my hubby that I'm going to stick him one day so he can see what it feels like. He always has this look of curiosity on his face when i test or take my insulin. He's too chicken for it right now though.

Set apart
Set apart 2012-07-02 06:11:20 -0500 Report

Lol, Young 1, my husband actually let me stick him one time in the beginning. He cringed and said it really hurt, aha now I think he has more admiration for his wife! I can't say I never asked why in the beginning, but now I realize that nothing happens without God's hand in it and it's all for a purpose! I see it as a way to bring me closer to him and to meet you guys! Hugs!

GabbyPA 2012-06-30 14:37:40 -0500 Report

That attitude is what makes you the happy person I know. You just know there is a plan for it all, getting mad or feeling guilt doesn't accomplish anything but to bring down the people around you. Love it, and your hubby will appreciate it one day.

troublemaker27 2012-05-04 11:16:16 -0500 Report

hey there i'm tori i have type two diabetes since 2008 i'm 34 and half yrs old.
there's no shame in being diabetic i don't mind sometimes i blame myself in being diabetic.
i watch what i eat and exercise everyday.
check my blood sugar.
well walk everyday too.

robertoj 2012-07-01 20:53:56 -0500 Report

I'm responsible in part for my diabetes and a much larger part in some of my other issues. I avoid the word blame when applied to others it leads to hostility and to ourselves leads to self loathing. You are doing the right things; be happy about it (always).

troublemaker27 2012-07-01 21:35:27 -0500 Report

ok i will i'm sorry i didn't mean to be sad about having diabetes.
how are you?
i'm good just got through eating dinner.
i checked my blood sugar it was 162.
not bad.

robertoj 2012-07-01 22:55:08 -0500 Report

I didn't think you were sad. It's just that negative thoughts have such powerful impact. That is good for after eating. My doctor wants me to keep my bg at just under 130 which makes sense because I seldom get highs but am prone to lows.

troublemaker27 2012-07-03 23:29:24 -0500 Report

well i feel kind of dizzy
so i'm ok.
how are you robertoj?
tori here well i'm watching the actor simon baker in the guardian.
see ya

troublemaker27 2012-07-04 22:24:44 -0500 Report

hey robertoj
how are you?
just got through eating dinner i had a cheeseburger,hot dog,diet pepsi,cheetos,salad and homemade bread.
it was good.
so how was your fourth of july?
well i'm on two weeks of summer vacation i don't go back to day program till july 16th.
see ya on the flip side

robertoj 2012-07-05 02:45:14 -0500 Report

It was great. My wife worked so I made a meatloaf dinner. She loves my meatloaf because I'm very creative and I've never made the same one twice. I use red quinoa instead of breadcrumbs.

troublemaker27 2012-07-05 22:25:03 -0500 Report

hi robertoj
tori here how are you?
i love meatloaf.
i had pizza,little pears and juice.
with a little sugar and my medicine.
ready for the weekend?
i went to the library and got some books,cd's and dvd's.
so i have something to do this month.
my check from trust management was $23.00
not good.
see ya

robertoj 2012-07-06 06:22:11 -0500 Report

I've hated money since I was young. God must have been listening because now I don't have much :D

Caroltoo 2012-05-03 15:46:03 -0500 Report

Interesting thought. I don't think I've ever felt guilty. I took care of myself well and I have no idea where D came from (NO family history for at least 3 generations), so I just consider it a random act of the universe. Definitely not my fault! My immediate response was about 3 days of fear for my life, followed by a week or so of anger that it happened to me, all of which moved rapidly into a "so what am I going to do about this" attitude which took me to the bookstore and gym to get educated and more active.

I can't think of anything I have ever wanted to do and not done because of having diabetes, except for eating the food items I've given up to get healthy again. Since I had to give them up to get healthy again, I take that as a sign that I should not have been eating them in the first place. So … that's a lesson learned by listening to my body. The other lesson learned is that stress does mess with my body's functions more than I realized and I have to manage that better. Exercise takes care of a lot of that for me.

DeanaG 2012-05-03 13:47:25 -0500 Report

Thank you for posting this, Gabby.
I really needed it this week. Seems like my blood sugar just won't behave this week and I was kicking myself. ;-)

Nick1962 2012-04-30 18:44:31 -0500 Report

So true Gabby. Even if the stars are not your goals, staying healthy in mind, spirit and body means some of those lesser (but no less enjoyable) things are within better reach. Sometimes we spend way too much time on worrying about things we can't change instead of making arrangements for the fun stuff!

Young1s 2012-04-30 10:38:46 -0500 Report

My sister-in-law saw me testing my BG for the first time. She got such of look of concern on her face that I had to ask her what the matter was. She said that she felt so bad for me and didn't understand why I have diabetes and she doesn't. She's about 150-200lbs heavier than me. I told her that it's not an issue of weight for me but of genetics and lifestyle. I also told her to not feel bad for me because my D has made me more health conscious and active than I've been in a long time. Nothing has changed about who I am, only what I do. I still get looks of pity from her but I just laugh and tell her to relax, I'm fine. I can only imagine how she'll react when she sees me eat something most would consider a no-no for diabetics.

Nick1962 2012-04-30 12:09:56 -0500 Report

Cool! You've got someone to mess with! Next time she's around, pop a chocolate chip in your mouth and put a horrified look on your face and tell her "WHAT DID I JUST DO? HOW COULD YOU LET ME DO THAT?" Then immediately test (wincing painfully of course) muttering "OH NO, OH NO, OH NO"

GabbyPA 2012-05-01 15:39:04 -0500 Report

You are a wicked, wicked boy!

GabbyPA 2012-05-01 16:28:21 -0500 Report

I bet you love to pull pranks on your friends. I like to watch them, but am not always so open to getting them done to me...LOL

Nick1962 2012-05-01 16:35:17 -0500 Report

I try not to miss an opportunity. I frequently put a rubber band around the handle of the spray hose at the kitchen sink so when the wife turns it on ssssssppppprrrraaaayyy. That never gets old!

byrun 2012-05-01 17:16:00 -0500 Report

l-o-l Speaking of never getting old, you may want to reconsider that one. Especially when it comes to your personal longevity. Be careful my friend.

Nick1962 2012-05-01 18:36:31 -0500 Report

Haaa so true! I've learned that i need to be outside when i pull that one (with a house key). It's fun when I watch her do it through the kitchen window.

byrun 2012-05-02 08:44:19 -0500 Report

Ahh, wisdom. Usually gained through pain and survival. I wonder what she does to get even? l-o-l Stay healthy and vigilant my friend.

jayabee52 2012-05-01 16:30:46 -0500 Report

I can dish it out also, but I know that if I dish it out I also have to take it with good humor too.

GabbyPA 2012-05-01 16:32:28 -0500 Report

yes that is true! I am good with it usually, but sometimes I get too serious and it is wasted. My husband is always telling me to "chill out, I was joking" =0)

Young1s 2012-04-30 12:13:42 -0500 Report

Hahahaha!!!! I just might…why give me such ideas!?! I knew there was a sadistic streak in there somewhere.

Nick1962 2012-04-30 13:31:41 -0500 Report

Because I know that years of being a mom means that inner child still needs to be released from time to time. Well, that's the clinical version. The real version is because I know you want to!

Young1s 2012-04-30 19:22:53 -0500 Report

Get out of my head! Truth is I've had such understanding experiences that I wasn't sure how I would handle someone who was misinfomed. At least she's more concerned than critical, like others have encountered.

Nick1962 2012-04-30 19:44:03 -0500 Report

Chances are she'd probably laugh it off and it'd be a good time (and a story you'd both share in years to come). That innocent smile in your profile pic doesn't fool me, i see that devious little curl in the corner of your mouth and eyes!

Nick1962 2012-04-30 19:56:39 -0500 Report

Yeah, no chance! I watched that clip of your twins at the sing off. Those apples didn't fall far from the tree. Their plotting pranks on each other all the time.

Young1s 2012-04-30 20:01:31 -0500 Report

Haha! Nope. They're almost 20 now, so nowadays it's more like how can they get one another to accept each others new boyfriend. It would seem my husband and I aren't even a consideration at this point. Well, at least until the break ups come in. Then they run straight to mommy and daddy for consolling.

Nick1962 2012-04-30 20:10:27 -0500 Report

Oh trust me, at least once a week they're saying "that's exactly what mom says". They're just trying to act tough, but they recognize your influence. Worse, they're probably fighting on the phone and what comes up every time is "YOU'RE JUST LIKE MOM!"
Mine's a bit more subdued. Every few months she's shows up with 3 bags of laundry and says "I hate it when you're right". The little #@$&

jigsaw 2012-04-29 21:41:58 -0500 Report

I was diagnosed with diabetes many years ago! The only thing that I changed in my life, is how I eat, and how much I exercise. I eat a much healthier diet, and I exercise more frequently. That aside, I do everything about the same as I always have. Guilt is an alien word when it comes to my diabetes!!!

GabbyPA 2012-04-29 21:46:03 -0500 Report

I do that pretty much as well. My feet bother me enough that doing certain things can be a pain, but I do pretty much what I like. I am healthier and I get more activity in my daily routine as well. So for that I don't feel guilt.

I think when I was first diagnosed, I was kicking myself because I knew it ran in the family and I didn't do enough to stop it from happening from me. Those are the kinds of things I think a lot of us feel, even if we work through it and understand it better, there are still days when I feel I should have known better.

jigsaw 2012-04-29 22:13:42 -0500 Report

I have had thoughts along those lines initially also. It runs in my family, and I was never really overweight. I do understand what your saying, but I'm not so sure I could have prevented it. Also, for me it was a steep and tricky learning experience after I was diagnosed, since all the doctor told me was cut your carbs! I barely new what a carb was at the time. For me, and prior to being diagnosed, I was wrapped up in raising a family, and supporting them. The only time that I had time to seriously consider diabetes is when I had no choice! That was after I was diagnosed. Up till then, the thought of preventing it never entered my mind.

Nick1962 2012-04-30 16:26:26 -0500 Report

Truer words have never been spoken! Kind of just the opposite of "you don't know what you've got till it's gone". In this case it's "you don't know what you've done till you get it"

GabbyPA 2012-04-29 21:23:44 -0500 Report

I get the newsletter from Healthy Outcomes and it doesn't have a link I can share it with, so I thought you would still like to read this little blurb.

I know that guilt hovers over a lot of us like a rain cloud, just waiting to pop. There are so many people who add to that guilt with myths and misunderstandings about what diabetes is. Even among those who deal with it daily, there is that temptation to blame ourselves.

I like what she shares about focusing on what you CAN do and not on what we can't. I know it is easier said than done, but it is a ticket to a guilt free path of dealing with our diabetes.