Talking to a 4 year old about diabetes

BreC
By BreC Latest Reply 2014-11-21 22:03:23 -0600
Started 2014-11-21 09:15:43 -0600

My 4 year old granddaughter was with us last night. She is very special as she was a premmie at 3lbs at birth. She is doing well but is still small for her age. Last night she came to me and asked would I make some of those good cookies. She was referring to chocolate oatmeal drop cookies. Her favorite cookie. With those beautiful blue eyes looking at me how could I say no. I made her some cookies and when they were ready I sat her down with a couple of cookies and a glass of milk. She wanted me to have some too. I ate one cookie. How can one so small understand that Granny really doesn't need eat cookies. I did try to talk to her about diabetes but I'm not so sure she understood.


8 replies

Gabby
GabbyPA 2014-11-21 14:29:02 -0600 Report

Yeah, it's kind of like trying to have the "sex" talk. The light bulb will go on later in life when she remembers things you did or said. Kids who are 4 who are diabetic themselves can grasp it, so it's not over them. It's just a different view from that age. She doesn't have to understand, she just has to know that grandma loves her and talks with her. You will have all kinds of opportunities to share with her in word and action.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-11-21 11:38:55 -0600 Report

My fondest memory of my grandmother is her teaching me how to make toast on a coal stove when I was in kindergarten. .She passed away shortly after that.

Your granddaughter is too young to understand all of the intricacies of diabetes but she is young enough to remember doing things with her grandmother. Especially because her grandmother made cookies for her. She may want to help you make the cookies for her.

Having that one cookie is not going to kill you and it may not cause a high. The key factor is to enjoy your granddaughter and stop letting diabetes control your life. Life is short and tomorrow is promised to no one. If you choose to let diabetes not allow you to do something with her, that will be your fault. If you don't want to eat the cookie, sit at the table with her and tell her Granny isn't hungry right now but I would love to sit here and talk to you while you enjoy your cookies.

I was at my cousins birthday party and his grandchildren were there. His 5 yr old granddaughter was eating Gummy Bears and came and climbed on my lap and told me to eat one with her. I was not about to tell that child that I could not have it. This would have made her think sharing was a bad thing. I ate the Gummy Bear with her. She offered another and I told her they are all yours go share one with Aunt Margaret who is her only living great aunt on her fathers side. Sure enough she was on my aunts lap sharing her Gummy Bears.

Though I am not fond of children I would never deny them the opportunity to spend time with me. Especially the ones in the family. In the future, if she wants cookies, make them then put them in a cute basket or cookie tin and send them home with her. Put a note in with them that says something sweet to her. She will remember that forever.

I have a recipe for Sugar Free Thumbprint cookies that you can fill with sugar free Jam. She will love making those with you although it takes a bit more time to make them. She can stick her thumb in them and you can put a label on them with her name "_______'s Thumbprint Cookies. What child wouldn't love having something named after them. When she is old enough to make them on her own, you can give her the recipe.

Type1Lou
Type1Lou 2014-11-21 15:02:05 -0600 Report

Great reply Joyce! You made me remember making toast on my grandparents' wood-burning stove! There were little squares that didn't toast where the handle went into the round metal cover over the fire…They had a regular stove as well but had kept the woodburning one…brings back fond memories! Happy Thanksgiving!

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-11-21 22:03:23 -0600 Report

Lou, we had a regular stove but here in the city before furnaces were put in we had gas stoves in the front part and bedrooms but the coal stove for the back half of the house.

She was visiting the day I got home from school so rather than use the toaster, she just put the bread on the hot lid and flipped it. We ate the toast and it was delicious. Those were the good old days. Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-11-21 21:32:11 -0600 Report

Lou, we had a regular stove but here in the city before furnaces were put in we had gas stoves in the front part and bedrooms but the coal stove for the back half of the house.

She was visiting the day I got home from school so rather than use the toaster, she just put the bread on the hot lid and flipped it. We ate the toast and it was delicious. Those were the good old days. Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-11-21 21:31:52 -0600 Report

Lou, we had a regular stove but here in the city before furnaces were put in we had gas stoves in the front part and bedrooms but the coal stove for the back half of the house.

She was visiting the day I got home from school so rather than use the toaster, she just put the bread on the hot lid and flipped it. We ate the toast and it was delicious. Those were the good old days. Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

jayabee52
jayabee52 2014-11-21 09:26:06 -0600 Report

Howdy Bre
Those young ones are so precious they melt your heart. One cookie probably didn't hurt you that bad. (my problem would have been once started I couldn't stop)

I am still waiting for my first Grand. I am told they are trying but as yet no dice.

As far as a 4 yo understanding diabetes, she may not quite understand yet, but I am not a fan of withholding such information from a child, so try to tell her in a way she might understand. Eventually it will click on and she will "get it".

Praying for your improving health

James