Husband won't take care of his type 2 Diabetes...What to do?

By DDB_PA Latest Reply 2010-08-12 19:05:03 -0500
Started 2010-07-28 15:39:34 -0500

My husband is 33 years old and was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when his doctor did a blood test on him 4 years ago and his level was over 700. He progressed from pills to now insulin 2 times per day. The problem is he decided to stop taking his insulin and his daily levels several months ago. He is always miserable to be around, he is depressed and grumpy. For the last year he has had problems with E.D., and refuses to see the doctor for it. Last weekend we finally were able to talk about his condition and he said as long as I live long enough to see the kids off to college, that's all I care about. I told him my feelings on this and he said he will start taking care of himself…I don't really believe him. What can I do? His level is consistently over 600…I am so worried about him.

13 replies

DDB_PA 2010-08-12 15:01:46 -0500 Report

Thank you everyone for your advice. Shockingly enough, after we had our last conversation…he has started taking better care of himself. He takes his blood sugar once a day and takes his insulin, as prescribed. I am starting to see hope here. I am going to start planning his will and funeral. That is my fav. suggestion. Our children are 12 and 14…not ready for college for quite a while. I think if I tell him I would like to plan his will and funeral arrangements, than maybe he will see the seriousness of this and my concern. I need him to be at the point where he takes care of his diabetes for himself…not because I want him to. So far, he has been taking care of himself. Hopefully, he will continue to take care of himself. I will keep you updated. Thank you for your prayes and advice.

HPei 2010-08-12 19:05:03 -0500 Report

I would hold off on the funeral arrangements for now. It sounds like he is starting to take care of himself, and a lot of men, if you keep prodding them, will lash out. If he keeps doing what his doctor (and you) want him to, just encourage him. Maybe you can take your blood sugar once in a while too. Have him "help" you do it.
If he's doing what needs to be done, I don't think you need to keep bugging him to do it, sometimes you just need to sit back and watch. He may surprise you even more.

Armourer 2010-08-04 01:11:19 -0500 Report

Been there, done that, still have problems with it at times. All three of Mama Dee's advice is excellent. The advice of planning his funeral is great. I volunteer at a local food bank and one of the volunteers told of her son-in-law who has diabetes along with his four brothers, parents and sister. She then said that her younger brother died at age 35 from diabetes. With numbers that high he will never see his children go to college. What I have to add is support him. You and the rest of the family change eating habits. This will be good for you and great for him. Someone below advised on this too. Good luck!

petals 2010-07-29 11:23:24 -0500 Report

I am sorry to hear this. Your hubby is in denial big time. And sadly you can't make him take care of himself. With numbers like that he will not see his children off to college. It is unfair of him to cause you so much worry. I wish that I could help in some way. My prayers are with you.

ston3xc 2010-07-29 09:36:30 -0500 Report

My youngest son was diagnosed when he was 12. I kept him on track until he came of age and then he decided he didn't want to be diabetic anymore. I tried to reason with him, told him he could lose his eyesight, he said" then I'll just kill myself", I told him he could lose his limbs, he said, " then I'll just kill myself", I told him he wouldn't be able to have sex, he said, " then I'll definitely kill myself!". He is now 32 and he has lost vision in both eyes, he has had half of his right foot amputated and his left foot is in danger, too. He can't have sexual intercourse. But he is still here. He apologized to me a couple if years ago about the way he behaved, he said he didn't think I ( his mother) was going to be here this long and he thought he wouldn't either. He is now getting regular medical care and taking care of himself (his last A1C was 6.1). One down factor, he never worked long enough to qualify for disability. Talk to your husband until you are blue in the face, If that won't work, act like he's already gone, go and do things with your kids without him, maybe when he's by himself, he'll do some thinking. Hugs and good luck to you!

kdroberts 2010-07-28 21:13:00 -0500 Report

This reply will be harsh. With blood sugar that high he won't be seeing the kids off to college. The only thing you can do is to make sure you and your kids are OK and that means sitting down with your husband and planning his funeral, getting his will in order and the like. It serves 2 things. The first and preferable one is that it will shock him into realizing what he is doing and he will start taking care of himself. The second and not preferable is that if he continues to keep on how he is then when he does die you will be prepared. Before that though there could be blindness, kidney failure, amputation, nerve damage, coma, heart attacks and strokes. With levels around 600 those will be coming very soon, within a couple of years or so. Most doctors will tell you to go to the ER if your blood sugar is over 350-400 for a reason.

It's not an easy situation for you to be in because there is very little you can do to make somebody take care of themselves. I wish you luck.

monkeymama 2010-07-28 19:16:37 -0500 Report

There is a saying, you can lead a horse to waters but you can not make them drink it. If your husband is saying he is going to start changing his ways, sit back and see what he does. There is only so much one can do. You can talk to someone until you are blue in the face. Until that person is ready to deal with it and change, it is just going to back fire on you. Essentially what I am trying to say is that HE must be the one ready and willing to change, otherwise he will never be happy and could cause turmoil between the two of you. You could try to see if there is someone close to him that can talk to him but also know that it may or may not work. I am sorry to say this, when you love someone so much, it is sometimes hard to pull the "tough love card" and let him fall. Please do not take me wrong on this, I have been married for over 10 years and love my husband VERY MUCH. My husband had to pull this card in a different situation with me. "I" had to be willing and ready to except and want to change for it to be successful. I am sorry you are having to go through this. I can only wish you the very best in helping your loved husband.

GabbyPA 2010-07-28 19:05:00 -0500 Report

This breaks my heart. What about you? What about leaving you? He is so young to give up on the love of his life who gave him those children.

One of the things that makes me take care of myself is knowing that if I was gone, what would my family do. I know they would survive, but at the same time, I would hate to leave them without all that I do and care for them. I love my husband, his children, what is left of my family...I would hate to leave them in such a quandary.

I guess I think that way because I lost my younger brother and I have seen my mother suffer that. I have seen her in the loss of my dad as well. I don't want to be the cause of more suffering for her.

I know that it might seem selfish of you to talk to him about this, but maybe this is what he needs to see. Leaving is the easy way, but staying has many more rewards.

RAYT721 2010-07-28 18:30:19 -0500 Report

It is very difficult to be the spouse of an alcoholic, drug addict, invalid, etc. There are groups like Alanon that help with alcoholic spouses and friends and maybe there are such support groups for spouses of diabetics. I would urge you to look for one or to at least get counseling for yourself to help cope. You can't help your husband if he's unwilling to help himself. He promised to change and you don't believe him. Is he changing? He wants to live to long enough to see the kids off to college so if that's his motivation you may have your answer on how to help him achieve that goal. Unless they are off to college next week, he's not only got to get himself in condition and control for that amount of time but needs to also realize that life having had a stroke, amputation or other possible complications from diabetes will also impact that life. You and I know it. Does he? Not talking to a doctor about any condition is really a male thing and I have to say that I am guilty of not asking either the right or the appropriate questions because I don't want the answers. The last time I went to a doctor I got diagnosed as diabetic, got sent for a sleep apnea study, got scheduled for a colonoscopy and had him touch me in all kinds of places… and I still have to pay the freaken copay! Seriously you may not be able to help anyone else but you can and should get help for yourself. You are the one suffering from the old grumpy, depressed, impotent man. Maybe he's given up? Then he, too, should see a counselor. There are so many reasons to live but to do so, it's got to take change. Things haven't gone well by doing nothing so it's time for a new change of heart and health and attitude. We are here for you and for him but HE has to be the one willing to make the changes and overcome the challenges. If I were you I would look into counseling for either or both of you or just for you because you deserve to be happy and healthy and sane before and after the kids go to college. Make sure to take a positive approach to him. Negative approaches will yield negative results. Make sure to start sentences with "I feel…" rather than things like "You always…" … Do you hear the difference? Even a guy can't argue with "I feel…"

MAYS 2010-07-28 17:17:08 -0500 Report

Sometimes reality is tough to deal with, and to accept.
As diabetics, dealing with reality, and the possibility of the complications associated with diabetes can be frightening, yet many do not want to see, hear or even know about these complications.

Being a diabetic is never something easy to deal with, but must be dealt with.
Managing one's diabetes is a self assigned duty, unfortunately the emotional effects sometimes extends beyond the diabetic to family members, loved ones and friends.

We are here for the both of you.


Mama Dee
Mama Dee 2010-07-28 16:53:51 -0500 Report

Happy day to you DOB,

I have been where you are & the fact that he is a grown man there is only a few things you can do for him concerning his health. 1st is pray for him (out loud) let him hear you go to our Father in concern of this situation, 2nd change the way all of you eat it will be good for the whole family (I did & feel much better because of it) don't tell him what you are doing just slowly change the meals & it's contents, 3rd ask God to give you peace about this & discernment on how & when to speak to your husband about this. Try reading Proverbs 10 (whole chapter) & James 3 (whole chapter) believe me if God could tame my tongue calm me down & direct my path He can & will be there for you & your family.

Now I need you to know that this will not work over night but it will work & you & the glory of God will reign victoriuos. Remember that God is not looking @ the situation you are in (He is there w/you). He is looking @ how you are reacting to the situation. He will never leave are forsake you just put Him first in everything you say & do, & want for He will give you the desire of your heart as long as the line up w/what He has planed for you. Jeremiah 29:12 For I know the plan I have for you, says the Lord plans for welfare & not for evil to give you a future & a hope. I will be standing on the wall for you & your husband & the whole family in the name of Jesus.

Working 4 Jesus, & Loving it.

Ralph1 2010-07-28 16:00:28 -0500 Report

Maybe have a good friensd talk to him or possibly a family member that he looks up too - am just thinking that if somebody else talks to him, maybe it'll sink in.

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