Angry at Diabetes: Paying for my Bad Attitude.

By Anonymous Latest Reply 2011-01-09 11:53:20 -0600
Started 2011-01-08 05:13:42 -0600

Hi All. I just saw my doctor yesterday for my routine lab test results. Not too good and for the most part, I did it to myself with my apathy toward having diabetes. My A1C was a little over 7. Cholesterol still high too. I complained about the incessant itching I have everywhere which I now know to be an indicator of glucose levels out of control. The most upsetting thing is that the patch of rash I developed on my forearm about a week and a half ago, is, according to my doctor, a fungal infection. Similar to the itchy rash I have been dealing with from time to time under one breast, also due to high glucose. (Sorry for the TMI!) Doctor prescribed Loratadine (antihistamine) and instead of the Nystop powder I was using for the breast issue, he gave me Triamcinolone Acetonide cream for both rash areas. My friend in the medical field told me to research cellulitis in diabetics. I did so and I didn't see any photos that resembled the rash on my arm but I will ask doctor when I return Jan. 27th. I am quite upset about whatever is on my arm.

I had a bad patch where I would forget to take my insulin and pills or else I was tired of having to deal with it and would tell myself, "I'll start tomorrow." For almost a month give or take a few days, I acted like I didn't have diabetes; did not take proper care of myself and now I'm reaping the results of my rebellion. I'm now angry at myself as well as this disease I have and I'm kicking myself for causing more harm to my body. I don't count carbs, having seen a dietician who explained to me how it should be done and leaving me completely boggled about the process. I even have books that teach carb counting and I find it to be confusing and a pain in the rear. I know to watch out for breads, especially white and that corn is a sugar bomb and I rarely eat sweets but that aside, I still eat pretty much as I always have. After seeing doctor this time, I knew I had to quit this self destructive behavior before I end up blind or on dialysis or missing a leg, etc. He keeps increasing my insulin at almost every visit. 5 more units now, which means 45 units of Lantus both morning and night, plus Metformin twice and Glyburide.
This apathy problem I have has been a recurring thing with me.I start out with proper intentions and then I slack way off. Probably the worst part is that my 72 year old dad was diagnosed as type 2 last year when in hospital after a heart attack. I do our cooking and while I refuse to cook red meat at home, he's sick of poultry, hates fish and still eats pork. He also occasionally will have a cheeseburger at Burger King and I say little about it because if I rag on him, it just aggravates him. I have to learn to cook properly for not only a us diabetics but also for his heart health. I don't exercise at all and I am setting a bad example for my dad which stresses me more.

I have two reasons for this rant. First, to say to anyone out there with an attitude like mine, don't let yourself get this way! Don't be an idiot like me and think that because you can't "see" diabetes that you can get away with ignoring yours. If it doesn't outright kill you, neglecting it will cause you serious and dangerous health problems that you won't be able to reverse.
Second, I am asking for advice. Can a diabetic eat properly without having to tally up every carb they eat? If not, is there an easy to understand way of doing it?
And how can I get out of this rut and get my caboose in gear?? I don't want to die or be so sick I wish I was dead but damn, sometimes I am up to my gills in all the lecturing diabetics get! I don't need constant reminders to inspect my feet every day and things like that and I get tired of food monitors! It's like once you become diabetic, all the world is Wilford Brimley telling you what and how to do! Another thing that frustrates me is the conflicting information from doctors who don't agree on how to treat diabetes. I worry about going with the wrong method. One famous doctor says going on insulin is the worst thing a diabetic can do while another famous one calls that doctor a quack. You probably know who I'm talking about. Actually, I'll make that a separate topic in a bit, and see what you guys think about treatments. I can't be the only confused and and frustrated diabetic here. :) Thank you so much for hearing me out!

10 replies

PetiePal 2011-01-09 11:53:20 -0600 Report

You know for some people it's easiest to keep your diabetes to yourself. This is what I did early on last summer. My immediate family knew and my gf. I told my best friend a few weeks later but largely kept it quiet from anyone else for about 3-4 months until *I* had a handle on it. I read up ridiculously, took classes and absorbed as much info as I possibly could. I didn't want people telling me all the things they "thought" they knew about diabetes and like snatching something out of my hands I "wasn't supposed to eat."

I never knew until I was diagnosed how many people had so many different misconceptions and how INVOLVED they want to be in your medical care and expertise lol. And it IS easy to feel overwhelmed by the deluge of information thrown at you. It seems like Dr. Oz is on every week touting some new statistic that isn't quite 100% accurate or misleading etc. There are literally thousands of books out there to read…and all say either the same thing but slightly different or offer a RADICALLY different view on treatment/causes etc.

Early on I was worried that I would get complacent at EXACTLY now…almost 6 months after diagnosis. I figured I would have my diet and sugars under control but I didn't expect my A1c to be as low as it just came back. (11.3 last June, 11.1 last August, 6.1 a week ago) I almost kind of dreaded it coming back low (although it really was the last thing I thought, I expected fully to come back in the 8s or 9s since I have not really been exercising a ton yet) because I knew that complacency can set in and I'd be more apt to order out for pizza etc. I was a little weak around Halloween and I would admit I might have 2 or 3 funsize candy bars…but I kept it in moderation and tried to keep the fear that if I DID ignore it I would get complications. I joined an IRC chat room called Diabetic-Talk that I found way back last summer with a GREAT group of people. Some are in very advanced stages of Diabetes…lost limbs, kidney/pancreas failure, retinopathy, neuropathy etc. They were very supportive and listened to my rambles sometimes when I really just needed SOMEONE to talk to who wasn't judgmental or had any prior assumptions and WERE diabetics themselves.

Still now it's a conscious effort EVERY day to make sure I'm trying my best to eat things that won't drop my sugar too low before the next meal, to actually eat ENOUGH carbs and not under consume bc of a fear of too much, or deny myself everything and go into super strict "starvation mode!"

I will admit there have been some nights where I WILL order out for a pizza and have 4-5 slices…not good I know and the low A1c kind of (negative!) but positively reinforces that behavior. I need to work better on having a more steady middle for my sugars than spiking and dropping bc that's only stressing my beta cells.

What I'm getting at here is that diabetes is different for everyone, and no one knows the challenge it poses to you better than *yourself.* You need to figure out what scares you a little but or in a more positive outlook what MOTIVATES you to get healthy and stay healthy. Scared of dying? Ok! Don't want to make your loved ones or s/o suffer bc you brought complications on yourself that are totally avoidable? Ok! Doing it JUST for you? Great. Find your motivation or your deterrent and keep it in mind constantly.

For me it's a combination…My brother is 41 and I don't want him to become a runs in our family so hopefully he'll see my example and make positive changes. I want my children one day (don't have any yet ;P) to have an active father who isn't sick and can go out and play catch and do all the things they deserve out of childhood. My father gave me a great childhood but when he was diagnosed when I was about 8/9 things got more difficult for him to be a part of. That and yeah I'm scared (@#*#@less of the complications… Find yours and stick to it.

Again diabetes is a different disease for everyone with some similarities across the board. You need to find what works for YOU best and sometimes find the strength to ignore the "general consensus" because it may not be 100% right for you. YOU are in control of treating your disease so unfortunately yes you do have to take major charge of it…but this is a great thing in itself! You can pick your treatment team and be an active part of it all instead of just being told what to do and doing it.

Hang in there and make the change today!

glee9349 2011-01-09 11:40:35 -0600 Report

A lot of having and managing diabities is mental and you need to have it in your head that you need to do these things and eventually it just comes a part of your life. Don't get to discouraged about it just make yourself concious of what you eat and do and your numbers will be better next time. Good luck!

GabbyPA 2011-01-09 00:11:55 -0600 Report

Here are some things that help me when I get to the place you are. I think most of us get there from time to time. I know I sure do.

Carb counting, is a must. Sad but true. Here is one of my favorite videos on it that may help you out.

Insulin is NOT failure. It is the best treatment with the least side effects. Use it wisely to gain better control.

Motivation can be tough. So join me in my "diabetes job jar" discussion and make one for yourself.

Here is a great discussion on cookbooks. Maybe one of those might inspire you to be able to cook for the whole family. I know it's tough when you have so many restrictions and a picky eater, but work it in gradually and you might be surprised. Try not to make it a big deal...a little mind games can go a long way.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2011-01-08 15:48:48 -0600 Report


I certainly appreciated the honesty, and the concern for others, that was so apparent in your post. From my experience in counseling individuals facing chronic conditions, what you have experienced is not uncommon. Your friends here on Diabetic Connect have jumped in to offer support based on their own experiences.

I posted a discussion that might have some useful ideas about how to get your self-care routine on track:

What I really wanted to emphasize in my post is that it's really important to be compassionate toward yourself. Turn off those voices of criticism inside of your head that are screaming at you about what you did or didn't, won't or can't, do. When you keep beating up on yourself, you are also telling yourself that you deserve more punishment. That's not a great way to get a better routine on track.

Instead, I would encourage you to take a look at what's getting in the way of your diabetic self-care. It might be helpful to work with your healthcare team on getting an optimal plan in place, one that is based on you, and not trying to impose a cookie-cutter plan on yourself.

I would also encourage you to look forward, not backward. We all wish we had made some different choices in the past, in some aspect of our lives. You're not an idiot! You're a human being who is challenged by a chronic condiiton, who knows that it is important to make posiitive changes and is open to learning new habits and getting a better plan in place. That's a lot!

I'm glad you are reaching out to the incredibly supportive people of Diabetic Connect. Let us know how we can help!

Pynetree 2011-01-08 11:19:51 -0600 Report

Read Jeffrey's reply…the voice of reason. It is easy to get in a rut..we are creatures of habit. Problem is the lazy way of doing things becomes the norm. You have to push, on the healthy path , to get that to be the norm…the habit. Eventually, if you journal it, you'll know what spikes your BG, and soon it'll be instinctive. Good luck. You are bright…you can do this…it's work…just take back control.

Harlen 2011-01-08 11:11:39 -0600 Report

Yep counting carbs is a pain but its the only way I know how to keep my BS were it needs to be .Taking my meds will save my life so it can not be put off till tomarow ???You are the only you there is and if you dont take care of you then who will ?????
Love your self like you wish to be loved
Best wishes

jeffrey9127 2011-01-08 08:47:20 -0600 Report

I am sure you have heard the old saying,"Today is the first day of the rest of your life." Stop being so hard on your self. Decide today where you want to be, and go for it. Start recording your BS readings, what your eating, and if you have done any exercise on that day. After a while You will know what you can eat without spiking your blood sugar. You will also have a record to show your DR. what is going on with your personal treatment for your Dabetes. Post when you can so we know how your doing. Good luck, and God Bless.

teststrips 2011-01-08 07:44:33 -0600 Report

Counting carbs is a pain but after a while it becomes second nature. I was doing the Atkins diet to lose weight and they have a small book with all the foods and their carb counts. It cost a few bucks.

kdroberts 2011-01-08 07:34:55 -0600 Report

I wouldn't worry about the past, you can't do anything about it now and beating yourself up won't help. You have to find something that works for you long term. you don't have to do everything all at once either, start small and then pretty quickly you will have major results. It sounds like you understand the basics of what you have to do so start by taking your meds as prescribed and getting in a glucose testing routine for a week or so. after that, start paying closer attention to food and using your glucose testing results. throw in some exercise and pretty soon you'll be noticing a real difference.

If you are stuck for a starting point, try doing the 21 challenge that's in the left menu of this site. It's basically lots of little things that add up to big results and some helpful recipes and logs.

re1ndeer 2011-01-08 06:53:36 -0600 Report

First off, stop beating your self up. We all occasionally slip. Take each day as it comes.

For the rash on your arm, go see a dermatologist (skin doctor) he/she will determine what you have.

Nystop powder is normally used primarily for yeast infections, and we diabetics quite often get these too.

I too, hate to count carbs, but take your time and eventually you will get the hang of it.
There is no easy way to count carbs, and I agree it is a pain in the rear.

Insulin, I thought I never would be on this drug.,But almost 5 years later, I am on this drug. I take Levemir (like Lantus) twice a day..20 units, Plus I take a fast acting Insulin Humalog at each meal 18 units.

This plus poking your finger ,is as another pain in the rear. But, to keep your self healthy we all must do these things.

As for your father, make something special, here in the recipe section has many really good recipes. Try one. And occasionally I'm sure a cheeseburger from Burger king won't hurt.

Good luck to you on your Journey. I hope you get the answers your looking for.

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