Diabetes and Depression—The Double Edged Sword of Managing your Disease

March 26th, 2010 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

I am still not a medical provider.  If you think you or someone you love is clinically depressed or needs professional help, seek out that help immediately.  Do it now.

I think depression in people and in kids living with diabetes is more situational than chemical.  If there is a link between diabetes and depression, how can we avoid negative consequences of depression while we take care of our diabetes, or support someone living with the disease?

Diabetes and Depression—The Double Edged Sword of Managing your Disease

Diabetes is a double-edged sword: telling someone they have the power to keep their diabetes under control can often result in that person feeling like a failure when it doesn’t stay there.

One of the worst parts of living with diabetes, for me, is that I am always reflecting on what I did and second guessing my actions.  If I go high or low, I feel like there was something I could (and should) have done to prevent it.  I want the reason behind nearly every glucose reading my meter displays.

As you have probably read this week, I understand there are certainly a lot of factors outside of my control that affect my blood glucose levels.  For me, I still want to know what those factors are so that I can adjust what I do the next time.

I need to keep reminding myself that while it is important to understand what factors play into each glucose reading, I am only gathering data and not creating value judgments about myself.  Diabetes is a data-driven disease and when I can remove emotions from the mix, I can better manage my disease. 

The only real way to “fail” when it comes to living with type one diabetes is to ignore it or make it bigger than it is.  Once you put your disease in its proper place in your life, you are already succeeding.  You know that your management is sometimes beyond factors you can control, and after you can accept that and learn to manage the information in a way to keep you healthy and happy, you are already there. 

You rock.

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