TEEN TOPIC #52:  Your parents are usually your support system at home, along with childhood friends.  Are you nervous about setting up a support system of your own when you go away to college, or do you feel it will happen naturally as you meet people?

Lexi (age 16)
It would most likely happen as I meet people, I’m great with making friends and I love talking about my diabetes

Laura (age 17)
I feel like it will happen naturally; I never really had to set up a support system to begin with, and even if it doesn’t happen that way, there’s really nothing to fear. I can always go back to my old support system (even if they won’t be physically there) or I could just manage on my own.

Claire (age 17)
I’m not really nervous about that, as much as I am at the actual task of making new friends at college. Apart from my roommate, whom I’ve been talking to for about 4 months now, I won’t know anyone else in any of my classes. It’s a little nerve wracking, but I’m sure once I get down there it’ll be fine.

Andrew (age 15)
I am an extrovert and finding fun, supportive friends has never been a challenge for me. I view college as a chance to just branch out even more and meet more people that will be supportive of me. So I really feel comfortable finding people that will support me when I go to college.

Jessica (age 20)
Having been at college for 3 years, I have already developed a support system away from home. For me it came naturally. I am open about my diabetes and, not only do I enjoy educating others, but I feel it is important to mention in case of an emergency. I am extremely lucky that I have 2 great friends (and a few others) who look out and care for me whenever I need it. I have always been the person to have a tight, small group of friends. I like to be able to rely on a few good people than a bunch where things can get lost in translation. I am a believer that everything happens for a reason, and so, for me, I didn’t really think or look for friends to count on at college; it happened naturally – they found me just as much as I found them.

Ashley C. (age 14)
I feel it will happen naturally when I meet good friends but, I don’t expect them to support me all the time, only when I need it.

Erin (age 17)
I already have a support system other than family

Nick (age 19)
Knowing that I’m only living an hour and a half from home makes things easier. My parents and friends aren’t too far away, and I can always rely on them. But I also make sure those around me are the responsible sort, who will be able to know what to do if something does happen.

Ian (age 14)
I feel that it’ll happen naturally. I personally choose to keep my t1 to myself, and hate meeting people BECAUSE they’re t1. I prefer meeting people because we share passions and viewpoints.

Cameron (age 17)
I feel like it will probably come naturally as I meet people. Most of my friends I’ve had throughout high school have supported me so I don’t see why it would be any different at college.

Ashley B. (age 16)
I’m not too worried about setting up support networks when I move where I want to, because I’ll have even more family around me than I do now. As for the friends, I’ll meet them when I meet them, and educate them on basic diabetes care.

Mercedes (age 17)
I feel finding a support system will be a natural thing to come across. You never know that person might be a diabetic themselves.

Maggie (age 16)
Honestly I have the best support system here. I am a little nervous about going away to college but it does happen naturally. I am very good at making friends, and the first thing they know about me is I’m funny and a Type 1. All my friends now know how to check my blood sugar and give me insulin, so it will be hard leaving that. But I do know how to train and teach the new friends I meet so I think I’ll be just fine.

Annelies (age 15)
In my experience in high school so far, the new people I have met have either known someone with diabetes, or have adjusted to it. At school, it’s happened naturally and my friends have supported me and helped me. I’m hoping it’s the same once I get to college.

Vanessa (age 16)
I feel like it would happen naturally as I meet new people because no matter where I go I make new friends and keep them so I feel like it would be very easy to have new people come into my support system.

Skylyn (age 16)
I am not that worried about finding a support system away from home. I do think that it will happen naturally as I am meeting new people and becoming friends with them. Through my future jobs and things I do, I’m sure I will meet people who will support me with my diabetes care. Also I can call my parents whenever I need them for help.

Jordan (age 18)
I feel I will naturally meet people who will become my support system this fall at college, and that it isn’t something I should force out. I need to learn to do things on my own.  Trial by fire.

Julia (age 15)
I’m not really nervous about finding a new support system because my parents will still be there for me. And I think the new friends I make, if I educate them about diabetes they can help me through what my parents and childhood friends used to.

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