Each week we ask our panel of Type 1 teens from across the country to answer questions about their diabetes. Here are their answers to this week’s question.
Annelies (age 15)
The worst thing about diabetes is having to sitting out of important events in your life sometimes, due to blood sugars or feeling sick. Another bad thing is people constantly asking you about stuff or saying things about it.
The best thing is the community and meeting people you probably would’ve never known before.
Andrew (age 15)
The worst thing and the best thing about diabetes is the responsibility that comes with being a diabetic. The responsibility that comes with diabetes, taking your life into your own care every day, is a constant burden and is the worst, most stressful part of being a diabetic. But the responsibilities that come with having diabetes have also taught me many life lessons about maturity and safety which non-diabetics don’t have and that I have a high value towards.
Ashley B. (age 16)
The worst thing about diabetes is that it affects young children as well as older people. It’s hard to see five-year-olds who shy away from needles, or a 12-year-old who’s been recently diagnosed have to adjust to the new normal of having diabetes.
The best thing about having diabetes is probably knowing that you’re not alone. I’ve met so many people at the diabetes camp I go to, and I have bonded more with these people in three weeks out of a year than I have with people I see every day. I only have two years left at my summer camp, but I know that the friends I’ve made there will be with me far into my life.
Ashley C. (age 14)
The only thing not bad about diabetes is getting out of class and eating in class, oh and also meeting lifelong friends.
Cameron (age 17)
The worst thing about diabetes is the days when your blood sugar is all over the place. Especially because there’s nothing you can do to control it some days.
The best thing about diabetes is receiving certain accommodations at school such as taking the SAT in my guidance counselors office (she has a very comfy chair).
Claire (age 18)
The worst thing about diabetes, and I’m being completely honest, is the ignorance that follows it. The never ending joke around Halloween with all the kids saying, “I’m about to get diabetes!” Or the teens and young adults jokingly referring to a plate full of food as “diabetes on a plate”. That’s by far the worst part, because having to explain to nearly everyone I meet that those blanket statements about an auto immune disease can hurt people, gets truly tiring.
However, what slightly makes up for that is the amazing person I have become with diabetes in my life. I would never be the person I am if it hadn’t been for this challenge plaguing my whole life. And so I will forever be grateful for my lack of insulin in my pancreas.
Erin (age 17)
Worst thing? Factoring in how life affects your sugars and getting sick more often or developing a new disease.
Best? the support from family and friends and bringing awareness towards a cure for diabetes. 🙂
Ian (age 15)
The worst thing is knowing that I have to wait for insulin to kick in or for my B.S. to be in range before I eat. Also, the fact that I can no longer just graze whenever I feel like it, and that a cruise or the E.P.C.O.T. International Food and Wine festival will never be the same.
Some of the perks that I have found are that I am eating better/ paying more attention to what I eat, I have learned how to hide things, and I have a viable and legitimate reason to give if my peers ever try to get me to drink whilst at a party.
Jessica (age 20)
The worst thing about diabetes is the constant feeling of tiredness, whether physical or mental. I am either tired from lack of sleep, blood sugars being off, constantly being on the move and not having time to take care of myself properly; or, I am tired of having to deal with this lifestyle. Always checking, bolusing, never feeling 100%, doctor appointments every time I’m home from college, and the list goes on. After 17 years it gets tiring, exhausting if you will.
Nonetheless, T1D has its perks. The best thing about diabetes is the community. Everyone who has a connection to T1D is determined to find a cure, support individuals with the disease and their families, offer advice, and develop technology and make other resources to make life easier. I don’t think any other disease has a community as supportive and dedicated as we do!
Jordan (age 18)
The best thing about diabetes is being able to use it as an excuse for stuff when it’s not really applicable.
The worst thing is when you go low or high at a poor time.
Julia (age 15)
I think the worst part of having diabetes is how I feel during a low or a long period of highs. It’s a difficult feeling to explain but it’s hard on my body.
The best thing I think is that if I can live life with an incurable disease then I should be able to accomplish anything. The best part is having sort of a feeling of accomplishment when my blood sugar is perfect or something like that.
Laura (age 17)
The worst thing about it, is well, that it’s a deadly disease and I’m basically fighting for my life every day.
The best thing about diabetes is that I’ve learned so much about myself and my body, and am able to take care of myself better than I probably would without it.
Lexi (age 16)
The worst is when I forget to bolus, especially at school, and I run high and need to use the bathroom a lot and being really thirsty.
The good part about my diabetes is when people ask about it they learn about it every day. And in class I can eat food without the teacher getting after me!
Maggie (age 16)
The worst thing about diabetes is that you never get a break. You can’t just say, “Oh, I’m not diabetic anymore.”
Although the disease in general isn’t fun, it does have perks. The best part is meeting new people going to camps and conferences and just the support you receive from some many different people.
Nick (age 19)
The worst is high blood sugar. I absolutely hate the nasty way my body feels when my blood sugar rises.
The best is probably the excuse to always carry snacks.
Skylyn (age 16)
I would say that the worst thing about diabetes is probably wearing the sensor. I wear it so often and sometimes it doesn’t even work. To me, it’s more of an annoyance than anything.
The best thing about diabetes would be all the people I have met because of diabetes. I would have never met them if I wasn’t for diabetes.
Vanessa (age 16)
The worst thing about diabetes is, I guess, the whole disease itself. Whether or not you know how the next day is going to go. The most frustrating part is when you know you’re doing everything you’re supposed to do and trying to take care of it and it still ends up going wrong. I honestly don’t think there’s a best part of diabetes, but it definitely has its perks at times.
Haley (age 14)
The worst thing to me is knowing this disease is never going to go away.
The best thing is the pack of skittles I got today when I was low!
Maddy (age 14)
The worst thing about diabetes is having to go the extra step to feel “normal”. As teenagers with diabetes, we are constantly trying to fit in with others and feel included, and our diabetes can sometimes get in the way of that.
The best part of having diabetes, though, is meeting others with diabetes. Friends that understand diabetes can understand how you are feeling and can give tips and advice when there is an issue. Meeting others with diabetes can create friends for life and can create relationships where you can be “normal” because you are all dealing with the same thing.
McKenna (age 16)
The worst thing about diabetes is the friendships I’ve lost in the past due to low blood sugars.
The best would be being able to deal with it and control it during sports.
Christina (age 15)
The worst thing about diabetes is having a low completely stop you from whatever you’re doing. For example, as a cross country and track runner, I can sometimes not go on a run because my blood sugar is too low. This can upset me because I feel frustrated that I’m limited in that moment, and I’m feeling crappy.
The best thing about having diabetes is the relationships it allows you to form with others. Diabetes is a unique disease to live with, and having others who know what you are going through makes it so much sweeter.