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Author Topic: Friend and Diabetes Updated P13, 18, 28, 31 & 36  (Read 142836 times)

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JustRhon

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Friend and Diabetes Updated P13, 18, 28, 31 & 36
« on: June 11, 2012, 12:04:03 AM »
My youngest son's best friend (L, nearly 13) has juvinelle diabetes. L was diagnosed a couple years ago and for the longest time he did great with watching his diet and taking his shots on time. Lately he has became very careless about it all.

L's diet consists of chocolate Cheerios's for breakfast, a pizza Lunchable and fries for lunch and 2 slices of cheese pizza with chips for dinner with chicken tenders as an alternate every now and then. He eats granola bars for snacks with dill pickles and string cheese as free foods. Not an ideal diet or anything I'd want my kids eating day after day but he has always been a picky eater so I assume his mom just worked with what she could to meet his needs. He spends a couple weekends a month here plus several evenings a week so I keep his stuff stocked and leave it at that.

As I said, lately he has gotten very careless about things and that includes getting into sweets and other snack food after I am in bed and pigging out. If his visits here are planned I try to make sure I don't have a bunch of stuff stocked that he shouldn't have but his visits have became very spur of the moment and more frequent in recent weeks (his parents are separated and the grandfather that had been keeping him while his mom works has began dating).

His mother and I have been the best of friends for years but his behavior is causing a lot of problems between us. When he goes home after pigging out and his blood sugar is sky high she blames me even though these episodes occur after I am in bed. He has also became nearly impossible to get out of bed in the morning (as in it can take hours to get him up to eat and take his morning meds), something that his mother complains about often but I still get blamed for his numbers being out of whack.

This has all became so stressful that I am ready to start refusing to keep him. I know that doing so would put his mom in a very bad place and probably destroy our friendship but it has became so much trouble plus I am terrified that he is going to end up having on a serious diabetic episode "on my watch" and I'll be in bed asleep without a clue until it's too late. I just don't know what else to do. I shouldn't have to lock all the food away from a child that is only months from 13 and that wouldn't be very practical anyway.

Does anyone have any advice or experience with this sort of situation? I would greatly appreciate any help.

*I'm new so I hope this is in the right place.
**I'm on my phone so please ignore any mistakes.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2012, 05:24:47 AM by JustRhon »

katycoo

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2012, 12:09:57 AM »
I think you need to have a heart to heart with your friend.

You need to tell her how much you are happy to watch her son but that you can't control what he does when you're in bed, and you can't control what's in the house when the visits are last minute. 

She needs to step up and take some responsibility in this too.

Also - the kid is 12.  What is being said/done to him??? Why is HE not being made responsible?  I think he needs a scaremongering visit to the doctor - failing to keep to his diet can have severe repercussions for his health.

JustRhon

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2012, 12:29:40 AM »
I think you need to have a heart to heart with your friend.

You need to tell her how much you are happy to watch her son but that you can't control what he does when you're in bed, and you can't control what's in the house when the visits are last minute. 

She needs to step up and take some responsibility in this too.

Also - the kid is 12.  What is being said/done to him??? Why is HE not being made responsible?  I think he needs a scaremongering visit to the doctor - failing to keep to his diet can have severe repercussions for his health.

I've tried to talk to her a few times but every time I bring it up she makes jokes and blows me off. To be honest, she has never been willing to discipline him or listen to any suggestion that maybe his behavior isn't appropriate.

I really do enjoy keeping L. My son is very happy to have his best friend around so often since his big brother is wrapped up in baseball and his girlfriend but I can't keep taking responsibility for a child that is so nonchalant about putting his life on the line and I can't possibly stay awake and keep my eyes on him all night, nor should I have to.

I've threatened L with not allowing him to come back if I can't trust him to behave once I am in bed or count on him to get up on time without a major struggle and he straightens up for a day or two then it is back to the bad behavior. I have found a diabetes support group for teens in our area that I would really like to get him involved with (I'd take responsibility for getting him there and back) but I don't know if it would help or how to bring the idea up with his mom.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2012, 12:31:51 AM by JustRhon »

FauxFoodist

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2012, 12:40:12 AM »
I think you need to have a heart to heart with your friend.

You need to tell her how much you are happy to watch her son but that you can't control what he does when you're in bed, and you can't control what's in the house when the visits are last minute. 

She needs to step up and take some responsibility in this too.

Pod.  It might be best that you refrain from having her son over until he gets his eating habits under control.  Someone I know lost his teen recently when the kid had a diabetic episode while at a friend's house.  While I understand the grief of the parents, their grief has caused them to lash out at the parent whose house it is and blame that parent for their teen having a diabetic episode that resulting in the kid's death (neither the teen nor the parents told the friend's parent that the kid is diabetic so that parent did not know how to handle it when the teen started having a seizure).

JustRhon

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2012, 12:53:46 AM »
I think you need to have a heart to heart with your friend.

You need to tell her how much you are happy to watch her son but that you can't control what he does when you're in bed, and you can't control what's in the house when the visits are last minute. 

She needs to step up and take some responsibility in this too.

Pod.  It might be best that you refrain from having her son over until he gets his eating habits under control.  Someone I know lost his teen recently when the kid had a diabetic episode while at a friend's house.  While I understand the grief of the parents, their grief has caused them to lash out at the parent whose house it is and blame that parent for their teen having a diabetic episode that resulting in the kid's death (neither the teen nor the parents told the friend's parent that the kid is diabetic so that parent did not know how to handle it when the teen started having a seizure).

This is my greatest fear (sorry can't bold on my phone but I'm sure you know what I mean). I make a point of keeping L's chosen food on hand and try to watch what I have stocked when I know he is coming but with him staying so often now and generally without any real notice I keep getting caught off guard. I try my best to keep an eye on him and I make sure that he eats on time and takes his shots as directed when I'm up but there is nothing I can do in the middle of the night when I'm sound asleep. L and my son have even been fighting lately because my son will wake me up and "tattle" if he sees L eating stuff he shouldn't.

I know if something happened to him his mom would never forgive me or stop blaming me even if it did happen when I was in bed and had no control. I'd never be able to live with it either which is why I'm ready to stop keeping him altogether.

EMuir

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2012, 12:56:24 AM »
I think you can help him by making it clear to him that he doesn't have to sneak stuff, but that he has to inject insulin to counter what he eats.  The thrill of sneaking may go out of it then.  I'd also tell him that unless he keeps his BG under control, his mother will not allow him to visit, because she doesn't want him to get sick!

I feel for you, my friend's daughter is diabetic and has the same attitude.  She feels OK now, so who cares what her BG is? Arrrgh.

katycoo

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2012, 01:07:41 AM »
I think you can help him by making it clear to him that he doesn't have to sneak stuff, but that he has to inject insulin to counter what he eats. 

I would NOT be encouraging this at all. This sends the message that the diet isn't important if you've got the drugs which simply isn't true.

HonorH

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2012, 01:10:15 AM »
Simply put, you have to get your friend to take you seriously. Tell her, if she makes jokes or tries to blow you off, "Listen to me. I would feel so horrible if something were to happen to your son while he was at my house. I need to prepare for his visits. That means we can't have any more spontaneous sleepovers until he gets a handle on this."

Then you have to make it stick. No matter how she whines, no matter how he whines, no matter how your son whines, no more spontaneous sleepovers. If she doesn't start taking this seriously, she'll lose her son. But that's not your responsibility.
William wondered why he always disliked people who said "no offense meant." Maybe it was because they found it easier to say "no offense meant" than actually to refrain from giving offense.

--Terry Pratchett, The Truth

JustRhon

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2012, 01:32:26 AM »
Simply put, you have to get your friend to take you seriously. Tell her, if she makes jokes or tries to blow you off, "Listen to me. I would feel so horrible if something were to happen to your son while he was at my house. I need to prepare for his visits. That means we can't have any more spontaneous sleepovers until he gets a handle on this."

Then you have to make it stick. No matter how she whines, no matter how he whines, no matter how your son whines, no more spontaneous sleepovers. If she doesn't start taking this seriously, she'll lose her son. But that's not your responsibility.

I'd give anything if she would stop blowing me off and take me seriously. If I do as I am tempted and refuse to keep him until things change she will end up losing her job because I am the only full time sitter she has for him and she isn't comfortable leaving him home alone (for the very reasons I'm not comfortable keeping him).

It's very easy to say I'm not responsible but if something were to happen to him most people (myself included) would likely blame me. I just don't know what I'm supposed to do with a child that is clearly old enough to take responsibility for his own health but absolutely refuses to do so. I can't force him to make healthy decisions nor can I keep my eyes on him around the clock when he is in my care or lock away every morsel that he shouldn't eat.

I'm just at a loss. Without his mother putting her foot down and making him alone take responsibility for his bad choices there isn't much I can do. I hate to put her in a position where she may lose a job she desperately needs but I don't see another option if she isn't willing to address the problems I am having with L.

cicero

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2012, 02:12:26 AM »
as a daugther and niece of diabetics (My mother and her brother died from complications of diabetes) and an aunt to a diabetic who is now 15 (diagnosed around age 8) - I say that you have two choices here - either never let this kid come over because you can't be responsible for him or you need to just step in. *someone* needs to be the adult here - this isn't a situation of a teen talking back, or making inappropriate wardrobe chioices - this is a health and possibly life-n-death situation.

I would sit down with L and explain to him that it's his life and his body but since he is still  a minor, the grown ups in his life are going to have to be responsible. tell him that you understand that it's difficult for him (and bring an example of something in *your* life that is difficult but youdo it anyway), but that even if he doesn't understand it - he still has to follow a certain lifestyle. and tell him that there is this group for teens and that it might be a good place for him to go "and why don't we just go one time and see what it's like". and then  lay out the house rules (no sneaking food, no eating after 9 pm). and let him undertand that the next time he breaks the rules he will be sent home - even if it's in the middle of the night. (and yes, you may have to drive him home in the middle of the night but hopefully that won't happen more than once or twice). and that he may be angry at your son for "telling" but he should understand that your son is his true friend, because he really cares about his life.

sometimes parents are immature and kids need to find a way to grow up on their own.

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JustRhon

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2012, 02:32:28 AM »
as a daugther and niece of diabetics (My mother and her brother died from complications of diabetes) and an aunt to a diabetic who is now 15 (diagnosed around age 8) - I say that you have two choices here - either never let this kid come over because you can't be responsible for him or you need to just step in. *someone* needs to be the adult here - this isn't a situation of a teen talking back, or making inappropriate wardrobe chioices - this is a health and possibly life-n-death situation.

I would sit down with L and explain to him that it's his life and his body but since he is still  a minor, the grown ups in his life are going to have to be responsible. tell him that you understand that it's difficult for him (and bring an example of something in *your* life that is difficult but youdo it anyway), but that even if he doesn't understand it - he still has to follow a certain lifestyle. and tell him that there is this group for teens and that it might be a good place for him to go "and why don't we just go one time and see what it's like". and then  lay out the house rules (no sneaking food, no eating after 9 pm). and let him undertand that the next time he breaks the rules he will be sent home - even if it's in the middle of the night. (and yes, you may have to drive him home in the middle of the night but hopefully that won't happen more than once or twice). and that he may be angry at your son for "telling" but he should understand that your son is his true friend, because he really cares about his life.

sometimes parents are immature and kids need to find a way to grow up on their own.

I really like this approach. I think it will be easier to get L to make changes on his own than to get his mom to force him to do it. I love him dearly, he has been a part of our family since he was 4, and only want the best for him. I'm just so hesitant to "discipline" someone else's child even if that child is frequently left in my care. I think I'll ask him about attending one of the meetings though, maybe my son could go with him, and then talk to him about the house rules.

I feel really bad for him because 1) I know he's having a rough time with a few things related to his parents seperation and 2) it has to suck being "different" than all your friends. Being a teen is hard enough without having to eat different and take shots that none of your friends have to take. Feeling sorry for him and understanding why he may be acting out can't outweigh my concern for his health and safety though.

ETA: I'm really sorry about your mom and uncle. My mom's bio mom (she was adopted) died from the same thing.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2012, 02:35:07 AM by JustRhon »

cicero

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2012, 03:03:11 AM »
as a daugther and niece of diabetics (My mother and her brother died from complications of diabetes) and an aunt to a diabetic who is now 15 (diagnosed around age 8) - I say that you have two choices here - either never let this kid come over because you can't be responsible for him or you need to just step in. *someone* needs to be the adult here - this isn't a situation of a teen talking back, or making inappropriate wardrobe chioices - this is a health and possibly life-n-death situation.

I would sit down with L and explain to him that it's his life and his body but since he is still  a minor, the grown ups in his life are going to have to be responsible. tell him that you understand that it's difficult for him (and bring an example of something in *your* life that is difficult but youdo it anyway), but that even if he doesn't understand it - he still has to follow a certain lifestyle. and tell him that there is this group for teens and that it might be a good place for him to go "and why don't we just go one time and see what it's like". and then  lay out the house rules (no sneaking food, no eating after 9 pm). and let him undertand that the next time he breaks the rules he will be sent home - even if it's in the middle of the night. (and yes, you may have to drive him home in the middle of the night but hopefully that won't happen more than once or twice). and that he may be angry at your son for "telling" but he should understand that your son is his true friend, because he really cares about his life.

sometimes parents are immature and kids need to find a way to grow up on their own.

I really like this approach. I think it will be easier to get L to make changes on his own than to get his mom to force him to do it. I love him dearly, he has been a part of our family since he was 4, and only want the best for him. I'm just so hesitant to "discipline" someone else's child even if that child is frequently left in my care. I think I'll ask him about attending one of the meetings though, maybe my son could go with him, and then talk to him about the house rules.

I feel really bad for him because 1) I know he's having a rough time with a few things related to his parents seperation and 2) it has to suck being "different" than all your friends. Being a teen is hard enough without having to eat different and take shots that none of your friends have to take. Feeling sorry for him and understanding why he may be acting out can't outweigh my concern for his health and safety though.

ETA: I'm really sorry about your mom and uncle. My mom's bio mom (she was adopted) died from the same thing.
first - i'm of the 'it takes a village' approach. and again - weird wardrobe choices? who cares. annoying music? use headphones. messy room? they'll learn. but health issues and safety are a whole other ball game.

second - you aren't a stranger here. you aren't a parent who is sticking their nose in where they shouldn't. you are the baby sitter (well, not "baby" sitter, but carer) - and as such, yes you should discipline when necessary. if they are in your car and he refuses to buckle up, won't you make him (or make him walk)? i would hope so! this is the same. and in a way - it may even be easier (in the long run) because you can (and should) make this *his* responsibility.


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Oh Joy

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2012, 05:59:05 AM »
I would leave health 100% out of this issue. You have a house rule...no nighttime snacks without permission.  He can obey and be welcome as a guest, or choose to not stay overnight anymore. How do you think that would be received?

NyaChan

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2012, 06:27:16 AM »
I would leave health 100% out of this issue. You have a house rule...no nighttime snacks without permission.  He can obey and be welcome as a guest, or choose to not stay overnight anymore. How do you think that would be received?

I'm with Oh Joy - while frequent visitors, close visitors, or hungry visitors would be welcome to grab whatever food they want from my kitchen, as a kid I would've been really surprised if a friend who was visiting went into my parent's pantry and grabbed food my parents had asked us not to eat.  Actually, I probably would have told them myself that we weren't allowed to eat that.  Don't beat around the bush - keep the foods that the boys are allowed to have at night sans permission in a clearly accessible place and say that this shelf/container/countertop is the only place they are allowed to grab food from.  If it is a rule, breaking it has clear consequences. 

Think of if your kids were a little older (not even that much really) and you had alcohol in the house.  If they waited until you slept and drank it, there would be consequences right? 

If you want your friend to take you seriously, point out the fact that she needs you to keep him - you are doing her a big favor which she is then chastising you for when she is unable to do her job with her son.  "Friend, I am serious.  I know you depend on me to a certain extent to watch Kid, but I am not going to be able to do that anymore if changes aren't made."

chicajojobe

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Re: Friend and Diabetes
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2012, 06:36:39 AM »
I think refusing to keep him his absolutely the right course of action.

Tell you friend, with total honestly what is happening. Tell her that you are upset by it as well and it worries you that he could make himself very sick sneaking food and you wouldn't know since you're asleep so until they sort this out you don't feel comfortable taking him.
Whether she chooses to believe that he's doing it himself while you're asleep is her concern.

Fear that he'll have a serious episode is a good one to have! Type 1 diabetes is very serious. Even the problems with getting him up in the morning could be a symptom of more than just him being tired from getting up late at night. If he's binging on high sugar foods, not to alarm you, but the worst possible scenario is he goes into a coma or dies.


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