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March 23, 2001

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Question from Fulton, Missouri, USA:

I am 14 years old and was just diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Is this going to slow me down and really affect the rest of my life? Is it wrong for me to be scared?

Answer:

From: DTeam Staff

Anything new can be a bit frightening, I think. However, your diagnosis should not slow you down if you are an active teen. You have many new things to learn, and I hope you have a great team to support you. If you want to empower yourself and be stronger than your diabetes, you can do it.

Get proactive about learning and integrating diabetes into your life. Ask questions of professionals and refuse to let fear determine your path. You can use Children with Diabetes to get answers to some questions, too. It is often really helpful to find another person your age with diabetes to bounce things off of. Do you have a local Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation or American Diabetes Association chapter? Does your diabetes doctor know of someone?

I really do understand what it is like to have your world suddenly change. I also believe that you can master the change and move forward. Your life can be rich and full, diabetes or not!

CMB

[Editor’s comment: Log on to the teen Chat Rooms at this website. There are lots of people your age there to bounce things off.

SS]