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November 2, 2000

Behavior

Question from Virginia, USA:

My 18 year old daughter was diagnosed at age 13 and has been rebelling against diabetes for almost a year now. At one point, I discovered she had not taken her insulin for almost three months. I think she needs professional counseling. I am at my wits end! How and where can I find her the help she needs?

Answer:

It certainly sounds as if your daughter is burned-out from diabetes care. William H. Polonsky, PhD just wrote a book, Diabetes Burnout: What To Do When You Can’t Take it Anymore, that may be very helpful to you and your daughter. However, the most important thing you can do for her right now is to get her into counseling with a mental health professional who is familiar with the burdens of living with diabetes. Your daughter’s diabetes team would be an excellent resource for a referral, as would your local chapter of the American Diabetes Association or the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.

JWB