I am 27 years old and have been married for 5 years this upcoming May. This past year I noticed that I was experiencing excessive weight loss (lost 50 pounds in 6 months), fatigue, excessive thirst, and frequent uriniation. I am in the health field, so I obviously knew something was wrong. I suspected it was type II diabetes (since I am 27...didn't know that type I struck that that age) and went to get it checked out. After the test results, I came to find out that my A1C was 14 (through the roof and absolutely horrifying!) and my fasting blood glucose level was in the 200's. I was devastated. I also had a huge fear of needles, so when they told me I was type I, I just about had a meltdown. Anyways, I'm over it and managing my levels very well with ocassional lows--turns out that my immune system attacked the beta cells on my pancreas and soon my pancreas will no longer make insulin. Ocassionally, my pancreas decides to fire out some insulin randomly and I get low, but I catch it and eat something and everything is fine. I am taking basal insulin (Levemir) and bolous insulin (Humalog) with the quick pen.
Going back to being married for 5 years...we were thinking about having children right before I got diagnosed this past October. Obviously this diagnosis has thrown a wrench in things. I know most of you were diagnosed at grade school age and you are used to things and know your bodies and how to manage things. I have no clue what to do, I am a newly diagnosed 27-year-old diabetic who wants to have children and I am scared to death that I might never be able to because I was diagnosed at my age of 27. I am probably overreacting, but this just seems so overwhelming. I was going to talk to my diabetic educator about this and see if I can look into the pump and a CGM. According to my glucose monitor, my average glucose levels are in the 90's, I know this isn't as reliable as a real A1C test, though. I almost wish I would have gotten diabetes when I was little so that I could have kids when I was ready to. Can anyone relate? Any advice?
"Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.:
Alright Kelly ,
Slow down and take a few deep breaths first. I know this has been quite a rough last year for you. Believe it or not getting type one at your age is actually something that happens on occasion. Your diabetes is not going to stop you from having kids right now. It is more likely that your fear of what might happen or the "what ifs" running through your head that are causing you the greatest concern. Believe or not even diabetics who have had it since they were a kid have the same fears come up in their relationships and major life choices.
What happens if ,,,,,, or Could this happen to my kids and so on and so on. Your not the first person to have these concerns. The fact that you are thinking about them is however a very good sign that you are human and trying to take care of yourself. You are still young both by means of age and relation to how long you have had type one. You still have many years ahead you and if you continue to take care of yourself, you should be alright. I am not going to make grand promises and say it will be easy. But i can promise you that if you work at it and stay determined and focused it will not only make you a better person but a stronger example as a parent as well. It is going to take some time to adjust and as you age things will change (You can talk to your diabetes educator about that). But right now diabetes is not going to stop you from having kids much less take care of a family.
In the end you will find a new kind of inward strength and also realize that this diesease does not make you any less of a human being, or a parent. You can talk with your Endo and your diabetic team about this and talk about it with your spouse. You have people in your life that will help you realize that this dis-ease in your life is not what will determine the rest of your life. Nor should it ever determine how you choose to live it. Your stronger then that. You just realize that and believe it. Diabetes can be rough but I believe you will realize people who have had diabetes as long as some of the kids and elders on this site are a pretty tough and resilient bunch of people. You are the same kind of person so long as you choose to be. Don't let this one thing be what keeps you from seeing your son or daughter, their births, adventures, struggles, graduations, weddings and their children. Your better then that. The real question here is what do you and your spouse want for your future? And what steps are you going to take to ensure those dreams come true Kelly?
^ Nailed it. ^
The bottom line is being diagnosed with type 1 won't stop you from doing ANYTHING you wanted to do. Women with type 1 have healthy babies all the time. Does it take more work than a healthy woman? Sure, but it's definitely doable.
My dad got diagnosed with type 1 at 35. You're not alone in adult diagnoses.
And you should be GRATEFUL that you got diagnosed at 27 instead of a young age like a lot of us. Be thankful that your body has been healthy all those years instead of having the stress of diabetes working on it for an extra 20+ years. A new diagnosis is hard to adapt to at any age, and it takes a lot of education and legwork at first, but in no time it will be all be second nature to you. Be grateful you're not a fumbling 3 year old trying to learn this stuff.
For now focus on getting a hang of the daily and getting your A1c at a level you and your endo are happy with...then start planning for a baby! :)
Yes I agree with Michael you are having the same concerns that anyone else with diabetes has even if they have had it for many years. I am 31 yrs old and have had diabetes for 22 years. I do not have children, but I plan on having children someday and yes I feel the same as you, but I know I can do it. People with diabetes have healthy babies all the time. It is just important you talk to you doctor and diabetes educator they will want to make sure before attempting to get pregnant glocuse levels are under control and will want to monitor more closely then usual while you are pregnant. Yes you do have to watch a few more things and monitor more so than someone who is not diabetic, but your healthcare professionals can help. They have done it before. Just so you know of course you want to keep blood glucose levels good all the time, but don't panic if you get a high or low every once in a while that is totally normal. You might actually have an easier time becuase you are newly diagnosed. Good luck!
I'm sure you have many initial concerns, but like everyone else mentioned, people with diabetes have children all the time.
I was 27 when I was diagnosed, and am 29 now, and my wife and I just had twin daughters born in December. My blood sugars have been up and down with all of the stress (They were also in the NICU/Special Care for 5 weeks, but came home last week and are doing well). I've been testing more often to make sure I'm in range and can stay healthy to take care of the kids without any issues.
I know the odds are somewhat remote, but I do have a lingering fear in the back of my head that they will get diabetes someday as well. I really will feel horrible if that happens. I also wonder, since they are identical, that if one did get it, would the other one have high odds of becoming diabetic as well?
Don't stress out too much about things. Stay positive and everything will work itself out.
First, welcome to Juvenation. I'm glad you found us. :)
You'll find a lot of great resources here, and all around the DOC (diabetes online community). It looks like you have already found the "Diabetes and Pregnancy" group here on Juvenation; that's a great starting point. I know that one of our members, Elizabeth, is currently pregnant, and was diagnosed recently as an adult (just last year, actually)- you two should talk! :) Here's her profile page: http://juvenation.org/members/lizzistardust/default.aspx and she has a blog, too.
Not to be a downer about things, but even those of us who have been at it "for a while" aren't masters of this either - there's always something new to learn or make adjustments for. Having a good healthcare team who is familiar and proficient with type 1 diabetes will be key for you to having a healthy pregnancy - ask your endo for a referral to a high-risk OB-GYN (hopefully someone they know has worked with type 1's previously), and a maternal-fetal specialist. They'll be your best buds as you go through this process of wanting to get pregnant (and being pregnant, once you're there!).
Please don't be afraid to reach out and ask questions. We've got some great people in the DOC, ready and eager to help whenever someone needs it. :)
Hi Kelly, sorry to welcome you to our T1 club, but we're here if you have any questions!
It sounds like having kids is your main concern which I think is very normal for women w/ T1 of our age. This diagnosis suddenly changed your life plans! (For me around 28, that biological clock suddenly hit like crazy, lol.) I'll be honest with you -- having kids when you have T1 is a lot of work. But, it's absolutely possible! I have an amazing son who will be 3 in April. (: I would check out the "diabetes and pregnancy" forum here on Juvenation if you want to talk to some of the pregnant ladies on here. Some of the scary info online re: diabetic pregnancies is from years ago when control and care wasn't as good. With hard work, almost all of us have healthy pregnancies and babies.
If I were you, I'd first spend some time adjusting to having D and see if your honeymoon ends. You're young per your profile, so you're okay to wait a bit, even though I know it's hard. But, an extra period of time spent getting adjusted will be worth it to have a smoother pregnancy! During that time, I think it's an excellent idea to look into going on a pump and CGM. Getting used to those before the pregnancy would be helpful, rather than switching during it.
Also, talk to your endo about your concerns. S/he can refer you to a consult with a high-risk pregnancy dr. (MFM or perinatologist) even if you're not pregnant yet. That can help you get your questions answered.
Let me know if there's anything else I can do to help you!
Sarah ~ T1 since age 4
Hi Kelly -
Like Rebecca, I am a long term diabetic who has the same fears as you do. I am 31 and have been diabetic for about 21 years. My fiance and I have talked about the possibility of kids in the future, and I have to admit that the idea of pregnancy as a type I diabetic scares me more I would like to admit. But, as everyone has said, it is quite possible for diabetic women to have happy, healthy children. There are many diabetic women on this site who have had children. This site is a great resource, and everyone on it is an inspiration about how diabetics can have normal lives.
You are all awesome, thank you for all of the encouragement and advice. I feel so much better. It's nice to know that I am not alone--there are others going through the same thing and there are so many people that can relate. I am checking into the pump already, I just have to meet with my educator and she said that they offer classes on it, so that should be a good thing to get going! Any good brands of pumps I should watch for??
I have joined the pregnancy group and this is also reasurring. It gives me hope that someday we will be able to have children. I'm sure it takes extra work, but I am a tough cookie >=) Bring it on!! hehe
All I can say is that I am so glad I stumbled upon this site, it's so nice to have people who can relate to this experience =) A Million Thank Yous! You guys ROCK.
Kelly, you have been given very good advice!
I will add that you can have a long, healthy life and have healthy children after you get good control. It happens every day. I was diagnosed in 1945, when I was 6. Now I am 71 and have been type 1 for 65 years. I am very healthy.
Ask all the questions you want, we are here to help!
Diagnosed in 1945, when I was 6. Pumping with the MM Revel. A1c = 6.1
See my profile for information about my book.
Welcome to Juvenation!!! Sorry about joining Club 1. I see you've been well taken care of. Good Luck on the baby. Oh, about that age when type 1 strikes, any age, me I got dx'ed at 52.
Lot's of really good help and people here.
Kelly- We're working on an information kit for Pregnancy and Diabetes (like the Adult T1 Toolkit in the Resources section). Stay tuned and keep taking good care of yourself.
This site is new to me. Very neat! I was diagnosed at age 2 with type 1. To all woman out there who are scared about becoming pregnant, let me tell you it was hard work but I have three healthy and beautiful children and am planning on adding to the bunch soon! There are always risks in anything in life but sometimes you have to jump in and make your dreams come true. Through out all three pregnancies I saw a Perinatoligist who did all the referring for me when it came to seeing an Endocrinologist, Eye Dr. and so on. Each pregnancy had a differerent twist to it but at the end all was fine. Say a prayer, have faith and trust in God and go for it! :)
If you have any questions feel free to post. I've been there done that.
Jesus! Richard you scarred me. I am new to this crazy web site, for the first time tonight. and saw your letter (or do we call it a blog? ). I am Richard van Druten (not Richard Vaughn (but similar name; I am 71, and I have had type I for about 55 years. I saw your blog and picture; we look similar, only I have LESS HAIR.
Are you trying to steal my identity? I live in CA. Life is pretty good so far. In my 20's I started expecting those horrible complications of Diabetes; Well so far haved had only small ones, no one has cut off my leg or put me on dialysis and I still have my sight. but who knows what the future will bring.
If you answer this, how will I find your answer? What is this about tags; I will put something in the select tags box:" Richard Vaughn and Richard van"
I don't know if I would say that it was better to get it as a child, you are lucky to have had all of those years without having to deal with it as a kid, and you haven't developed complications from having it 20+ years. Your body is probably in better shape to have children than someone who has had it damaged, making their pregnancies much more difficult.