Keeping the Peace
Come up with a contract: outline ahead of time when you can ask about blood sugars/how often, who orders supplies, etc. The contract does not have to be a set in stone contract, but outlining these things ahead of time can help to keep your relationship from becoming strained, especially if you do not talk on the phone very often, having it always be about blood sugars can get frustrating for both of you.
- Not allowed to talk about blood sugars on the phone but will email uploaded charts or only allowed to ask once a day.
- What to do on sick days: how often they have to call you or their medical team.
- If there is a problem with blood sugars (unless your child wants to talk to you about it) agree that they talk with their nurse educator, but don’t necessarily have to explain everything to you.
Offer to be in charge of ordering your child’s supplies – this can take the burden off of your child and it will allow you to stay involved. Label the last box of supplies so your child can let you know they are on the last box of supplies and it is time to re-order.
Pack a sick day kit supplied with things such as a thermometer, ginger ale/coke, saltines, glucose tabs, ketone supplies, etc. This will give you the piece of mind that they will be taken care of when they are sick and you can’t be there.
Get involved in a parent support group – many are offered through your local JDRF chapter.
Provide extra money outside of the school meal plan for your child to spend on food from a grocery store (you can simply send Gift Certificates to the local supermarket as well)- often dining commons fail to provide appropriate food choices for diabetics (the type of meal plan will effect this as well- “all you can eat” plans are especially difficult).
Try to have positive interactions with your child about diabetes management. Don’t be proud of blood sugar levels, be proud of the number of times they are checking. The more checks, the more data you have to deal with the highs and lows of college life.