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The problem is we grow up

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Here’s the problem – a child with diabetes at some point becomes an adult with diabetes. It seems like there is an increasingly vocal group of us in this situation. Yes, we still have Type 1 diabetes even though we are adults. There is no magic cure that comes with your ability to drink or rent a car, although those are nice perks of adulthood.

Side note: I probably feel this a little less than others, not having been diagnosed until I was 21.

The ‘adults’ who went to the CWD conference last week in Orlando each have a few stories about either being mistaken for children or having people wonder where our children are. It is a ‘children with diabetes’ event, so if we aren’t one, we must have one. Right?

Since it would take a bit of a drive for me to get to the event, I left my home Tuesday so I would not have to get up as early on Wednesday for the focus groups. On Wednesday between two focus group times, Kerri arrived. I walked her over to the registration desk so she could check in.

She got to the front of the line and I was standing a bit behind her. Kerri gave her (new) name and the lady began to retrieve her registration packet. As the volunteer was walking over to the folders she asks, “Are you checking in by yourself or with your daughter?” and looks directly at me.

There was a stunned silence as Kerri and I try to figure out what to say. I don’t remember exactly what the response was, but I think she managed to stammer out something.

Not to give too much away about our ages, but let’s just say – for Kerri to be my mother, she would have had to be a VERY precocious toddler.

Mother, daughter?


9 responses

  1. This is one reason a number of us are working to try and address “adults with type 1 diabetes” issues specifically. Such mistakes are certainly regular occurrences, and the issue becomes even more problematic in that many endos are “pediatric” and do not have adult patients, as if their pediatric patients never grow up. To make matters worse, many endos who treat adults with diabetes aren’t always up-to-date on type 1 related issues, as a majority of their patients are frequently type 2. Rest assured, however, our voices have been heard on this issue!

  2. If I were in Kerri’s’ shoes, I think I would have had a very difficult time not blasting the person or making some very ridiculous and outrageous comment to make the person cower in shame. While I am laughing at this, I think that someone really needed to clean those glasses or contacts or whatever gave them the vision that you two were mother and daughter.

    Funny story but also falls in the realm of one of those uneducated Diabetic comments

  3. I would have been an advanced two year old for sure!

    And while I agree that people need to understand that “children with diabetes” grow up to be “adults with diabetes,” it was a gentle mistake made by the lady at the counter. I can’t, for a second, think she was ignorant. I think she was, instead, in a grove of parents and kids checking in together.

    I think my response was “Whaa? My daughter …” Putting my hand against my collar bone, “No, I’m the kid. I mean the adult. I mean, I have diabetes.” Grin.

    Now Sara, make sure you eat all your vegetables. And get your hair out of your face. Don’t talk back to me, or I will tell your father. 😉

  4. Thanks for clarifying Kerri. The lady behind the counter is probably well acquainted with diabetes with a diabetic child of her own.

    One funny story that made me think of a more serious issue.

    Thanks Mom!

  5. That is too funny. A totally honest mistake because of all the other parents with kids (as you and Kerri pointed out) but still funny.

    I am not even sure you two look related!

  6. Haha!! That is GREAT!! I would have paid money to see the looks on your faces!!

  7. Still can’t believe that story. There were some serious age issues at the conference. I mean, I was older than all of you and the lady at registration asked me where my mother was!

    Beyond that, you make some excellent points about a lot of us that fall through the cracks. I certainly had my reservations about attending as adult – ALONE. I have to thank all of you, that made me feel like I belonged.I couldn’t have asked for a more embracing community. Next year our “older” group will have to be even bigger and better!!

  8. Some people are just bad with ages, I guess. Or, y’know, need glasses. 😉

    You both look like you’re about twelve to me, but I’m oooooooold.

  9. Pingback: 2008 Moments in Review « Moments of Wonderful

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