I have been diagnosed with diabetes, how do I explain it to my family?

Diabetes is no doubt a serious and disturbing condition for not only the one who has this condition but also for the family members of the patient. It affects the life of the whole family and affects the routine of all the members of the family, and not to forget the increment in the responsibilities of everyone. The sufferer of the condition finds it very difficult to live with this drastic and time and money-consuming condition. In addition, he/she goes through a series of behavioral changes before having a stable mind about that.

Diabetes is all about change, and change is always scary. And one comes to know about this change suddenly. It makes it even scarier. The patient has to change his/her lifestyle in the context of food habits, physical activity, and medicine intake. The family members have to cooperate with the patient in all aspects and have to play their supporting role. And the scariest thing about diabetes is that it warrants that your countdown is near to end. This is depressing not only for the patient but also for the family members. It’s like everything was normal and good, and suddenly, it happens to the family and the patient who nothing is good about the world.

How to approach the family with this bad news?

Here is the problem. You noticed that you have been having an increased thirst for a few weeks and also your appetite has increased. You cannot tolerate hunger and also urine output is high. Not only that, but you go to your doctor and he/she runs a few tests of your blood and urine and makes a diagnosis of diabetes. You get worried about your life and start feeling miserable. In addition to that, it is on you to tell your family about the condition. It kind of adds up the tension. Following are some tips to make it an unpleasant task for you. Follow them, and it will be easier for you to deal with this very difficult task.

Know about your illness thoroughly

You might be having a lot of questions about your condition, but everyone does. You surely might want to know the depth of the condition, its response to the treatment, curability, side effects of the treatment, progression, and outcome of the disease, and, most importantly, the effects of the disease on different organs. Ask all of these questions to your healthcare provider. He/she will tell you in detail about these questions and may also tell about the side effects on mental health in addition.

Gather yourself and make up a mind

The details about your disease may increase your morals as you come to know that it can be dealt with well with determination and following the instructions of your doctor strictly. It kind of encourages you to break the news to your family. Take a reasonable time to prepare yourself and choose proper and light and hopeful words before you speak to your family. Sometimes it’s not the circumstances that are very much disturbing, but the method of their description. Words and sentences matter a lot in all aspects of our life.

Choose a decent time and place

It can be a family gathering on a nice warm evening on Sunday with many good things to talk about. Usually, all the members of the family are present on these occasions. Or it can be at teatime or after dinner in the dining room. The main idea is to choose a spot in time when it is easier to tell all the members at once and there is plenty of time to discuss the issue at hand. Make a moment and just go with it.

React wisely to the reactions

Even after taking so many precautions, there can be some members of the family who become too upset with the news of your illness. Being the elder in the family, it’s your responsibility to remain calm and deal with these reactions wisely. It’s your job to make it look like just another problem of life and show it to be the one that can be dealt with well with a responsible attitude. You need to be stronger than everyone in the family because your high morals will reflect in others.

Tell the most important details

Start with the sentence, “I’ve got a condition that can be managed with the right attitude and responsible behavior, though it’s not completely curable.”

Diabetes infographic with prevention tips, symptoms, treatment, and complications.

Your family needs to know about the outcome, curability, side effects, and the treatment options available for this disease. Brief them about these questions in simple words as you were briefed by your doctor. Tell them about your responsible attitude about this disease and your determination to cope with it willfully. Know that your determination is a very helpful tool in this uphill task. Tell them the details about the plan of treatment. The main purpose of this difficult ever talk of the family is to raise the morals of the family and show that this condition can be dealt with well if you stay together and remain helpful throughout the illness.

Answer the questions carefully

Family members may start bombarding questions to you suddenly. You need to answer them wisely and, most importantly, calmly. Address every question from every member, irrespective of the status of the member in the family. Children are very touchy and curious about such conditions. You have to respect the sentiments of everyone.

The bottom line of the whole discussion is that it is very hard to break horrible news such as this to your family and yet, it can be done by simply following a proper strategy full of information, confidence, compassion, and determination. The role of the family members in this condition should be helpful.


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