Can you remember the day you were diagnosed with diabetes? How did it feel? What were the emotions, thoughts and reactions that you had?
 
The experience of being diagnosed with diabetes has been likened to the experience of grief. In the same way as we may grieve for a lost loved one, the diagnosis of diabetes can trigger a grieving for our lost health.

It is common to live life as if we are invincible, rarely considering our health or mortality. However this dramatically changes when we are diagnosed with a chronic health problem; we are suddenly acutely aware that life is not without its limits. We now have to rely on regular medication, make frequent visits to a medical setting and a team of doctors and nurses to keep us well.

The stages of grief were described by the psychologist Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and are outlined below – do you recognise any of them in your feelings towards diabetes?

1. Denial – “This can’t be happening”

2. Anger – “Why me?”, “It’s not fair”, “How can this be happening to me?”, “Who is to blame?”

3. Bargaining – “Just let me see…” “I’d do anything to turn back time…”

4. Depression – “I’m so sad”, “What’s the point?”, “I miss my old life”

5. Acceptance – “It’s going to be ok”, “I can take control and manage this”

Not everyone with diabetes will necessarily experience all of these emotions, or in this particular order. In fact many people oscillate back and forth between a number of these stages for many years, getting stuck at denial, or between anger, bargaining and depression and perhaps small acceptances along the way.

To find out more about how to manage the impact of diabetes, go to my homepage (www.PositiveDiabetes.com) and download your FREE copy of ‘Top 10 Tips for Living a Positive Diabetes Life’ at the top right of the page.

If you would like to learn how to better cope with the impact of diagnosis, the Positive Diabetes Ebook, ‘Diabetes De-Stress’, will teach you the step by step process of how to manage the emotions caused by diabetes, based on evidence based psychological strategies. Find out more here: http://positivediabetes.com/diabetes_book.html

Finally, would you like t o take advantage of a FREE telephone conversation with me to discuss any aspect of managing your diabetes? If so, just email drjen@positivediabetes.com to arrange yours now. I look forward to hearing from you and helping you gain control of your diabetes and your emotional well being.

Warmly,

Jen