How I'm Coping With My Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis

I had been feeling extremely fatigued for the last few months. It was really affecting my quality of life, as I could barely manage to get any work done. I assumed my fatigue was due to my other medications, so I put off going to the doctor, but I still felt like something wasn’t right. I finally made an appointment. At this appointment I got blood work done. I got a call the next day.

“You have type 2 diabetes,” the nurse said. This was like a slap in the face. After a few moments, tears started streaming down my face. This is not what I wanted to hear. I continued crying for the next hour. There were so many emotions I felt throughout the rest of that day. I was angry that this happened to me. I’m so young, why me? I was upset because I had been trying to avoid this. The primary emotion I felt was guilt. How could I have done this to myself? I blamed myself for my diagnosis. I thought to myself, if only I had eaten healthier, or gotten more exercise. I felt these negative emotions for a while, until I started looking at things in another way.

The key to mentally dealing with this diagnosis was educating myself. I researched type 2 diabetes extensively. First, I learned I was not alone, that millions of people live with this every single day. That fact relieved some of my anxiety. Second, I learned that diabetes is in fact a very manageable condition to live with. I knew I had to make a lifestyle change, but it wasn’t impossible to treat. Third, and this is the most important one, type 2 diabetes is not my fault. I blamed myself at first, because it seems to be known that certain lifestyles increases your risk for diabetes. I knew I didn’t always eat healthy or exercise as much as I should have, that is why I blamed myself. But type 2 diabetes can be caused by a multitude of things, including hormones, genetics and other medications. This made me realize that although lifestyle does play a role in the diagnosis, other factors do too. I stopped beating myself up and blaming myself for what had happened.

So coping with this diagnosis was difficult, but what helped me the most was realizing that type 2 diabetes was not my fault.

Getty Image by fotiksonya

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