The Diabetic Partner Follies, Act 11: (Almost) The Other Woman

Greetings, friends of the Diabetic Partner Follies, the forum for significant others of the PWDs (people with diabetes).  We are getting it through our heads that you folks live with diabetes, too, and that often it ain’t no picnic.

This week’s entry really choked me up.  It’s the kind of thing I hope is in my partner’s heart, although men tend to be less poetic in expressing these things.  It also made me realize that having the Big D around IS like having another being in the relationship mix, after all. See what you all make of it.  (And feel free to email me directly with anything you might like to share.)

I realized after getting married that I had a force to contend with. Not my
husband’s mother, as is the case for most new brides, but my husband’s
diabetes. I think of it, occasionally, as the other woman.

He knew her long before he knew me. They’ve been through countless ups and
downs together and have an intimate bond I will never be a part of. They have
their own language, and while I can hold my own in a conversation about bolusing
and complex carbohydrates, I will never speak it as fluently as they.
And so I have to remember, when I see the two of them getting in to trouble
or mistreating one another, that I was the last one to arrive at the dance. I
have joined the party, but there will always be that boundary, no matter how
much I learn or how much time passes, that I cannot cross over.
I can’t make his feet stop hurting when neuropathy rears its very ugly
head. I can’t make him exercise, no matter how much I may suggest it. I can’t
fully empathize with what high and low blood sugars feel like. And I can’t make
her go away.
But there’s plenty I can do. I can carry a meter and test strips (and
Skittles) in my purse. I can make sure his prescriptions stay filled. I can
count every carbohydrate I put into our meals. I can sit beside him in the
middle of the night when we’re waiting for his blood sugar to level out.
In the end, I can’t control the two of them, but most importantly, I can –
and do — love him unconditionally.– T.P.


One Response

  1. Rachel
    Rachel December 8, 2006 at 8:12 pm | | Reply

    I, too, feel like diabetes is another woman at times, T.P.

    Most of that feeling was lost when my husband had a severe hypoglycemic episode, followed by my type 2 diagnosis. I wish it wouldn’t have had to happen like it did and I certainly don’t wish it on anyone else.

    You can be educated as much as possible and as prepared as possible, but you never know how it will hit you between the eyes.

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