The Diabetes Emotional Roller Coaster

A day for a person with diabetes like myself is broken up into a series of peaks and valleys, when it comes to both blood sugar levels and emotional stability. Too often, we address the former without paying attention to the latter. I find, however, that the two are more intertwined than even I would care to admit. Treating Type 1 diabetes often includes a series of frustrations and setbacks, and how I view these setbacks determines how well I circumvent them.

Let me walk you through the process when a day of mine goes off the rails. Actually, how my day unfolds begins with the night before. On this night in question, I check blood sugar levels once before retiring to the pillow and it reads well within limits. During the night, for whatever reason, I have some uncomfortable dreams and I wake up several times. When shutting off the alarm clock in the morning, I test my blood sugar, and now it has gone from “good to go” to “I need more medication right now.” Most would write it off to dawn phenomena and say the liver dumped stored sugar to start the day with energy; that may be, but it’s still a mess I need to clean up.

I have now started the day confused, and I get angrier the more I think about it. My frustration stems from the fact that I am following to the letter what I need to do to control my diabetes, and it is not working. This continues day after day and I try many things to correct my metabolism, but I only achieve limited success for my efforts. And those bad blood sugars are stacking up for the next A1C test.

I round out my pre-morning routine with insulin adjustments, food, and some exercise before I get out the door. Except…I forgot the paper and my testing supplies. I am now mildly irritated with myself, and way more than mildly irritated with diabetes.

I notice that when I think about my shortcomings I find my blood sugar is rising. And the longer my sugars are high, the less focused I become on the world around me. Also, the higher my blood glucose goes, the angrier I become. Most of the time I don’t recognize the black cloud over my head until someone asks, “Why are you in such a bad mood?”

These emotions can end relationships, both personally and professionally, and I know I have to be always aware of how I’m trending emotionally. I don’t always catch myself in time and I’ve caused some damage. If I can catch myself and I can get my blood sugar readings closer to normal levels, I feel more connected to life and I can identify the pattern in the wreckage of the day. Alongside monitoring my blood glucose levels, I make sure to use meditation and breath control to press the reset button on my emotional moods, as well as to monitor my feelings. I set aside at least five minutes a day for focused meditation, and then I use breath awareness to gauge my mood throughout the day. If I am breathing shallow, I know that I am getting frustrated, and I then set aside time to collect myself. If am breathing fully and regularly, then I know I am in a good place.

How my day goes largely depends on if I can identify my emotional reaction to the first curveball that diabetes throws in the day. If I can stop and reset myself, I can correct and go on with my day. If I can’t, I feel strapped into an emotional roller coaster ride. Through trial and error, I’ve found it’s imperative that I build in time to check in on my emotional state when I’m checking my blood sugar levels. The two go hand in hand, and I can’t treat one without treating the other.

Thanks for reading this Insulin Nation article. Want more Type 1 news? Subscribe here.

Have Type 2 diabetes or know someone who does? Try Type 2 Nation, our sister publication.

Jeff Huffman was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1970. Throughout his career, he has written statistical books and papers for several companies and organizations, including NASA. He lives in Wichita, Kansas.

Related Articles


  1. 756141 835231The Case For HIIT Cardio – Why You ought to Concider it By the way you might want to have a look at this cool internet site I found 626186

  2. I do trust all of the ideas you’ve presented to your post. They are really convincing and will certainly work. Still, the posts are very brief for starters. May just you please extend them a little from next time? Thanks for the post.

  3. I think this is one of the most important information for me. And i am glad reading your article. But should remark on some general things, The site style is ideal, the articles is really nice : D. Good job, cheers

  4. What i don’t understood is if truth be told how you are no longer actually much more neatly-preferred than you may be right now. You’re very intelligent. You realize thus significantly on the subject of this subject, made me in my view believe it from numerous various angles. Its like women and men are not fascinated until it’s one thing to do with Woman gaga! Your personal stuffs excellent. Always deal with it up!

  5. I have been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this website. Thank you, I will try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your web site?

  6. I truly appreciate this post. I’ve been looking everywhere for this! Thank goodness I found it on Bing. You’ve made my day! Thx again!

  7. I will immediately seize your rss as I can not find your e-mail subscription hyperlink or newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Please permit me understand so that I may subscribe. Thanks.

  8. We’re a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community. Your website offered us with valuable information to work on. You’ve done a formidable job and our whole community will be thankful to you.

  9. 484781 700596I discovered your weblog post web site on the search engines and appearance several of your early posts. Always maintain the top notch operate. I additional the Feed to my MSN News Reader. Seeking forward to reading much much more on your part down the line! 231470

  10. 503402 94227I enjoyed reading this a lot I really hope to read a lot more of your posts in the future, so Ive bookmarked your blog. But I couldnt just bookmark it, oh no.. When I see quality websites like this 1, I like to share it with others So Ive developed a backlink to your website (from 796912

  11. Greetings! Very helpful advice within this article! It’s the little changes which will make the largest changes. Thanks a lot for sharing!

  12. I’m gone to convey my little brother, that he should also pay a
    visit this weblog on regular basis to take updated from most recent news.

  13. Greetings! Quick question that’s entirely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My web site looks weird when viewing from my iphone 4. I’m
    trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to fix
    this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share.
    With thanks!

  14. I like what you guys are up too. Such smart work and reporting! Carry on the excellent works guys I have incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it will improve the value of my website :).

  15. Hi my family member! I want to say that this post is amazing, nice written and include approximately all significant infos. I’d like to peer extra posts like this.

  16. F*ckin’ amazing things here. I’m very glad to look your post. Thank you so much and i’m looking ahead to contact you. Will you kindly drop me a mail?

  17. Heya i am for the first time here. I came across this board and I find It really useful & it helped me out much. I hope to give something back and help others like you aided me.

  18. I like the helpful information you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your weblog and check again here regularly. I am quite certain I will learn lots of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

  19. I think this is among the most vital information for me. And i’m glad reading your article. But should remark on some general things, The website style is wonderful, the articles is really excellent : D. Good job, cheers

  20. I enjoy you because of all your valuable hard work on this blog. My mother really loves carrying out internet research and it’s really simple to grasp why. A lot of people notice all concerning the dynamic tactic you convey important secrets on the web site and even improve response from the others on this article plus our favorite simple princess is in fact studying so much. Take advantage of the rest of the year. You are conducting a remarkable job.

  21. My spouse and i have been very joyful when Albert managed to finish up his web research via the ideas he was given from your very own weblog. It is now and again perplexing just to possibly be offering hints that many others could have been making money from. We really realize we now have the writer to thank for this. The explanations you’ve made, the simple website navigation, the relationships your site aid to foster – it’s all amazing, and it’s really facilitating our son in addition to the family reckon that that matter is cool, which is certainly especially important. Many thanks for the whole thing!

  22. I like what you guys are up also. Such smart work and reporting! Carry on the superb works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it will improve the value of my web site :).

  23. I needed to send you the tiny observation to be able to say thank you once again just for the splendid strategies you have provided on this page. It was really tremendously generous with people like you to convey freely just what most people might have distributed for an e-book in order to make some money on their own, certainly since you might well have done it if you ever decided. The creative ideas likewise worked to be the good way to fully grasp other people have a similar eagerness really like mine to find out a great deal more in terms of this matter. I think there are lots of more pleasurable sessions in the future for those who read through your website.

  24. Can I just say what a comfort to discover somebody who really knows what they are discussing on the internet. You certainly realize how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More and more people have to look at this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised you aren’t more popular because you definitely possess the gift.

  25. hello!,I like your writing so much! proportion we keep in touch more about your post on AOL? I need an expert on this area to resolve my problem. May be that is you! Looking forward to look you.

  26. I would like to get across my passion for your generosity in support of folks who really need help on in this situation. Your real dedication to getting the solution all-around had been certainly functional and have really permitted associates just like me to arrive at their aims. Your personal insightful recommendations means a whole lot to me and substantially more to my colleagues. Thanks a ton; from all of us.

  27. Great – I should definitely pronounce, impressed with your website. I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs as well as related info ended up being truly easy to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it at all. Reasonably unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something, site theme . a tones way for your client to communicate. Excellent task.

  28. Hey very cool blog!! Guy .. Excellent .. Wonderful .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds also…I am glad to find so many useful info here in the submit, we’d like develop more techniques in this regard, thank you for sharing.

  29. Thanks so much for providing individuals with remarkably pleasant chance to check tips from this web site. It is always very great and also jam-packed with a good time for me and my office peers to search your site minimum thrice per week to read the latest things you have got. And indeed, I am also certainly satisfied with all the perfect ideas served by you. Selected 2 points in this post are completely the very best we have all had.

  30. Thanks for the sensible critique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more clear from this post. I am very glad to see such fantastic information being shared freely out there.

  31. I simply couldn’t go away your site before suggesting that I extremely enjoyed the standard information a person provide in your guests? Is going to be back often in order to inspect new posts.

  32. Very interesting points you have observed , thanks for posting . “History is a cyclic poem written by Time upon the memories of man.” by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

  33. Thank you for sharing superb informations. Your site is very cool. I am impressed by the details that you have on this website. It reveals how nicely you perceive this subject. Bookmarked this web page, will come back for extra articles. You, my friend, ROCK! I found just the information I already searched all over the place and just couldn’t come across. What a great website.

  34. Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research on this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such magnificent information being shared freely out there.

  35. I think this is one of the most vital info for me. And i’m glad reading your article. But should remark on few general things, The website style is ideal, the articles is really great : D. Good job, cheers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button