Navigating the dating world can be challenging, and having diabetes can add an extra layer of complexity to the mix. So what are questions and considerations that may arise when you have diabetes and are in a relationship?
One common concern for people with diabetes is when to have a BIG conversation with their partner about their condition.
This conversation can cover a range of topics, from the signs and symptoms of low blood sugar to what to do in case of an emergency.
While there is no one "right" time to have this conversation, it's important to feel comfortable and confident enough to share this information with your partner when you feel the time is right.
It’s up to you to decide when to tell someone that you have diabetes. You might feel you want to keep it quiet on a first or second date, especially if you don’t know if you’ll see that person again. Or, you may decide to be more open about diabetes from the start – especially before something like an insulin dose or treating low or high glucose levels needs to happen during the date.
Another consideration for people with diabetes in relationships is how to handle the practical aspects of managing their condition.
For example, supportive behaviors, such as keeping glucagon or sources of sugar close at hand, or empathizing with you when you vent about a difficult element of having diabetes, rather than dismissing you, can go a long way. A considerate approach can lessen the difficulties of dating with diabetes, regardless of whether a person with diabetes is just starting out or has been doing it for some time.
Of course, having diabetes in a relationship can also come with its own set of challenges.
Some partners may accidentally rip out insulin pump sites or cause other mishaps that can be frustrating or even painful for the person with diabetes. It's important to communicate openly and honestly with your partner about these issues, and to work together to find solutions that work for both of you.
But remember! Anyone who is scared away or otherwise dismissive of someone's diabetes does NOT deserve your time. Someone who has an issue with your diabetes, cites inaccuracies or myths about it, and is unwilling to learn why those myths are false, is sending signals that spending time with them will be more of a bother than a pleasure. Learning this makes it much easier to move on to someone who will be far more beneficial to you.
This is just one aspect of a person's life. With open communication, understanding, and a willingness to work together, people with diabetes can enjoy happy and fulfilling relationships just like anyone else.