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Emotions related to being diagnosed with diabetes

Being diagnosed with diabetes can provoke a range of emotions that may also challenge a romantic and other kind of relationships . It is crucial to understand that emotions are part of accepting the illness, and processing them individually and together, is important.

The news of a diabetes diagnosis can trigger an emotional rollercoaster. In a romantic relationship, both individuals have their own understanding of diabetes as an illness, and adaptation to the situation is based on what is felt to be best. Although personal lifestyle choices or other actions can sometimes contribute to health problems, illness or chronic pain is not a conscious choice made by an individual but something that cannot be fully controlled when it enters one's life.

Becoming ill, for example with diabetes, can create a feeling of losing control over one's life, which can be quite frightening. A person may feel defective and inadequate, angry and disappointed with their life and themselves. Anger naturally arises and is a normal emotion when a person feels forced into a situation against their will. The emotions of a partner watching their loved one's illness from the sidelines can include frustration, anger, hopelessness, and helplessness. The anger is not necessarily directed at the partner but at the "compulsion" that the illness brings.

A common emotion specifically associated with being diagnosed with diabetes is guilt. The mind easily starts to ponder which factors in one's life may have led to the development of diabetes. This state of mind is often amplified by societal discourse on diabetes as a "lifestyle disease" and by incorrect language and perceptions.