After being discharged from hospital, we were pretty much on our own. There were six-monthly checks with the diabetes clinic, and our GP was always available at short notice (one of the benefits of rural living) but being the only person we knew who was diabetic was extremely isolating, both for myself living with the condition and my mother, caring for me.
Diabetes UK is a national charity, set up to provide information and fund research into Diabetes. As well as some extremely comprehensive information packs and regular members magazine full of advice, guidance and diabetes-friendly recipies, they have a network of local support groups. The nearest one to us was 30 miles away but was run by a dedicated, caring group of friends who made those first months and years much easier for me and my family. Meeting other families going through the same issues as us lifted a massive weight, and for that I’ll forever be grateful – and have continued to be a paying member into my adulthood.
Diabetes UK has recently launched a support group for gay and lesbian people living with diabetes in London. For details, contact the chairperson Paul Doyle on 07400 848 181.