April 19, 2011

Little White Lies

Ally has been telling little white lies lately.  Well, I guess that is half true.  Little white lies are supposed to be the kind that don't hurt anyone.  And while Ally's little white lies have not hurt anyone, I can't decide if they are truly harmless.

I have noticed her grabbing a piece or two of her younger sister's snacks.  She does it in a rather sly way, thinking that no one is noticing that she popped them in her mouth.  Most of the time, a few Goldfish crackers or yogurt raisins are not going to send her blood sugars into space.  But I feel like I can't let it go.  If she starts thinking its ok to pop a few of this in her mouth, then pretty soon it will be a few of that too!  I don't want her to have an eating disorder because of diabetes!  When I have "caught" her doing this, I simply say, "Ally, would you like some Goldfish?"  She always answers me "No!"  I try to speak calmly and not come off as upset by her "sneakiness."  I say, "Well, just let me know if you do and we can bolus you for the carbs."  She says, "Ok," and then moves on.  It has happened numerous times now and I just don't know what to do.  I don't want to make it an issue...but I don't want to ignore it if it is an issue.  Does that make sense?  What would you do?????

A second instance of little white lies.  We were outside enjoying a beautiful spring afternoon.  We have been cooped up inside all winter long and we are ecstatic to be able to enjoy some sunshine!  She was unusually whiny and arguing constantly with her sister.  (Not that this is unusual, but Ally is pretty laid back and she is usually the one to difuse the situation.  She was instigating on this afternoon.)  When she cries easily, it tends to be an indication that her blood sugar is either dropping or high.  Could be either!  Or neither!  She's 8!  Anyway, we asked her to go inside and check her blood sugar.  I have a hard time disciplining her when I suspect that diabetes is the culprit.  So, I usually have her check her bg and then deal with the behavior situation.  (Which is really not often...again, Ally is usually so easy going and very pleasant to be around!!)  Anyway, she went inside.  Keith checked on her in minute or two.  She was still screaming at us through tears about the scooter that SHE was using (we have 2 by the way).  Keith ignored the screaming and crying and asked her what her blood sugar was.  She replied 110.  Her CGM did not show any arrows indicating that she was dropping, so we had her sit for a few minutes until she gained her composure and was ready to play again.  Dinner was in about 35 minutes.  CGM showed steady, so we did not re-check her blood sugar.  A little while later, her CGM was alarming high.  BG=308.  Because it did not seem to me that the food she ate should have made her spike that high, I went back to the log and looked to make sure that we bolused her for dinner.  Yes.  Then I remembered that we had not re-checked her before dinner since she had just checked about 35 mintues before that.  So, I pulled the meter out to double check what that number was.  Remember she told us 110.  Hmm.  The last meter reading was from breakfast.  (This was a school day, so the other checks during the day had been at school.)  So I asked Ally which meter she used.  She told me the one in the D-bag.  I said no you didn't because the last reading on that one was breakfast.  She said something like "Oh, then I must have used a different one."  We do have extra meters around, but none of them were handy and I KNEW that she had not used one of them.  I checked her pump...no meter readings for the pre-dinner time.  SHE LIED TO US!!!  I couldn't believe it.  I was so angry I didn't even know what to say!  I was hung up on the fact that she lied.  Keith calmly whispered to me, WHY do you think she would lie to us about that?  UGH!  Again, I kind of "get" why she didn't want to check.  I'm sure she is sick and tired of pricking her finger and checking her blood sugar.  I'm sure that she hates having to interrupt her classes, her playtime, everything! to check her blood sugar.  I'm sure that she is annoyed by us asking her all the time what her BG is or what her CGM says.  I DO UNDERSTAND!  But she CAN'T LIE TO US!  Again, I tried to calmly talk to her about it and I told her that it is very important that she is honest with us.  We work so hard every day to keep her safe and healthy and we need to work together, not against each other.  She had a tear (she HATES disappointing us) and said she understood.

And all of this leads up to TODAY!!!  I got a text from the school nurse saying that her numbers had been good today, but that her teacher had stopped the nurse to ask her how Ally's numbers were today because she didn't seem herself.  She seemed more sluggish than normal.  Well, again, we GUESS.  Is she Low?  Is she High?  Is she tired?  Is it this nasty, gloomy, rainy weather we are having?  Is she getting sick?  WHO KNOWS!  But the nurse thought she'd let me know just the same. 

Ally came home from school with a math problem solving paper from today.  She only got 4 out of 10.  This is not like Ally.  Her teacher sent a new copy home and let us redo the paper.  I let her do it by herself.  She got them all correct without any help.  So why the 40% earlier today? 

I looked at her BG log from school.  Hmm.  She had gone to the clinic at 10:15 with a "low alarm" on her CGM.  Nurse P's log read:  10:20 Low alarm-CGM=108.  I'm thinking, she shouldn't be alarming low if the CGM says 108, but I figured she had dropped because breakfast carbs just hadn't kicked in yet, and by the time she went to the clinic she was on the way up again.  Her fingerstick was 111.  All the rest of her BG checks today were in range.  I was still a little perplexed with the teacher's observations of her unusual behavior today and her math score, so I downloaded her pump and CGM tonight.  This is what I saw...

The green shaded area is her target range, the blue line represents the CGM readings and the black dots are BG meter readings (fingersticks).  I would also like to give a shout out to the CGM here!  Look how closely the curve of the CGM matches the BG readings! 

As I studied today's summary, I noticed that between 8-12 am she was in range the whole time.  She never dropped below her target.  AND...there are no little alarms!  If she had truly had a low alarm at 10:20, there would be a little picture of an alarm on this graph. ??? Now I'm really confused!  I went up to ask her about it (she was already in bed, but I was confused!) and she said she didn't remember.  Then I got the feeling that she was not being honest - AGAIN!  I said, did you go to the clinic because you felt low or because you were alarming?  She was quiet.  I told her that she didn't do anything wrong and that I was just trying to figure out if I needed to adjust her insulin.  She said that she felt low, but she told her teacher and the nurse that she was alarming low.  Why does she feel the need to lie about it?  Breaks my heart!  And makes me mad too!  Again, I tried to just focus on the facts.  I told her that I was very proud of her for going to check her blood sugar when she felt low.  I told her that I don't care if her CGM says 400 and she feels low, go check!  I said, "I will never be upset at you for feeling low or for checking your blood sugar."

So I am sitting here, still perplexed about today.  I don't understand what was going on today.  Why was she acting off (to her teacher)?  Why did she do so poorly on a paper that she clearly understands how to do?  Why did she feel like she needed to lie about feeling low?

And then I thought back about these other recent white lies.  Should I be concerned?  One more thing to "sleep on" tonight!  Maybe I'll have more insight tomorrow.  In the meantime, feel free to share yours with me!



  1. We have been through this. It will be Ok! Maybe let her know there are consequences to lying. Maybe tell her next time she is caught in a lie, she will get "x" punishment?

    When J was caught in a string of white lies years ago in 3rd grade, we had him speak to his endo about it. Something about confessing to the endo...it is much harder than confessing to parents. Good luck! I still double check J's numbers to this day. I haven't caught him in a lie for years...but that is just one of the consequences of his lies so many years ago. ((HUGS))

  2. ((hugs)) I don't have any experience, since Adam is only 5, but I will be reading the comments because I suspect we will deal with this at some point in our D journey.

  3. not sure what to do but will be interested in others' advice. sounds like you are doing a good job as it is by asking her calmly about these instances. best of luck!
    ((HUGS)) from me too!

  4. I was talking to a fellow D - mum on Monday adn her daughter is 7. She said that her daughter using the D to try and get lollies and to get out of things "i'm feeling low. I need a lolly."
    "I can't do more of the swimming lesson. I feel low" So she just gets her daughter to test and before she gets the food. She is hoping that her daughter grow out of it soon.

  5. When you look at the big picture, how is she doing overall? As long as she's doing okay overall, and the lies don't get worse or increase in frequency, then I wouldn't worry too much. It might be nothing more than a short-lived, frustrating-for-you phase. But could she be feeling overwhelmed? A little D burnout?

    You're doing the right thing by talking to her. Keep talking. You'll probably get to the bottom of this by talking to her.

    If it became a more serious issue, I'd do the same as Meri. I give her a consequence.

    You're a good mama, Misty!!!

  6. Oh Misty...UGH...Ugh...and ... ugh .... I have nothing for you here except I heart you and you are doing a wonderful job. You guys will figure this out and get through it. The frustration of it and the "why" behind it has to be weighing on you. Meri's idea seems sound. Are you visiting Endo soon? Or your CDE? ... I am sure it all becomes to be a little much for our kids.


  7. I love how you check her BG before discipline. That is so fair of your! I actually kind of do the same with my husband. If we get in an argument and I am confused about why we are fighting, I ask him to check him BG and then after that I know if we are arguing for nothing or not. Maybe your little one is just a point where she is tired of D. I know me and my hubby get like that. I would say maybe just reinforce the importance of D care and keep plugging ahead? I am sure it's just a phase :)

  8. Justin gets MAD at me sometimes when he is acting "off" and I tell him to go check. I can understand why that would get old after a while... its kinda like us being bitchy and the hubby assuming that we have PMS :) Not every little bitch session revolves around that ya know!?! (AND they dont get 3 weeks off).

    ANYWAYS... I like what Meri said. Maybe one night you can lay down with her and explain that ALL lies have consequesces, but that the diabetes related ones are extra important because she could get sick.

    I will allow Justin to sneak a chip or a piece of something... he use to be sly about it and I started giving him the "I saw that" squinty eyed smirk. Now he waits till I'm looking and gives me the "shit eatin grin" and laughs before he pops it in his mouth. I will then ask if he wants some. Usually he doesn't. And when it is something that definately needs insulin(not often)... I will tell him he needs to cut it out until he checks and gives insulin.

    Making it no big deal or using the pick my battles approach has worked for us... but Justin is also 10 and I have ALWAYS had to approach him differently. He is a pain like that :)

    I think I am done with my book now :)

  9. Okay. deep breath (for you and for me!).

    I have read through the comments and agree with ALL of them! Meri is spot on with having Ally speak with her endo about it. More accountability. Then Heidi chimes in with stepping back and looking at the big picture . . so wise!

    I also like how Lora lets Justin know when she sees him 'sneaking' something. Just knowing we are watching them will build confidence and hopefully make them feel secure.

    I did have to have a takl with Ellie about the severe complications (sometimes getting graphic) about what can happen when you don't manage your T1D. I HATED to do it, but I did it in love and not in anger or reaction to an immediate lie or sneak. We sat down and just talked about T1D and what it can do in teh long run. What does Ellie want for herself? What can we do as parents to help her? What are her frustrations? Lots and lots of talking.

    I guess I really just want to express to you, Misty, that Ally is not doing anything out of the ordinary. Just the sometimes sucky part of adding such a huge responsibility on teh shoulders of a child.

    Stay strong, stay true to you and your husbands values and above all, make sure Ally knows you are there for her . . in good and bad times.

    ::stepping off my podium and offerring a ((hug))::

    I, like Sandy, give you props for checking her BS before discipline. Most of the time with Ellie her misbehavior IS due to a high or low, so we correct THAT and then the problem. Nice work.

  10. Such awesome comments from everyone!
    We, too, have Bean test when she's not being herself and most of the time BG is the reason for the behavior. After a correction (usually see 'off' behavior when high) we still have her take some time to herself to get it together mainly so she starts cluing in to how she feels when she's high and can avoid problems in the future.
    I think it's good to keep talking with her about this. Part of it is being 8...I taught third grade for four years and lying is just one of those things that comes with that age it seems! However, D related lies can have way worse consequences than just your run of the mill white lie. Keeping those lines of communication open is so important (need to remind myself of that, too!!).
    Hope you figure it out...and share when you do so those of us with up coming 8yr olds can learn from you!

  11. I agree with what Meri said completely. Lies are lies - d related or not. I'm sorry I have no words of wisdom for you but I would like to thank you for sharing your story. Although this sounds a bit selfish - reading this helps me better prepare for what I am facing down the road with Nate. I'm hoping it never happens but realistically I know that it will and I hope I am as calm and understanding as you are.


  12. I think all the advice here is great! I don't have anything to add! She's such a darling- my guess is tht its a phase but it IS so frustrating!!!

  13. (((hugs)))

    I don't have anything enlightening to add.

    Except that I think you're an awesome family and I know you'll figure out a way to work through these little blips on your radar.


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