The popular forumDiabetes Support celebrates its official second birthday this World Diabetes Day, 14 November. Launched in 2008 the site has grown in size with more than 186,000 posts and is a place where users can share their personal experiences of living with diabetes and support others with the condition.
The forum now has over 3,200 users of all ages who share information on everything diabetes related; from information on complications, to what care to expect from your healthcare team – and everything in between.
Supported by Diabetes UK, the forum has proved an invaluable resource to those who use it, many of whom say they never previously had the chance to talk to other people with the condition. “I’m nearly 20 years into having Type 1, and before the forum I had never really spoken to another person with diabetes,” said Shiv, who has been a member of the forum since July 2009. “The forum is an amazingly supportive and friendly community where all are welcome.”
These sentiments are echoed by many other users of the site. “I found this site one year after being diagnosed,” explains am64, who joined the site in September 2009. “I am now surrounded by support and have learnt so much. I’ve maintained my HbA1c for over a year and my doctor is very pleased! The thing about this forum is support, and it comes from people with all different types of diabetes. I love the humour as well and I, for one, couldn’t have been in this situation without this forum.”
The forum has also helped many offline relationships to blossom, with one couple recently getting together after first talking to each other through the site. Many members from across the UK regularly meet up to socialise and are also arranging a gathering in London to celebrate their second birthday. “This place is a lifeline,” said Steffie who registered on the site in February last year. “Every single one of us has gained so much knowledge and also made such good friends.”
Many of the forum members shared their experiences with us and you can read what they have to sayhere.
The Diabetes Support forum is free to join. You can browse the various topics of conversation before signing up and can find more information on the site:www.diabetessupport.co.uk.