To get some quotes to use for the Diabetes Support second birthday news story, we asked members of the forum why they liked the site and how they have benefited from using it. The response was overwhelming and we unfortunately couldn’t use all they had to say in the story, so we have added all their comments here in full.
"My son (12) was diagnosed with Type 1 nearly two years ago and this was the first place I found, it helped me to come to terms with the diagnosis and made both myself and my son feel that this wasn’t the end of the world - it was just going to be different from what we had 'planned'. I like to think that I now give something back to the forum when new parents and carers join feeling exactly how I had felt in the early days of diagnosis."
"I discovered this forum in March 2010 and I have found it to be an extremely valuable support tool. At the time I was just starting out on the insulin pump and the members here have been fantastic in offering advice or clarifying points that I've raised. It's so good to be able to talk to people who can actually understand what you are going through. I, like some many others on here, wish there was something like this place many years ago when I was first diagnosed!
I'd recommend it to anyone who has diabetes or wanted to know more about people who have the condition and what they go through on a daily basis."
"This place is a lifeline and every single one of us has gained so much knowledge and also such good friends."
"Nearly 12 years with Type 1 diabetes and never really knew how to effectively manage blood sugars. Once learning of carb counting and experiencing other diabetic individual's experiences, I proceeded to seek the company of other like minded folk and I landed here at Diabetes Support. The experiences, knowledge and most importantly the support should be part of all diabetics' and their families lives."
"I found this site a good while back and let it slip. Forgot my old username, passwords, the lot. Just recently got back on and wish I'd stuck with it first time round. Stacks of good tips, experiences, and indeed mistakes to learn from. And believe me I've made a few of those!
Got back on for all the wrong reasons as I've got myself in a bit of a pickle. Had I taken notice earlier I'd have saved a lot of it happening. Even though people can't solve problems there's a strange sense of easing that comes from knowing younger peope with diabetes might have access to sites like this. Should be prescribed!"
"Although having Type 2 diabetes for 10 years, I was put onto insulin over 18 months ago. I found this site following a web search. I was able to ask questions, as insulin was very frightening for me. Northerner was, and still is, the Daddy of the Forum. He is a wealth of knowledge of all matters diabetic and is a computer whizz. He continues to be an immense help to everyone.
I said fairly recently, hardly a day goes by where I don't learn something new from this site."
"After 32 years of Type 1, never having met another Type 1 and being trapped in 70s/80s thinking, I wanted to update my control, found this forum and my life has literally become transformed. I now have access to the best advisors a diabetic could want - other people with diabetes."
"I'm nearly 20 years into having Type 1, and before the forum I had never really spoken to another person with Type 1. The forum is an amazingly supportive, friendly community where all are welcome. I value the advice and opinions of the forum members very highly and this is always my first point of call on anything diabetes related."
"I was diagnosed 2 years ago at the age of 61. My diabetes-care surgery nurse gave me this forum's web address saying it would help me to be able to talk to people who are actually living with diabetes rather than the professionals who advise on the condition. The forum continues to be a great place for information and nothing is too silly a question to ask."
"When diagnosed I was made to feel it was all my fault, I was fat and that was why I had it - and that I would be a burden on the NHS. The forum has supported and encouraged me to accept I may be actually overweight due to having diabetes, has advised me how to fight for my test strips to gain excellent control, and through the forum the Weight Loss Group has helped me shed 47 pounds in 4 months. I couldn't have coped without the forum."
"Just wanted to say having had Type 1 for 31 years I didn't really know any other people with diabetes. When I had my first child it was especially unnerving & isolating being the only diabetic mum I knew. Since then I found this forum; it's wonderfully friendly, supportive and informative and frankly I've had a lot more informed support and useful advice from on here than from the vast majority of health care professionals I've come into contact with over the years. It's given me renewed confidence in and enthusiasm for my diabetes care/control and helped in the transition onto pump therapy. It even inspired me to kick off a local group in my area for diabetic mums! I just wish I'd found this site years ago."
"I’m fairly new to the forum , I'd just like to add that I wish there had been something like this when I was younger I’ve had diabetes for 30 years (since I was 10) and it would have been nice to know I was amongst others."
"I have had Type 1 for 36 years and have just found this forum. The help I have got in the past few weeks has been great and I don’t know how I managed before, well not very well, but now I think I am getting there with all the help I have had from this forum."
"I have had Type 1 for 16 years. I came across the forum when I was having issues with funding for my pump, about a year ago. Since then I have had a baby boy. Having access to this site during the trying to conceive period and during my pregnancy has been a lifeline to me. I really don't know how I would have coped with the emotional and medical difficulties of diabetes and pregnancy without the support and advice from people on here."
"I got diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in March 2010 aged 37. It was a big shock as I had no symptoms apart from feeling tired and having numbness and tingling in my feet but I didn’t know this could be due to diabetes. I joined the forum on the same day that I got told the news and have never looked back. Everyone has been so supportive especially when I first joined and knew nothing about diabetes, no question is classed as silly and I did asked a lot of questions at the beginning believe me, but everyone was happy to give me advice. I don’t know how I'd have coped without this forum as it’s the only place I feel that has helped and encouraged me. I’ve also joined the weight loss group and find it really has been helping me shed the pounds. I’ve made some really good friends from joining the forum. I hope someday I will be able to give others who join advice and friendship just like I’ve been shown."
"I think I am the longest serving member of this group, I signed up in the October 2008, I believe all the others joined the following month. Anyone needing support and friendship will find this group second to none. I am 71 years of age, and even I learn from the younger members, who all appear to have wise heads, helpful advice, and a shoulder to lean on if required. The main thing that makes this support group what it is, is the members, lead by a great admin in Northerner and his support team."
"This forum is the best support I've ever had, everyone is so helpful and we have a real laugh together as well. I wouldn't want to try to survive without it now."
"Without this forum life with diabetes would be so much harder to cope with especially in the early days. It has become one of my daily addictions with Facebook (I even logon to this site before Facebook....."
"Having been Type 1 for a good fourteen years and never really met anyone with it I just wanted somewhere to vent feelings. Given the decade or so of diabetes related rubbish that had accumulated in me I needed somewhere. I do love being able to meet people and the social side is something that's incredible. It's always worth going to meet with these folks."
"Well I was actually diagnosed the official day this support forum started, but it took me a few months to "stumble" across it. Without it I don't know where I'd be, in terms of my control both mental and blood sugar levels, the ability to moan, ask questions, just listen, make friends, even meet some (not all scary!) is quite amazing. I never would have thought I would be so dependent on a forum, but although I'm not so "active" at present I do think of all of these people as more than cyber friends, I do wonder what some of them think of me though! T’riffic is what it is, and is what all these people are."
"Diagnosed almost 19 years ago...... Never knew of a network of people with diabetes that have gelled so well and had so many life changing and success stories. Blended in with the "non-diabetic world" and considered myself as the same. People just couldn't understand what it felt like so I could never share my feelings and annoyances.
This forum changed that; I've learnt too much, understood my condition more and appreciated the challenges people face with regards to the condition. At the end of the day, this forum is there to help.....not in a reactive way, but a proactive way and that to me amounts for a lot."
"Since I joined, the forum has been very good to share all the experience with others because as a mum, you can feel the diabetes yourself you feel only the pain that even if you try your best sometimes is not enough. And even if it's only a silly event like a cold and your son blood sugars go super high there is always someone on the forum that has been all through this before and it makes you feel better is reassuring and therapeutic."
"Diabetes looks from the outside like something that should be solved with numbers and logic; it's only when you are living with it, that you realise it isn't that simple..... It’s a frustrating condition that affects everything you do.
It's fantastic to be able to share the ups and downs with real people who DO understand because they've been there. Without this site, I'd be the only person with diabetes I know who goes mountaineering and the only one I know of trying to start a family. As it is, I now know lots of people who can sympathise and give me advice.... and I can sympathise and give advice to others, in turn."
"Being a parent of a newly diagnosed Type 1, I have found this forum such a help in every way. The support, emotionally and practically has helped me so much through the steep learning curve of the first difficult few months. Thank you everyone."
"Well I found this forum one year after being diagnosed. I was a DDD... depressed on the dole and had diabetes. I am now surrounded by support and have learnt so much. I've maintained my HbA1c for over a year. My GP is well happy. I also now have a Job which I am loving and succeeding in as it keeps my supersonic brain stimulated! In the charity sector!The thing about this forum is SUPPORT and it comes from all types of diabetes, we have and equal opps policy! I love the humour as well! I for one couldn't have been in this situation without this forum."www.diabetessupport.co.uk