Anxiety and depression

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Michael Bortoft DAFNE Graduate
Sheffield Teaching Hospitals
1 post

Hi all new to the diabetes I am type 1 and inject my bi 2 times a day and my QA ever time I eat at the moment I am finding it hard to come to terms with injecting in public before I did the DAFNE course I would just avoid taking my insulin if I was out I seem to have this overwhelming fear off people watching me and judging me thinking am some sort of druggie Advice would be gratefully welcome Confused

sjohno DAFNE Graduate
Royal Derby Hospital
37 posts

Hi Michael

I used to have the same thoughts as you but now I very happily test my BG and inject my QA whilst sitting in food places. You'll notice that your surrounding audience are involved/engrossed in their own social activities. If anyone does catch sight of you injecting and they're brave enough to voice their opinion (alot aren't and wouldn't) it is at the end of the day none of their business and you have an excellent explanation if you were ever questioned lol. I wouldn't inject my BI as I do this in my bum...........I do go to the loo to do that Very Happy

Good luck, you will be fine.


alturn DAFNE Graduate
NHS Grampian
78 posts

Inject with pride - it's other people who might have a problem.

I've never had an issue injecting/testing in public, if anybody is nearby and curious I would just explain. And I would never consider using a toilet unless had to inject other than in stomach.

NottsKnots DAFNE Graduate
Nottingham University Hospital & QMC
10 posts

I lost any inhibitions 25 years ago whilst reading about a girl who was traveling around Africa; there werent really any facilities that she could use, so she injected through jeans! I dont think anyone these days would recommend that, but if she could do that in public, then what the h3ll was my problem.

Be discrete - if you have loose clothing a belly jab can be done almost invisibly behind a table whilst sitting (at a restaurant or at a work desk). If you are wearing a jacket (suit or coat) then its an easy shield. Heck, I even do it on planes, and I cant hide that from the person sitting next to me. I find that getting the test kit out for a BG measurement tends to diffuse any thoughts they may have.

Get a snazzy insulin pen - no druggy has a designer pen, so that also tends to make anyone who notices less concerned.

Its more and more common to see people, and I always mention diabetes to colleagues - for safety reasons, in case I ever have a bad hypo and need help. That way everyone knows whats going on and pretty much ignores me after day 1 (and being a contractor, I work for a lot of different clients). I try to spread the word far and wide, so more people become aware anyway.

As already said, no-one else really cares or notices what you get up to; the more observant in society tend to be the more intelligent and have some idea of the difference between medication and abuse.

So, do it and dont worry about it: give it a few weeks and you’ll forget all about it. NEVER miss the dose for something as daft as that: avoiding the complications of diabetes is WAY more important to you than a little perception of someone elses thoughts (that they are probably not having - its almost certainly in your head only, so banish it).

Good luck.

marke Site Administrator
South East Kent PCT
669 posts

Hi, I'm with everyone else ( I guess would be :-) ) don't worry about it. The most interest thing I have is I am now lucky to enough to have a pump. No public injections just questions about my weird little device I play with at Meal times.The only time I expect looks but never seem to get them, is when I go through Airport security. i take the pump off and put it through the scanner, then collect it the other side. i stand there and re-attach what look like wires to my body and no one has ever really paid any attention or questioned me !
When I had to do injections I just got on with it and didn't make a fuss and generally no one took any notice. I appreciate that it is easy to say don't worry about it, but I always found it was an opportunity to explain about Diabetes, what it is and why I had to inject. People are usually interested and sympathetic and rarely judge you.....

michaelj DAFNE Graduate
South East Kent PCT
41 posts

Many years ago I was criticised for doing an injection in a restaurant and told I should do it in the toilets. My response was, Next time you go to your doctor for a jab tell him you want to do it in the toilets and see what he says. Personally as long as you are discreet about it most people will not even notice.
As regards blood sugar levels Whden I was diagnosed on 1961 there were no blood sugar testing devices only a very haphazard urine testing system which although better than nothing didn't tell you a lot. Regarding sugar levels my doctor just said as long as you get one decent reading a day yuo'll be fine a principle |Oi have lived with since.

torana DAFNE Graduate
Royal North Shore Hospital, St Leonards, NSW
53 posts

Hi Michael. I too used to inject in the filthy toilets and sterilise my blunt steel needles and glass syringes in boiling water before going to school. I quickly realised that most people today in shopping centres simply don’t look or even care. They have more important things on their mind such as KFC nuggets.
It’s interesting your comments about urine testing once a day. It was never a stable method of testing blood sugars due to the sugars in the urine being held in the bladder for long periods, yet better than nothing.

It’s also fascinating how one can test once a day and hopefully remain alive after many years. I have never heard the advice to test once a day from any doctor over 50 years? It appears some Type1 diabetics for unexplained reasons can minimally test and have minimal damage from long term high blood sugars yet most of us pay the ultimate price. Are you one of the lucky few?

HelenP DAFNE Graduate
Queensland Diabetes Centre, Brisbane, QLD
218 posts

Through jeans works but it does blunt the needle!

Had one over zealous passenger report me to cabin crew on an airline...apparently I was injecting drugs!
But over all it never bothered me and apart from the plane incident nobody ever questioned it with attitude!
(I would never do it in or near a toilet...what are they thinking?)


A1vickiheal DAFNE Graduate
Diabetes WA, Western Australia
1 post

Hi Michael, just about everything people said above is true. I have only been diagnosed about 8 months and it was horrible at first but I am slowly getting used to it. I have even injected on a commuter train and no one even noticed. Good Luck