Family and Relationships with Type 1 Diabetes


October 4th, 2022

Family and Relationships with Type 1 Diabetes

Living with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) can have an impact on your relationships with family, friends or romantic partners. 

Managing T1D as a family, friends and romantic partners can help you feel less alone.  It can bring you much closer and strengthen the bonds you already share.

It’s important to have regular and open communication in any relationship so that you can support one another. 

Being aware of the pressure that T1D can add to your relationships and the common issues that can come up will help you manage difficult moments in your relationships better. 

1. Family Relationships and Type 1 Diabetes 

Sibling rivalry

  • Having T1D can mean that you get more attention from your parents due to, hospital visits and care. Your siblings could feel left out or unhappy because of this.
  • It can feel unfair when family members might be strict with you, like limiting what you eat and other things you must do to keep up good T1D management. Try to remember that this comes from a place of love and that they want you to stay healthy and happy.
  • Involve your siblings with your management of your T1D and invite them to the hospital with you to make it more fun!
  • Share HelloType1 website and Facebook page with them! So that they can understand T1D better and the impact it has on you.

Separated parents

  • Having parents that are separated can be difficult to navigate for anyone. It can be difficult to manage practically and emotionally. 
  • You need to make sure that you have all your medication/diabetes management tools with you. Bring them with you to both homes. Your parents should help with this. 
  • Keep track of your blood glucose monitoring and insulin doses in your diary so that both your parents have the correct information. 

Extended family

  • When you are diagnosed with T1D, it’s natural for your grandparents, aunts, and uncles, etc to be upset and worried too!
  • Some extended family members might be confused as to what T1D is and what this means especially if they come from a different generation/culture.
  • Share HelloType1 website and Facebook page with them! Then they can read or listen to learn about what T1D is and what it means for you. 
  • Sometimes it can feel tiring having to educate everyone so you can use HelloType1 to help with that!

2. Other relationships and Type 1 Diabetes

Romantic Relationships

  • Having a medical condition like T1D does not mean you cannot date or have romantic relationships. 
  • Be honest with your partner about your condition, their reaction can inform you on if they are right for you. 
  • Find a partner who is open to learning about T1D and can be understanding. They can support T1D management. 
  • Invite them along to your hospital appointments and share HelloType1 website and Facebook page to involve them in your T1D management.
  • If you want to, you can get married and start a family just like everyone else! 


  • Having T1D does not mean that you can’t have friends and get involved in fun social events and activities!
  •  Being honest with friends is important and their reaction to you having T1D will tell you whether they will be a good friend to have.
  • Tell your close friends about T1D and the management, they can help you and look out for you! They should be understanding and supportive.
  • Share HelloType1 website and Facebook page to educate and involve them in your T1D management.

Despite having Type 1 Diabetes, you still can have healthy, happy and loving relationships with your family, friends and romantic partners. 

Remember to ask for help and accept support from your family, friends, partner and medical teams. It can lessen the stress and share the load. You are not alone. 


HelloType1 content is based on published, internationally recognised guidelines and then reviewed by local experts to ensure it fits local context. The translation is based on simplified English language to ensure it conveys the safest and clearest possible message in regional languages. Basic insulin and blood glucose testing access is still an issue in the South-East Asia region and our chief aim is to address this. HelloType1 content is not intended to replace the advice of individual healthcare professionals but as a collaborative tool to help them improve the outcomes of disadvantaged people with Type 1 Diabetes in the region.

HelloType1 content is curated for the topics using information only taken from accredited sources such as the International Diabetes Foundation (IDF) and the International Society for Paediatric and Adolescent Diabetes (ISPAD).

This content is then reviewed and adapted by a panel consisting of healthcare experts (e.g. endocrinologist, nutritionist, diabetes nurse, psychologist) and members of the South-East Asia T1D communities, helping ensure the information is appropriate in a local context.

Writers of HelloType1 content:

Kara Winney – Programme Manager – Digital Innovation at A4D


Content Reviewers – healthcare professionals:

Prof Dr Muhammad Yazid Jalaludin – Paediatric Endocrinologist, Malaysia

Khamtavanh Khambuapha – A4D Doctor Coordinator, Laos

Usa – Student Doctor, Cambodia


Content Reviewers – people with Type 1 Diabetes:

Marlena Laura Wilson – Nursing Student, A4D Coordinator, Thailand

Emelyne Carmen Ho – College Student, Malaysia

Le Khuong – T1D advocate, Vietnam

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