NOTHING Against The “100” Club….BUT for Your Kids’ Sake Be Careful!

meterI debated with myself for some time to write about this subject because when something seems like it could be so good, I do not want to dampen anything.  But the more I thought about it, the more I thought that it was a discussion that needs to be had. It’s surely food for thought and surely your thoughts are always welcome.  I believe that we should celebrate any and all of our kids’ accomplishments…..diabetes or not.  If there is an opportunity to bolster them up and make them feel good about themselves…………….I say; let’s do it.

But sometimes caution has to be used on ‘not’ necessarily what is, but when it ‘isn’t’ present; that needs the discussion.

There is an ongoing idea out there to celebrate when a reading comes up at ‘100’; and my discussion today is not to take issue, necessarily, with the idea but to have you consider thinking that out a little further than just the idea of posting the ‘100’; that is becoming more and more popular.

Here is my thought, and feel free to push back on me–it’s just that; a thought.  It is not so much the ‘100’ that concerns me, it is the 287 that follows on the next day.  Hitting a ‘100’, obviously, only happens sometimes.  And if one makes a big deal at getting ‘100’ and the child thinks that the number is terrific, and wonderful, and mommy posts a picture of me holding my meter showing a ‘100’……well what happens when mommy does not do it at 86, or 118, or even 165…….not in your mind; but in the child’s mind? When it does NOT happen, it does two things: the first is equivocate it to the test being hung on the refrigerator, and the second thing is from a child’s point of view, when they do not reach ‘100’ and a fuss is not made——they have failed.

I have said it a thousand times.  Growing up, and from the time Kaitlyn was diagnosed (and we were advised by the brilliant, late, Dr. Richard Rubin) and every time we checked her blood sugar, all we said was ‘thank you’.  The number was nothing more than a gauge to decide what to do next.

Because it’s not the making of the fuss over anything that is the point to consider, it is when you DON’T make a fuss; what is your child to think? What is THAT message.  And with diabetes, even when they try their hardest, that number should not ‘reflect’ their (nor your) efforts.  The only thought is that whatever it is, it’s not as good as when mommy and/or daddy made a fuss over it the last time.  This goes even more-so for an A1C.

These numbers are there to help guide us on a map of this journey with the new normal.  Just be careful when celebrating things diabetes…..building up a child a little, only to disappoint them that much more when not celebrated, is something to be avoided.

And in diabetes, those non-optimum numbers come too often to make anything more out of them than what they are……road signs on what to do, and not a measure of accomplishment.  Don’t measure their efforts by a number.  Celebrate what they do, living life to the fullest while managing this monster!

I am a diabetes dad.

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

0 thoughts on “NOTHING Against The “100” Club….BUT for Your Kids’ Sake Be Careful!

  • I heartily agree. Thank you for putting into words what I think when I see those pics.

    No judgment on those who do post them. Balancing the physical needs of T1D and the emotional toll that dealing with it all can cause our kids. It’s overwhelming at times.

  • we do the 100 club but we approached it with it is rare. My little guy and big guy like it because they get a dollar. The little guy immediately wanted to know if he got $2.50 for a 250 number. He is an entrepreneur for sure. He had 100 at least once a month all last year. Our oldest that was very recently diagnosed has gotten 100 twice already. It is not a goal, per set just a little fun we add to the drudgery of checking blood sugars so often. For us a number is just a gauge. Both boys know this. They just like the random opportunity to add cash unexpectedly. They also like to guess the number before it pops up and if they are the closest we recognize it. Just little games we play, but then my boys are 10 and 14 and have grasped the concept that the number just let’s us know what to do.

  • It is a fun thing for the kids…IMO. Means nothing as to how their diabetes is being managed…day to day. People put too much pressure on this “fun” thing! If you don’t like it …. delete it.

  • In my opinion it’s just something fun for the kids. It’s only as much pressure as the parents put toward it and in our case it’s non. It’s more like hitting the jackpot at Chuck E Cheese on the machine. Just a random number that was determined to be fun to see. My 10 year old gets the same excitement if his meter and Dexcom match numbers. No matter if it’s 100 or 400.
    In anything you do yourself or teach your kid make sure you insure that it’s only a game. Just like any sport or even school. As long as your doing your absolute best that’s what’s important. You win some and you lose some. Not every will go home with a trophy!

  • From a diabetes Mom. I have also had the great pleasure to have had several in depth conversations with the late Dr. Rubin. Unfortunately they were before I had my own type 1 child, though I was married to a type 1. I loved his philosophy and we live by it today. Its just data, not good not bad, it just helps us to decide on a course of action. But, I found it quite interesting statistically speaking when that 100 exactly showed up on the meter after almost 6 years! Then it happened 3 time within a couple of days, crazy right! I didn’t feel that was the goal and it’s not good or bad, just more interesting data that I paused over to snap a picture and use to decide on our next course of action. Oh and of course use it as an excuse to post a picture of my gorgeous 13 yo DS!

  • We have learned through our short time with our daughter (nine years) that she is an all or nothing girl. She is all in when she does something. We try very hard to put numbers in their proper perspective – a tool. We don’t celebrate with the A1C numbers. She is competitive and has to be the winner each time. This week we had to face another issue with numbers – the BMI. She brought home her fitness test from school and it had her BMI number at the bottom of the sheet. It said needs improvement. My kiddo plays soccer four days a week for over an hour. My daughter looked at her sheet and was upset because of the two numbers that she didn’t “succeed” at. The rest of the test she completed the task, and actually was much higher than the average. She told me she failed at the two numbers she didn’t do well with. There was information on the side of the sheet telling how kids can have a better BMI number by doing x, y and z. I once again, had to explain it is only a number and not something she failed at.

  • My son is 17. We just celebrate that he tests at all. To try to make a big deal out of a particular number would most likely make him test even less than he already does. You have to look at the bigger picture.

  • Totally agree. Have been concerned with all the pics of that allegedly perfect number. Thank you! Children with Diabetes conference helped us learn to minimize the response to numbers and to just use as information. And to greet your child and talk about day for a few minutes before asking for their number lol.

  • It’s JUST a game. You probably agree with giving all kids a trophy just for participating! I don’t fault you for that…but in my opinion it’s dumb. In this case, we’re not scolding a child for not getting a 100, merrily celebrating the random occurance. Like buying a lottery ticket…you don’t win every time but it’s exciting to have that chance! The giving of a reward does not equal punishment in the absence of the reward.

    • Thank you for writing and as I have stated to a few privately…..my goal is to continue a discussion and I welcome all sides. What anyone wants to do to help their kids is their choice. I also write about what I have experienced over the years and the disappointment shared with me from others who have been there was enough for me to write about it. To say they are wrong? No. To continue a dialogue on how it might work and what to be careful of…..yes. Dialogue. Conversation. Not Tom being right (honestly, who cares)……but people not knowing and seeing a discussion to help them navigate these waters?????……..well, I welcome THAT EVERY time. Thansk again for writing.

  • I usually enjoy your posts, but not this one. First let me say that I have never posted my daughters’ (yes-plural- twins ) numbers but that is my family’s choice. I think your post comes across as judgemental and I know that is not your intent. If this is a fun thing for families to do, why do you question their parenting? I have looked at the posts as being families and kids being happy for the 100 for multiple reasons which I won’t list here. This is a disease where we all need support from each other -not scolding or judging. Live and let live…

  • Thank you — a million times THANK YOU! As a mother of 14-year-old identical twin boys who both have T1D (1 dx 8/27/05, 2 dx 2/3/13), the one thing that discourages me from many T1D boards, blogs, etc are the continual “Yay Me!” BG and A1C readings. I would never want my children to see that, especially as teens when they are already so frustrated when their hormones and stress, etc, are wreaking havoc on the stabilization of their numbers. It would serve to only make them feel more guilty over many things they cannot control because I know it does me as their mother. Parenthood and teen years in general come with plenty of layers of guilt and second-guessing. We manage T1D the best we can with the most advanced tools (thankfully, we are able to do that as many are not due to means and/or opportunity), yet it remains a battle. When we have “magic” 100s, they are still a snapshot in a long and arduous journey. What I celebrate is that my children wake up each morning, healthy and able to play on their sports teams, go to school, and just live lives as normal teenagers do.

    • And I do the same…..thank you for your words. I can only talk about what I know, what I research, and what I feel……..they are mine. When a synergy exists with those who read my columns….fabulous. When people disagree with me…..fabulous. I only ask that it is all stated and discussed openly and with respect because only by dialogue do we find out what is good for each of us. I have never once meant it as a statement of rhetoric when I have lectured and stated; no one has made more mistakes at this thing called diabetes…..than I. But I try real hard not to make them twice. Sharing, disagreeing or not, is what helps us all learn. Thanks again for
      chiming in.

  • Ginger Vieira says:

    Great point, Tom! Growing up, one of my best friends really understand how horrible it felt mentally for me to see a high number on my meter, so she would say “GREAT JOB, GIN!” no matter what number was on my meter! Of course, I wasn’t having highs because of purposefully neglecting my diabetes or rebelling, but because diabetes is hard work and I was a teenager…so obviously there are some exceptions to where it wouldn’t be a great idea to congratulate a child on every blood sugar number ….but for me, it felt so much better to hear my friend say “Great job, Gin!” than to hear the classic, “Oh my god! What happened!?”

    I vote for celebrating effort and intentions rather than numbers, especially for kiddos.

  • I wholeheartedly agree. Blood sugar levels vary for many different reasons, most of them are out of our control. Even if people with Type 1 do everything right, they will still get high numbers because of a small infection or something else going on in their bodies. That is not their fault. It’s a lifetime battle to try to keep blood sugars in balance. The A1C is the test that shows them how balanced they are. I am a Diabetes Mom, and I am proud of my son for courageously facing this disease every day of his life.

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