Age: 24    Year Diagnosed: 2010   Location: Pittsburgh, Pa

"I learned to not hide my diagnosis because it only makes things more difficult. When I was embarrassed about having type 1, I hid finger pricks and shots at first. Then I started snacking without checking or dosing. Eventually months went by where I literally didn’t check my sugar at all. I look back now and know that I was slowly killing myself and I can’t believe I have no complications. I slowly started being very open about my diagnosis and not caring if people saw me giving myself injections or checking my sugar. I have a family who loves and supports me and are now very involved in my care.

Find a group of others living with type 1. When I was first diagnosed, I didn’t care about myself. I hated the fact that I had to live with a disease and not know anyone else who lived with it made things even harder. Finding other people who understand the daily reality of living with this condition saved my life. I have a small group of great friends who get it. And that makes the biggest difference."