When my son was diagnosed with diabetes at age 11, I was very fastidious about writing everything down - almost compulsive about it - and following all the protocols to a tee. I even wrote down everything he ate, thinking the endocrinologist would want to comment on his diet. At that time, a BG in the 300s was atypical and a cause for concern. My son even went to one checkup and had an A1C of close to 7! He was voted the best patient of the day at the doctor's office!
Fast forward to now - the teenage years. That A1C I mentioned was the best ever and it has slowly increased each checkup. Because my son is a teenager and also due to the type of personality he has, he wants to be in almost complete control of his diabetes care even though he doesn't want to count carbs consistently, bolus after every meal, check for ketones when over 300 or when sick, or check his BG at least four times per day.
It can be super frustrating for us, as the parents, to see our son not want to take care of himself yet refuse to let us help. At times, we see a glimmer of hope and maturity on his part - he will stay awake and keep checking every hour when he gets a BG of 400 late at night. However, often that little hope of him taking better care of himself flies away into the wind.
When you have a teenager, especially one with a certain type of strong willed personality, you cannot just put your foot down and insist he do such and such a thing. That only results in him including you less in his diabetes care and contributes to more anger and volatility in the relationship.
I wish I had the answer to this quandary. Prayer is something good to do in this type of situation. We have tried external motivators, but I feel, because they are not intrinsic motivators, they do not continue to motivate for long. Praising him for the little successes is important. Every checkup we attend, the doctor and the diabetes educator reinforce the importance of daily diabetes care which means that the information is not just coming from us - this is a good thing. We have said those same things almost every day for the last 3 and a half years yet they do not seem to sink in. Sometimes I think that laying off for a while might be the key. In other areas that we have done that, there comes a point when maturity sets in and he amazes us! However, it can be so scary to attempt this approach with regards to diabetes. What has worked for you and your family?
Here are just a few links about teenagers and diabetes: