Emily Stanton, Scott and Jemima Clarke are taking part in the ENDIA study from Perth, WA. Emily has had type 1 diabetes for 22 years.
Connections to type 1 diabetes
Emily has had type 1 diabetes for 22 years. Her Dad is a GP, who also trained as a nurse, and her Mum was a nurse too. So even though it was a huge shock when she was diagnosed, her parents already knew a bit about diabetes and how to manage it. Living with diabetes was hardest for Emily as a teenager – she admits to not doing a single BSL for 3 years and just did not look after herself. After a few years of this, her eye doctor found a couple of small retinopathy bleeds, which gave her a huge wake up call. Since then she has taken much better care of herself, and found she quite liked running which helped a lot.
What does Emily wish people knew about type 1 diabetes?
I wish people knew more about the long term complications of diabetes. The needles and blood sugar tests are difficult, but they aren’t nearly as bad as the threat of going blind, getting liver and kidney failure or having your arms and feet fall off! These things are all a possibility if you live with diabetes for a long time, even if you look after yourself really, really well the entire time.
Why did Emily say “yes” to ENDIA?
I got involved with ENDIA because there is a chance my children will get diabetes, and anything I can do to reduce that possibility is worthwhile. I have been involved with JDRF for a long time, and am part of the State Leadership Group in Western Australia. ENDIA was a way for me to get involved in a different way: by being involved in the research that JDRF helps fund, I might be able to prevent Jemima and our other children from getting diabetes, or find a cure for it if they do get it. We continue to support ENDIA so we can be part of preventing and curing type 1 diabetes. We will be keen to get involved with any future pregnancies and babies that we have as well.