First of all,
give yourself a pat on the back for being so supportive of your sweetie. Also, the food lessons you teach your children now will be a big help to them later since there is a chance that they may develope diabetes as well. You need to have your doctor prescribe diet classes for you and your hubby at a nearby medical center or teaching hospital. Most towns with a university will have one of these. If not that, then you need to get an appointment with a registered dietician to do the training. Please! For the sake of your husband's heart, eyes and feet, please get this training! I was diagnosed with diabetes 10 yrs ago and I have to retake my training next month because so much has changed since my first training. Make sure he gets an annual eye exam with an opthamologist (not an optomotrist), gets to a podiatrist for ANY foot problems including athletes foot or ingrown toenails. These conditions going untreated can lead to loss of a limb.
Encourage him to keep a food diary with a carb count and to test his blood sugar at least once a day first thing in the morning and hopefully once more before a meal or before bed. He will need to keep track of this for his doctor and for himself so he can see which foods really send his sugar up. Ask him to tell you which meals helped his blood sugar readings and which ones you need to modify.
You will still cook regular food but you may find that you change your starches in your meals. I use a lot less rice, potatoes and pasta and cook more with barley, brown rice and bulgar wheat. [Whole grains release carbs into the blood stream at a slower rate and prevent such high blood sugar peaks.] I also don't make as much pasta stuff, lasagna or spaghetti.. When I do I substitute fresh spinach or collard greens for some of the noodle layers, and use spaghetti squash with the spaghetti to lessen the carb load. I keep a lot of fresh fruit and fresh salad stuff around. He can't have more than 4 oz. of fruit juice at a time and it's much better for him to eat fresh fruit so be sure to keep that around for him and the kids. (Cell walls in plants slow down digestion of the fructose and slow blood sugar peaks.) You should try to have more produce than canned goods in your shopping cart. There should be salad (made with spinach or greens or zuchinni or cabbage, not just lettuce) at least three times a week.
He should also be encouraged to join the Y or find some other form of regular (I'm talking three times a week!) exercise. I swim. Some people walk or play golf or bowl, some ride stationary bikes while they watch TV. This must become a regular part of his daily stuff and not get eliminated because you get busy. Lack of exercise leads to insulin resistance so he will need more meds to get the sugar into his cells for energy. If he doesn't exercise every other day he will start to get tired all the time and his sugars will go up. Increased sugars over 150 lead to permanent damage to the kidneys, eyes and arteries. Increased sugars are also the leading cause of neuropathy which affects the feelings in his feet and hands as well as his sexual arousal response. It's very important that he test his sugar often and try to keep it under 120 (or whatever his doctor dictates) before meals. The kids can become helpers in this by reminding him about his testing or offering to go swim, walk or whatever with him.
For this first year or so while he adjusts to his diagnosis and all it entails he may go through a grieving period... He will miss being able to eat or drink whatever he wants. He may feel saddened and confined by charts and tests and pills. This is very normal and you must encourage him to accept his dx and KOKO (keep on keepin' on!) for you and the kids. Your attitude about taking a walk each night after dinner (the dishes will still be there when you get back) or making regular visits to the Y will go a long way toward all of you adjusting to his new lifestyle.
Diabetes is all about choices. I choose to eat healthy and exercise. I want to be buried with my feet still attached. I don't want to go blind. I don't want to go on kidney dialisis. Sometimes I choose unwisely... but then I get right back on the horse for the next meal... I don't like counting.. I don't like reading labels (especially since my eyes have gotten to the 'bifocal' stage!) I don't like counting carbs, I don't like swimming all the time (ruins my hair color! LOL!), I don't like being different from my friends who can have a few drinks and dessert when we go to lunch... But this was the hand I was dealt.. I need to make the best of it and get on with my life.
Take care and return often to read and learn. Try to get HIMSELF to join the forum. He will then be responsible for his own health and can learn to take care of himself instead of having the doctor do it....