Tag Archives: Breast Cancer

Forget “save the tatas!”

October was Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Pink ribbons were sported on shirts and “think pink” sporting events were held almost daily. Many car decals and t-shirts supporting breast cancer research could be seen wherever you went. Two of the most popular campaigns around often use the slogans, “Save the Tatas,” and “Save Second Base!” Although I think “Save Second Base” is a cute slogan for baseball games supporting breast cancer research, my more sensitive side can’t help but think that these slogans are really inappropriate.

Beating cancer is what should be focused on, not losing a breast. Graphic from M Live
Beating cancer is what should be focused on, not losing a breast. Graphic from M Live

I feel like “Save the Tatas” is seen on more cars than any ribbons supporting a family member or saying, “I’m a survivor” as a symbol of hope for others suffering from this horrible disease. Although these things do work towards raising awareness, I want to see more stories of survival and triumph over this disease.

It’s sad that women have become so overly-sexualized that saving their breasts is the center of a lot of breast cancer awareness campaigns. It’s no wonder breast cancer survivors are often so afraid to get mastectomies when even campaigns to save them have negative connotations about losing their breasts. Many women feel insecure and endure terrible harassment when they choose to get a mastectomy to beat cancer. It breaks my heart that these brave women who have stared death straight in the eye are still looked down on and talked down to just because they chose their health over a secondary sex organ.The most important thing is that the woman is healthy again, not that she has breasts and maintains a “womanly figure.”

Being healthy is more beautiful than anything in the world. Female cancer survivors often have to make difficult decisions such as shaving their hair off, removing their breasts and often times it can be near impossible to feel beautiful when you’re that sick. That shouldn’t even be a worry! No woman should ever feel pressure to be beautiful in a time in their life when they’re fighting just to make it to tomorrow. All she should be worried about is kicking cancer’s ass and returning to her old inner self. There’s no reason and no excuse that these women should be put down when they’re some of the toughest people on the planet.

It’s time we all start focusing on the person who is living in the body wracked with cancer. That person can’t live without their body, but they can live a healthy, normal life without their breasts. My hope is that women will not have to think twice or be insecure if they’re faced with having to get a mastectomy.

 

Walk for something that matters

The Susan G. Komen foundation is an organization that is supported by donations and volunteers only. Women from all over the world come together and volunteer for many different events. Even men have jumped on the bandwagon and are now walking and donating money in order to lend a helping hand in finding a cure for breast cancer. The most popular event that Susan B. Komen has to offer is the Race for a Cure campaign. Continue reading Walk for something that matters

The Devaluing of the American Woman

Breast cancer is scary. There is no getting around the fact that no one wants to find they might need surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. However, it is commonly accepted that it is necessary to screen for this cancer.

Sure touch, Photo from: medicletactile.com

Recently, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has reevaluated its stance on what age it is necessary to have a mammography, and with what frequency. The USPSTF is a panel of doctors that is government funded.

According to their new conclusions, it is not necessary for most women below the age of 50 to get a mammogram, and once a woman is in her 50s she should only be screened biannually. After the age of 75, the risks of breast cancer are uncertain, so no assessments have been made for this age group. Also, they have deemed self breast examinations to be unhelpful and therefore not worth teaching.

However, the American Cancer Society does not accept these new standards and still recommend women to start getting mammograms annually by the age of 40. Their statement in response to the new guidelines set by the USPSTF states that the ACS stands behind their own standards because they have data that the USPSTF did not consider during their review.

Breast cancer survivors are among the most upset by the USPSTF