This morning my husband's cousin sent me (and 67) of her closest female friends a message on Facebook stating that there was a new Breast Cancer awareness meme going around.
I'm all for Breast Cancer awareness, as someone with the BRCA 2 mutation I have an 84% chance of developing Breast Cancer by the time I'm 70. However the message I got made me want to burn my bra. Women are supposed to put the number of their shoe size, followed by the word inches and a frowny face. Truthfully I was about to roll my eyes and ignore it until I saw the next part "don't tell the men", yeah, I have some big issues with this practice.
1: Saying you are raising awareness by NOT ACTUALLY saying anything about Breast Cancer isn't raising awareness. Especially when you leave out a key section of the population. Despite what people think men can get Breast Cancer, they also have mothers, daughters, sisters and friends who are affected by breast cancer. Men shouldn't be kept in the dark about breast cancer anymore than women should be kept in the dark about testicular cancer. Awareness leads to support.
2: Why does it have to be something sexual. My shoe size is 7, so my post would be "7 inches :("
Even Ben said that comes off as a little insulting of your significant other. My bigger issue is how often we sexual breasts. Don't get me wrong, Ben is a breast man, but it's still hard when thinking about the mastectomy I plan to have. They are part of our bodies and there are many women (my mother's birth mother) who would rather ignore the problem instead of lose their breasts. Breast Cancer is NOT sexual and shouldn't be made in to something sexual.
3: what the hell does your shoe size have to do with cancer? How does writing that help with awareness? I hate the false sense that people are helping when they could have easily done so much more. Post information on where to get more information about Breast Cancer and where you can donate either money or even time helping people out. When was their last breast exam? Wouldn't it be better to let people know the importance of getting checked early.
4: Early detection is key for treating any type of cancer. Support of friends and family is so important to those battling cancer. So why would you make a post that excludes so many people from being able to properly get information?
Cancer awareness is of any type is important. I hope everyone will retweet, reblog and generally share this message with everyone they know and love.
If you want to raise Breast Cancer Awareness here are some sites to check out:
Susan G Komen for the Cure
National Breast Cancer Foundation
For more information on the BRCA 1 and 2 mutation check out:
Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered (FORCE)