I Am Ashamed Of The Breast Cancer Awareness Month Movement

I Am Ashamed Of The Breast Cancer Awareness Month Movement

Have we forgotten the focus?

I'm honestly embarrassed by the Breast Cancer Awareness Month movement. Now before you start writing your hateful comments, let me explain why.

The main reason for my shame is the godawful slogans used solely to grab anyone's attention instead of pointing out the issue, to name just a few of the many: "Save the tatas", "I love boobies", "don't let breast cancer steal second base", "save second base", "save the hooters", "save a life, grope your wife", "feel for lumps, save your bumps", "big or small, save them all".

Are you kidding me? Breast cancer, first off, can happen to men too. So, possibly we have changed our priorities from the cancer, and moved the focus to breasts. Secondly, breast cancer kills. These slogans completely bypass the levity of the issue and treat it as solely a physical appearance problem. Many women lose their lives to breast cancer, fight through pain and days where they feel they cannot make it another second, and we could not get people's attention until we plastered "I <3 Boobies" on billboards, bracelets, T-shirts, and posters. We have taken a serious, lethal problem, and made it trivial and sexualized it just to create excitement and gain attention from the masses. And not only that, but we have sexualized something that is, in itself, a sexually demeaning process for the woman struggling.

And now, speaking on the importance of it killing a woman's confidence, these slogans are not for the purpose of making the woman feel better about herself. These slogans are simply about getting people's (mainly guys') attention and making them care about breast cancer by making it all about a woman's breasts. "Save second base"? Could we be anymore selfish? Who is that about? Because to me that sounds more like it is about what a man loses when his significant other gets breast cancer. "Save a life, grope your wife"? How does that help a woman with breast cancer, especially one who has had a mastectomy? How inconsiderate. These women feel ashamed, less sexy, less feminine and all we can say is: "I'm here for the boobies", "I'm a breast man", or "save the tatas". These women may go through chemotherapy and lose their hair and all we can do is put on a T-shirt that says: "My oncologist does my hair".

I know women who have struggled with breast cancer and I would be embarrassed to be displaying any of these slogans around them. It is demeaning. It minimizes the importance. It is offensive. I know women who have struggled with breast cancer and are completely offended and deeply hurt by these slogans. Wouldn't you be too? I cannot imagine going through what these women go through, and the only recognition you get around the nation is a bunch of people wanting to save your boobs. At that point, it isn't even about the woman, her heart, her emotions, her healthcare or her life; it is about her physical appearance. I, for one, am sick of these slogans and the negative and unproductive attention they bring to the cancer, or should I say, to the breasts. How many men wore/wear shirts or bracelets with these slogans simply because it gave them an excuse to be wearing something that said "I love boobies" or to have an image of a sexy female on their clothing that does not even portray what breast cancer really does to a woman? If you want to get first-hand insight on what breast cancer does to a woman, read this Washington Post article. It is about a woman who says she had breast cancer and hates breast cancer awareness month. And for more on how we have downplayed the importance of breast cancer, read this Huffington Post article.

I would apologize for the length of this article, but that would require me truly being sorry. The only thing I'm sorry for is not saying more and not saying something sooner.

Cover Image Credit: Deborah Hazen

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6 Things NOT To Say To Someone Struggling With Infertility

No, I can't "just adopt."

Five years ago this week, I was diagnosed with MRKH syndrome. Essentially it means I was born without a uterus, so I can't have children naturally. Some days I'm okay with it, and some days I'm not. Finding out you can't have children years before I would even consider having any has been the longest and toughest emotional roller coaster I have ever experienced.

MRKH only affects about 1 in 5,000 women in the US , so it can sometimes feel lonely and isolating. People will say things that they think are comforting, and while they do mean well, sometimes their words can hurt more than they help. This doesn't just apply to MRKH syndrome. It applies to anyone who is unable to have children.

People say things they think will make the person feel better or in some cases, provide a solution, but most of the time they just make the wound even deeper. Here are some things you definitely shouldn't say to somebody who is struggling with infertility.

1. "You can just adopt."

No, I can't JUST adopt. Adoption is a complicated process in many respects that can take years. It's not that simple.

2. "At least you get to keep your figure."

Please. I would gladly take your stretch marks and baby fat if it meant I could experience pregnancy.

3. "You don't have to worry about [insert pregnancy symptom here]."

Again. Morning sickness, swollen ankles, backaches. Many women would take that over being childless any day.

4. "Why can't you?"

While my goal is to be open and spread awareness about MRKH syndrome, this is an extremely personal question and a violation of privacy.

5. "Have you tried [insert fertility treatment here]?"

Chances are, someone with infertility has tried every treatment in the book. This isn't your place to give advice.

6. "Just relax. It will happen."

Even if you know the cause of a person's infertility struggle, it's best to hold off on giving any type of advice unless you're asked directly.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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5 Reasons Car Naps Are The Best

All naps are great, but there are plenty of reasons why car naps are the best of all.

There's no such thing as a bad nap. Still, some naps are better than others. When ranking naps, there's no doubt that car naps are the best of all. Here are five things that make them so great.

1. They don't waste time

You either sleep or sit there and do nothing, so sleeping isn't technically a waste of time. Yes, you could find something productive to do during the ride, but chances are high that you probably won't.

2. The trip seems shorter

Would you rather stare out the window for hours or take a nap and wake up at your destination? The choice seems clear to me.

3. There is the nice motion of the car

I mean, it is basically like a cradle that rocks you to sleep.

4. The sound puts you to sleep

The low hum of the car on the road will have you asleep in seconds.

5. You wake up refreshed for your next adventure

When you finally arrive at wherever you are heading, you are wide awake and ready for whatever is ahead!

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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