The Oversexualization Of Breast Cancer
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

The Oversexualization Of Breast Cancer

It's about the women, not the breasts.

40
The Oversexualization Of Breast Cancer
Wikimedia Commons

Every year at this time, I reflect on the affect breast cancer had on my childhood and the impact it still has on my family today.

My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was ten years old. Thankfully, my mom’s understanding of the disease allowed her to catch it early and undergo surgeries and chemotherapy to try and prevent the cancer from recurring. I am one of the lucky ones, whose mom beat the disease and is still here to go through life with.

According to U.S. Breast Cancer Statistics, one in eight women is diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s a serious disease that affects so many lives and families.

As someone who has experienced how breast cancer affects a woman and her family, I have two major frustrations over the state of breast cancer awareness in this country.

For one, breast cancer is oversexualized in popular culture and does not show proper respect to patients.

I’m tired of so many people making it into something sexual. Breast cancer has the potential to cause such pain and devastation, yet people treat is as something superficial and frivolous. Why is it treated so lightly?

Attempting to create humorous merchandise surrounding breast cancer (i.e. I Heart Boobies, Keep A Breast) is not funny. It cheapens a diagnosis that means so much more than the risk of losing a pair of breasts. Women cope with something so deeply personal and life-threatening, and masking the raw, personal reality of the disease with derogatory terms is just wrong. I have no respect for people who use degrading language toward cancer in an attempt to act funny.

We need a classy, respectful way to inform people of the real dangers associated with this diagnosis. Let’s change people’s perception of the disease by putting the focus back where it belongs: on the women behind the diagnosis.

Disingenuous advertising associated with the disease is also a problem that needs to be addressed.

According to Think Before You Pink, a pinkwasher is “a company or organization that claims to care about breast cancer by promoting a pink ribbon product, but at the same time produces, manufactures and/or sells products that are linked to the disease.”

Some companies exploit the pink ribbon in order to benefit from consumers’ desire to support its cause. The proceeds from these purchases might not fund breast cancer initiatives at all and might even contain harmful chemicals, the website says.

Sure, there are many questionable marketing practices out there. While there are many clever, wise tactics out there, pinkwashing is deceiving and immoral. Why would a company trick someone into thinking they are helping further the cause for breast cancer initiatives when it is just trying to lure you in by using a recognizable, worthwhile cause that people proudly support?

I am grateful for the programs out there that constantly work toward improving treatments and increasing awareness, but I wish that people would use more genuine, thoughtful approaches when referencing such a wide-reaching, personally devastating disease.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Adulting

Unlocking Lake People's Secrets: 15 Must-Knows!

There's no other place you'd rather be in the summer.

933629
Group of joyful friends sitting in a boat
Haley Harvey

The people that spend their summers at the lake are a unique group of people.

Whether you grew up going to the lake, have only recently started going, or have only been once or twice, you know it takes a certain kind of person to be a lake person. To the long-time lake people, the lake holds a special place in your heart, no matter how dirty the water may look.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

109935
man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses
Pinterest

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lifestyle

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

57052
​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments