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to get naffed off with the raising breast cancer awareness frippery?

(109 Posts)
ChaosTrulyReigns Fri 18-Oct-13 18:05:27

Fecking FB. angry

Tbh, I'm a bit irrational about it, having been touched signifcantly by BC recently, so my view may be skewed, but how on earth is I like it on the doorknob going to raise awareness in any mindful manner?

There's a photo of lemons in an egg box with clues to changes in breast tissue that are worth looking out for. Now that's worth sharing.

And raising money by running, cakes, whatever - worthwhile as well.

But stuppid inane posts? Meh.Wanky.


UserError Fri 18-Oct-13 19:06:16

I absolutely hate the games and I've turned into a bit of a keyboard warrior whenever I see the opportunity. None of my friends are daft enough to post them - it's usually a status by them to their own friends list, explaining why they're annoyed by the games and why they're not the best thing to do.

I finished my own hospital treatment for breast cancer last May. I'm really really outing myself now, but I've been posting a link to the R4L I'm doing tomorrow in memory of a friend. Probably breaking a million mumsnet rules now, but this is our JustGiving link:

That gets posted whenever I see someone defending the games because hey, put your money where your mouth is.

I'm also countering the stupid comments by informing people about a Facebook support network I'm part of. If anyone knows anyone who has had breast cancer young, please get them to search for the Younger Breast Cancer Network UK on Facebook. It's several private groups that the admins have to add to you, but we have about 600 women so far from around the UK and the support is amazing.

UserError Fri 18-Oct-13 19:09:26

For what it's worth, I hate pinkwashing but I grit my teeth and bear it during October, because at least most of it is trying to give out a sensible message and is also raising money for research (yes, some might be mere pennies but still).

The lifestyle issues - totally with you on that flowersinavase. I'm overweight and I had a strongly oestrogen positive breast cancer. The correlation is there. Did my weight cause it? No. Did it contribute? Very possibly.

MrsCosmopilite Fri 18-Oct-13 19:13:18

I'm just having a virtual argument with someone about this. Apparently I am a sourpuss, and it's just a bit of fun posting those statuses.

Does nothing to raise awareness or help.

ScarletLady02 Fri 18-Oct-13 19:17:45

I have no issue with the existence of "breast cancer month" and all the useful things that happen - fundraising, reminding people to check their breasts, even people paying tribute to lost loved ones etc....but yeah the pointless "share this if you care" crap does my head in.

I never Mum is dying from this hideous disease, having beaten it many times in the last 20 years, I care plenty thanks and don't need to tell the world about it. She does a lot of fundraising all year round, even now she can barely leave the house and it has spread to her brain and lungs.

I had no clue about the "I like it on..." thing. I'd seen random statuses but didn't know what it was is that "raising awareness" exactly?

The way I see it...if one person's life is saved because they decide to check their breasts thanks to seeing something on Facebook then it is worth it, but certain things do get my goat a bit about it.

NanooCov Fri 18-Oct-13 19:17:49

I didn't have a clue what this was about and just thought some Facebook acquaintances were indulging in weirder attention seeking status updates than usual. So it clearly does not work to raise awareness. Now I know what it's about I'm fucked off by it - load if shite and crass - I'm sure one of my best friends (thankfully now cancer free after a year if treatment - yay!) would agree. Bollocks to it.

CuntyBunty Fri 18-Oct-13 19:26:24

BC is rife through our family (female line), but the pink shizz makes me turn my eyes away from reading anything further and WaterAid is then more likely to get a donation from me, even though BC is closer to home IYSWIM.

It's like those fucking, execrable, marketing bell ends who do the Boots adverts (how I now loathe thee, Boots, you cunts) have taken over the breast cancer campaign and made it all giggly, girly, hair twirly, frothy. Urgh.

I have a had a few glasses of wine.

HepsibubbleCauldronToad Fri 18-Oct-13 19:32:51

grin Cunty I've had no wine, but still managed to say what I felt in between the expletives..

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Fri 18-Oct-13 19:47:22

Secondly - breast cancer has been linked to things like being overweight and drinking too much. Why is that hardly ever mentioned?

Quoted for truth - that's why the 'girls night in' Cancer Research fundraiser makes me hmm

Scarlet so sorry about your mum flowers my mum also has had it.

The point is not that BC is not a serious issue that damages many lives but the way the fundraising and 'awareness' is communicated and managed. Why is it just about generic 'awareness' and not specific messages that treat the audience intelligently

a) there are many different types of breast cancer

b) checking your breasts and 'being aware' is not necessarily the best way to get an early diagnosis - in fact over-diagnosis and over-treatment is also an issue.

c) the 'pinkification' of BC is patronising and misguided

d) many breast cancers primarily affect post-menopausal women but they rarely are the target or subject of Breast Cancer Awareness month

e) there have been many advances in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment and understanding of these would make much more interesting reading - and better communicate how important research funding is - than silly Facebook games

f) as above the biggest thing you can do in lowering your risk factor is cutting back on booze - it's the one environmental factor that is backed up by the evidence

CuntyBunty Fri 18-Oct-13 19:53:39

Yes, Tondelayo, you speak sense.

RenterNomad Fri 18-Oct-13 20:37:47

I'll look up that "Smile or Die" thing, TondelayoScheartzkopf, thank you.

Barbara Ehrenrich is brilliant. I think I remember reading reviews/excerpts of this book when it came out, but if not I can imagine what it's like: she was bloody scathing and brilliant in that book about u nemployment/ precarious employment, so can just imagine how she'll rip guts out of any argument that "staying positive" helps one beat cancer... so presumably those who succumb are weak and deserve to die - disgusting idea.

ScarletLady02 Fri 18-Oct-13 20:44:06

Thanks Tondelayo, sorry about yours too. She's an inspiration to me. She never talks of "battles" or "bravery". She just gets on with it and is an amazing woman and mother. I was 7 when she was first diagnosed and I'm now 30. It's bad now...really bad, but she's always smiling.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Fri 18-Oct-13 20:55:13

flowers to you and your mum Scarlet that is so hard to live with from such a young age.

bigbrick Fri 18-Oct-13 20:57:03

There should be equal awareness for other illnesses.

FrightRider Fri 18-Oct-13 21:19:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CuppaTeaForTheBigFella Fri 18-Oct-13 21:27:09

But it's not harming anyone is it, and tbf it's made the OP start a thread, and gain responses, so therefore we are all talking about it.

And fwiw I lost my Mum to breast cancer, whilst she was in her forties sad She wasn't overweight, she didn'tsmoke, she hardly drank, and she did exercise regularly!!!

thanks for you and your Mum scarlet

QuintessentialShadows Fri 18-Oct-13 21:31:41

See, I always used to share these kinds of statuses, in empathy with my friend. It meant a lot to her that these types of statuses were shared.

But she is dead now. She passed away 2 weeks ago, leaving behind 3 children. (I posted a lot about her, and was really distressed at the beginning of the month)

I am all for raising awareness, but wont be sharing any dumb statuses any more. Most people have no clue, and by telling them what it means, they just go hmm

QuintessentialShadows Fri 18-Oct-13 21:32:31

"And fwiw I lost my Mum to breast cancer, whilst she was in her forties sad She wasn't overweight, she didn'tsmoke, she hardly drank, and she did exercise regularly!!!"

Sorry about your mum, Cuppa.
I could have said the same about my friend, she was just 41.

thegreylady Fri 18-Oct-13 21:33:46

I have had breast cancer. It is not pink or fluffy nor was I tickled pink in any sense at all. Many of the bc people are know were slim, fit and young. They exercised reguarly and breast fed their children. Many of them died. The so called 'preventative measures' work to some extent for post menopausal women who have hormone positive cancers. The real killers are the inflammatory, the lobular, the hormone negative and the Herceptin positive, the triple negative and the cancers in younger women .
Do you know what it pisses us off to be told we should have done x, y, or z and we could have prevented our cancers because you know what all those women need from you- their 'sisters' not a pink ribbon or a fluffy boa but genuine understanding.
I have been lucky. My triple negative cancer hadn't spread and chemo and rads have kept it at bay for 7 years.
K was a runner she had 11 year old twins and a 5 year old. She died at 40.
J was slight and blonde with a ready giggle, a vegetarian aged 34- she died.
D was newly married and 26 years old she died.
Etc etc etc
They wanted to see their children and grandchildren grow but they died. It isn't fair to say they should have lost weight, eaten more broccoli or been teetotal.

CuppaTeaForTheBigFella Fri 18-Oct-13 21:38:45

Thank you quint I'm equally sorry to hear about your friend! and her poor children.
So sad.

weebarra Fri 18-Oct-13 21:40:30

I see your point. I was diagnosed with breast cancer this week. I have two DSs, nearly 6 and 3 and DD who is 8 weeks.
I am fucking terrified. But, I can't abide the pink shite and I'm pretty sure that breast cancer is one of the best "resourced".

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Fri 18-Oct-13 22:00:20

So so so sorry sad I did not mean to imply BC is anyone's fault - I actually KNOW the opposite - the biggest risk factors are your age, your sex and your family history.

The so called 'preventative measures' work to some extent for post menopausal women who have hormone positive cancers. The real killers are the inflammatory, the lobular, the hormone negative and the Herceptin positive, the triple negative and the cancers in younger women


So sorry if my point about alcohol came across that way. I meant it in the sense that THERE IS ALMOST NOTHING YOU CAN DO TO PREVENT IT - having a very low alcohol intake is the only known measure and that is with certain types of less aggressive cancers as thegreylady says above.


MrsDeVere Fri 18-Oct-13 22:12:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RenterNomad Fri 18-Oct-13 22:26:46

With regard to risk factors, it's a very hard thing to judge: whether the risk factors can be taken seriously, or whether they are kind of a waste of time, given how many people develop cancers without apparent massive risk factors.

I have a dear school friend who "defied" all those indicators, (she drinks very moderately indeed, eats healthily, exercises, lives well in general, blah, blah, blah), and got breast cancer in her mid-thirties, so it is definitely worth saying that all these chances and probabilities are on very small numbers (though, over the world's population, of course, the numbers are still huge), and there are so many, many tiny factors at work, including environment, that "factors" can, indeed, end up seemingly meaningless.

It's also well worth remembering that past generations died younger, so there may well be genetic factors - which are very important - in cancers, which never "ripened" or were diagnosed. (In my grandmother's case, she was suffering severe Alzheimer's at the end, so it seemed to be considered almost irrelevant that she had skin cancer shock. As she was already massively distressed, day to day, and was not expected to last long enough, it was considered pointless to treat the skin cancer, and I don't imagine it will have been recorded as the cause of her death).

Sorry, that was a bit morbid. All of your stories were told rather less brutally than mine! blush Sorry we are all in this together, though. sad

P.S. My friend lives on the Continent, so they reacted very immediately and aggressively to the breast cancer, so she has got a brilliant prognosis. smile

Manman Fri 18-Oct-13 22:52:03

Thank you for a beautiful post thegreylady.
I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer 3 years ago. Am 2 years post treatment now. I am healthy, young, hardly drink, don't smoke etc etc. It is not my fault I got breast cancer.
My mum wasn't so lucky, she died from her bc 11 years ago. She wasn't there for my wedding day or to meet any of her grandchildren.It wasn't her fault.
My heart breaks reading about your friends.

propertyNIGHTmareBEFOREXMAS Fri 18-Oct-13 23:03:12

Agree it is flippant and pointless attention seeking (for self as opposed to breast cancer)

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