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Pinktober Revolution

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  • Artista928
    Artista928 Member Posts: 1,458
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    still seeing it! It's Nov 1st guys!

  • alicebastable
    alicebastable Member Posts: 1,945
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    Its November; let's unpink!

  • chisandy
    chisandy Member Posts: 11,385
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    Whew! Can finally wear pink again just because I feel like it, looks good on me, matches what else I've got on, and the shirt or blouse is clean--no dumb questions, pitying looks, or "my friend beat breast cancer and so can you." Although I do buy Advocate Health Care/Chicago Bears "Real Bears Fans Wear Pink" tees each year...because the proceeds go to Advocate's breast cancer centers, they're (usually) navy blue, my DH is an attending doc at an Advocate hospital, and we are Bears fans (otherwise known as masochists). Besides, this year's shirt finally has long sleeves.

  • ShetlandPony
    ShetlandPony Member Posts: 3,063
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    Time to get out my tote bag that says, “I survived breast cancer awareness month”.

  • dogmomrunner
    dogmomrunner Member Posts: 492
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    Shetland - I would love a bag or shirt withthat.

  • Artista928
    Artista928 Member Posts: 1,458
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    now that's a shirt I'd wear! Lol

  • traveltext
    traveltext Member Posts: 1,053
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    This Pinktober saw an upsurge in media reporting about male breast cancer. I get Google alerts on the topic and, compared to previous years, my inbox overflowed with links to stories about men with this disease. Perhaps people here caught it, but Beyoncé’s dad, Mathew Knowles, came out to talk about his recent diagnosis and treatment. When a famous person Is prepared to spread the word, awareness levels about the genderless nature of this disease jump many points.

    I spent the month over at Twitter reporting every article and piece of research news I could. The biggest story was the Vanderbilt meta data study that compared male and female outcomes of many thousands of people treated for bc. The results backed up much of what bc men knew for years about our poorer outcomes. There’s a succinct summary of the results here:

    https://drattai.com/update-on-male-breast-cancer/

    It was again fantastic to read the BCO posts here this year. What more can we say about Pink! Nothing, but ya gotta have a laugh or two.


  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,178
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    Me too Shetland. Where did you get it? Have it made?

  • SuQu31
    SuQu31 Member Posts: 73
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    ChiSandy, I feel the same way. I like wearing all shades of pink, and I felt especially uncomfortable wearing pink in October this year. Most of the “regular" Pinktober things don't really bother me, but I don't like that it has made me feel like I'm drawing attention to my cancer by wearing a color I happen to love.

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    Re the pink parking lines - I think it's wrong for the same reason all of the rest of it is wrong. It's prettying up cancer, making it girly (when men can get it) and sending the idea that breast cancer is somehow feminine and ladylike.

  • Sara536
    Sara536 Member Posts: 5,937
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    Are the men supposed to park across the street?

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    Yes, they can park across the street, along with all of us. Women that havent had breast cancer, that believe it's all fun and pretty can park there. That's how it goes.

  • vlh
    vlh Member Posts: 773
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    Traveltext, when I saw the Knowles segment, I immediately thought of you and your tireless quest to increase knowledge about male breast cancer. I think his unfortunate experience will make men not only more aware of the disease, but less embarrassed to broach the topic with their doctors.

    The article you linked shows how important it is to include men in clinical studies. Women were excluded from cardiac studies for decades, even if not of childbearing age, so we should be especially supportive of the men facing breast cancer. Abusive pinkwashing aside, I think that the Susan G. Komen races and similar events helped us to be able to talk openly about breast cancer. I'm old enough to remember when it was only discussed in whispers.

    The imaging center I go to is decorated in an ornate style I dislike and I think the capes (which I hate) are pink. Their radiologist is exceptional, but I can't imagine a man being comfortable seeking testing there. Statistically, it's logical that breast cancer facilities cater to the 99% rather than the 1%, but I hope that the hard work that you and others do will ensure that future designs will be more gender neutral.

    Lyn

    P.S. I don't understand the pink parking lines at all. I had such a difficult time with chemo that I had to rest three times shuffling into the infusion center from a distant parking spot. That's a dilemma that could be related to any type of cancer. We needed more handicapped spots, not designated pink spots.

  • traveltext
    traveltext Member Posts: 1,053
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    Yes, VLH, the publicity around Knowles’ diagnosis and treatment is huge and great for the cause of awareness of the genderless nature of this disease. Good on him for speaking out, most men don’t. And, yes, I’m aware of the discrimination against women in cardiac studies and heart disease research. Hopefully that will change. The FDA has just recommended men be included in bc clinical trials. Can the cardiac women be far behind?

    Re the pinkness thing. I do know how much of a minority we are and I do get what the fundraising is for, although I’ve researchedpink charity fundraising costs and they are over 50%. Give a dollar and half gets to somewhere useful. No, my gripe is that all the pinkness makes people think it’s a women only disease. Men present later and we have a poorer prognosis. Okay, we’re only one percenters, but the disease is just as problematic for us.


  • scrafgal
    scrafgal Member Posts: 412
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    We also need more Black women to be included in BC clinical trials, given the disproportionate access to equitable healthcare and negative outcomes for the large number who are diagnosed.

  • vlh
    vlh Member Posts: 773
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    Fortunately, strides have been made in including women in cardiac studies. I only mentioned it as a striking example of how gender bias can result in clinical studies inappropriately excluding people who could benefit from research. Great news about the FDA recommendation!

    I totally agree that too many breast cancer charities are inefficient fundraisers. I also think that their marketing has historically focused on attractive women in perfect makeup triumphantly celebrating their victory over the disease while failing to properly acknowledge the devastation of metastatic cancer. I do think it's important to recognize the good done by breast cancer charities while remaining vocal about areas requiring improvement.

    I understand your frustration with all the "pinkness" ignoring the men facing breast cancer. It's encouraging that nearly every segment I saw on breast cancer this October specifically mentioned that men can get breast cancer. Besides Mr. Knowles' public comments, having a man with breast cancer on the popular U.S. TV series "A Million Little Things" should also help spread the word.

    I hope you didn't see my remark about the 99% / 1% incidence as somehow being dismissive of the toll breast cancer has exacted from men. Rather, I was pointing out that businesses, and imaging centers are very much a business in the U.S., have skewed their appeal to the majority of their demographic; however, I was hopeful that they would be more sensitive to men with BC in the future. The work you and others have done is definitely bearing fruit. Well done!

    Lyn

  • traveltext
    traveltext Member Posts: 1,053
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    Yes, attractive younger women, often with little kids, are used a lot in ad campaigns when the average age women get bc is 57. Never a man, of course. A bc marketing person told me that this evokes the greatest fundraising response.

    I know you’re not dismissing us, definitely you’re not, it’s just that our tiny cohort gets tiny attention. That said, this year has seen this turn around, and there have been lots of media stories on men, around three times that of previous years. Now we just have to get men to take their health seriously!


  • traveltext
    traveltext Member Posts: 1,053
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    A late addition:

    "Gaslighting is deliberate psychological manipulation that causes someone to question their own sanity while making them feel dependent on the perpetrator of that harm. And it's clear that pink-ribbon culture is sanctioned gaslighting, celebrated during its very own pink month."


    https://www.sfchronicle.com/opinion/openforum/arti...(Premium)&utm_source=t.co&utm_medium=referral


  • Mominator
    Mominator Member Posts: 1,173
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    Thank you, Traveltext, for another enlightening article on Pinktober.

    We get a double dose of Pinktober in my area, both in October as well as May. The local hospital conglomerate has designated May as "Paint the Town Pink" month in honor of mothers and breast cancer awareness. Big bows and huge pink banners appear everywhere in towns served by this hospital group. Local towns have their names changed to include pink, such as Red Bank becomes Pink Bank. Local town councils and PTAs and other community groups jump on the pink bandwagon, having fundraisers, and probably drinking the pink cool-aid as well.

    Mominator

  • alicebastable
    alicebastable Member Posts: 1,945
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    I'm on a different cancer type forum, and a gentleman there was describing having to go to a breast center for one of his tests, and how weird and awkward he felt. I was happy to give him information on male breast cancer, and how attitudes like his are part of the reason men get tested later with higher stages. I wish there was a way to educate EVERYBODY about it.

  • Togethertolearn
    Togethertolearn Member Posts: 224
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    I loved the pink days now since I ended treatment in September. I helped get Pink games for all our high schools teams not just the usual varsity. The support and love at those has been amazing, very unifying, very emotional and healing for many . This was my first pink October as a survivor and I felt encouraged each time I saw a Pink item: I felt not alone and felt like there is a future after (my mind is still processing cancer and I feel lost much of the time). Also I think seeing pink does remind people about getting mammograms or doing a self check. So I liked it... but ask me in a couple of years :) I never gave a thought about pink till my diagnosis, it wasn't on my radar. So that's another reason why I liked October 2019 pink, it felt brand new!

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    Traveltext wrote:

    Yes, attractive younger women, often with little kids, are used a lot in ad campaigns when the average age women get bc is 57. Never a man, of course. A bc marketing person told me that this evokes the greatest fundraising response.

    Exactly. But then they will say that their message is "cancer doesn't discriminate" .. 'be aware' etc. The message this sends is, cancer only effects women with kids - or, that only women with a family go through hell with cancer. I got bc at a young age, and have no kids. I am offended by being presented with images of something that might provoke a certain response. When we're talking about something as serious as cancer, no marketing person should be manipulating an image of who is effected and who isnt. I can only imagine how isolating and shaming this is for men.

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    Mominator wrote:

    We get a double dose of Pinktober in my area, both in October as well as May. The local hospital conglomerate has designated May as "Paint the Town Pink" month in honor of mothers and breast cancer awareness. Big bows and huge pink banners appear everywhere in towns served by this hospital group. Local towns have their names changed to include pink, such as Red Bank becomes Pink Bank. Local town councils and PTAs and other community groups jump on the pink bandwagon, having fundraisers, and probably drinking the pink cool-aid as well.

    Everything that I absolutely despise about this topic. Breast cancer isnt pink and pretty and I fail to see how this actually helps anyone.

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    Traveltext wrote: A late addition:"Gaslighting is deliberate psychological manipulation that causes someone to question their own sanity while making them feel dependent on the perpetrator of that harm. And it's clear that pink-ribbon culture is sanctioned gaslighting, celebrated during its very own pink month."

    Great link Traveltext.

    Buy our product. Selling breast cancer as sexy, 'save tatas'. There is even a oncology gynae group in Australia using the disgusting slogan "Save the Box". When will women's bodies stop being objectified and used to sell stuff? It's not the cancer that matters, it's the potential loss of an objectified body part. Our anger isnt something anyone wants to know about, but this crap is? Something really wrong here isnt there? They justify the sexualising of breast or gynae cancer by saying it 'gets attention / gets people talking'. The problem is, the message that it sends is the wrong message. It gets attention by taking away the reality of cancer, and instead turn bc into something that resembles a fun and pretty experience, and all that matters is that breasts are saved as they are sexy. And / or, what we've been through is being used to sell products. Or, that saving a 'box' is imperative as a woman's worth is all about objectified body parts. I don't know any woman who refers to her reproductive organs as a 'box' ... and I don't know of any woman who isnt aware of cancer, or wants to talk about saving a box. We want respectful discussions about cancer, not this.


  • sbelizabeth
    sbelizabeth Member Posts: 956
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    For prostate cancer "awareness" and fundraising, do men prance around in bedazzled boxer shorts and wild wigs No? Prostate cancer isn't a reason for a party?

    "Save the cojones" for testicular cancer?

    Of course not. It would be sexualizing and trivializing a disease that's neither sexy nor trivial.

    What's that smell? Uh-oh, my hair is on fire again...

  • rubyredslippers
    rubyredslippers Member Posts: 94
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    sbelizabeth - exactly!