Topic: Buying a masectomy bra

Forum: Employment, Insurance, and Other Financial Issues — Employment, insurance, and financial concerns are common. Meet others here to discuss and for support.

Posted on: Nov 1, 2010 11:50AM - edited Aug 20, 2013 03:04AM by pattyinarnold

Posted on: Nov 1, 2010 11:50AM - edited Aug 20, 2013 03:04AM by pattyinarnold

pattyinarnold wrote:

As I say to my family and freinds I have no "boobs".  They were taken May of 2007.  So its been awhile and I thought I had over come all the "prolems, hurts" you go through when you first lose them.  This weekend the scars were "reopened"..  I went to Nordstroms this weekend, I purchased my boobs and bras from them, and I thought I would buy a "new" bra.  How many times in our "bra" waring years did we go in a store and spontaneously buy a bra just because we wanted one.  Well those days are gone.  I went in and asked to see the masectomey bras and was quickly ushered in the back dressing room and left for 15minutes.  You would have thought I was buying a dildo.....Why can't we just buy a bra...I still know what size I ware both around and the cup size.  I don't need specialist...

Has anyone else had luck just buying a bra?  We should not have lost this freedom. 

Live like there is no tomorrow, Love like you have nerver been hurt, Dance like no ones watching Dx 1/3/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/11 nodes, ER+
Log in to post a reply

Page 1 of 1 (9 results)

Log in to post a reply

Nov 1, 2010 11:57AM MNLinda wrote:

It's a real annoyance.  I don't much like the mastectomy bras they show you - The first two the fitter brought me were those big white granny bras, even though I had specifically told her that's what I didn't want.  I did eventually get some bras I was reasonably happy with, but had to go out and get extenders (extra hook & eye) because the fitter was so adamant I should have a 32, not a 34, and 32 feels too tight to me.

All that, and you have to sign all the papers for the insurance coverage, and receive & sign an acknowledgement that you received a copy of the store's privacy policy.  Whew.

PILC + autoimmune disorder; DX at age 51, 6 TX neoadjuvant TAC 9/2009-1/2010; BMx 2/2010, 33 rads starting 4/2010, tamoxifen starting 6/2010, Zometa starting 10/2010, reconstruction starting 12/2011, Femara starting 6/2013...right arm lymphedema Chemotherapy 9/21/2009 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 2/17/2010 Mastectomy: Left, Right Radiation Therapy 4/18/2010 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/21/2010 Surgery 12/2/2011 Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 11/14/2012 Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 5/28/2013, ILC, 6cm+, Stage IV, Grade 2, 0/10 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2013 Femara (letrozole)
Log in to post a reply

Nov 1, 2010 12:05PM pattyinarnold wrote:

When she asked if I had insurance and told her "yes, but I am paying for it"..All I wanted it is to look at them and maybe buy one.  Why did have to look at my bras in a dressing room.  I didn't  before the masectomy and I was 54.

Live like there is no tomorrow, Love like you have nerver been hurt, Dance like no ones watching Dx 1/3/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/11 nodes, ER+
Log in to post a reply

Nov 1, 2010 04:36PM pattyinarnold wrote:

I have the phone# to the corp at Nordstrom and I am going to call and let them know I felt like a drug dealer or someone buying something nasty.....I do think we need to do serious complaining, I just don't know who to complain to.  That is why I vented here..I knew there were people who knew how hurt I felt by being treated that way...Living with the scars and disfigurement is one thing this was just too far..

What web sites have you had luck with Madalyn?

Live like there is no tomorrow, Love like you have nerver been hurt, Dance like no ones watching Dx 1/3/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/11 nodes, ER+
Log in to post a reply

Nov 2, 2010 01:29AM debbie6122 wrote:

Wow, i would of been furious if they put me in the back and then didnt show up for 15 minutes thats just insane, i had to laugh at your dildo comment though, funny but not really. shoot if you went to buy a dildo they show it to you at the counter not in the back, not that i know ( somthing ive hearrd) :)

I wish i had a norstroms close by just so i could go in and see if they treated me the same, i would not of handled that very well at all, i probably would of stromed out after 7 or 8 minutes tops, thats just plain wrong- they will problaly tell you they do that for your own privacy for you, but i dont see it that way, they owe you a big apology and maybe a new bra??

masectomy, chemo, node positive Dx 12/20/2009, IDC, ER+/PR-, HER2-
Log in to post a reply

Nov 2, 2010 01:16PM pattyinarnold wrote:

I called Nordstroms corporate office today and the put me in touch with the person who handles their mastectomy program.  It was a man...I explained my problem with how it was handled and he was very glad I called, at least that is what he said.   He said they thought they had the program down, but it looks like they still need to work  on training.  I did tell him "we are women and loosing our breast does not stop us from shopping".  That if the girl had been able to show me a rack that they had all the mastectomy bras at and let me look at them I would have been ok.  I did tell him that it hurt me and I left the store in tears.  It did prevent me from shopping in that store.  He asked me if I would speak to a lady they just hired to set up the program.  So we will see if they bring us out of the "back" room.   

Live like there is no tomorrow, Love like you have nerver been hurt, Dance like no ones watching Dx 1/3/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/11 nodes, ER+
Log in to post a reply

Nov 4, 2010 10:06AM MNLinda wrote:

I'm not totally down on Nordstrom's on this matter - I did have a better experience when I went back the second time.  The fitter had told me they could pocket any of their bras for breast forms.  This isn't really true - some styles just won't work with breast forms, demi bras and that sort of thing. 

I picked out a few likely-looking styles and tried them on in the Normal Women's dressing room, just tucking the breast forms in to see how they fit.  Then I picked two and took them to the counter and asked to have them pocketed.  I still had to deal with a fitter to get them to submit paperwork to the insurance company, but since they already had my info on file - they need to know what shape your breast forms are - it didn't take very long, and I didn't have to get her input on what size I should buy, or anything like that.

They don't charge extra for pocketing the bras, and they will mail them out to you at no charge so you don't have to return to the store a second time.  It takes a week or so to get them.

It would be nice if they had a couple of racks of pre-pocketed mastectomy bras you could browse, though.

PILC + autoimmune disorder; DX at age 51, 6 TX neoadjuvant TAC 9/2009-1/2010; BMx 2/2010, 33 rads starting 4/2010, tamoxifen starting 6/2010, Zometa starting 10/2010, reconstruction starting 12/2011, Femara starting 6/2013...right arm lymphedema Chemotherapy 9/21/2009 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 2/17/2010 Mastectomy: Left, Right Radiation Therapy 4/18/2010 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/21/2010 Surgery 12/2/2011 Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 11/14/2012 Reconstruction (left); Reconstruction (right) Dx 5/28/2013, ILC, 6cm+, Stage IV, Grade 2, 0/10 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 6/19/2013 Femara (letrozole)
Log in to post a reply

Nov 4, 2010 10:31AM otter wrote:

I absolutely agree with everyone who's saying we should be able to browse through a rack of mastectomy bras, the same as any other woman can browse through a rack of bras she's interested in.  But, I'm wondering a couple of things...

First:  It wasn't very many decades ago that "large"-sized bras were not on display in the lingerie section, either.  They were packaged in boxes in a cabinet with pull-out drawers.  No way would there have been 48 DDD's or anything similar hanging on pretty hangers for all the world to see.  For that matter, it was pretty darn hard to find "training bras" (32 AAA etc. -- basically a band of jersey fabric) on public display when I was in the market for one 45 years ago.  Now, there are all sorts of petite-sized bras in bold colors; but what's most remarkable is that the super-sized bras dominate the lingerie sections of the stores where I shop.  It took awhile, but women are no longer self-conscious about having very small or very large breasts.  Or, at least society doesn't expect that they will be...

Which leads me to my second thought.  How many women our mothers' age (mine is 84) would be comfortable shopping for a mastectomy bra if those bras were hanging on racks in full view of passers-by in the lingerie section of an ordinary department store?  Not very many?  Yeah, that's what I thought, too.  I have no doubt that some of the secrecy is because the store clerks might be uncomfortable; and some might be because other customers might shy away.  But, I'm wondering if some of the secrecy is a misguided attempt to provide us with privacy the store might think we want.... even if we don't need it anymore, because we're okay with our bodies.

Just wondering.

otter

Dx 2008, IDC, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
Log in to post a reply

Nov 4, 2010 10:40AM crazy4carrots wrote:

Otter, your last paragraph expressed my thoughts exactly!  I do want to add, however, that the first time I went to the shop that has a registered mastectomy fitter, bras and protheses, I really appreciated the privacy, the lovely large changing room, and the fitter bringing me the selection (none of which I really liked, but oh well...).

Actually, now that I've learned the fast and easy way to turn a regular bra into a mastectomy bra, I shop in the regular bra section  (see the Breast Prostheses section for the video).

The demagogue preaches doctrine he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots. Dx 1/10/2008, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
Log in to post a reply

Nov 4, 2010 11:01AM pattyinarnold wrote:

I am not down on Nordstoms at all.  I got the prostheses and bras I have there.  The first appointment to be fitted was very good.   The fitter was very helpful and kind.  That is why I went back.  Even if they pulled a special rack form the back or something for you to look at that would be ok.  The program they have is great.  They are one of the only stores that offer it and I really appreciate that they are trying to help us  I explained this to the corporate manager I spoke with.  He said it is a new program and feed back is the only way they can expand it and improve it to really meet our needs.  So far everyone I have spoken to has been very interested in the feedback of some who uses their program.

It is not the same for all of us.  My mom is 84 and she wouldn't have a problem.  The bras look just like all the others except that pocket.  The point is...choice to do what is comfortable for you.  For me, it was being able to browse and not be herded in the back room.  Insurance should not have been a issue until I was ready to buy.   Nordstroms didn't bill my insurance the first time.  They gave me the paperwork, but I had to pay up front and bill my insurance myself.

I didn't know they would have regular bras pocketed either.  Good info thank you. What I would like to see is giving us a option to make that appointment for a fitter or just browse and pick your own.  You can try on regular bras so why can't we try on our bras if we need to. 

Live like there is no tomorrow, Love like you have nerver been hurt, Dance like no ones watching Dx 1/3/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/11 nodes, ER+

Page 1 of 1 (9 results)

Scroll to top button