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All TopicsForum: Living Without Reconstruction After a Mastectomy → Topic: I look for other flat chested women. A rant.

Topic: I look for other flat chested women. A rant.

Forum: Living Without Reconstruction After a Mastectomy — Discuss prostheses, swimsuits, bras, and other options for women not having reconstruction or waiting for reconstruction.

Posted on: Jun 13, 2012 05:39PM - edited Jul 2, 2012 09:56PM by MT1

MT1 wrote:

I know many of you wear prosthesis, so I probably wouldn't be able to see or 'know', but. I look for you. I want to see you. I want to form a union, lol. I wish it were even more accepted, acceptable to be flat. To not wear prosthesis, not feel the need to, to opt out of reconstruction-if that is your choice. I do hope that women who see me, flat as can be, see there are options, that reconstruction isn't par for the course. I want to make flat beautiful, sexy, stylish. Normal. And it is normal for me, is becoming normal, but I am talking about society, norms and expectations. Breast cancer is not about 'boob jobs'. Yes, many of us opt for them, want and need them. But it is also about choosing to be flat. 

Geez, would I like to meet up with other flat chested women. I would love to take over a hotel, make noise, laugh, cry, be flat together-to see you. I want to meet other women who, like me, have decided not to reconstruct. I want to be able to see you and high five! I want to experience our society of normal.

I was picking up my vegetables from the CSA and a man could not stop looking at my chest, I wanted to yell, 'Breast Cancer did this!! Get it together, man!' I wish all of us would!

Rant complete.

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Mar 13, 2017 04:26PM MT1 wrote:

Thanks all!! I appreciate this space and all it has done for me as I went through treatment, and I love updating with links to stories I have participated in. Thank you for supporting me and making it possible for me to speak up and out on our behalf.


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Mar 13, 2017 09:55PM hsant wrote:

Hi. I want to preface this with I've been flat and happy since June, 2015. I do not use a prosthetic.

Ok, ladies! My point is for someone who opts for recon....sure, it can look like a real breast. I know this from first hand experience with my sister. Also, if you opt or qualify for nipple sparring mastectomy, your recon looks pretty real, according to someone I know who opted for that.

Keep in mind, there are people who don't post, but lurk and are trying to make a choice which is good for them and is accurate. Love to all

Dx 5/10/2015, DCIS/IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 6/2015, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+, HER2- Surgery 6/11/2015 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 7/1/2015 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Mar 13, 2017 11:18PM Suburbs wrote:

hi all. I am struggling with the surgery topic but wanted to jump in and say that the ladies that were in the cbs segment are brave and spirited and breaking new ground. Everyone has many choices and it's a personal decision. In this case, choosing not to reconstruct or not being able to do so are another facet of dealing with the cancer, on the outside, not just the inside. I think establishing a movement with a terrific slogan is a great way to foster acceptance. I had a flashback of childhood remembering woman marching in support of the ERA. I still have my share of hand wringing before I make a call on what to do. In the meantime, whatever I decide, I feel confident that either way, I am not alone. I thank those ladies for their candor and honesty and applaud their service to the community.
Dx 1/9/2017, DCIS/IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Chemotherapy 2/1/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 2/1/2017 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 6/21/2017 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap Hormonal Therapy Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab)
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Mar 14, 2017 12:24AM MT1 wrote:

New York Post article about 'Going Flat' where I talk about this board

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Mar 14, 2017 12:45AM Luckynumber47 wrote:

Suburbs said: "I think establishing a movement with a terrific slogan is a great way to foster acceptance. I had a flashback of childhood remembering woman marching in support of the ERA"

If we're back to burning bras I've got plenty to donate Winking

My avatar is a Blue Footed Boobie. Cracked me up. ATM variant, mom died at 33 from BC Dx 2/15/2016, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/16/2016, DCIS, Right, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 4/6/2016 Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 5/16/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 14, 2017 02:30AM Fearless59 wrote:

Hi, all,

I have just one, DD, and I run around in public without the prosthesis pretty often.... I often forget I have only one. Semi loose clothing. I feel pretty normal. A friend more concerned with looks than I am, we went for an errand or 2, and she really wanted me to wear it. Not sure if she was embarassed to be seen with me or she thought I would be!! It was odd! Whatever! People can just "get over it!" haha

Dx 12/7/2016, DCIS/IDC, Left, 6cm+, Stage IIB, 1/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Mar 30, 2017 02:51PM JoAnn_K wrote:

Surprise! I decided after nearly 3 years of being flat-chested, to get breast prothestics. I go to a support group for other reasons, and earlier in the year, someone commented that I make a lot of comments about my chest and my flat chest in a comical way, but she felt that I was still grieving the loss of my chest, and was making fun of myself to cope. I thought about it, and realized she may have been on to something.

I started wearing little pads in my sports bra, worn to keep me warm in the winter, and felt comfortable, but realized they really don't look like my breast used to look, which were rather large. So I decided to go for it and get the prostheses. It was not traumatic at all. In fact, needing both made it easy. I could pick the size and make both sides evenly shaped. I was fitted for a bra that would accommodate it, and the seamstress made pockets that I could insert the prosthesis in. They feel real. They are also really heavy (3 pounds apiece), but they look natural, and frankly, I feel happier. I look like my old self again. I was ready to look like my old self again. It's time to move on.

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Mar 30, 2017 08:07PM Wren44 wrote:

Good for you JoAnn! It's important that each of us makes the decisions about what we want. Enjoy looking like your old self again.

Lumpectomy & reexcision followed by mastectomy of right breast. Anastrasole.
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Mar 31, 2017 08:07PM - edited Mar 31, 2017 08:08PM by Erica

Joann,

Wonderful that you feel happier with your breast forms (prosthetics). For what it's worth, even with large forms, you might be able to find silicone forms that weigh less than the ones you have now. If they're comfortable, great. But if you decide you'd like something lighter, a good mastectomy shop should be able to help you.

After my bilateral mastectomy without reconstruction, I never went the flat route myself. While I didn't want reconstruction, I wanted to look more or less as I had before in clothes. Though I wear silicone breast forms occasionally, and do feel they're the most lifelike, I've found that what works best for me is wearing unweighted foam forms in a pocketed camisole. They give me a natural shape, feel extremely comfortable, and are surprisingly hug-able.

Whatever makes you feel good is the best solution!

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Apr 6, 2017 02:12PM MT1 wrote:

I am happy to be flat. I don't know why, but maintaining a breasted look and having a flat body doesn't work for me. I don't want two body types. I miss my breasts, I miss how they used to look in clothing, but that doesn't mean I want to maintain two presentations, a public and a private version. Although, I do understand it isn't right for everyone.

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Apr 6, 2017 04:14PM Erica wrote:

Like you, MT, I understand that my choice isn't right for everyone. I thought that I might eventually go flat, that my desire to maintain a breast-like shape in clothes might dissipate. So far that hasn't happened.

But I'm totally comfortable with my flat chest and I've never regretted not having reconstruction.


BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Apr 6, 2017 04:33PM KristyAnn wrote:

Hi Ladies.

I had a unilateral mx in 2008 that was skin sparing to leave my options open. Honestly I was such an emotional mess I did not want to make that decision then. I ended up with chemo and radiation so very few options are even open for recon- Ive looked at all of them- its been 9 years so Ive analyzed things over and over and researched a lot of options. I am hoping to have prophylactic mx on the other side in June and just go flat. My oncologist wants me send me for custom prosthesis and I guess that might be cool for outings or something formal but I seriously cant wait to go flat- so tired of the bras, a prosthesis, dog ear on the mx side (will be removed at next surgery), aches from the bras and prosthesis..... Love reading yalls stories about the flat world--- any advice or tips for me as I move forward?



Neratinib trial Oct 7, 2009- on the real drug Dx 3/18/2008, IDC, <1cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2+
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Apr 6, 2017 06:59PM bareclaws wrote:

KristyAnn, being flat rocks! I never had any doubts about my decision, before surgery and a little over three weeks since BMX, not after surgery. Start planning your future wardrobe. That part can actually be fun. There are a few Pinterest lists with flat options, but really I think most of the things I see online as appropriate for flat ladies, are, uh...matronly? Frumpy? (I deleted my original description.) Think fashion! Clothes look great on a flat figure.

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Apr 13, 2017 08:52AM Rebamacfan123 wrote:

lovely day.

I had two cups of almond organic milk w a few cookies. That reminds me of drinking ginger tea before blood test on Tuesday

Waiting for my PT. Have a bra prothesis and lymphedema garment appt in the afternoon. Insurance company is paying so why not.

Hubby asked me nicely why bra prothesis. I replied there are likely be occasions i need to wear fake boobs.

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Apr 15, 2017 04:39AM feelingfeline wrote:

Reba my freebie foobs take up 2 drawers. Sure they keep each other company I suppose. Wish I liked wearing them as I do know that personally I look nicer with them but I am so sensitive in the mx area that even the lightest ones bug me after a relatively short time so 99 times out of 100 the choice goes - glamour, or comfort? Comfort wins! However it is good to have the choice don't you think?

Dx 1/20/2012, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIIA, 3/22 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 2/8/2012 Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Chemotherapy 4/3/2012 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 7/31/2012 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy 8/6/2012 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 8/1/2015 Aromasin (exemestane)
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Apr 15, 2017 12:02PM Rebamacfan123 wrote:

I feel the same. I am positive only occasions i would wear is some business dinner. Probably less than 3 or 4 times a year. I love my sleeves however. Hoping to see the diff/benefit

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Apr 15, 2017 01:16PM Wren44 wrote:

I just wish my 2 sides matched. I would like to remove the other one so I could go flat or wear lightweight foobs in a camisole. The bra strap goes right over a nerve and sets it off often. But the real one is droopy old lady and needs something to hold her up. Those little shelf bras do nothing for me.

Lumpectomy & reexcision followed by mastectomy of right breast. Anastrasole.
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Apr 19, 2017 03:30PM Bcsurvivor60 wrote:

wow! I agree! I had tram flap reconstruction after losing one breast to cancer 15 years ago. 2years ago I lost my second breast and last year had my reconstructed breast removed. Being "flat" was a freeing experience for me, however, most people look at me like I'm crazy. It would be wonderful not to be gawked at. More awareness is needed

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Apr 19, 2017 10:05PM Wren44 wrote:

BCsurvivor60, People may not be noticing as much as you think they are. I knew a woman for over a year and didn't realize she was flat. I finally figured it out when we were in the same lymphadema exercise class. I thought her posture was a little odd, but didn't know that was what made it a little odd.

Lumpectomy & reexcision followed by mastectomy of right breast. Anastrasole.
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Apr 19, 2017 10:35PM kathindc wrote:

I have only caught a handful of people who have stared at me in the five years since my BMX. When I realized it, I looked hard at them and the next thing I knew their heads went down. Only once did someone do it repeatedly and I repeatedly stared back. They finally got the message. BTW, on that last one, I was reading but I've always have been able to sense when someone looks at me and I look up and find those eyes doing it.

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Apr 20, 2017 04:27PM - edited Apr 20, 2017 04:28PM by ravzari

Bcsurvivor60 I've had other women see me in a fitted tank top at the gym and think I was just wearing a 'really good sports bra' (one even asked me what kind of sports bra I had on because she wanted something to give her that level of compression for cardio! :D ) or assumed that I was small chested and wearing a compression tank instead of flat.

I went from a DD to flat, and even people I've worked with for 3+ years didn't notice anything different until I said something, they just knew I'd been out for a week then worked from home for a week after some undefined surgical procedure (my supervisor and immediate team knew why but that's it). Mostly, I've been surprised how few people actually notice if I don't say something. I was also pretty baffled that nobody seemed to notice as, to me, it was a HUGE physical change since I'd had such large ones before.

My fashion sense is tank tops, plain t-shirts, and yoga pants, so no camo-via-scarves or wearing lots of patterned shirts for me, my breasts were always pretty obvious in clothes, doubly so since I was a big fan of push up & slightly padded bras to make up for natural sagging, so I looked pretty darn big even in loose shirts, and I assumed it'd be pretty obvious once they were gone; even then, pretty much nobody noticed.

It seems that the person who notices it the most is the person who's had it done, and they just assume since they obviously notice, everyone else does too.

Prophylactic BMX no recon, June 2016, due to strong family history of BC.
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Apr 25, 2017 06:08PM sh2015 wrote:

I have dog ears on both sides and in the middle. I will not have reconstruction but what are the chances the insurance will pay for the removal? Has anyone had problems with this?

Dx 10/8/2015, DCIS/IDC, Right, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery Prophylactic mastectomy: Left, Right Surgery Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Apr 28, 2017 02:27AM sbelizabeth wrote:

Sh2015, insurance will pay for surgical removal of excess skin and shaping of your chest. My mom had enormous dog ears and her insurance paid for the skin to be smoothed out and flattened. Please see a plastic surgeon who does a lot of breast surgery. There's absolutely no need to just live with lumpy remnants of skin.

pinkribbonandwheels.wordpress.... Dx 10/20/2011, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 6/28 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 12/15/2011 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 4/18/2012 Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/21/2012 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 7/19/2012 Femara (letrozole) Surgery 4/15/2013 Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap
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Apr 28, 2017 07:57AM Wildplaces wrote:

Yes "dog ears " can appear when two of the sides of the incision are longer ( because they are ellipse curved) then the final closure ( which end up being a line between the two) - if you draw an ellipse and then a line though it you will understand how bringing the ellipse lines on the straight lee leads to excess tissue.

So it is common after such surgery, a complication and as such it would make sense it should be covered for repair.

Most plastics surgeons should be get a good response.

Dx 8/5/2016, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/12/2016 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic ovary removal Chemotherapy 9/11/2016 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 2/20/2017 External: Lymph nodes, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Apr 28, 2017 09:23AM hsant wrote:

SH, I had excess skin removed from my prophylactic side six months after my BMX. It was covered under my insurance

Dx 5/10/2015, DCIS/IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 6/2015, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+, HER2- Surgery 6/11/2015 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 7/1/2015 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Apr 29, 2017 11:38AM tsoebbin wrote:

What's recovery like from dog ear surgery?

I am 52 and Love Travel, My Family and Friends, and Life in General! Dx 4/4/2016, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 2, ER+/PR+ Surgery 5/10/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Dx 5/11/2016, IDC, Left, 1cm, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/27/2016 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right
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Apr 30, 2017 03:00PM MoreShoes wrote:

Just wanted to say, thank you very much. I've just watched the link on CBS about going flat. The last comment did it for me: my body is good enough. Thank you. Thank you. I can't have reconstruction and a year later I still struggle with my body image. It was so inspiring seeing these women.

Dx 4/9/2008, IDC, Left, 2/16 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Dx 6/21/2012, IDC, Right, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Dx 10/30/2015, IBC, Left, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Apr 30, 2017 03:17PM kathindc wrote:

MoreShoes, my motto is "It's all in your flatitude.

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Apr 30, 2017 03:48PM glennie19 wrote:

Flat and Fab !!!

Fibromyalgia and Truncal Lymphedema,,, some of the fun things I live with. Total hysterecomy 9/29/14 Dx 6/27/2013, Paget's, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/8/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left Dx DCIS
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May 10, 2017 02:36PM sh2015 wrote:

Thank you all for your replies. The first plastic surgeon I saw said he would not even try to turn it into Insurance....but he would do it as long as I paid (Geez!) I went to a different one and he will at least TRY to work with the insurance company. I called the insurance company and they just assumed it would be paid...mainly because it is not unusual and I would not have these it not for the cancer.

Dx 10/8/2015, DCIS/IDC, Right, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery Prophylactic mastectomy: Left, Right Surgery Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)

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