7. Fucking Pinktober

Symtpoms: dry cough

Pain level = 0 (thanks to steroids)

Treatment = Capecitabine

UPDATE: tumours have been found in my scalp and under the skin of my stomach – not skin cancer, more spread of breast cancer

 

 This one is a rant, but first, I mean no disrespect to the primary ladies who benefit from the pink ribbon campaign.  I realise that it does do some good, and this is just my opinion.

Every year, we get an explosion of pinkness during October, over everything from frilly underwear to ice cream, from make-up to key rings.  At the start, it had meaning.  The pink ribbon was a tribute to survivors and those still struggling.  Now, it has turned into a Disney version of cancer.  Everything is ‘boobies’ this and ‘boobies’ that, almost like it’s fun.  And it makes me want to puke.

Most of this over-merchandising makes tuns of money for the manufacturer, with little going to the charities.  It might seem as if ‘more is better’ but the message has been lost beneath and avalanche of cute pink accessories which only serve to trivialise the real lives of women with this disease.

Back in the day, we needed awareness.  Too many women were presenting too late to be helped.  No one is saying that we can tick the box, but things are so improved that now there is a risk of over-diagnosis and over-treatment of benign conditions.

More than awareness now, we need research into new treatments, that don’t involve the slash/poison/burn approach of today.  Immunotherapy is in definitely the way forward, but its in its infancy, with viable treatment still years away.

That’s what we should be promoting.  We should be emphasising that, with all the good news, women like me are still dying by the thousands.  Many more are being disfigured and facing excruciating treatment which hasn’t advanced for years.

Now, if I sound like a bitter old hag who is carping on about a campaign that has helped millions, there is some of that.  None of the pink ribbon activities benefit women with metastatic disease.  Only 3% of the breast cancer research budget is spent on metastatic disease.  Even so, I would still say that something has gone terribly wrong when we’re offered a ‘boob bead’ key ring.  The message is getting lost in a all the pink naffness and trinkets, and needs to be refocused on saving lives.

So if you want to do something that will really help, don’t be fooled into buying this junk; lobby your MP to get more funding.  Give to Second Hope and Secondary1st, the only charities working on metastatic disease, or organise fundraising to help.  They desperately needs your support.

End of rant.

 

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