Cancer is Not Pink!

When I started this blog upon learning I had breast cancer, the sole intent was to keep track of important information, like appointments, tests, treatments and my feelings – in one easily accessible place. Rather than having to search through hard copies, which I still keep, digitized information is so much quicker to reference if I need to remember when or why something changed.

Actor1Blogging has also given me a platform where I can rant, cry, rave and simply ramble about things that have nothing to do with cancer – those things that are part of “living,” everyday life which sometimes takes the lesser, supporting role when cancer shows up to play the leading role.

I decided my first step was to pick a name for my blog. I wanted something that was easy to remember but made an on-topic point. I made a hand-written list of names I thought might work. “I Hate Pink,” was a first thought for a catchy name, but after googling “I Hate Pink” and finding Ann Silberman’s incredible, But Doctor, I Hate Pink,  blog, I needed to cross that name off my list. I continued scribbling names on scraps of paper if a catchy name flashed through my mind. Yet Google was proving that every “good” name had already been taken.

I ended up going back to my first thought, the “I Hate Pink” one because first thoughts are usually the best – it said everything I was feeling! I decided to analyze deeper. So, I did.

I reflected upon what I was trying to convey and how everything I searched, related to breast cancer, is pink. Poor pink. It was such a fair, pretty color, until it turned into a death shroud of sorts, forever to be linked with a killer disease. Its new meaning is easily recognizable because of all the hype and damn band-wagoning… poor pink. And then…

CancerIsNotPinkCape1BLUE! A shrieking blue lightening bolt shot through my thoughts, clearing all of my muddle until there, wearing a pink cape, were the words, the simple truth – CANCER IS NOT PINK! “Hell yes! That’s it!” But, I needed to be certain that cancer was indeed, NOT PINK! And my search began…

BreastCancerInside(1)

©Wikipedia Mastectomy specimen containing a very large cancer of the breast (in this case, an invasive ductal carcinoma).

I am only going to post two images of what actual breast cancer looks like because it’s not pretty and it’s not pink.

I understand where the pink got started, with the pink ribbon and Susan G. Komen and it was all for a purposeful cause and well intended to remind women to check their breasts, get checked, get mammograms. And, it worked! Women got the message and have been getting checked and diagnosed.

breastCancerSlide

©UCDavis.edu
Slide 150. Gross specimen of invasive breast cancer. The arrow points to the infiltrating edge.

Since then, however, everyone and their pet gorillas are still throwing pink at us! There are charlatans out there! Buying “pink” doesn’t cure breast cancer, it lines pockets of frauds with plenty of GREEN! And GREEN is what will foster the cure for breast cancer by donating to reputable Cancer Research Facilities! A good place to start is at your State Universities. Check into their Medical Department, do they have a Breast Cancer Research Program? Do your homework. 

Many people feel they are helping by wearing pink products, the more junk they buy, the more committed they are to the cause, but that’s wrong! The $100 they spent on candles, pins, chains, shirts, caps… could have gone toward equipment and made a REAL difference in someone’s future. The Pink Awareness campaign is senescent, women ARE aware. Now, let’s find a cure.

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19 responses to “Cancer is Not Pink!

  1. I wrote a bunch of “I hate pink” posts too. We don’t need more t-shirts, ribbons, and logos. Donating to “breast cancer awareness” is just throwing money away.

    I’m particularly angry at the so-called charities that claim to “give money to breast cancer victims” because I have never met a single woman who had breast cancer, of any age, race, ethnicity … no matter how destitute … who got a penny from any group.

    I always tell people if they want to help a cancer victim, find one amongst your friends, family and/or acquaintances — there are bound to be some — and give them some cash. At least you’ll know your money is going to a good cause.

    Liked by 2 people

    • That is the most helpful suggestion ever! To meet and help the real people who need help.

      I just hate that society has created a “pink club” that is useless and people don’t think! They just want to belong. … ugh….

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    • I will say this: even though I’m not a big fan of Komen, they did help start this group (http://www.wkyt.com/betterliving/headlines/Kentucky_Pink_Connection_and_its_link_to_help_others_149280665.html), which helped me get a colonoscopy, and the treatment I needed after I was diagnosed with breast cancer (unrelated).

      Liked by 1 person

      • What a project! And it is doing good things for people who need help, that is great news. And even better news, they helped you!

        And this is part of my point, people need to be aware of where their dollars are going. I hate the mentality of throwing money away to “dress pink”, thinking because they are wearing all the pink paraphernalia, that they are helping. If I asked the cashier who wears the pink ta-ta t-shirt why she bought it she would say, “To help breast cancer.” End of conversation.

        I think I need to focus on researching worthy foundations that do good. That will keep me distracted during Pinktober.

        Thanks for the information Debi! 😀

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  2. I am amazed. I always hated that pink stuff. And now you tell me none of that money went to cancer research (unless validly claimed). Imagine everybody in North America shelling out $2 that would fund research and/or victims! What a world! Thank you.
    p.s. I’m keeping my 9yo pink baseball hat – it doesn’t mean anything.

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    • No, not “every” pink product associated with breast cancer is phoney, but it’s a tangled web of deciphering who is reputable and how much of your donation actually helps your intended purpose.
      I have to confess that after I had my implant surgery I bought the gaudiest, pink crystal pin that the hospital had in their gift shop, knowing full well that my $10 would do no good. In actuality, I paid more than $10, I paid with my breasts and I don’t know if the hospital saves our cancers to do more research. I wonder what happens to our specimens? I’ll have to research that! Thanks Chris!

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  3. I cannot stand all that pink, but I guess I’ve made that clear. Great post.

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    • Maybe it’s bothering me more because this was just recently my 1st anniversary, I don’t know if it’ll get better or I’ll grow thicker skin. I may not be able to keep the promise I made with my last cancer post – that I would stay away from social networking during Pinktober because it makes me rant. I’m thinking to focus on researching reputable research facilities and agencies who REALLY help women, like Debi noted (above) there are some out there. Thanks. as always, for stopping by!

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  4. I like hearing the history of your blog name – and also like how you remind folks to put their money to where it can help the most. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I totally agree. I’ve even resisted wearing the pink shirts I get for walks or races. People who have never had BC thing they’re doing something great wearing all those pink ribbons in October, but did anybody ever ask us how we feel?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great post. In way too many serious issues the solution society collectively comes to is “let’s buy stuff that is somehow related to serious issue”. Capitalism isn’t going to cure cancer; well-funded institutions and scientists committed to a cure are.

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  7. Love the sentiments. I’m doing chemo now and hate the constant pink in my face. Hate the cutesy sexualization of our disease. For all of the awareness and education these charities say they do, you never hear about mets, male breast cancer, the financial burden of health care, the worry and stress, the pain of surgery, the side effects of chemo, the fact that it comes back in 20-30% of patients. You only hear from smiling survivors. Blah! Sometimes I wish instead of celebrating, people would get mad and actively do something. I read a blog about a woman who used all of her sick and FMLA days and got canned in Oct. Her boss had pink ribbon crap all over her desk. Yikes!

    Agreed! Know where your dollars are going and if you know someone going through it, don’t be afraid to visit or help out. Thanks for the blog!

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    • Thank you so much for visiting and taking time to comment. There are many of us who decided to share our real-life breast cancer experience in hopes of perhaps helping newly diagnosed patients.

      We all have different stories and there isn’t just one “type” of breast cancer, and, like I said, none of it is pink. Pink people won’t realize the truth of breast cancer unless it happens to them.

      Even before I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I questioned the effectiveness of pink-washing – I never bought anything from pink campaigns.

      Thank you for stopping by. And I wish you the best of luck and health as you endure the treatments. Please stay in touch!

      Like

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