I'm 0 weeks and craving a more effective way to raise breast cancer awareness.

This was my status message last night. It had 21 "likes" by morning...way more than I could have expected.

Everyone seems to be playing this game:
Hey!! This is what its about...Ok pretty ladies, it's that time of year again, in support of breast cancer awareness!! So we all remember last years game of writing your bra color as your status?.....or the way we like to have our handbag handy? Remember last year so many people took part that it made national news and, the constant updating of status reminded everyone why we're doing this and helped raise awareness!! Do NOT tell any males what the status' mean, keep them guessing!! And please copy and paste (in a message )this to all your female friends to see if we can make a bigger fuss this year than last year!!! I did my part... now YOUR turn ! Go on ladies...and let's have all the males guessing! .. It's time to confuse the men again (not that its really that hard to do :)) Everyone knows it makes their brains work wonders on what we're talking about!! The idea is to choose the month you were born and the day you were born. Pass this on to the girls only and lets see how far it reaches around. The last one about the bra went round all over the world. So you'll write... I'm (your birth month) weeks and I'm craving (your birth date)!!! as your status. Example: Feb 14th= I'm 2 weeks and craving Chocolate mints!!January-1week Febuary-2weeks March-3weeks April-4weeks May-6weeks June-8weeks July-10weeks August-12weeks September-13weeks October-14weeks November-16weeks December-18weeks Days of the month: 1-Skittles 2-Starburst 3-Kit-Kat 4-M&M's 5-Galaxy 6-Crunchie 7-Dairy Milk 8-Lollipop 9-Peanut Butter Cups 10-Meat Balls 11-Twizzlers 12-Bubble Gum 13-Hershey's Kisses 14-Chocolate Mints 15-Twix 16-Resse's Fastbreak 17-Fudge 18-Cherry Jello 19-Milkyway 20-Creme Eggs 21-Pickles 22-Skittles 23-Gummy Bears 24-Gummy Worms 25-Strawberry Pop Tarts 26-Starburst 27-Mini Eggs 28-Kit-Kat Chunkie 29-Double Chocolate Chip Crunchy Cookies 30-Smarties 31-Chocolate Cake

That's fine, whatever.. their facebooks, their lives. I'm not personally hurt or offended by the silliness, but I am lucky not to have lost anyone to breast cancer or suffer from infertility. So, yeah, I won't be playing. At least, no more than I did--with a sarcastic version. I just don't get it. If you are like me and many others, you saw all of your friends announcing pregnancies, knowing they weren't pregnant, and scratched your head. Later, I got the email and was all, "Ohhhh, okay.. wait.. what? What does that have to do with breast cancer? How does tricking people into thinking I'm pregnant raise awareness? I'm not even 'allowed' to tell anyone what it's about, so how am I making anyone aware of breast cancer?" It's strange.

Have you seen this blog post? It's a good read. http://cgwardphotography.blogspot.com/2011/08/regarding-facebook-breast-cancer.html?spref=fb

Here are my own, personal reasons:
  • If my family thought I was pregnant again, they'd probably all be devastated. Not because they do not want more babies in the family, but because another pregnancy could very well end up killing me and, even more likely, kill any babies I became pregnant with. I wouldn't do that to them.

  • When I was in high school, I was best friends with "M". Her mother had colon cancer and was always in and out of hospitals for a while. Eventually, she was just cared for at home. I watched this sweet woman, rapidly it seems, lose her battle to cancer. When I would go over to M's on good days, she would call me back to say hello... on bad days, I would hear her moaning in pain from the living room. There was nothing fun or funny about it.

  • I have 2 friends, "J" and "L", who are both suffering from infertility. Each badly wants a baby and, after several, several months of J trying for a second child and several years of L trying for her first, neither has had a successful pregnancy. I can't imagine how they feel seeing all the "Gotcha!" pregnancy posts. J not only suffers from infertility, but also lost her mother to breast cancer. I hate to speak for others, but I'm fairly certain that she doesn't find the games beneficial at all, and instead--finds them rather hurtful. I do know for sure that she doesn't like them. The fact that the game has to do with faking a pregnancy just adds insult to injury. Here is another (similar) great post on why this game sucks for the infertile: http://infertility.about.com/b/2011/09/03/im-pregnant-just-kidding-new-facebook-meme-for-breast-cancer-awareness.htm
One of the comments on that article implies that the article is suggesting that you shouldn't even talk about your dinner because someone may be hungry and offended. The f^#k? How does someone get that from the article? I think what it's saying is more along the lines of: If you knowingly have some starving, homeless people on your Facebook (which would be odd, but go with it), it would be flat out evil to be all, "Guess what? I just had an awesome steak dinner in my warm, comfy home!" as a joke.

When you add all of that to the awkward feeling one must get after genuinely congratulating a person they think just announced a pregnancy, only to find that it's a game..well, the game doesn't seem very fun or funny anymore.

I apologize for the fact that this post isn't funny or entertaining..but, you know, neither is cancer. Let's spread some real awareness. Post some links with some real information on breast cancer. Here is one link the has multiple links conveniently pasted on the same page:

Need more? Let Me Google That For You

16 Response to I'm 0 weeks and craving a more effective way to raise breast cancer awareness.

September 5, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Very well said. I rarely even use my FB any longer because of the "If you've known someone with cancer repost (and most of you won't)" or "My sister is a mf'ing angel, if yours is a mf'ing angel too repost" bullsh*t.

I truly fail to see how this does *anything* to help anyone beyond the temporary amusement it gives to the people who try it or (maybe, just maybe) king those with a diagnosis feel supported or remembered.

Beyond that, I resent the crap out of these sorts of "Haha men are such idiots!" games, emails, bumper stickers, t shirts, etc. Why in the HELL is making guys feel, look, or sound dumb the go to idea when it comes to breast cancer? Every woman who deals with breast cancer more than likely has a guy who is also profoundly impacted by her condition--a father, a boyfriend, a husband, a son...this gets a BIG whatever from me.

September 5, 2011 at 2:45 PM

Well said Lacey, I didnt get it either so I didnt do it. My husbands mom died of pancreatic cancer & I can hardly see how a game on fb would've benefited her. -Nikki Carroll-

September 5, 2011 at 3:43 PM

Could not agree with more......"M"

September 5, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Awesome post. Stumbled you, I hope it spreads like wildfire. <3<3

September 5, 2011 at 9:42 PM

Very well said! :)

September 6, 2011 at 4:22 AM

My son has just been diagnosed with cancer and some stupid game on fb doesn't help at all but the sweet comments of encouragement on fb really do help. I would bet everyone has been touched by cancer at some point in their lives whether by acquaintanceship or personal. We should encourage people to be checked because we love them and don't want them to suffer or lose them to this sometimes preventable disease. So remind someone to have a mammogram because you love them and want them to be around a long time!

September 6, 2011 at 9:37 AM

Like most things the original intent gets lost. Thank you so much for your perspective. I am very guilty of passing this along on fb.
NOw I am passing along a link to yout post

September 6, 2011 at 10:12 AM

Came across your blog through bloggy moms. Can't wait to read up :)


September 6, 2011 at 11:06 AM

I loved the CGWard article, thought it was quite well articulated and made very valid points. And you also make a very personal relationship to the "stupidity" of the game (in my opinion). I am glad to see that there is such a common theme of dislike for these stupid "awareness" games (and the other stupid posts as a PP alluded to!) - but along with that, a drive by so many to get some REAL awareness generated, in a way that might actually HELP someone, as well as honor those who have fought a battle with cancer. Well said.

September 6, 2011 at 11:11 AM

Im trying to understand were your coming from, but I have to admit I'm not completely there. Not just because I play these "stupid facebook" games. Do I know they have little to do with breat cancer awareness, yes but only from the funding stand point. Constantly talking about it, is just what the word says "awarness". Are you aware of breast cancer and it's impact? we where pink shirts and flash pink ribbons, but how many do self breast exams? most "awarness" campains do little for people who suffer with cancer or may have lost someone, but they does mean you should stop talking about!!! As far as this last game goes, I'm sorry you and your friends were offended by the pregancy inuendo, but I have a feeling that they are going to be sensitive for a while, my mom was when she had a miscarriage. Maybe you they should have passed around they misscarriage/lost baby status that went around earlier this summer (similar to the antibullying ones). I personaly don't take facebook so seriously, I'm umemployed and have little money, but don't get offended when my friends talk about their jobs, or go on shopping sprees. I'm happy for them!

September 6, 2011 at 12:12 PM

I seriously have to say, I love you. I have gotten so many of those ridiculous FB inboxes. Okay, so most of them are cutesy or funny, I agree that this one is really not. I'm not actually offended by it, however I don't find announcing I'm pregnant and then saying Gotcha, even in the slightest bit, amusing. My sister is TTC after 3 miscarriages and my best friend is TTC. It's just not funny and I love that you eloquently verbalized what I've been wanting to say every single time I get one of those inboxes.
So thank you :)

September 6, 2011 at 1:38 PM

I admit, I passes along the game on FB without thinking about it from this perspective as well. I won't be in the future. Thank you for sharing your feelings on this. I'm so glad Triberr RT'ed this post.

September 6, 2011 at 7:03 PM

Found you on Bloggy Moms and love the posts and decided to follow.
Yeah..I completely agree with this post. I don't understand what the FB status has to do with breast cancer. My aunt is a breast cancer survivor, but in no way, shape or form am I felt to go along with this silly little FB game. Nonetheless, I am not one to judge and really just shake my heads at my friends that I have.

Looking forward to reading more of you blog. hopefully you will stop by and follow back!


September 7, 2011 at 11:30 PM

I hope it's okay that I use your status message. I had been away from facebook for awhile and when I returned I saw this going around. I didn't put this up as I didn't get how it helps. I had just written a post about Cancer because a friend lost her mother in law to Breast cancer and is raising money in her name for her birthday...THAT i would write about...This just blows my mind, and apparently A LOT of the blogging community has been aggravated..Okay I am sure many people are but us bloggers have a pretty loud voice with our blogs!!

September 8, 2011 at 7:21 PM

What would be more useful to breast cancer awareness would be to post a message asking people to take 2 minutes and give themselves an exam, to remind female loved ones to give themselves an exam or post a link to donated/volunteer for the organization. That is productive and not a game!
Well said and I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks this way :)

September 16, 2011 at 9:14 AM

as an infertile woman, I totally appreciate this post! Love your blog & nominated you for the "Versatile Blogger" award. The details are on my post at http://psychodynamom.com/2011/09/16/you-like-me-you-really-like-me/

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