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Speak Up: How Have You Been Affected by Breast Cancer?

Breast Cancer Awareness Month is coming to a close, but I know for many of you, you don't stop thinking about breast cancer when the month of October draws to an end. It's disheartening that breast cancer is so prevalent, and I'm sure every one of you knows someone who's been diagnosed, has recovered, or lost the battle against this horrible disease. Many of you have stories to share, and by letting others know it increases awareness about breast cancer and connects us in some way. For me, knowing that I'm not the only one with close friends affected by this disease makes it a little more bearable. So tell me, how have you been touched by breast cancer?


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BraveFool BraveFool 8 years
One of my best friends was diagnosed with breast cancer this summer - at age 25. She's in her 13th week of chemo right now, and every day is a struggle for her. But she's been amazing throughout the whole thing, and has spent the month of October reminding her friends (constantly) about how important monthly self-exams are!
scottdavis0676 scottdavis0676 8 years
I had my left breast removed a year ago owing to cancer, but I have since made a full recovery. As long as the cancer doesn't metasticize, your survival rate goes up tenfold. Luckily I detected mine in its nascent stage.
CreateMagic CreateMagic 8 years
My aunt died of breast cancer when I was 14, 11 years ago. She was 35. By the time they had found it, it had metasticized (sp?) to her bones and was terminal. I miss her everyday.
alethia037 alethia037 8 years
I have fortunately not been affected by breast cancer... though I cannot say the same for other cancers. My heart goes out to each of you who has lost someone or been close to someone going through such a terrible ordeal. Please also push the men in your life to get regular check ups... my best friend just underwent chemo for testicular cancer and had one testicle removed... he is 22 years old.
PurpleFairy3 PurpleFairy3 8 years
My grandmother had it eight or so years ago and survived and is still alive today! I love her so much!
crazylovevbug crazylovevbug 8 years
my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer and survived. she was really lucky, she found it super, super early.
kristints kristints 8 years
Also, 356UIK, please stop thinking about it that way, our mind controls a whole lot of what happens to our body and if your mind is saying that you're for sure going to get cancer, then, you will. Think of your mother and aunt's diagnoses as being a helpful reminder to be proactive with your health, but don't use it as a way to beat yourself down, that won't help anyone. Think positively and positive things will come your way.
kristints kristints 8 years
I haven't been touched by breast cancer, but I have been touched by the equally horrifying, but not as spoken about ovarian and uterine cancers, lost my aunt to both a few years ago.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
My sister was diagnosed just about two weeks ago with Stage 2 intrusive ductile breast cancer. She is in the process of trying to attack this problem and she's trying not to be as fatalistic as she started out being. But she's seriously breaking down because our youngest aunt died on October 1 from breast cancer in the same breast. My sister is an RN. She ALWAYS does monthly self-breast exams and she gets her regular pap smear and breast palpation from her doctor. Neither she nor her doctors felt this huge cancerous mass that has turned out to be breast cancer. Why? Because as I found out the vast majority of women do not ever fell the cancerous lump until it has broken apart and spread into a position the breast that is obvious. My sister's cancer is under her breast tissue in between the muscle on the ribcage and her actually invading the mammary ducts of her left breast. The surgeon, oncologist, radiologist and her primary care doctor still cannot feel the huge lump with palpation but the can now feel the guide wire they placed in it and they can feel the lymph nodes on her neck and down her arm that are inflamed and possibly cancerous. The mammogram showed a slight obstruction "a fuzziness" on the film is what the radiologist said. So she had another inconclusive mammogram and a MRI which clarified things - a 1 to 1 1/2 inch mass under her left breast issue on the muscle wall of her ribcage. She said it looks like a spider either coming out of her breast going toward her ribcage or going the other way. My sister's breast cancer is not estrogen induced which is not good. But we've got a very aggressive game play for the treatment and she's going to start chemo and radiation before she has surgery next week. My sister's oncologist is so pissed becausemy sister's primary and gynocologist both ignored my sister's complaints of pain in her ribcage sometime radiating through her breast because my mother's side of the family has no instances of breast cancer going back several generations. My sister has complained of fatigue, joint pain, breast pain, shorteness of breath and other things for at least a year and a half. They did blood tests and said her SED rate was high but it was it, they said maybe she has Lupus or RA but they never physically checked to see why her SED rate (which can indicate that the body is either fighting a serious immune problem or cancer) was so freaking high. Everytime my sister would say, "Two of my aunts had breast cancer." They would ask if they were maternal or paternal aunts. Paternal. She'd get the response "No, your father's family genetics has no effect on your health." Which makes absolutely no sense what-so-ever, doesn't half your DNA come from your father? We found out my father's side of the family is chalked full of women who died of breast cancer or fought breast cancer. 10 women on my dad's side have had breast cancer, 9 of those women died from their breast cancer. We had just thought that only our Aunt Zoe had breast cancer. But another aunt had it and beat it and she's the only one who has beat her cancer. My grandmother's two sisters had and died of breast cancer. And they each had three daughters and all six of those women had and died of breast cancer. Anger does not begin to describe the depth of our feelings about the misinformation out the in world. My sister and I should have been having mammograms and MRIs since we were 18 or 19. But now at least my identical twin nieces will be starting to get mammograms/MRIs every year starting at 18. Talking to the helpline at the Susan G Komen Foundation has been mind-blowing and illuminating. I'm actually glad that even before I ever found out about the breast cancer in my family or that my sister has breast cancer now that I was donating money to them regularly. 80% of lumps found in breast are not cancerous. The 20% that are cancer, the recovery/survival rate is improving every year.
Tassie Tassie 8 years
My aunt is battling it at the moment, my thoughts are with her. When I last saw my aunt, the loss of her hair really hurt her, it seemed to be just the most recent thing to break her heart and spirit, so I recently donated my hair to Pantene Beautiful Lengths - its not much, but if my hair helps someone maintain a positive attitude, it might help them make it through.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
My aunt's mother-in-law had breast cancer that was not caught early enough. It metastasized and spread to her bones and lungs and by the time they found it, it was considered to be terminal. She underwent radiation and chemo for a long time and the cancer took her life a few years ago. I also have a good family friend who had breast cancer and caught it early. She had a mastectomy and is now 10 years cancer-free. So be sure to do your BSEs and get your mammograms...they can save your life.
juju4 juju4 8 years
My grandmother, two aunts, and my mother have had breast cancer. (All of those women are on my mother's side). My husband's grandmother lost her battle with breast cancer. My mother is the Breast Cancer Care Coordinator at a cancer center in her area. She makes me so proud....she is an advocate for patients that walks them through every step of the process, and is someone they can turn to with questions and advises the families that need counseling. Ironically, despite my family history, neither she nor her sisters have the breast cancer gene.
356UIK 356UIK 8 years
Yup, my mom and my aunt have/had it and I'm pretty much gonna get it at some point eventually. Whatevs, I'm over it. :(
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
Luckily I haven't been personally affected by it, but my heart goes out to all of you who have.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
my grandmother had breast cancer, and at the time, my mom didn't even tell me about it - i was away at overnight camp and all i knew was that my mom was going to visit my grandmother for a couple weeks which seemed odd at the time, but i wasn't really in a place to question it. luckily she was able to beat it and lived for a while afterwards. i think that knowing how many people are affected by this disease these days, there are very few of us that can say that we don't have a relative or friend that has been living w/ this.
indieglam indieglam 8 years
My boyfriend's mom is going through a round of radiation right now after chemo and surgery. She has such a positive attitude about it and I think that's really helped her get through it so far. I hope she kicks this cancer's ass.
Briandiesel Briandiesel 8 years
Thank you all for sharing your stories. I can't imagine the strength you all have. I have been lucky so far with my mom. Two lumps removed. Not cancerous. Thank the Lord. I used to have to pressure her to go get mammograms. Not anymore.
Witchy-Ways Witchy-Ways 8 years
My grandmother died of breast cancer and I'm constantly worrying that my mother, who leads a very stressful life, might get it too in the future...
Peggasus Peggasus 8 years
Sorry, more comments since I just posted mine: I am also sorry for Jude's loss and like Fit said, everybody else's too. Even now I remember I forgot about my cousin's wife Shirley (who died), my MIL's cousin Rosanne and my husband's Aunt Kathy...too many friends and family members.
DaytimeDreaming DaytimeDreaming 8 years
My mother died because of it when I was 15, so it's always on my mind.
Peggasus Peggasus 8 years
I have about six friends who have had it in the last twenty years, a few having total mastectomies in their mid-20s or 30s, who are all fortunately still around. My own mother has had it twice: the first time 13 years ago (lumpectomy and lymph node surgery along with radiation), and again 3 years ago, with a mastectomy and chemo. I figure I'll get it one of these years, too. I'm sorry for your losses, bjf and hex.
Fitness Fitness 8 years
For all of you have lost someone to this disease or who have had to watch loved one battle the "C word" my heart goes out to you.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Lost my mother to it when I was 13.
princessgouveia princessgouveia 8 years
My mother had it 15years ago and recovered but the mastectomy and chemo was really tough on her so now the C word doesn't get mentioned ever.
hex913 hex913 8 years
It's never off my mind. I lost my 40-year-old sister to it about a year ago. Breast cancer will always be something I think about, and will be diligent in checking for myself and for the ones I love.
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