Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Breast Cancer the Socially Acceptable Cancer

A breast cancer diagnosis is no fun. Actually any cancer diagnosis is no fun. We all know that. But maybe because of all the 'awareness', it is now more socially acceptable than other forms of cancer. Isn't that just weird? I think so.

Meanwhile, a woman in New Zealand was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer and she wonders if breast cancer would be better because of the stigma surrounding smoking and lung cancer.

I think lung cancer is the only cancer which is regarded as 'self inflicted'.  Face it, as normal human beings we associate lung cancer with smoking. But not all smokers get lung cancer and not all lung cancer patients were smokers. I think we look at lung cancer patients, even us former smokers, as people who have done it to themselves. They smoked and they got the lung cancer they 'deserved'.

The problem then is with the original cancer stigma, all cancer patients can feel isolated and alone. Which is no fun. But lung cancer with its added stigma makes it even worse. How to find the best support when you don't have the 'in' cancer?

First of all breast cancer patients seem to be all around us but lung cancer patients are fewer and harder to find. Then its got this additional stigma. I think all cancers should be equally treated with the same resources available for all.

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