I finally realized that there was something going on right about the time that the third person on my friends list was seemingly announcing a pregnancy via facebook in a 24 hour period. “I’m 13 weeks and craving skittles”, “I’m 9 weeks and craving ice cream” and within a couple of days, every other post on my newsfeed followed suit. Then, I got a message in my inbox. It was the same bullshit that has prefaced these past “viral” statuses, a claim that the “secret game” was to bring about Breast Cancer Awareness.
First of all, if the purpose of the status is a big secret, how the fuck is it going to bring about awareness? When I read my friend post “I like it on the kitchen counter”, I didn’t think to myself “Oh shit! I need to go examine my breasts for lumps!”. No, instead, my first thought was, “damn! A bit of overshare.”. When I read “6.5 inches *sad face*”, it didn’t inspire me to take a moment and consider how many of my friends and family have been impacted by breast cancer. The only thing I thought was, “is this breakup revenge humiliation?”. So, with that in mind, when reading “I am 11 weeks and craving chocolate”, why would people think anything other than you are announcing that you are full of fetus? Why would these same people that congratulated you, upon the realization that it was a joke, be reminded of all of the people, men and women, that have fought the battle with breast cancer, the survivors and the deceased?
Personally, the latest “facebook awareness campaign” made me very uncomfortable. I have more than one friend who struggles with infertility and I have several friends that have suffered multiple and/or very recent pregnancy losses. I cringed at the thought of them reading those statuses and congratulating their friend, only to discover that it was a joke. Furthermore, I have loved ones who have been touched by breast cancer and some that have lost their own loved ones to breast cancer. I can’t imagine that these statuses that exploit that battle in an effort to popularize the “game” enjoy having their experiences and losses marginalized for the amusement of others.
Posting a fruit, posting where you put your purse and fooling people into believe you are pregnant does nothing for breast cancer awareness or research. If you want to bring about awareness, share a story of how you have been affected by breast cancer, whether directly or indirectly. If you want to donate, make a contribution directly to breast cancer research.