There are two sides to every story. Even though the words are the same, the goals is the same, the way that it is perceived by two different groups of individuals can be totally different. Today, I had an interesting conversation with a blogging friend who opened my eyes to the other side of the #NoHairSelfie post that I put up a few days ago.
I would like to begin by apologizing to any of my readers, friends and family who have had cancer if that post offended you. That wasn’t my intent. It wasn’t until I saw many blog post splashed across my Facebook feed that I began to see what I saw as a way to support friends and family members going through this horrible disease, that in fact they found it offensive and hurtful. I thought in light of what I have learned, I thought I would share both sides of this campaign and why I chose to participate.
Why I chose to participate in the #NoHairSelfie Campaign
I have never had cancer or any other serious illness that has threatened my life (Thank GOD). The only people who I have watched struggle through cancer was my grandparents. I didn’t live close by, but I did take them to surgery appointments and doctor appointments. That being said, I didn’t witness their hair loss, their extreme illness from chemo or their emotional breakdown.
When I was offered the opportunity to work with Princess Margaret to promote this campaign, I felt like I was been given the opportunity to help make a difference. I saw this campaign as a way to get people talking about cancer rather than ignoring it or being afraid of it. I thought it was an opportunity to inspire people, who get lost in a busy shuffle of life, to donate to this cause to help find a treatment. I thought I was helping.
Why It Is Offensive!
One of my good blogging friends, MySoCalledMommyLife, has recently battled the beast and won! I followed her journey on her blog and got a glimpse at the pain, suffering, and turmoil that a person with cancer goes through. I can’t imagine what is beyond her posts, the parts that were too horrible, too painful and too embarrassing to share. I admire her honesty and bravery to share this with the world. It wasn’t until she wrote this post about the #NoHairSelfie campaign, that I began to see how the campaign could be offensive.
Here’s what MySoCalledMommyLife had to say on Instagram today:
That this 👆 is what I looked like. Bald. Losing my hair was devastating. I didn’t have a choice. One night two weeks after my first chemo, my hair pretty much died all at once. I had no choice but to shave my head and wait impatiently for it to grow back. When you have long thick hair, becoming bald is heart breaking. Being bald let’s everyone know you are sick. I don’t want you to shave your head in “solidarity”. Because even if you choose to shave your hair you still don’t understand the pain and suffering that came along with me losing mine. Yours will start to grow back immediately. Mine didn’t. There are so many other ways to show you care and support those with cancer. Most importantly money needs to be raised to continue to fund research to have top of the line treatments and hopefully soon find a cure.
The purpose of this post is not to place blame. I believe that the campaign was created with the best of intentions at heart. It was created as a way to bring about awareness for the disease and help to raise funds to find a cure. Please take the time and donate! That is what this campaign is all about! We want to find the cure for CANCER and make the word CANCER obsolete.