Connecting with African-American Women with Breast Cancer
We need online forums for breast cancer support in the African-American community. For me, being diagnosed with breast cancer was devastating. It came out of the blue and totally disrupted my life. I went online to Google breast cancer statistics and treatment as soon as I got home. I researched all that I could about breast cancer surgeries, treatments and survival rates. In doing so, I found out devastating news-that black women are diagnosed with breast cancer at younger ages than white women. I also learned that many African-American women die from breast cancer.
This shook me to my core, the fact that black women are 40% more likely to die from breast cancer than white women. But I also thought, there has to be African-American breast cancer survivors out there. All black women diagnosed with breast cancer don’t die, right? So, I went on a mission to find online forums for breast cancer support or online support groups dedicated to black women since I could not find any breast cancer support groups in my local community.
My Quest to Find Online Forums for Breast Cancer Support for African-Americans
I was able to locate a few organizations. However, none of them were online forums for breast cancer support for African-American women. The few websites that did show in my search results were national organizations that did not focus on online groups. For a number of reasons, physically going to a support group may not be an option. And considering that almost everybody and their momma are online and on social media, it is surprising to see that the conversation about breast cancer is almost silent online in my community.
I also found an online forum that dedicated a section to African-American women with breast cancer. But no one responded to the few outdated posts. That was two years ago. I saw a question posted a couple of days ago and none of the members have responded.
Not surprisingly, not much has changed. I am still struggling to find a platform to meet other black women online who are currently fighting or survived breast cancer.
I’m Not the Only African-American Breast Cancer Survivor
Why do I feel like I’m the only black woman dealing with breast cancer when statistics show that so many black women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year? But where are they? Why don’t we have support online? Where are the women that look like me that were diagnosed under 40 years old? Did they all die? Are they still here but have no desire to share their stories with me? Why are we, black women, left to fight the fight alone?
We have to be there for each other when it matters, and when no one else is there for us. And while I appreciate that there are online forums for breast cancer support, I am well aware that my journey is so much different than Becky with the good hair.
The reality is this: We don’t have to fight breast cancer alone! My call to action is for You to step out of the shadows. Black women, young and old, rich and poor, are in despair from a breast cancer diagnosis. We can’t just be there for each other when we want to spill the tea, gossip about celebrities, and tweet about the latest episode of Love and Hip Hop Hollywood.
What do you think, Black and Topless readers? Did you feel alone during your breast cancer journey? Are you going through the motions now but feel all alone? Please leave a comment. We have to start somewhere.