Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Regarding the facebook "Breast Cancer Awareness Games"

***THIS is my blog. I am aware there are other "copies" going around the internet. It has been brought to my attention many of them have been "edited". This is the one to read. ;)


**NOTE SEPT 2nd 2011, 2:55 pm eastern time. I am overwhelmed at the response I received from this blog entry. I never imagined in a million years how many others would be so understanding, including those who played the game. Thank you. I would also like to apologize ahead of time for my lack of writing skills. lol. I am not a writer or journalist. I am simply a woman, with feelings. I never meant for this to become viral. So, point being, please don't let my writing inabilities take away from the point I am trying to make. I was simply defending the infertile community, the TRUE Breast Cancer Awareness Cause, and then, myself as I was personally attacked. This blog was NOT written to attract attention. Apparently it has. Whoops. I had no idea the masses of eyes that would stumble upon this.

A couple readers pointed out that by THIS blog post I am doing exactly what the creator of the game wanted; to bring breast cancer awareness. Well... I just don't think they planned on me coming along. lol. My destiny can not possibly be that special lol. But I am very glad that by getting up here on my soapbox (I'm really short, I need one lol), that I did make it (the game) about Breast Cancer Awareness again; as it should have been in the first place. That doesnt mean their game worked, it means the people who protested it did.

We have recieved THOUSANDS of letters from hurt & confused people with valuable emotions who felt this way. We have yet to hear of one single person who has actually scheduled a mammogram due specifically to THIS game. There doesn't seem to be a mass exodus of women rushing to their Dr's right now because their co-workers, sisters, teenage daughter posted a facebook status message that made them think they were pregnant for a few hours. ONLY hurt and confused people, and still, men who are left clueless. That says it all.

I love the ideas from commenters! Many of you have opened my eyes as well! Thank you!!!!!
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Warning. I'm long winded. lol.


Ok I'm going to be the party pooper. :( I know someone will get offended & try to judge me in return for my feelings. I hope instead of being angry, if you participated in the latest facebook "breast cancer awareness game", that instead, you will open your heart and listen to me and maybe be able to see things from a different perspective. Pretty please? Our circumstances tend to be the basis for our opinions right? Ok. :) So here's a different point of view.

Last year a game was started on facebook, to "raise breast cancer awareness". Women emailed other women, to keep it a "secret from men" (which slices the possible amount of awareness spreading in half immediately), of how to play, to post their bra color as their status, so men would wonder what the fuss was all about, and somehow, this was helping to raise breast cancer awareness. Maybe because bra's are for breasts, that was the link *shrugs* When you get a minute, read that story about the bra game from a survivors point of view. It's worth it. Short read. Informative.

CLICK HERE FOR A SURVIVORS OPINION ON THE BRA GAME

Then it became posting where you like to leave your purse by saying "I like it on _____", so you were left with a sexually suggestive status message. For instance, "I like it on the chair in my office" Again, I'm having difficulty understanding how this helps anything related to breast cancer. And what is the point in "hiding it from men", when men TOO can be the victims of breast cancer... but many don't know.. because nobody tells them! I mean, if we were really trying to raise awareness, we'd want it to reach everybody, right?

Then we were told in secret, to post our shoe size, but in inches, with a sad face after it, another sexually persuaded status message. So I guess if you have big feet, or small feet... well you get it. In the end, most people had NO idea it had anything to do with Breast Cancer Awareness. :( If you did. Cool. I'm glad. But I have found that the majority of folks, had no idea.

Now another game is being played. This particular game, was when I had enough and felt I needed to speak up. I was going to keep my mouth shut, but then I saw dozens of people I am in touch with online voice the same hurt I felt. So here I am talking about it. We now have women on facebook pretending to be pregnant by choosing a number representing their birth month, and birthdate. Yea seriously. The birth month states how many weeks "pregnant" you are, and the birthdate claims what you are craving". There was a cryptic chart being emailed from women to other women via facebook with a list to choose from as far as "weeks" and "cravings". For instance, had I played the game, my facebook status message would have said, "I am 13 weeks and craving gummy worms!"

When someone figures out that it's a game and that person is not really pregnant, they are not an ounce more educated about breast cancer than before they fell for it. :) They're actually probably either extremely annoyed, upset, or just laughing at being thankful that someone WASN'T pregnant.

I'm not playing this game. As it appears, I can not have anymore children due to health issues and an ovarian disorder. I have one child. My Abby who is 8 years old, who, yes for the record, I appreciate and love to the core!!! If you look at the rest of my blog, you will clearly see that. :)

I suffer from secondary infertility. That means I can not have anymore children even though I have had one. An estimated 15% of americans, (more than 5 million people) suffer from infertility. This means, someone you love, who wants a child and deserves one, can not have one (who is likely on your friends list). My husband and I have tried since we got married to have a baby, pretty much every month. My daughter really wants a brother or sister. We have tried vitamins, bettering our health, counting days, taking temperatures, creams, ovulation kits, you name it, even taking unsolicited advice from friends and family. Everything we can do besides invitro, as we can not afford it. I did conceive in March of 2009, but miscarried around 4 weeks after conception, when I did not yet even know I was pregnant. We were devastated. As you can imagine, pretending to be pregnant as a joke, is downright vulgar to me. It would PAIN my family and friends who have been praying for us for years for me to jest of pregnancy on facebook and then say "just kidding!".

From this game, I witnessed someones mother become ELATED at thinking she was about to be a grandmother by her daughters (newlywed at that) participation in the "game". It took nearly a day for her daughter to sign back onto facebook (I'm assuming she has a job :) ) and tell her she would email her; the email that informed her that no blessing was on its way. I haven't seen that girls mother say much since then on her page in the last few days. Is it related to her post? I don't know. Maybe not. But, nonetheless, at least for a bit there I imagine she felt like a dream come true for her had just been ripped out of her chest. But hey, it was for charity right? I mean, come on, it's for a good cause, why should anyone say anything bad about it! I'm not alone in feeling this way. Maybe if you played along, your family and friends don't mind that kind of humor. Ok cool. If you're that confident that absolutely nobody on your friends list wasn't disapointed or felt awkward after, then hats off to you. And for the record, I recieved about a dozen emails just from other moms who experienced something similiar. One of them was so excited, she called her husband at work, her sisters, and they all started to celebrate and squeal in excitement. She is so hurt, she doesn't even know how to talk to her daughter about it :( . Doesn't that just break your heart?

And keep in mind, and this one is important folks, many of the young breast cancer survivors who won the battle, are now INFERTILE from the treatments they needed to fight breast cancer. So I imagine a mockery of pregnancy "on their behalf" via a facebook status message is probably adding insult to injury. :( not cool.

I'm the sure next comment will be... "yes but now people are more aware of Breast Cancer Awareness because of the game". Again.. this. whole. thing. is. an Epic. Fail. All this has done is cause strife and divided us as women. Not drawn us together. Not taught us anything about a serious medical issue at all. It is still pointless and a bit unintentionally, insensitive. Non productive for sure.




We know nobody meant to hurt anyone. Of course not. Nobody is being mean in return by asking folks to please stop or try to understand how hurtful this can be. But when you tell someone "lighten up" after they say "ouch", that's when it feels personal. Instead, just say, "I didn't think of it that way". Because we know you probably didn't. What ever happened to a good old fashioned apology without a "but, but, but!", right after it? I'm not lashing out at the people who sent it to me, gosh I know you probably meant nothing by it. I still love all of you :), promise! I know that no one intentially hurt me by sending it or by playing it. But I feel confident that when they decided to play, they weren't feeling a passion for raising Breast Cancer Awareness, but rather a bit of a giggle inside of pulling the legs of the people on their facebook friends list and eagerly waiting the reaction they got. Come on guys, you know you did that. lol. I wonder how many of you were excited for those who took the bait and actually emailed them and said "Ha! Got your attention! I love you and it's important to me that you get a Breast Exam", and they responded "Why yes, that's a fabulous idea! Had you not pretended to be pregnant, I would have never thought of that!" And if you were one of the few who WERE thinking about Breast Cancer Awareness, I'm super proud of you. Honestly. Maybe siking your friends & family out into thinking you've been given a blessing is that much fun to you, ok, fine.  If you enjoy that kind of shock value, have at it I suppose. Maybe it is funny for some people. But to connect it to breast cancer awareness is hardly justified or tactful. We all love it when we pull a good clean trick on someone, myself included. But please try to understand, this, is very, very, tacky. I understand that spreading Breast Cancer Awareness is a very important cause, but this idea, wasn't very well thought out for the cause at all. Not to mention the rumor mill that will come from those who are new to facebook and not internet savvy who saw someone post a pregnancy and doesn't check their page often or have any clue what is going on. You watch. There be those peeps out there, yo. *wink* lol. And now the loads and loads of teenagers and scared and angry parents who were affected by this game are coming out of the woodworks. And NONE of them are talking about Breast Cancer Awareness.

We're just asking for understanding, and a better effort. Unfortunately, some people can't stand it when they accidently do something wrong and instead of trying to learn anything or think with their heart, they stomp their feet and throw toys. Instead, we ask that you please sample a slice of humble pie. It's good for the soul!

Yes, I know; we judge others based on their actions and ourselves based on our intentions. It is a human flaw and it's not fair of us. I don't see how a passionate intention to help spread Breast Cancer Awareness could have ever been the focal point in starting this game. This was a game that never should have had the Breast Cancer Awareness Cause pinned onto it.

Let's find more productive respectful ways to spread awareness instead of using silly facebook status messages. As a society, we have just GOT to be more creative than THAT. Mmm hmmm. I believe that in my heart of hearts. We can do better! *big smile* You know which one really worked that WAS funny and WAS focused on Breast Cancer Awareness!? The "feel your boobies" campaign! :) When I first saw this, I can tell you, I remember it. It was on my friend Renee's myspace page about 4 years ago. I cracked up laughing & I said to myself "well yea I guess you do have to feel your boobies to see if theres anything weird there, that makes sense". And honest to God, I gave myself an exam. I felt my boobies! And you know what, I found an OWIE! Turns out, it was just a fluid pocket & cutting down on caffeine can help it. PHEW! (and I learned that malignant tumors doesn't exactly = pain.) I have fibrocystic breast tissue. I wouldn't have known that or what it was even called or how to check for changes had my friend Renee not said "FEEL YOUR BOOBIES!" lol



Now THAT!!! Up there! That is great marketing! It's colorful humor, is what helps it get passed around... cause I know.. it's gotta be catchy and attractive to get it out there... BUT... it is so obvious what it's about so it's right on the point and DOES in fact make you think about getting a mammogram or doing at home self breast exam!!!! *big smile*


There were a few passionate ridiculers who felt pretending to be pregnant was a noble deed, who sent me hate mail. (Not very many, no worries, maybe only like 5) Apparently not only do I live with infertility, but now it is my responsiblity, my albatross to carry, to suffer in silence, while a very tasteless game is played in the name of a very serious cause. And again, I am not alone. I am just one of many many many.

Thinking that this is tacky is not being judgemental either. And please, don't try to use my faith against me. I actually had someone try to tell me that as a Christian, I shouldn't feel this way. I'm sorry, I disagree. It's called discernment, not judgement. Jesus Himself got angry when He saw something that was wrong. And He never sinned. Being a Christian or Jew or a Muslim or an Athiest or whatever you are, doesn't mean we aren't allowed to think & feel anger. Yes we are to control it. Sometimes our anger can be processed in a productive way to make wonderful things happen! God feels anger when something wrong is done does He not? It is not a sin for me to feel this way. I can "discern" that this isn't such a fabulous game. It wasn't a very well thought through idea. Just like when I see someone screaming at their small child in the store and cussing & acting like a fool. I'm not judging their parenting skills. I can discern that they need to calm down & learn more affective ways of parenting.

We are all AWARE of breast cancer. Being aware of it doesn't make you immune to it. You can be a Dr. who treats breast cancer patients and become a victim yourself, correct?

If you played the game, I guarantee you there is someone on your friends list who saw you post your fake pregnancy, and for a moment, she was reminded of her empty aching womb, preparing herself to congratulate you, because she loves you, and yes, she IS truly happy for you if you ever do get pregnant, please know that. She went through the emotions that come with such a sensitive situation for her, and she probably cried. And when she found out it was all a joke, she probably felt anger and pain and learned NOTHING about Breast Cancer Awareness.

This is blog post is NOT a guilt trip. If you played & you feel bad now, let it go. Here's a hug!  (((HUG))) I don't want you to feel guilty. I want you to feel inspired! And I want you to feel your boobies!! Haha!

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I'm all for being proactive. I have a plethora of ideas to help you be more proactive too!
  • Next time you get paid, donate some money to your favorite Breast Cancer Awareness Charity. There are so many to choose from. 
  • You could even donate to a local clinic that treats breast cancer patients who can't afford their treatments.
  • If you know someone who has breast cancer, go to her house after she's had chemo and help take care of her and cook for her family and clean her house so she doesn't have to. Be her friend. Be sensitive to her needs.
  • Ask her that if you faked a pregnancy on facebook, if that would help her get through her battle.
Here are some examples to help you understand more if you still don't quite see the big deal. For instance, I'm against animal testing for cosmetics. I can pretty much promise you being "facebook pregnant" isn't going to help make people realize how bad it is or stop big companies from doing it anyway. I'm also all for promoting Autism Awareness. Autism has affected a few children in my extended family. I don't think people realize how common it is. If I started a game emailing women in secret saying "Don't send this to men, leave them clueless, but post your status as the last time you vaccumed but say it like this, 'I did it yesterday' or 'I did it this morning', and we can spread autism awareness!" Really? Does that really help spread the word for a cause??

Oh wait here's an idea! Let's have all the men, email each other, and not women, and all post their shoes size on their status messages but end it with inches.... to help spread prostate cancer awareness!!! For instance.. my husbands status message would say "10 1/2"!!! See how easy that was to help!??!! Wait... what do you mean we didn't help..... Oh..... well it's ok,  my heart was in the right place and that's what matters. *wink*

I am pretty confident this "game" was started by someone who will never know what it is to ache and pray for a child and to not be able to have one, or who isn't close to someone who goes through the same monthly pain I do. You may roll your eyes in irritation when your dear Aunt Flo (period) shows up for her visit, but many times I clean myself up while I CRY!!!!! And your infertile friend or cousin, well, she does too. And then when I let my husband know and I see the disapointment in his eyes too. If you've never been through that on a consistant basis, please don't judge me or my lack of enthusiasm for this whole fad, or your friends who are going through it.

Breast Cancer Awareness is a noble cause. It deserves better treatment and publicity. Nobody who is truly passionate to the core for breast cancer awareness would be proud of a game that has not been effective in spreading breast cancer awareness, but only the hurt feelings of many of its sufferers.

ADOPT! Ok, well, for those of you who seem to think adoption is so easy and afforable for us all and are rude enough to insult me because I have not gone that route yet, trust me, I've thought about it. A LOT. I didn't get to tell my ENTIRE story in ONE blog! My journey with infertility is still young, I am only 31 yrs old (32 in a couple weeks, those of you who actually tracked my birthday from the game already knew that lol) . I may very well adopt someday. I'm sort of adopted myself. *big smile* and I'm an only child! :) And if it really means THAT much to you that I do adopt immediately, I'll give you my address so you can send me the money to pay for it. *smile*

I know things can always be worse. That's true for pretty much the entire population. Just keep in mind, there are no winners in the Pain Olympics.

I am stepping off of my soapbox now. I hope at least one person who played the game can see it through a different set of eyes and understand how tasteless and tacky and useless that "game" is.

NOW HERES Something to pass on via facebook that IS productive! You can CLICK a simple button right from where you are sitting, to give FREE mammograms!!!! Yay!!!

CLICK HERE TO HELP! <no seriously its really quick and simple and useful!

and join them on facebook! they have some GREAT easy to share "pass alongs" that are productive and cute!!!!

THE BREAST CANCER SITE ON FACEBOOK <great stuff to click "share" on you'll love!

Best Wishes! Hugs! Smiles!
CgW






UPDATE. I have received an overwhelming positive response from so many people today after I posted this blog entry. I have had thousands of strangers contact me. It turns out, many many women, and men too, were upset over this "game" and I was not alone. I would like to mention, many of those responses were from Breast Cancer Survivors, who agreed that posting a facebook status message suggesting a possible pregnancy, does nothing for Breast Cancer Awareness, or treatment for those living with Breast Cancer. I've had Dr's contact me & thank me. Women who experienced negative backlash from playing the game because they accidently hurt feelings of their family members who believed they were pregnant. Widowers who thought it was senseless. And a man who has breast cancer who had no idea it was even possible until he was diagnosed! If you could read the comments in my inbox, you would know exactly why I spoke up. Trust me. It was worth it. I would like to thank everyone who has left me supportive comments and for taking the time to tell us your story and experience with this topic. We have opened many eyes. I have decided to leave this post on my blog. 

Still not sure it really bothered anyone? Scroll down and read the comments ;)

a survivors perspective <warning, she speaks her true feelings. Good read.

more about me :)

CHEERS!

©C.G. Ward 2011


I put my money where my mouth has been and I donated $10 from each session I've had since I wrote this blog and 10% of my tshirt sales to the Breast Cancer Site at http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

https://www.thebreastcancersite.com/store/item.do?siteId=224&itemId=40805

I hope you'll join me!!!!

295 comments:

  1. I had to link to this post on my facebook. This is SO TRUE. There are several people on my friends list that are struggling with infertility and out of respect for them I have refused to play this game. Aside from that NONE of them do anything to raise awareness.

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  2. So true, I suffered with secondary infertility and have a very good friend who suffered though primary and know many in the TTC community and this is just outrageous, (as if the "normal" run of FB preg announcements doesn't sting enough. Great post and I so hope they do away with this game fast.

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  3. Thank you SO much for posting this. I also suffer from infertility and always will (I have premature ovarian failure) even though I'm pregnant (through donor eggs from my sister) this game was so insensitive and unfunny.

    I posted on my FB last night asking if anyone who sent me the email or participated donated money to cancer research. Of course NONE of them commented on it.

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  4. My friend posted this link on FB, I'm so glad she did. I couldn't bring myself to "play" the game, even though I am expecting. My husband and I tried for three years to get pregnant, during that time we faced a lot of heart ache. I can't and won't announce my pregnancy on FB, because I remember the way it ripped out my heart time after time and the tears I cried. I'm so sorry for all that you're going thru, but thank you for speaking up.

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  5. I hadn't seen the latest game on Facebook about the fake pregnancy but I'm glad I've been made aware of it through here! Thank you so much for posting this. I agree, it does not help awareness and it does hurt! I was foolish enough to participate in the bra colour game. Not something that I'll do again. Cancer is a killer... not a joke and anyone that thinks it is should spend a day in the shoes of a cancer patient or a cancer survivor in my opinion. xoxoxo

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  6. Thank you. Glad I am not the only one livid about this latest "game". I've had 5 losses after my only child, and I am unable to have more children due to early menopause.

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  7. As God as my witness, I won't play this game. Now, if only I could get people to be as sensitive about my kid's life threatening food allergies.

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  8. I had a miscarriage in May. I won't be playing this game at all.

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  9. I played this stupid game. I didn't think about the immaturity of it. I'd like to apologize to anyone that this game makes sad. I miscarried years ago, and I can imagine seeing this as someones status and being completely crushed by it, then finding out it's a joke would hurt even more. I'm sorry.

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  10. I suffered with infertility for years as well. Though now, God has seen me to have children, I very much remember the excruciating pain of infertility. I remember hating all pregnant women. I. have. been. there.
    I too will refrain from this game.

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  11. THANK YOU, THANK YOU for posting this!!! I agree with everything you just said and do not know how this helps people be aware of Breast Cancer...

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  12. I sent this link as a reply to the message you're talking about.

    If we need to post status messages about breast cancer awareness, how about we spread the fact that breastfeeding helps prevent breast cancer, in both mother and child.

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  13. I had that email sent to me and for some reason the whole thing didn't sit well with me. I ignored it at the risk of being insensitive to those struggling with breast cancer, and not being a part of the "raising awareness" movement. I am blessed with four healthy now adult children. But not for one moment have I taken it for granted that I was very blessed!! My heart goes out to every woman fighting your battle and all those other battles that we encounter in life. Thanks for reinforcing my decision NOT to play the game as the right thing to do.

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  14. You go girl(s)! I find them distasteful and refuse to participate. I would rather donate to a research project and just come out and say, "Hey, breast cancer is a problem and we need to support those that have been affected."

    How hard is that?

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  15. I am 100% in agreement with you. My husband and I have struggled with infertility...for about 10 years. I was one of those people that ached when I saw the first posting on this. Thank you for sharing your story. I'll be praying for you. Please pray for us. We have no children yet but trusting God to bless us with a little one. God bless you.

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  16. I didn't know this was a game and I saw a girl on my page who is supposedly going through infertility, and she posted on her page she was 2 weeks and craving Starbucks. I was all like, wtf, she's pregnant! I would have been happy but I was so jealous... then to find out it's a stupid FB game. I deleted her and now I'm just done with the silly mess. This is a good post, I have one daughter but can't seem to get pregnant again... Such is life.

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  17. My sister has been trying to have baby #2 for nine months now. She got pregnant the first time right away and didn't expect this time to be any different - but it is. A friend of ours posted that she was pregnant earlier in the week (for real) and then the game today led her to believe that someone else was pregnant and she asked them on FB "Are you pregnant?" and they've yet to respond. For at least a bit today, she thought she was being hit twice in one week. So I totally agree with you.

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  18. I just posted a status to my own FB not a half hour ago saying pretty much what you are saying here. I think the ppl who play this game are not thinking about it at all. Not only is it inconsiderate to ppl it also has the potential to wreck relationship they are in at the moment. Yes "supposedly" it is to raise awareness but I dont see how it does that at all! I see way my problems with this game then any kind of gain that breast cancer awareness will receive!

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  19. I have to say I am so sorry. I played this "game" and passed it on to several other women. One of them is a new friend and she led me to this blog and told me of her personal struggle. I am so so very sorry. I immediately deleted my post and have passed this blog on to everyone on my facebook. I am so truly sorry. I would NEVER intentionally post something that I thought would cause someone pain for one second!! NEVER! I just didnt think of the consequences or even if the "game" had any validity. I just blindly passed it on. Well, it was only on my page for about 3 minutes but I know that some saw it. =( Its gone now. Thank you so much for helping me to see past myself.

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  20. Wonderful post!! I also have shared this on my facebook page. I haven't seen this latest game, but after suffering through the stillbirth of my son last year I'd be shocked if any one of my friends were actually stupid enough to ask me to play along.

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  21. i have been trying to have #2 now for well over a year.. i was on depo and well, i didn't realize that it was going to mess up my system so much that it would cut me off from being able to ovulate, and thus, not be able to get pregnant.. :( everytime i see a woman pregnant, or know someone that has announced they're pregnant or see a baby, i YERN to be able to go through all of that again.. i think people who are posting this 'game' dont understand that it hurts other people :)

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  22. AMEN!! Four miscarriages, and a stillbirth at 34 weeks, and they think its some sort of game to spread awareness about breast cancer?! I really dont see the connection.
    I totally agree with your blog post, and linked it too my facebook! and am now following your blogger!
    I guess they dont know that they are rubbing the salt in the wound.
    Hugs and love to you all!

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  23. I'm a guest, I hope you don't mind but I shared this on my FB page! My mom is a breast cancer survivor of 10+ years and this does absolutely NOTHING for breast cancer research or its patients, or anyone dealing with the cancer or treatment as we speak.

    I also have a few friends with PCOS who have hard times conceiving, and I have a friend who recently - miraculously - gave birth to twins after 8 years of trying and devastating miscarriages and IVFs.

    I completely agree with you that the sentiment from these games, not just this one but all of them, are childish, insensitive, inconsiderate, and pointless. I am sorry for all you have been through and I send you and other women strength and optimism. Keep your chin up, even though it may seem hard, and thank you for posting. :)

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  24. I will not play this game either. As a mother of 4 and with many complications having my children. My youngest only 4 and not being able to have anymore due to a uterine rupture with #3 and then just over 2 years after #4 I had a hysterectomy due to horrible scar tissue from my c-sections and uterine rupture. It is still hard for me knowing I will never have anymore and having my children beg for more.

    To the one that used the depo. I also used it for a year and I did get to have 2 more after words. They were farther apart than my first 2. So there is still hope.

    Know I understand and care about those of you wanting more children. I would love that as well.

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  25. THANK YOU!!!

    I've not struggled with infertility nor have I struggled with cancer and I find this distasteful and insensitive and just plain STUPID! (Although I am connected to many who struggle with both.)

    I refused to participate last year. I refuse to participate this year.

    I usually don't follow suit on FB games, so it's a no-brainer to not do this one. But it aggravates me so much to see people posting random nonsensical statuses and keeping them secret for the sake of a cause!?!?!?!? really!?!?!?!?

    On that note .... tomorrow is wear teal day. Teal is the color of Ovarian cancer and I just recently lost a close friend to Ovarian cancer. So tomorrow, as a part of Ovarian Cancer awareness, I will wear teal. But I will play no games with my FB status.

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  26. As someone else said, I have people on my friends list who struggle with infertility. Not to mention I have plenty of family on there asking me all the time when I 'plan on having #6' and the last thing I want is to post a "game" and get nothing but harassment and harsh words from my family thinking I'm seriously pregnant again. Ugh.

    I didn't play the purse game...the foot size...the bra color...or anything else. I don't do the ones saying post your kids' birthdays, or the ones where you use mothers maiden name to make up your 'gangster/stripper/star wars/some other stupid name' games.

    Too much personal info out there these days, and these stupid games feel like another way to get MORE from us.

    Who stops someone from going 'Ohhh...3 weeks and pickles...now I know a month and a day...' and doesn't take much to figure out a year.

    Nope, no thanks. I'll keep deleting the messages, and blocking the posts.

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  27. You just said almost word for word what I said in my friend group earlier!

    I'm so sorry you have had to go through the pain of loss and infertility.

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  29. I myself do not suffer from infertillity, but am done having children! I can't imagine the amount of rumors this would fly! I, like you, think this, and alot of the other games, are a senseless waste of time! Thank you for posting this!!!

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  30. Thank you so much! I'm so glad someone finally decided to post something about this "game" I do not understand how some people could be so incentive. You go girl!

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  31. Have you tried going on a gluten-free diet? I worked with a Naturopathic doctor and she discovered that I had a food sensitivity. The sensitivity causes antibodies to go haywire in your body and they attack any foreign substance (including sperm and embryos trying to attach to your uterus), which can also lead to miscarriages.

    Just thought I would put it out there. It's not a difficult thing to try. Give it a shot for at least 6 cycles. We tried for 2 years and 6 unsuccessful fertility treatments. I went on the gluten-free diet for 2 weeks and got pregnant. I had to stay on the diet throughout the pregnancy, but it kept me at a healthy weight.

    Much love and best wishes,
    Jodi

    PS I agree with you on this blog post.

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  32. thank u so much for ur blog. i had no idea. sorry for my ignorance in this matter. i will be praying for u and ur family.

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  33. I so agree... I "played" the bra game once and then thought about it... I refused to play any of these games again. I lost a grandson in November to being born too early and have a friend who has had many miscarriage and then finally carried a daughter to term only to lose her shortly after birth.. This is a cruel game. Thank you so much for re-affirming my decision not to play these "games".

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  34. This is a wonderful post. I too suffer from secondary infertility. My baby girl is almost five years old and I know on her fifth birthday I'll be crying not just because she's another year older but because it's a symbol of another year of unfulfilled dreams. So many of my family members and friends have played this game and sent this message to me. I have not played it. Because I didn't want people to misunderstand and think that I had finally conceived the second child I've been longing for. I haven't participated in any of the last several games and I doubt I will be any time soon.

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  35. Thank you for posting this. The latest 'game' has my blood boiling. There are so many women in my life and business that are struggling with infertility and this is extremely disrespectful. I appreciate being able to share your post rather than trying to compose my own thoughts about it.

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  36. I just want to thank you so much for having the courage to put this out there! My husband and I have struggle with infertility and trying to have a baby for over 7 years. We don't have any children and long so desperately to have a baby to love. I applaud you with every word you spoke because it is EXACTLY how I feel and the way I have wanted for so long, to express my feelings to family and friends who so carelessly throw pregnancy around like it's nothing. Very well written! Thank you so much!!

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  37. This game isn't making anyone aware of anything. It is just something copy pasted... I have to taken part in the purse game, but then thought, what knowledge is being passed along? No lesson learned. Not one symptom, no instructions of how to check yourself. It can be hurtful, and it isn't the intention of those around you. This isn't a woman's disease in fact it is common in men and now even small children are being diagnosed. It is cancer. it is a killer. it isn't funny!

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  38. Hi! I agree completely that these FB games do nothing to raise awareness about breast cancer. I haven't participated in any of them. I lost my mother to breast cancer in 1988. She was 44. I was 18. My siblings were, 16, 7, and nearly 4 years old. Breast cancer is nothing to joke about or to play silly games about.

    The paragraph in your blog that made the most sense to me is: "I'm all for being proactive. I have a plethora of ideas to help you be more proactive! Next time you get paid, donate some money to the Susan B. Komen for the Cure cause or donate money to a local clinic that treats breast cancer patients who can't afford their treatments. If you know someone who has breast cancer, go to her house after she's had chemo and help take care of her and cook for her family and clean her house so she doesn't have to. Be her friend. Be sensitive to her needs. Ask her that if you faked a pregnancy on facebook, if that would help her get through her battle."

    That's what people who want to help fight breast cancer can focus on, finding ways to donate their time, money, services, or help, either directly to someone they know or a clinic in their community or indirectly to an institution somewhere in the world that is searching for new and better treatments or even a cure.

    Be well~Sara

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  39. I had this message from a single, childless friend and I 'left the conversation' and deleted the message; I should have said something. My first thought was of disgust, how many people had been overjoyed for their friends or family, only to have it crushed. It's cruel. You raise a very good point about the despair for a woman who is desperate to become pregnant & sees this joke.

    Good on you for blogging this.

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  40. Id like to think that intentions count for something, and people arent meaning to be cruel. I know that doesnt stop women from feeling upset by it, but people are just trying to have fun and unfortunately it can hurt people, but in life anything can offend or hurt others, and many people would not link their facebook status to infertile women... (im not saying its right, but its better than intentional hurting)

    I personally changed my profile, and this article makes me feel very bad for doing it. In my mind it was not linked to breast cancer at all, i mean I know some person, somewhere started the idea in their basement kind of thing.

    However in regards to breast cancer awareness, they are a lot of worse things out there happening in the name of breast cancer (with the logo attached to it and everything). Ever see a sponge with the pink ribbon, or fabric, make up shades.. etc. you name it. Many many many of this products that donate 1$ directly to the foundation for "awareness" have chemicals and other crap that are actually linked to cancer.

    In Canada the first lady lit up their house in pink for breast cancer awareness, please tell me how switching all your perfectly fine lightbulbs to totally un necessary pink ones then leaving them on day and night for a week does anything for the cause. Its ridiculous for sure!? Wasting energy and who knows how much money to pay people to switch the bulbs.

    We are aware of breast cancer, we dont need to be more aware, we need to do something, fund more research into preventative, or treatment options.

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  41. Thank you so very much for writing and sharing this.

    I had 2 family members i love dearly post the status. After I posted congratulations one never responded and the other posted "hahaha" with no explanation.

    I know one of them knows I couldn't have children because we talked about it just the other day; the other is a generation younger and may not realise.

    Now reading it was just a game... it's devastating.

    But finding out I'm not alone does help, even though I wish dearly none of us had to deal with this level of hurt.

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  42. I have never participated in " any " of these breast cancer awareness games.. I never will. Cancer is serious and not a game. I lost my stepson at the age of 13 years to rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare childhood cancer. I raised him as my own. I have 3 other children but suffered 3 ectopuc pregs and I think a status like this is very insensitive. We need to educate and inform others on what to look for. Thank you for wise blog..

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  43. Just wanted to say well done. Couldn't have put it better myself.
    From a slightly different perspective,and hope I don't upset anyone saying this as it's not my intention, but I never wanted children of my own...partly because I have an incurable kidney disease and many other health probs which I know would be passed on to any child and I could not do that, but also a part of me seems sadly lacking in desire to have kids. I don't know why, it's just me, I can't help it.

    I have also suffered because of this, with women (many of whom are mothers) calling me a "freak" and saying I'm not "normal" for not wanting kids...or I'm not a "proper woman" as they visibly edge their own children away from me like I'm some kind of monster.

    It's bloody awful and quite frankly pathetic. I cannot help the way I was made any less than I can help the health probs I would never want to pass on, as my poor Mum (bless her soul) did desperately not want to pass onto me, but such is life and it's no ones fault..it's just life.

    I also refuse to take part is such childish and insensitive "games" on fb and also fail to see how this has any result except to unnecessarily drag peoples feelings through the dirt.
    My mum also had breast cancer and a mastectomy, as well as other forms of cancer...and I completely fail to see how these childish and pathetic games do anything other than wind people up.

    Like you said, if we really want to raise awareness, then damn well start talking about it, doing something about it and actually RAISING AWARENESS instead of messing about with stupid hide it from the men games on fb. And I agree...what kind of stupidity does that send out??? Hide it from the guys?? Do the same if we have breast cancer do we??

    Idiots.

    Sorry, rant over. x

    Much love, good health and peace to those of us out there who still possess a brain!
    Fiona.xxx

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  44. THANK YOU for posting this blog! I ABSOLUTELY agree with you and was quite offended, not only because I struggle with infertility, it took us 8 years to finally get our little miracle Jack but unfortunately he came too soon due to Incompetent Cervix on Aug. 31, 2006 and died in our arms 5 years ago today, Sept. 1, 2006! This is very insensitive to those of us who have had our precious baby die and those who have had miscarriages because we would all give anything to turn back time and be pregnant with those SO Wanted and Loved children! Thirdly, October is not only Breast Cancer Awareness month but it's also Pregnancy and Infant Death Awareness month! So this "game" was truly done in poor taste.
    Joey....Jack's Mama

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  45. Thank you SO much for articulating so well what I have long felt about these stupid fb games. I am 43, and my mother had breast cancer at 42. As you can imagine, each mammogram is fraught with anxiety, and just yesterday I got my overdue annual mammogram. Later in the day I got a message about "the game," and while I knew it was well-meaning, the sheer idiocy of the premise deeply offended my intelligence! How on earth is this helping breast cancer in any legitimate way?

    As others have said, make a donation, cook a dinner, drive a child to soccer, clean a house, nudge a friend to get a mammogram...in other words, do SOMETHING other than alienate the male population or make a mockery of the miraculous ability to conceive a child.

    Thank you for speaking for so many of us.

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  46. I was diagnosed with breast cancer 9 months ago and I couldn't agree with everything you said more!!! There are more proactive ways to raise awareness!!

    Kerri

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  47. I'm glad I'm not the only person posting about this. I missed the "pregnancy game" because I would have flipped my lid.
    http://teawithfrodo.blogspot.com/2011/07/breast-cancer-awareness-is-so-much-more.html

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  48. Thank you! Breast cancer has affected more people in my life than any other disease. So I'm all for awareness, but frankly I don't know how much more "awareness" we need to bring to it. I think people are "aware". Let's focus on cures.

    What people don't seem to be aware of is how many people are suffering from infertility and just how devastating it can be. My wife and I went through 10 years of RPL and PI before having our miracle girl. Even now that she's here, the pain of infertility doesn't go away. And sometimes dumb things like this on Facebook can trigger an avalanche of emotions.

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  49. I thank you for posting this blog. I struggled with fertility problems when I was younger. I suffered abuse as a child which left scar tissue. It took 3 yrs to have my daughter and another 7 yrs to have my son. I truly feel for any woman going thru the struggle. I also lost a great sister-in-law to breast cancer. I don't think anyone in my husband's family or in my sister-in-law's family would find this game to be humorous in any way.

    I applaud you for standing up against this ridiculous excuse for awareness. You have given great ideas to help. One you don't have that I really find quite easy, go to Breast Cancer site & click on the button to help fund mammograms for women who can't afford it, TOO EASY!!!

    Again, thank you. And God bless you & all the other women who want children but have trouble having them. Also God bless all those affected by breast cancer, or any other cancer. I ask for love & care, strength, courage & wisdom to walk the oath we are ea h on. Bunches of love to all

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  50. Brilliantly said. I am now pregnant with twins after 3 years of painful heartache. I will never loose the pain that I went through and am glad that this has been said. You are currently my yoda! I'm also sorry for your pain, nothing can take it away but I hope that knowing you have lots of love and support can ease it a tiny bit x

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  51. Where is the "LIKE" button? LIKE, LIKE, LIKE, LIKE! Instead of posting that I'm nine weeks and craving peanut butter cups, I'm posting:

    "Once again this year, I'm NOT playing the breast cancer awareness game. Instead, I'm posting the DATE OF MY LAST MAMMOGRAM: August 27, 2010 - and if you are a woman who has entered the age of mammograms, I'm encouraging YOU to post the date of YOUR last mammogram. COPY AND PASTE THIS (changing the date, of course) IF YOU WANT TO "PLAY" ALONG WITH ME.
    (In just looking up this date for myself I discovered I'm a few days overdue. Now THAT's effective breast cancer awareness.)"

    Julie Stiles Mills
    http://pragmaticcompendium.wordpress.com

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  52. Thank you for opening my eyes to this. I did play this game, but not to raise awareness for breast cancer as I am no fool and realize that my facebook status will not change the world. I played it because I have the complete opposite problem that you do. I have 6 kids and my husband has had 2 vasectomies. We discovered we were pregnant not long after he had his first vasectomy. When we got over our shock and accepted the fact that our family was growing yet again, we made the announcement that we were in fact expecting. I received many negative and hurtful comments from my "friends". I played this game because it was a game. I wanted to see if anyone would post hurtful comments again this time and since everyone else was doing it, it was okay. I'm taking down my status now. I am sorry that I offended you and I hope that no one else was offended. Thanks for opening my eyes.

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  53. Love love love this blog. Very WELL SAID! I commend you for stepping up on your soapbox to share you thoughts and feelings. I do have fb and am just annoyed with those silly things. I really don't pay attention to them. Till i read you blog. Now my eyes are open and I completely agree with you. Do you mind if i post this? I'd like my friends to see this.

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  54. Thank you so much for writing this. The Facebook "games" to "alert" people to the threat of breast cancer are inappropriate at best. I am a 23-year-old woman with endometriosis, and while I am not trying to get pregnant, I know that it may be a long, painful, and probably impossible process. Pregnancy is not something to be taken lightly, much less used as a way to "publicize" breast cancer awareness. Thank you.

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  55. Thank you for this beautiful post. You must have been reading my mind.

    You've worded it beautifully.

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  56. I am one of the "infertile" ones. This doesn't offend me in the least. Maybe I have a thicker skin since I resigned myself years ago to never having children? I didnt read your whole blog because I felt like you summed it up pretty much in the first few paragraphs. Thanks for the different point of view. Hadn't really given it much thought until your post. I think the games are silly & I too am not sure how they promote Breast Cancer Awareness. Maybe if they said "And click here to donate to BCA" at the end or something? Hm.. Probably not.

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  57. Oh, and by "this" I mean the games. But neither does your blog post offend. :)

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  58. Yesterday when I began receiving these emails on facebook to participate in this game, I was horrified. I must have missed out on the previous games played to "raise awareness" as I'm not a huge facebooker. I was surprised by the message it was sending and surprised by the people I knew who were actually participating. It's tacky and insensitive.

    I agree with your message in this post wholeheartedly. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer back in 2007. She was in remission for the past 3 years until last week when they found those tell-tale spots on her scans after her mammogram.

    I had not had the strength to share this news with my friends and fellow bloggers yet but I think now might be the time. Getting emails about how I can support breast cancer awareness through silly games is hurtful when you understand that cancer is NOT a game. And I can completely see how this could destroy people who are dealing with infertility as well. I'll be writing a post on my blog today and linking to your message here. Thank YOU so much for putting into words how I feel about this.

    Much love, Sarah Kate
    http://dixie-creek-farm.blogspot.com

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  59. Please do explain how running around or racing has anything to do with helping breast cancer or any other medical problem. Or how your fertility whoa's cannot benefit from other woman's fertilization, who just might not want to be fertile? By taking an unwanted child who is in a home with a hundred other unwanted children. How can that not bring the most joy to you and yours in this time of child desperation and need of a growing family.

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  60. My Grandmother had Breast Cancer and every year my Aunts do the bay bridge walk, to raise money for research. Not sit behind a computer and post innuendo. My Grandmom later got Pancreatic cancer, and we watched her die slowly and painfully. I hate those stupid games. If you never had cancer, or knew someone with it, then maybe you shouldn't make a "game" out of it

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  61. You put into words what I could not. I, too, only played the "game" when it was bra color, but thought it stupid to keep "secret" from the men. Who cares? Seriously.

    But the others? I could not see how they raised any awareness of breast cancer.

    This latest one did nothing but make me pissed off. I've linked this blog to my status to hopefully raise awareness to my many, many friends who did participate.

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  62. I'm so glad you said it out loud. I've shared your blog several times because I think you nailed it on the head. To allude in any way that you are pregnant could be so hurtful to someone who struggles with infertility. I have 2 wonderful friends who each struggle in different ways. One with endometriosious and had to have a hysterectomy at 29 and unable to get pregnant. Another could get pregnant but would loose the pregnancies before she got to 12 weeks. God has found to bless these women in their own unique way, but I would NEVER dream of joking about being pregnant. Thank you Thank you Thank you!

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  63. I love your post, and hope you don´t mind that i share it on my FB page :-)

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  64. I never saw the game, but I totally agree with your feelings on it.
    But, your mentioning your secondary infertility, made me want to share my story with you, as for years, I thought I would never have another child.

    After my son was born, I had 3 depo shots. Then we decided we were going to try to have another baby. Test after test with no reason whatsoever. After 8 long years of hoping I finally got pregnant. I lost the baby less than a week after we found out. I then proceeded to have 2 more miscarriages, that almost completely broke me. My story does have a happy ending though, after everything we went through, I did finally carry a baby to term and she is now 4 years old. There is a 12 year age gap between my children.

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  65. I agree with everything you've stated here-not as a breast cancer survivor, but as a woman who has had 8 miscarriages in her lifetime. I do have 2 living children, thank God, and they are a blessing-but those pregnancies were very hard pregnancies as well. I had a sister-in-law who survived breast cancer (but later succumbed to ovarian cancer), and have a dear friend who is a survivor. I also have many friends who have struggled to have babies-one had 13 miscarriages before carrying to full term, and one has been trying for years and still has only conceived once, and later lost the fetus at about 5 weeks. I am no stranger to your plight, and tho I haven't felt it as fully as you, I do have some insight to your pain. I have been sent numerous messages to do this, and I have politely ignored them all. I'm going to try to link this to my facebook page-as a friend of mine did-to raise more awareness for THIS problem, and hopefully open a few people's eyes. Thank you for putting into words exactly what I was feeling. God bless you on your journey, I will be praying for you.

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  66. While posting the bra colors was kind of clever and did spark conversation among my girlfriends about monthly self-checks and the like, the metoooos are a bit much. I'm not comfortable with the sexual innuendo -- my kids are on facebook! -- and the faux pregnancy innuendo is just cruel.

    Thanks for saying it out loud.

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  67. I am going to post the link to your blog on facebook as well. Here you managed to "raise awareness" about: men suffering from breast cancer as well, how to help those suffering, infertility, and calling humanity back to common sense and compassion.

    I have not participated in those facebook campaigns and am a little confused by friends who do. Also, I wanted you to know I do not struggle with infertility. I frequently pray for those in your shoes and do not take my children or pregnancies for granted. I take this blessing seriously and admire the strength that shines through in women that struggle. Thank you.

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  68. All Im gonna say - Hats down! Awesome blog and above all, so true.

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  69. Love, love, love this! I completely agree.

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  70. I really don't get these games, and the other postings to support other stuff of FB. (Though at least the other ones actually say what one supports). If people want to support a cause they should donate time and or money, then they can post about said donation.

    The other breast cancer "games" were a bit lame, but this one is just insensitive. At least when I first saw someone playing it was a person I knew was pregnant. At least for me I'm pregnant now, once or twice while TTC I'd actually cried when reading real pregnancy announcements on FB. I can't imagine how hard it must be for those still trying or who can't to be bombarded with these statuses.

    And as an aside, breast cancer awareness is great. It would be nice to see more ovarian cancer awareness, which has a higher fatality rate than breast cancer (though any cancer is rough). It doesn't help that ovarian cancer symptoms are so vague that it's missed in that early window of better treatment success rates.

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  71. That is so interesting that you said something. Last night I was explaining the game to my husband and with tears in my eyes said, could you imagine the reaction I would get if people really thought I was pregnant? I am infertile as well. We can't have kids and have adopted a little boy and hoping to adopt again. So faking that I was pregnant didn't seem to give me any satisfaction...in fact I always dreamed of being able to announce that...not as a joke but as a gift that I had been praying for. Love the post!!

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  72. I was very moved by your post. I had just read my daughter's post on Facebook that claimed she was 4 weeks and craved twix. I expected that it was some game she was playing as I would hope she would have the good sense to tell me before posting on Facebook. I have since sent your post on to her as I would like for her to understand how hurtful, what she may think an innocent game is, can be. God bless you.

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  73. Thank you for this post. I've often found these types of games silly at best, but I think you helped open some eyes about how they can be hurtful at the same time.

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  74. You've verbalized what I've always felt about these "games", but never articulated. Thank you for putting yourself out there (and your words), and making yourself vulnerable. My husband and I have struggled with secondary fertility for a year now, and felt like we had no voice, or reason to feel crushed because God had already blessed us with two children. And I never realized how hard it was to see posts like the "pregnancy game" until I had been there this past year. I know intentions are good, but outcomes can be hurtful. God has since chosen to bless us again with another child, and I'm very grateful. But I'm also more sensitive and aware of how funny comments and games can hurt those with unknown struggles.

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  75. Unfortunately, this is another one of those 'games' that gives people the false pretense they have done something to help a cause without actually having to DO something. :( Instead of drawing attention to breast cancer, it only draws attention to the person posting. They receive comments/attention (positive praise) which just encourages them to participate in the next foolish game for a "cause".

    I admit, I did not think about those struggling with infertility when I read the posts. I just thought of the hurt feelings from husbands, family members, and friends when they posted "Congrats" only to be laughed at later. My husband had a vasectomy. If I posted I was pregnant (even jokingly), I know his family would wonder HOW? WHO? I'm not willing to hurt my friends and family for a joke.

    What about the people who post they are pregnant as a joke and get a not-so-positive response? They have created these hurt feelings and this riff over a gag. No thank you.

    Thank you for your insightful blog. I have shared it on FB as well.

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  76. My husband and I have been trying for our take-home baby since January of 2009. After 13 months of trying to get pregnant, we finally got that beautiful second line. Our son was born full-term in October of last year, but died in the NICU five days later due to brain atrophy from oxygen deprivation via a cord complication. Seven months later we were pregnant again, only to miscarry two weeks later. This game gives me so much pain it's unreal. THANK YOU for this post.

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  77. One more thing - a suggestion - the blog is great, but the playlist is distracting :)

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  78. Thank you for posting this. I do not have a Facebook account, and this is one of the reasons. All of the ridiculous {and often hurtful} games that are played. I'm sorry you are hurting so badly.

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  79. Thank you. I did not think of it this way, but did think it 'bad' for a variety of other reasons... have re-posted to my facebook.

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  80. As a breast cancer survivor and an infertile woman, I applaud your post. How about we all just hug the women in our lives and help them schedule a mamogram?

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  81. I am so glad that I didn't participate in this game...or the last several. I thought it was stupid but I never thought of the insensitivity towards infertile people. My sister is currently struggling with infertility and it has been a really rough and rocky road. This last month she also had a very serious cancer scare. I posted a link to your blog as well so that more people think about their actions and the consequences before they go along with the masses. Thank you for your thoughtful opinion. God Bless you as you journey though the currents and muddy waters of infertility. P.s. I love your playlist~ Great job....and I'm a radio announcer!

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  82. THANK YOU! I just had a rant on my Facebook about the games and got slammed by a cousin about how its for a cause blah blah blah.. And I read thees _ weeks craving _ one not thinking much of it, but I did go through the torment of wanting a baby and years of trying and had these been posted before I conceived I would have felt resentment too. You have said what I though and so much more. You are a great person.

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  83. I'd like to add that I have had a great struggle with infertility. It doesn't make it any less silly to get all bent out of shape about a stupid FB repost. If little things like this get you all worked up, don't leave your house because on the scale of 1-10 of stupid things that could potentially hurt someone's feelings this is maybe a -1.

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  84. I cannot have anymore children due to health issues also. I feel so angry at people for tricking and congratulating them. All the while they are laughing at the thought we thought they were prego. It's not funny.

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  85. I cannot have children anymore, by my own choice, but when I saw the pregnancy game, I was so excited. I love babies and knowing that one of my friends will be having one is such a great thing. I was very disappointed when I went through the rest of my wall and saw 15 posts with all of them saying they were pregnant. It really kind of made me feel betrayed, though it probably shouldn't have. I played the first game, the bra one, not because of the Breast Cancer awareness, but because I thought it was fun to mess with the men. I honestly didn't see how this "game" could help breast cancer awareness and so after that first game, I ignored all emails suggesting a new game. I don't get them anymore. I already do as much as I can to help with breast cancer research. I don't have money, in fact, the only reason I have the internet is so that I can go to school online. 50 dollars a month for the internet is much cheaper than 100 dollars in gas to get to my chosen college after all. Because of the lack of money, there is a website I visit daily called The Breast Cancer site. All I have to do is click daily and I help get women mammograms. I also help my grandmother out as often as I can because since she lost her left breast to cancer, she has not been herself. My cousin died of breast cancer, I just know too many people that have had it to really think these "games" will really help out.

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  86. I thought many of the same things when I saw the tacky facebook status. I'm not infertile or a breast cancer survivor, but I love plenty of people who experienced both. And for them, I was offended. Thank you for being bold and speaking your mind.

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  87. Thanks for posting this. I've never dealt with infertility but my second child was stillborn and while October is breast cancer awareness month, it is also pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. Thank you for bringing awareness to those who would have never thought that this would be offensive.

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  88. I absolutely HATE those facebook games. They're annoying and, you're right, pointless. I'll never understand them and HATE when I get those emails.

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  89. Absolutely perfect post. I'm sharing this one too. I have 2 beautiful children now, but I too suffered from infertility. It took 4 years of treatment for PCOS to finally conceive my now 8 year old. Pregnancy will never be a joke to me.

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  90. I actually would like to share this post on FB. I think you wrote this beautifully.

    First, I want to ask if you have yet tried Chriopractic care? I know you probably get a lot of "helpful suggestions". I did too. I also suffered from secondary infertility. I lost three babies within 10 months after having my son. We started trying when he was 2. Got pregnant and lost the baby. One loss was at 5w2d, one at 4w1d and one at 6w3d. As those may not be lives to others they were to us as we believe life begins at conception.
    I understand that utter heart ache every month. Every month you get that damn period. Every month you HOPE only to be crushed. I yelled at God, I got mad at Him and angry at Him. I told Him, the desires of our hearts my ass. I was angry that He took babies to heaven. I was angry that He would tease me in a sense. Sure He wasn't teasing me but taking away each baby sure as heck felt like it. "Here...you can have this baby - wait I take it back." I racked my brain forever with wonder of what I did wrong. The reality was that I did nothing wrong. I too suffered from secondary infertility. Where they don't know exactly what goes "wrong" after the first pregnancy and delivery but some sort of imbalance not allowing a pregnancy to stick again.
    I don't mean to hurt you at all with my next comment......
    I did chiropractic care just once. That month I got pregnant. I now have a healthy 2 month little girl. We went through the TTC crap for 2.5 years. I could not imagine someone going through it longer. It is a pull at the heart each and every time you bleed.
    I do not like the new game and I will not play it. If anything something like that should raise awareness to infertility. That is all it does is raise awareness. Doesn't do much more. Sometimes it doesn't even do that.

    This posting about being pregnant in no way refers to breast cancer. Men do get it too. Why do some women feel the need to keep men in the dark and hide it from them.

    The posting on FB has made me angry. Yes, I did get my miracle this year but still. I lost babies. I know people, such as you, that are aching to have their womb filled with life again or even for the first time. This status game is hurtful. Whether people know it or not. Whether they realize it. It may be a game to some but to others it is a slap in the face or a reminder that they can't get pregnant. I hate joking about being pregnant.

    Thank you for sharing your story. Bless you and I pray that your womb opens and you may conceive a blessing of miraculous life. That you may have a healthy child soon. Blessings.

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  91. I'm with you on this. My dad died from cancer. Plus, I recently went through a uterine cancer scare and I'm saddened that my 8 yr old will be an only child. I don't have cancer, but am going to end up having a hysterectomy due to problems.

    Those Facebook posts trivialize cancer and the other ones are insensitive to those battling infertility, etc.

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  92. Please stay on your soapbox. I totally agree. I have not played any of these silly and hurtful games. Posting these statuses helps Breast Cancer awareness just as much as changing your profile pic to a cartoon character raises awareness of child abuse. I have a few facebook friends who have struggled with infertility, and it was because of them that I didn't announce or talk about my last pregnancy on facebook. Instead I told them in person, before I told other friends. No sense throwing it in their face over and over again.

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  94. Damn you're good! Couldn't have said it better myself.

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  95. LOVE THIS!!! I am linking to my FB page, because you said it better than I could earlier today. I went a bit kooky/crazy! I must admit, the first few times I saw it I died a little inside. My heart aches to be ____weeks and craving ANYTHING at this point! My Momma passed away from breast cancer when I was only 3, so I find it offensive on 2 fronts. It DOES NOT raise awareness, it just serves to hurt feelings! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!

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  96. My very best friend posted this on her fb wall this morning. I had no idea what those stupid games were about. No one would tell me and i am female! You would think that they would if they wanted to pass awareness along. Anyway i just saw the newest game last night because my stepdaughter posted it. I thoight she was just referring to her braces since she only has had them for 1 week and she isnt allowed to eat gummi bears. A guy commented on her status asking if she had a bun in the oven which pissed me off since she is only 17 and better not be pregnant. I myself am 33 and cannot get pregnant. I have had one miscarriage and i have been diagnosed with endometriosis. Its not the same as breast cancer and you cant die from it but its still emotionally devastating. There is a 90% chance if u have it lile i do that you will not conceive. People who joke abouut it or take their babies for granted are insensitive to others and i wish that they would just open their eyes to the people around them. Anyway thank you for posting this. You are not alone and there are many people out there who support you. I walk for breast cancer!!!! It makes me get up off my butt and do something positive! God bless you!

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  97. As an infertility and multiple miscarriage survivor I applaud this blog posted and posted a link to it on my facebook page after ststing that this game was hurtful. I'm hoping those who don't understand why it would be hurtful will read your blog post and get it. Thank you for posting!

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  98. one little game, sparked all this conversation.

    hmmm.

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  99. I suffer from secondary infertility also and it made my heart ached to see so many "announcements" making me think why wasn't I able to announce just a joyous thing. Then I found out it was a game. Talk about getting really angry.

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  100. I've never felt the heartwrenching pain of a miscarriage. I have three children, but after my third I had a life-threatening heart issue. If I were to play this stupid game and announce I was "pregnant", my family would be freaking out, scared for me! These stupid games are getting old.

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  101. I too agree. I do not struggle with infertility, but I have many friends who do and I am CERTAIN this is a hard game for them to watch happen. I also know that even though I have children, it would crush my Dad to see me post my "fake" pregnancy and then break the news to him later. The only funny thing I have seen out of this whole thing is when my Brother-in-law posted his fake pregnancy stats, thus making fun of a stupid game.

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  102. I suffered for 12+ years being told we'd never have kids without IVF which we could not afford. My a sheer miracle I got pregnant on our own. I have since gone on to have 3 wonderful girls and am 18 weeks pregnant which still stuns me after all the failed fertility treatments and suffering in silence for so many years. Alot of people say get over it but for a woman who has never been through it you will never get it. Infertile woman are constantly assaulted with pregnancy and babies its everywhere! And at no time are we ever not happy for friends/family/strangers who can have kids its something we know we will never have to it rips out a part of your heart everytime you get that phone call or baby shower invite. Even now my friends say you are about to have a fourth child you shouldn't be bitter or upset but infertility is a pain that is of epic proportion and no matter if you go on to have kids or adopt kids that pain and suffering you went through will NEVER be forgotten and hearing people announce pregnancies especially those who 'weren't trying' is still like a knife in the heart. You feel as a failure as a woman. Pregnancy was the one thing that no matter how much I tried or set my mind to it I could not achieve. Everything else in my life school or work if I tried hard enough was obtainable. So while people may tell you oh we don't like kids or we are waiting for x,y,z reason just remember she may be lying to protect her heart being bombarded with questions and the pity that people feel for you because you can't conceive. And for the love of god stop asking people when are you gonna get pregnant!

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  103. Totally agree, not just for the immaturity of it all, but it's getting quite annoying by now. What with all the copy and paste if you agree and such and such. I haven't played the last few of the games, and i don't feel myself or any of my friends on my list became more or less aware of any type of cancer due to copy and paste, and games. If it was a heartfelt story told from experience then I would support them, my letters on a screen depicting sexually suggestive status's are not going to help the mother in the cancer clinic who is suffering. How about we focus our time on more beneficial things???

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  104. I give you a standing ovation...I am in the same monthly struggles you are...I have had female problems since I started as a young girl...I have endometriosis and was told kids were never possible even thou a mom was all I ever wanted to be....I praised God and all that was holy when we were blessed with my daughter...it was a miracle...now she is 2.5 and like yours begs for a sibling and every month we try and every month I cry....docs keep telling me I need a hysterectomy NOW but I refuse...a miracle happened once it can again....and it is really upsetting to see friends post this....the first one I saw was from someone who NEVER wanted kids and when I thought she was expecting I was hurt thinking she doesn't even want kids....I am glad I am not the only one to feel this way.

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  105. Technically I had an infertility problem, but through prayer, yoga, chiropractor, all natural progesterone and vitamins we went on to have 4 biological daughters and one son(trisomy 8) who is blessed to be ours through adoption. I say that because technically I was infertile but that has no baring on how I felt about the game. I thought it was dumb. I commented on a womans status that lost a child to trisomy 18 and then had a miscarriage. I was elated as I thought she was expecting. I wasnt offended because I try not to be but I felt like an idiot.

    I like what you said about not being judgmental and to not use your faith against you. That is so well spoken. I agree. when people come at me I always say Well Jesus got angry to and over turned tables.

    This is a great blog. Thanks for writing it and honestly my eyes are open now to the hurt it can cause. I didnt partcipate because I thought it was stupid but I didnt think how it may affect others. The Bible says "Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows what we know, and holds us responsible to act." Prov. 24:12

    Thanks again

    Be blessed

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  106. I'm so glad you posted this. I have lost 5 babies in pregnancy. At 21 weeks, 5 weeks, 10 weeks and now twins at 11 weeks. Hearing about pregnancies and seeing babies is extremely hard. Then a stupid came like this comes out and makes it all worse. So I'm glad you have posted this and spoken out about this "game".

    I am sorry for the problems you have experienced getting pregnant and for your miscarriage. I know how difficult it all is.

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  107. Wow! I have been watching these posts on facebook all week. Just this morning I found out what it was. I was about to post my status then a friend of mine had this link on hers. AMAZING! I am so glad I didn't "play the game" My sister can't have kids and I have three. I never thought what that status might have meant to her until reading your post. Thank you and may God bless your life for standing up for what you believe!

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  108. Thank you for this terrific post. Having had four miscarriages myself, I can feel over sensitive at times.

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  109. As I posted on my FB page, I didn't participate in this "game" because I know too many people who have been personally touched by so many different types of cancer. It's cruel to both sides of the coin (the infertile & the cancer-plagued) & does nothing to help either. I appreciate your openness & willingness to share what is so deeply private. I'm an only child & I can tell you that my childhood is not one that I look back on with regret of not having a sibling. I am incredibly close to my mother & can't imagine my life any other way. *hugs & God's blessing*

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  110. Kudos to you for writing this post. I felt the same way. I lost my daughter at 26 weeks gestation and then in another tragic twist of fate, I lost her daddy to cancer. So double whammy. Like you, I could not see how this game (any version of it) helps raise awareness for cancer or any other disease. All it is, is a game.
    The sad truth is, I'm seeing many fellow bereaved moms playing this game too... I just don't understand.

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  111. I felt the same way about these facebook post-totally inappropriate and suggestive. Thanks.

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  112. Thank you for your blog <3 touching, well put love. I was a bit less tasteful when i blew up about my son turning 4 in heaven sept 11th of this year and our 4 losses and 6 years with infertility... i hope that this does help unit those who have now become divided over it. im all for save the tata's and any awareness i can bring to it. but there just should be a better way next time...

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  114. AMEN! I did not play either as I too have primary and secondary IF - and we have had 2 losses this year after YEARS of going without positives. We actually has a loss last week - I just couldn't do that to myself or those that might read my posts and it has NOTHING to do with Breast Cancer Awareness!.
    @KBRILL - OMG, I thought I was the only "bitter" IF person that had kids. I am sick of being told to get over it has I do have kids - but it was not EASY, CHEAP, and I can't have as many as I want when I want them - I have to do to extraordinary methods to achieve them - so sorry, I can't get all excited for Sally Loo who had an OOPS!

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  115. I have lost my mother and two aunt to this horrible disease. I am very sickened that women are being asked to post something as their status and told not to tell men what it is about so that someone can giggle at clueless men in the name of breast cancer. Nowhere in the post that these women receive are being told to get checked, get educated, or to donate time or money if they can or even a link to give us information on this disease. Women are to be hush hush about the post. This saddens and angers me. I don't know how this can raise awareness. This scheme worked the first year and made national news, but not the proceeding years.I believe we should say proudly that we are doing this to raise awareness. I know people who can't conceive or have had trouble conceiving and this is heartbreaking. I too posted on my facebook page letting people know I would not stand for this.I have started a repost if anyone would like to use.Feel free to alter it as long as you are letting people know that you are not supporting this game.
    Breast cancer is no laughing matter. There are millions of women and their families affected by this disease. Making light of a serious situation does nothing to raise awareness, Show these women, not only the survivors but the ones we’ve lost some respect and not play these games. If you truly want to make a difference, get a mammogram or donate. Repost if you really want to make a difference.

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  116. Wow I couldn't agree more. Last year was my first year walking in the Susan G. Komen 3 day walk and I am doing it again this year. These silly games do nothing to help breast cancer. If people really want to help they can give to the cause directly. Trust me that a walker would really appreciate it as well. I too have had 2 miscarriages and know the sadness that can come with it. Thank you for speaking your mind. More people in this world need to stand up for what they believe.

    Come on over and visit our 3 day walk FB page and help us spread a positive message to fight Breast cancer.
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Team-Rack-Pack/263385380351966

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  117. Wow.... just wow.... I am SO glad you wrote this post. You stated your position beautifully and eloquently and it was worth sharing.

    As a Christian, I have avoided this bogus Facebook status game because I don't want to imply inappropriate thoughts that I never had the intention to say. I too wondered how this even encouraged Breast Cancer awareness and "left" a Facebook conversation when the shoe size thing was brought up.

    Thank you for being honest so that others can see that these kinds of games are frivolous at least and hurtful at most, even if unintended. Well done.

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  118. I really appreciate your post on this subject as it is very dear to my heart also like many other readers. My mother is a breast cancer survivor (luckily) and it was definitely the challenge of a lifetime. My brother and his wife are infertile and cannot bear their own children at all (they have been able to adopt a little girl so far but that took 8 years). They tried invitro as well as many other options and nothing worked. I was tricked by the status thing thinking that a friend was pregnant and I went through a wave of emotions when it wasn't even necessary. I wish people would just post more information on their status instead of playing this crazy game.

    This is what my sister just posted on her facebook and I intend to add it to mine:

    "About 1 in 8 women in the United States (12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime....About 70-80% of breast cancers occur in women who have no family history of breast cancer" On the bright side,"In 2010, there were more than 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S." I'm lucky that I have breast cancer survivors in my family;

    U.S. Breast Cancer Statistics
    www.breastcancer.org

    I wish you the best and again thank you for your post!

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  119. I totally agree!! Though I must admit I hadn't seen it in the light that you mentioned, I had always thought that these games were pointless in the context that they were supposedly meant.

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  120. I'm sure the person who came up with this game intended no offense. It was just very poorly thought through. I really appreciated your perspective. It helped me remember to be ever vigilant in considering the feelings of others and weighing my own words. I hope people will forgive me for my stupid, off-handed remarks and that I will forgive others likewise--but I hope those mistakes and slips are few, as they can be if I am aware of others' feelings.

    Perhaps this game did not raise awareness for breast cancer, but it did raise my awareness of the pain of infertility, and what not to do to increase that pain. Thanks.

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  121. As a father of 3 who knows the joy of pregnancy (from my limited point of view) as well as the pain and torment of miscarriages many times over, I applaud you for taking the "public" stand against what amounts to a crass method of raising a false awareness to a very real problem.

    It was bad enough when an innocent 'game' of color choice turned into a sexually suggestive
    game of provocation.

    This rendition is over the top.

    Well done.

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  122. I don't play the games because I don't feel they raise awareness at all. The fake pregnancy thing- STUPID. However, I will say, nobody should have to censor themselves because someone around them may be experiencing hardship. I have miscarried and had a neonatal loss, so I understand how much it hurts when all you want is a baby in your arms. However, in my pain, I didn't expect anyone to stop living or cater to my grief. I had people step back as a way of being considerate, but I would never of forced anyone to do that.

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  123. I like the mammogram idea. What if we suggested, for those who want shock value, posted the date of their last self exam? Like "I did it two days ago."

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  124. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-robbins/breast-cancer-awareness-g_b_577574.html

    When I read the above article, I felt like it was good information to have.

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  125. I also suffer from secondary infertility, but this did not offend me... I hear your points though and they are valid. But sometimes a game is just that: a game. I agree that if has NOTHING to do with breast cancer though

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  126. Thank you! It's time somebody stands up and says something about how offensive and vulgar these games are! I am a single woman in my 30's proud of my virgin status and cannot imagine what posting a fake pregnancy would do to my witness. I may link your blog post to my blog that discusses a woman's purity. Our purity, whether, in my place as a single woman or that of a married woman are not just important but I believe vital and fragile. I will NOT jeopardize MY purity by posting what color of undergarements I'm wearing, or by implying where "I like it"!

    Thank you again for posting this!

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  127. My husband and I both suffer from infertility, We have done everything, up to and including inject-able fertility medications, with donor sperm, only to have two consecutive miscarriages, and no live births. After 13 years we have stopped fighting the war that is infertility. It honestly pains me to sign on to Facebook. To take a gift like pregnancy/children, and take it so lightly. I totally and whole heatedly agree with you. And that's all I have to say.

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  128. I cannot support this blog post enough - finally, someone who has the eloquence and intellect to identify the issues with these ridiculous games and put it clearly into perspective for those who do not. I do not support these games and I think that people need to understand the consequences of their actions and honestly realize that changing a facebook status does not help any cause unless its with a link to donate to said cause. People don't seem to understand that what comes off as a "silly" game, can actually be hurtful to many (as illustrated above) and does the exact opposite of raising awareness. Kudos to you for openly sharing your opinions and personal experiences.

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  129. I'm not playing this game because, like you, I don't think it's related at all to awareness about a very serious issue. Having lost my mother to cancer as well as a dear uncle the way that this "game" is being played under the guide of some sort of education is disgusting.

    I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks this is just pathetic.

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  130. Thank you for this wonderful post. I also refused to play this game because I also believe that people only post such statuses just to raise curiosity among their friends about the status.. not to raise awareness about any serious illness..! And when I read the chats below those statuses, people only have fun, joke around n a few minutes later, there's a new status ..and new chats.. where has the awareness disappeared to? Well, to me, it never emerged to start with. Hence, very well said. Thanks for speaking up.
    I shared this post on my twitter & facebook to make more people aware.
    Have a great day:)

    Tuba from Istanbul/Turkey

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  131. BRAVO to you!!! Like so many others here, i too suffer with secondary infertility. When I saw my first so so weeks and craving i seriously thought she was in fact expecting. As they day progressed i knew it was a game. When i later received two messages asking me to "raise breast cancer awareness" i deleted it immediately.
    Then another friend (also suffering from IF) posted her frustrations about the game, some people agreed with her, other people were like "OH, it's all in fun., why are you getting your panties in a bunch!" Umm..no honey! i'm sure there is NOTHING funny about Cancer!!!!

    What i wanted to post was
    0 weeks and i'm craving to punch you right in the face!!!!!!

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  132. I agree with all of your post except the part about donating to the Susan G. Komen foundation. Another person posted about it. Please don't donate to it! I was thinking the same thing he wrote when I read that part.

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  133. totally agree with this blog post! I haven't played any of these silly games because I don't get how it helps raise awareness. I wasn't about to play this "game" because like many others, I too have friends who would have thought it to be insensitive. I'm not able to have any more babies, and don't want to joke around about it. And I feel for my friends and family who have never been able to have at least one child of their own.

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  134. My friend posted your link on her facebook (and I did too!) - I admit, I do play "the games" - (and I also was unable to conceive for years until undergoing ICSI, and am blessed to have one beautiful child) - and had not considered how they would effect a relation of someone who was trying to conceive. But do remember that every woman who reads that message, and sees posts about it, has to at least give a moment's thought to breast cancer awareness.

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  135. I wanted you to know I agree that the game is insensitive, and not thinking I did play the game. I think you took it a little far personally but you were right. Maybe ending the blog at the point this point "You can be a Dr. who treats breast cancer patients and become a victim yourself, correct?" or mentioning that victims of breast cancer are often infertile them selves awesome point. I am almost positive that anyone that didn't feel guilty at that point wasn't going to. Never the less I am still going to pass on your message. I understand your bitterness and am sorry that I was one of the insensitive individuals who played the game I struggled for two years to have my own first child. I honestly was not thinking about this when I decided to post. Mostly because I just had a baby so I would have expected that my friends and family would know it was a joke. I am going to erase my status and post this instead. For all of those struggling again I am sorry for playing the game. I can't imaging how you feel about those like me that didn't think but please don't judge to quickly we didn't mean to hurt you. I promise that.

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  136. A friend of a friend sent me this blog post in an email. After reading it I shared it as a link on my FB page. Thank you so much. You expressed very well how this "game" is not fun for everyone and can be a painful reminder of something they want or have lost. I refused to participate in this stupid "game" and was trying to think of a way to express my feelings about it but you summed it up very well. Thank you for helping spread awareness.

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  137. I put a link to this post from my blog and also shared it on FB. Thanks for this post, you took the words right out of my mouth.

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  138. Thank you for posting this. Many of my friends have shared your blog link to Facebook and I feel like I could have written much of this myself. My husband and I suffer with infertility and cannot currently afford treatment. I'm glad that I at least got the "rules" to this game early enough that each post from someone else didn't elicit the same sting that they otherwise would have, although that feeling was still there enough to bother me that they were joking about it. I know it seems harmless enough to most people, but I know TOO MANY people who aren't "most people." Thanks for voicing this for us!

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  139. Repost if you know someone who has been affected by Breast Cancer and lets spread some awareness: Feel your boobies!!! Every month on your "birthday". Men to! It affects EVERYONE! Since some are offended by the week/craving post lets spread some info. Come on, copy and paste for all to see. :) <---- This is my new status on FB today.

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  140. I posted the link on my FB page because I fell for one of these yesterday, and was left feeling, "this is utter bullshit, how does this help promote breast cancer awareness?" Not to mention that I myself have been through fertility issues and to see people posting this only makes me want to hit them.

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  141. I have several friends who are fighting breast cancer and just this week my MIL received a diagnosis of Stage 1 breast cancer. I cannot, for the life of me, understand why women succumb to these ignorant games. Thank you for your vulnerability. I've reposted this to FB and Twitter. God bless.

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  142. I played the "game" having been sucked in by the "raising cancer awareness" platform. As a breast cancer survivor of course I want to raise awareness, however after reading your post, I immediately deleted my "game" post. Thank you so much for sharing another side of this "game". My daughter went through two miscarriages before my miracle grandbaby was born six months ago. I know what we went through as a family. Forgive me for participating in a "game" that inadvertantly was offensive to so many. I won't do so again.

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  143. Thank you for posting this, I have also shared it on my FB page. I suffer from secondary infertility. I have 2 wonderful birth children and 3 adopted so I am definitely blessed. People look at me and wonder why in the world I'd be upset that I can't get pregnant, I mean I have 5 children...right?!? Until you've walked a mile on the road of infertility (primary or secondary) it's just hard to understand...or explain. This game, as well as the 'expecting........more sunshine' post that went around were very tacky. I do not have a huge friend list, just around 150....but if only 10% of my friends post those status updates, that's 15 times I have to be reminded of my infertility struggles....and for what? I doubt it's really bumping awareness for anything. I definitely don't want family and friends to handle me with kid gloves or feel they can't share their pregnancy joys with me, I'm elated when I find out anyone is pregnant, it's a blessing. These games are not funny though. Again, thanks for posting.

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  144. In all honesty, I'd never thought about it like that, but I can promise that in the future, I'm going to think twice about these so-called "games".

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  145. thanks for posting. i totally agree.

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  146. I also linked this on my facebook thanks for not being afraid to speak up! This is so well written thanks for sharing!

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  147. I think all the FB games are silly and never play them but, to be honest, I never once realized how someone in your situation might feel. Thanks for the insight.

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  148. Thank you so much for this post. My heart breaks for you and your pain. I too have linked this post on my Facebook. As a mother to angel babies after secondary infertility, this "game" crushed me. You're right, it has nothing to do with breast cancer.

    I make memorial pieces every day for other women who have gone through the pain of losing their little ones. I can't imagine how they would feel if they saw me posting a fake pregnancy announcement. NO ONE should ever feel that pain.

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  149. Very well said! I also agree with the person who said that we should post something like, "I did it 2 months ago..." as in the last time we did our breast self exam (which should be done monthly).

    My mother had breast cancer, so I think awareness is important. This game has nothing to do with raising awareness though.

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  150. Wonderfully said! Not only did I share your blog post on my Facebook page, but I also challenged my friends to post a status that offers a real way to raise awareness and help in the fight against breast cancer! My status now shares the date and information for the Race for The Cure event happening in my home town this month.

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  151. Thank you for letting this out! I've seen what infertility has done to friends, and ven family members. When I received the "Breast Cancer Awareness" email with that information, I immediately deleted and thought, "Why would anyone do that?" Having family members who are still suffering due to breast cancer, this does nothing.
    This is not cool, and surely doesn't help with raising awareness. Excluding men from breast cancer awareness is even more cruel. That's why I like "Save the Tatas".

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  152. I am recently widowed. I was really put off by this tasteless chain mail that was forwarded to me. I didn't participate in the inches (really? how tacky) and I won't be participating in this. Pregnancy is not a joke. I have two beautiful children to remember my husband, but I will never again feel someone kicking me from the inside, or have that glimmer of hope and future and promise that a pregnancy brings. I don't want any more children without him, nor when he was with us, and I cannot imagine the horror of my family and friends if I posted something like that.

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  153. I too have shared this on my page. My dad also had to have surgery. Yes men can get this also. So to this day, I check every I am in the shower. It doesn't take but a few seconds to check and it could save your life.

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  154. Posted this to my FB. This hits on two sides for my wife and I. My wife lost her mother 23 years ago to breast cancer (she was only 4) and we suffered 6 years of infertility before we got pregnant. (Due in January) But we don't forget where we came from and we hate what this "game" is doing to both breast cancer research and families suffering infertility and those being teased of babies that aren't really there.

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  155. Primary infertility, here...lost one baby at 7 weeks after IVF (3rd try) and we decided to never try again. I'm so glad you had the guts to speak out against this game. It wounded me more than I thought possible now, two years after accepting a child-free life. Thank you.

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  156. I didn't think of pregnancy when I started seeing the posts. The first 2 or 3 I saw were from people I have met through a dieting support group, and assumed they were sticking to their eating plan and craving their favorite goodies. When I responded, I hadn't even considered how this would make someone infertile react. I think I will remove my post.

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  158. I can completely and utterly understand your emotions over this, you are entitled to them and I fully support you in them. I am also very sorry for your loss, it is a difficult thing to live through every day. I personally have not had to live through it, but I had been led to believe that I would have many fertility issues due to some of my medical conditions. I was lucky, and as you've stated, not everyone is.

    However, The point of the game, although not evident to the naked eye is the same as any form of advertising. It has brought the topic to the forefront of your mind, yes, some people will be offended, others indifferent, and yet others will just follow along because they can; but every single one down to the man (or woman in this case) is now thinking about breast cancer, and if it brings even 1 to go and look it up or donate, then it has been successful.

    Sensationalism is what makes something viral in our world, whether you agree with the method or not is irrelevant, it's getting people talking, debating, arguing but most of all, the words "Breast Cancer" are becoming a household word again and when something is talked about (Be it the action, cause or method - it's been Psychologically connected to "Breast Cancer Awareness") it creates public interest and in turn gets people to look into it.

    So although I completely sympathize with you for your loss, and that this has so grievously offended you, but by having this blog post up you are only doing EXACTLY what the creator wanted you to do. Yes, It's not in the same format as what was originally set out, but you are SO PASSIONATE (!) about your reaction to these games, that you are gathering a HUGE following who whether they agree or disagree, are now thinking about Breast Cancer Awareness.

    Sometimes to get a message out, you don't actually need to teach anyone anything, but plant the seed of a thought in their head and they will seek out the knowledge themselves.

    I know that I'll probably see a lot of people angry at my response, call me insensitive, or whatnot, but I speak the truth. You're all thinking about Breast Cancer Awareness, are you not? Well, Misson Accomplished....

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  159. I have to say a big thank you to you for this post, as someone who is struggling with the inability to conceive I very much connected with your words. This "game" is not funny.

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  160. Thank you for posting this. I almost lost my life delivering our son last month. In an effort to stop the bleeding and to save my life, they had to do an emergency hysterectomy. I am only 28. My husband and I wanted 6 kids. I have 5 friends currently struggling with infertility. Although I do not know what it is like to be in their shoes, or in those of breast cancer survivors who gave up their chance at having children to save their own lives, I can somewhat relate. And yes, this game is insensitive and heartbreaking. But - another point not made is that Breast Cancer awareness should NOT be for women only. Keeping the guys in the dark on this game again defeats the purpose of breast cancer awareness. Those fighting have dads, brother, spouses, sons, grandsons, etc. These men are fighting the battle for breast cancer just as much as the women in their lives suffering. And, believe it or not, some men suffer from breast cancer. So, thank you! I am glad I am not the only one who found last year's game pointless, and now find this year's game pointless as well.

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  161. I really loved this article and could not agree more. I feel it is cruel thing not only because of the women who ache for another child but because women with breast cancer are often infertile due to chemo therapy or radiation treatments. Good for you for having a voice I posted this to my facebook. Thank you

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  162. I saw this post through a friend and I am so glad you wrote what so many people were thinking! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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  163. I started playing the game yesterday, but was very bothered by it and later deleted it. I suffered from years of infertility and underwent the various fertility treatments, including IVF. I was never able to be pregnant long enough to inform anyone about it and will never get that opportunity as I had to have a hysterectomy almost 4 years ago. My husband and I were blessed to adopt our beautiful daughter 6 years ago. Thank you for helping put into words what many of us feel!

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  164. Good post, spot on - thank you. But as sad as the dashed hopes of many may be as a result of this game, I'm more heartbroken for you and so many who commented here who seem believe that biological parenthood is the best - or only - parenthood. I, too, have lost babies and endured years of infertility, but I have found so much MORE joy, fulfillment and redemption in adoption. Not only can I be a mother, but I can literally change history by adopting a child who needs a home. I can save their life. I can be the reason these children will be followed by generations. Make a list of all the reasons you want to be a parent - now see how very, very few of those reasons have anything to do with biology. DO NOT tell me you can't afford it - I wasted years under that myth and I've seen it proven false hundreds of times. You CAN afford it. There are myriad grants, loan programs, massive tax credits and willing donors with financial support. Sometimes it takes stepping off that cliff in faith before the how is revealed - and there's a whole lot of beautiful growth in that process, too.

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  165. As someone who has gone through pregnancy loss, I also found this particular game offensive. On top of that, one of my best friends was the first to post it that I saw, so I thought she was announcing her pregnancy to the world before even having the courtesy to tell those closest to her and I was hurt. Then to find out it was a game was even more hurtful. Thank you for this post. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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  166. I am truly sorry for misfortune..i lost my 2nd daughter cause she was stillborn, carried her to full term and 2 days before i went into labor she had passed away, i had to deliver her naturally and plus i couldn't even see nor hold her, it wasn't an option for me...they just took her away and gave me a picture for her..ripped my heart right out of my chest. I too had trouble conceiving my 3rd child, i was told due to health problems that i wouldn't be able to have any more children and you are right, it is the most horrible, most inconceivable news u want to hear...i know that some of the games on here about Breast Cancer Awareness do have "sexually suggested" games and i do get that...but i also am a Breast Cancer survivor Feb. 21, 2012 will be 5 years...i had to undergo and do the most painful procedures that a human couldn't possibly understand unless u have had Breast Cancer...they don't even treat animals that way. I lost my hair, my eyebrows, i threw up for days on end...been hospitalized. There were days i felt like giving up...then i saw the light at the end of the tunnel and on February 21, 2007 i was declared cancer free...i know these games do not raise Breast Cancer Awareness, but they do show me how many ppl out there support and care for the ppl like me who had to endure the same pain that i had to go through...I do agree the games need to have a better tactful way of showing people they care, but at least for me, right now, it makes me feel good that there are people out there that care what we have to go through and it makes me feel good and put a smile on my face.

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  167. Thank you so much for posting. I am acutely aware that, after nearly 11 years of struggling with infertility through endometriosis, I have finally become "one of the lucky ones." My precious baby boy is due 6 weeks from today. Having had friends and family joyously share pregnancies over the last decade, you try to find a way to become numb to it while still feeling excited for their blessing. It was a constant struggle, being happy for them while nursing your internal pain (and often anger)caused by thoughts that you would personally never experience what they were going through. I wasn't aware of this facebook "game," and am very thankful that I haven't had any friends post it yet. Even though I am now expecting, I still remember the pain and tears I experienced throughout all those years, so it would be incredibly difficult to have a friend make light of what I view as a flat out miracle. I am so thankful for my pregnancy and will use the past pain and heartache to help me be the best mother I can be. I am thankful for you that you've been blessed with once precious child already. Perhaps this struggle you're going through now is just prepping you for more gifts and blessings then you could ever imagine...

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  168. i agree with your blog, its getting out of hand yea the first one was fun and did make you think about breast cancer, but the "copy cats" from what i call them are just stupid. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings

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  169. I have lost 4 babies two early term two born early too early to stay. I have had two healthy babies but the medical intervention that got me there left me unable to have any more. Thank you for posting this.

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  170. I am sharing this link. I had five miscarriages before receiving my one miracle, lost a double pregnancy the year following and have not conceived since.

    While I am in the place in my own life to be relatively calm about this subject 99% of the time, the pangs to have more children show up every once in a while and I will never forget the way I did feel when every month was torture. Even though it is not that way now, I still wonder EVERY single month because after all, it happened ONCE. (I do not cry or get wishful but I always, always wonder.)

    I see your point and I applaud you for being so real about it. We sugar-coat a lot of pain we feel in this life for the comfort of others. It is not wrong to ask someone to think before they participate.

    I also participated in the first one, and am ashamed of that. My love to fellow mommies of angels, mommies at heart only, and mommies in the making.

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  171. I too, have found this game to be insensitive. I know it was not meant to be that way, but being a mother that has suffered many miscarriages, lost 1 child due to meningitis at 6.5 months last October (she took 4 yrs for us to concieve & currently 35 weeks pregnant, due in October, I find it so annoying seeing all this statuses stating how many 'weeks' & cravings. Thank you for your post!

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  172. AMEN!!!! Very well written and concise.

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  173. Reading you post made me cry! I have a couple friends who are unable to conceive and I know the absolute heartache they have went through. I also know the extreme insensitivity they dealt with from their own family and friends. While I thought the game was quite inappropriate when I read it, I didn't stop to consider the point of view from someone who is unable to become pregnant, I just thought it was unwise to announce a pregnancy on FB that wasn't true.

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  174. I fell into the game of the bra colour a couple of years ago, because it seemed kind of fun and I liked being in the loop. My fiance asked me what the colour statuses were all about, and I told him it was supposed to tangentially promote awareness towards breast cancer. Let me tell you, he was LIVID. He doesn't have any friends (that he knows of) who have fought with breast cancer, but he knows that *I* do. In fact, we were going to name our child after my friend, were our child a girl. He thought that these statuses belittled my friend's LONG fight with breast cancer, and asked if it actually sparked any conversations ABOUT breast cancer, or if I, myself, donated to breast cancer research after posting that status. Shamed, I said it did not, and that I did not and immediately deleted the status.
    Since then, I refuse to participate in the games, and often will send a link to our local (or their local) breast cancer research agency or a link that ACTUALLY promotes awareness about breast cancer. Ironically, it seems the only time these stupid statuses actually start providing awareness is when people challenge the fact that the statuses do not.

    Yesterday, after seeing FAR TOO MANY of my female FB friends post the "I'm ____ weeks and craving ____" I posted a status asking that we stop pretending that this in ANY way actually promotes breast cancer awareness. I have to be honest, it didn't even occur to me that this would hurt or offend people who are struggling to deal with infertility. (and sadly, I know far too many good men and women who fight with infertility or secondary infertility on a daily basis).

    Thank you for posting this. I can only imagine how hard it was for you to put your pain and anger out there for everyone to see, and how vulnerable it must have (or perhaps still does) made you feel when you wrote/posted this. That took an amazing amount of strength, courage and bravery, and again, I thank you for it. I will ABSOLUTELY be sharing this link on my FB and twitter.

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  175. I had an unplanned pregnancy a few years ago, and I placed my little boy for adoption into the arms of his mom and dad, who have struggled with infertility for 9 years. They are my favorite people in the world, and this game made my heart ache for them and for the countless others who will never have the opportunity to put something so silly as a craving on their status. My heart also ached for the numerous teenagers who had status updates indicating they were pregnant, because I know the heartache that goes along with being a single/unwed mother-to-be. Thank you for your post, now I know I am not alone in feeling sad and hurt by the "games".

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  176. I couldn't agree more. I get so tired of these useless games and all the stuff that is shoved in our faces to always wear pink ribbons, do the Run for a Cure or sponsor everyone and their dog that is in it. EVERYTHING is about breast cancer & I am sorry but I am SICK of hearing about it. I feel sorry for those who have it, but there are worse things that people live with and can die from that are worse! I have two children who both have major health issues. One is a Type 1 Diabetic who is insulin-dependent just to be able to stay alive! She has to do multiple finger pricks every day, and until she got her insulin pump (which is what keeps her alive) she had to do a minimum of 5 injections of insulin a day! We have been dealing with this since she was almost 6 years old, 9 years ago. There is a FB group that supports parents of all the diabetic kids that has over 2500 members now, some with 2 or three children who have Type 1 diabetes. At any minute these children could have a severe low or a severe high that could cause them to die! They are constantly having to be monitored to ensure their blood glucose levels (BG's) are in a safe range. Yet where are all the fundraisers and media coverage for finding a cure to end this horrible disease? Type 1 Diabetes is becoming an epidemic~ and not because we "give our kids too much sugar". It is an autoimmune disease where the body attacks itself and kills the very cells that are meant to keep it alive!

    My other daughter lives with severe hypothyroidism and Celiac Disease. With the Celiac Disease, it isn't a matter of just cutting out gluten. With CD, even the slightest contact with anything that has been touched by something containing gluten can cause a reaction. EX: someone touches a cracker, then touches a piece of cheese with the same hand that touches the cracker, & the cheese is eaten by a CD person can make that person sick. The same with sticking a knife that has touched something with gluten in the peanut butter jar or the butter. Cross-contamination is a scary part of CD and the fear of cross-contamination really inhibits our ability to go anywhere to eat. Where is all the promotion for these diseases????

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  177. I am 18 years old and I just graduated from high school. Thanks so much for this post. Being only 18 I haven't really given a lot of thought to any of the issues that have been shared here, but I am thankful that you shared your thoughts. I have reposted this on my facebook, twitter, and on my blog as well. I admit I played the purse game and the bra colour game, but after that I saw the posts about pregnancy and stuff and realized it was going too far. I didn't repost because I didn't want sexually suggestive posts on my profile, but I never even thought about the way those posts might make some people feel. However, I do not think anyone intended to offend people when posting those, but I still don't think it's right. Next time I get one of those messages, I am going to send back a link to this post. Thanks for speaking up. Stay strong. <3

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  178. I 100% AGREE with you! I dont understand how any of this helps raise awareness for breast cancer. The bras ok. MAYBE but not any of the rest of this at all. I also suffer from infertility and so does my husband and our families who are brought into this mess of not being able to have grandchildren! We are so broke and in debt its unreal but we did IVF and are now pregnant with our daughter (1st child). I doubt we will ever be able (to afford) to try it again. I feel that pain and I have SO many wonderful and amazing friends that are still TTC and havent. Failed after failed IVF attempts. Its very hurtful to me to see all these "fake pregnancy" and everyone laughing about it. Everyday I thank God for allowing me to raise HIS child who is a miracle and for others to joke about it really upsets me. To know that so many amazing people I have came to know from dealing with infertility are hurting at these stupid and immature posts! One of the girls I know who has secondary infertility posted she was 6 weeks and I CRIED I was so happy for her... to find out it was a stupid game?????????????? So girl, preach on!

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  179. Well said! These games are hurtful and people need to know that it isn't a joke but rather ignorance.

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  180. I am weeping as I post this reply, and so glad that you have been brave enough to write the words that I have been mulling over and crying over....thank you for your honesty and for speaking for those of us who haven't been able to.

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  181. I had been wondering how this game relates to breast cancer awareness. I agree there are better ways to raise awareness and do something about breast cancer. It is called the Susan G. Komen three day, bake sales, and pink parties. I don't know who created the game but I can guarantee that it had nothing to do with raising awareness.

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  183. Yes, yes, yes and more yeses. I suffered from primary infertility for 2 years before receiving my first positive pregnancy test. That pregnancy resulted in a devestating miscarriage as did my second pregnancy almost a year later. Since that time I was blessed with my miracle baby, but after another year of no prevention, we are undergoing treatments again. Infertility is far more widespread that most people care to think and for those of us who get to be 'that woman' the ability to get pregnant is no laughing matter. While this may be a 'Breast Cancer Awareness' style post, I love that it is more of an 'Infertility Awareness' post! I posted a link to this on my Facebook and my blog because I couldn't have said it all better myself.

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  184. Thank you so much for posting this! I have PCOS, and have lived through 6.5 years of primary infertility, and almost 9 years of secondary infertility (with one adoption and successful pregnancy between the two).

    Your post was well written. Thanks for speaking up.

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  185. Thank you for posting this. I had posted a FB status last night about this so-called awareness game and received messages about how insensitive I was being. I have been TTC my first child for almost 4 years now and have 2 babies in heaven. I don't call people insensitive when they don't want to talk about my infertility and pregnancy loss issues. I whole-heartedly agree with everything you wrote.

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  186. Thank you for your words. I had a friend point your blog out to me after I posted on FB that the games for awarness were a little childish and didn't serve the reported purpose. I never even thought about your angle and the hurt joking could casue. Thank you for your bravery and honesty.

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  187. My wife is a cancer survivor, stage 4 non-hodgkins lymphoma, and because of the effect chemo had upon her heart will never be able to have children. I did not know about this game until just now but am personally disgusted. The insensitivity of people never ceases to amaze me. Many women who get cancer end up not being able to conceive later because of it. I also fail to realize how this is going to promote breast cancer awareness. I am pretty sure that everyone knows about breast cancer. I also always wonder why people don't try to promote awareness of other cancers. The month of September is lymphoma awareness month but I don't see any "games" being played to promote it. Personally the focus that is placed on breast cancer sickens me. There are so many other deadly cancers out there.

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  188. I agree whole heartedly, with different background. I am the mother of seven children. We have faithfully said "yes" to the children we've been blessed with. However, the general population doesn't seem to see that blessing. With each new announcement comes more and more nasty comments about our children, our rights, our faith, our marriage. You name it, we've heard it. We've heard so much horrid bile from everyone we see, whether they're perfect strangers or (supposedly) friends. Even family. I was asked (with that silly email) to participate in the latest game (after becoming demonstratively excited for a friend who has just "announced" her BC awareness. I felt quite the fool, not so friendly imho) and had to let said friend know that I couldn't do that and subject my family (yep my children hear horrid things as well. Usually when they're addressed to me, my children are present)and myself to the incredibly unkind and vulgar things people feel so free to spew without having the quiet joy of a baby to buffer it a bit.

    This current game IS incredibly insensitive. I agree with you!

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  189. Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you!

    I was hoping someone would speak out about this. I was far too afraid to 'call out' all my friends and family members that were participating in this stupid game. My wife had enough insight to not participate. I knew there was a reason I say she's a lot smarter than I am.

    This does not raise awareness at all. All I saw was disappointment when friends of friends were congratulating them on becoming pregnant, only to find out it wasn't true. One of my friends actually suffers from infertility as well.

    Thanks once again. I am so sorry for you, and hope you never give up until it is physically impossible to do so. Good luck!

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  190. VERY Well put!! I didn't play thisd last game and wondered what it popping up on my FB page. And you are so RIGHT none of this still helps BREAST cancer or anything for that matter. It hit really close to home for me... Thank you for your words I couldn't have ever found those words to express my TRUE feelings!

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  191. Thank you SO much for posting this. As a bereaved parent of two miscarriages and twin premature infant deaths, I was aching at the thought of so many friends being pregnant at the same time. But to find out it was all a hoax?! That's just downright insulting. Oblivious to the reality that they are hurting so many parents instead of doing anything helpful for fighters and survivors or family of those fighting, won, or even lost. You have brains up there people, use them.

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  192. really interesting insights. I actually saw my first pregnancy post only about 2 minutes before bumping into this article in a friend's feed. Word spreads fast, huh? Thanks for sharing.

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  193. Add me to the list here! A gal on one of my groups shared this link and I'm going to share on my FB wall too. I've previously dealt with secondary infertility due to high fsh. I was one of the lucky ones that was able to eventually get PG and I have a beautiful high fsh "baby" (now 6!). I operate a couple of private forums/groups for women that are secondary infertility gals, and my first thought when I saw this was that it would be something that could really feel hurtful to 'my gals'. Some folks commented on FB and said that they're crazy to try to get PG (especially the AMA gals) and if that's the way they're REALLY going to react when/if the gal does get PG then that's really not too cool either. ~~Oh, and I have a maternal history of BC in my family, WITH losses. I have other things that make me aware of BC... including the grandchild that my Mom never knew. Thanks so much for blogging this and I'm really glad that you've gone viral with it! Someone definitely needed to!

    Gigi

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  194. Bravo. Well said. I appreciate your words and as someone who also suffers from infertility, I can appreciate your viewpoint. I have a beautiful adopted daughter whom I adore. Looking back, I can't imagine God's plan working out any other way. But when you are going through the tragic storm of preganancy and loss, ANY news of ANYONE being pregnant can shatter you. Good job.

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  195. I haven't played the game either, I seen it as pointless and stupid! I have watched family and friends post as they all played the game and I'm left to wonder if any thought had been put to it when they posted or if it was just to see the response they would get. Who knows on that! Sorry for yours and all these others troubles with having a child. I have a 6 year old daughter and shes my world, and even tho she wasn't a part of my plan when I was 20 I still got her and wouldn't change it for the world and I will tell the "world" I KNOW I wouldn't be here today if I didn't have her, that's how much of a low and state of mind i was in right before I found out I was 2 months pregnant, it changed my world when I found out tho. I may not be where I expected to be at my age when I was younger but I am right where I need to be with Emily and Me!

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  196. I participated in that post, though I had my doubts about this particular "game". I had many, many reservations since most of my Facebook "friends" know that I was diagnosed with breast cancer while I was pregnant with my last (my fifth, our sixth). It was truly a horrible horrible experience. I was blessed to have received treatment, delivered the baby and have recovered. She was delivered healthy and I began chemotherapy when she was six days old and followed with 42 radiation treatments. I was blessed with five children before breast cancer ended my fertility (had to have my ovaries removed) so I am very, very blessed. I struggled with this "game" because many "friends" questioned me and my ability to conceive again. I did remove that status before I read this blog. They only reason I "played" was because it was in the name of awareness. Obviously I (a BC Survivor of five years) would never knowingly be insensitive to any other survivor. Insensitivity goes both ways. I will not ever play any "games" (yours or otherwise) because I do not want to be titled as "insensitive". Hugs and prayers for your own personal healing. Svrmomof6.

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