#IBaredIt: Bare It. Share It. Better Boobs., Banding Together for Breast Cancer Early Detection

Annah Elizabeth4 Comments

Last week I posted this piece, one designed to encourage women to have their annual mammograms done.
I highlighted how my recent mammogram experience made my week’s Happy Happens column.
I briefly discussed a few of the physical and emotional discomforts we women (and men) face in the name of good health.
During the exam I asked the nurse if I could take a few photos of the machine.
The intent was to demystify the procedure and to disarm some of the anxiety so many people face at the mere thought of the experiment.
Nurse Arr allowed me to take the photos, but told me I needed to contact the PR department for approval.
Being the law-abiding, good doobie that I am, I phoned their guy (FROM THE HOSPITAL LOBBY), told him about my weekly column, why I felt it was important to talk about mammography, and explained that there were no people and no other identifying details in the image, other than the examiner’s initials, which I would be editing out.
I e-mailed him the photos: One of the right side view of the machine, one of the left side view of the plates, a rear image of the imagining screen, and the photo I took of the digital image of my breast.
I contacted him as a follow-up before the post went to press, but didn’t hear back, and since he said he didn’t think it should be a problem, that their main concern were privacy issues, I went ahead and published the piece.
And I shared on social media with the teaser Bare it. Share it. Better Boobs.
I established the hashtag #IBaredItand asked everyone to share the post in an effort to help mobilize people everywhere, to ADD a little something to helping the cause.
You shared and retweeted and +1’d.
You said that this is important to you, too.
Guys and Gals, I am heartbroken and a bit miffed to inform you that I have had to remove those pictures. Here is the correspondence I finally received this evening:
“Apologies for the delay in responding. Our compliance team struggled with this because although we understand your desire to use these for the blog, and have no desire to stand in the way of the spirit of your work on it, the photos’ existence does violate our policy. It was very kind and considerate of you to reach out for permission to use them. However, we are unable to grant that permission in keeping with our policy on photographs taken with what would be considered unauthorized equipment.”
As far as I’m concerned, the hospital is acting out of fear and is not taking into account the extreme measures taken to be discreet and to present these images in a tasteful manner.
This very fear is standing in the way of women’s health. It SCREAMS: BE AFRAID.
And that is the VERY thing I was trying to stop.
So, here’s what I want us to do.
And I know we can.
Two simple things:
1)   If you are a company or a doctor or nurse or medical equipment rep or anyone with access to AUTHORIZED SHARABLE photos of mammogram equipment, POST THEM. POST THEM and TAG them with the Bare It. Share It. Better Boobs. #IBaredIt campaign slogan. Post them in the COMMENTS BELOW or on THE FIVE FACETS FACEBOOK PAGEor TWEET THEM or +1them to all of your people. HECK, DO THEM ALL! (Please be sure to share only the photos you have permission to share.)
2)    Share this post and if you’re so inclined, THIS ORIGINAL ONE, and let women everywhere know that we don’t have to be afraid! Early detection is the greatest cure we have. LET’S GET BEHIND IT! SAY ‘NO’ TO FEAR AND ‘YES!’ TO MAMMOGRAPHY.
Thank you for already saying that you care about this cause, and thank you in advance for helping me spread the word again.
Yours in healing, hope, and happiness…

4 Comments on “#IBaredIt: Bare It. Share It. Better Boobs., Banding Together for Breast Cancer Early Detection”

  1. I think what you tried to do (and did) is wonderful. Mammograms aren’t fun, but they aren’t scary either! At least, they certainly don’t need to be. It’s terrible the way everyone / everywhere seems to be worried about legal liability. It prevents “good work” like you were trying to do.

    1. Thanks, DAW. The world of liability and fear is crazy, and at times, like this one, downright ludicrous. Thanks for sharing and helping spread the word!

  2. Interesting – but perhaps the denial you received will lead to information being shared even more widely! Great post

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