When American actress Angelina Jolie revealed that she had undergone a double mastectomy, I was amazed at the support she received and sad that the opinions of those who disagreed were mostly disregarded.
It’s not surprising that our media is devoid of stories and pictures of old women. These days you are severely discouraged from becoming old and showing it. When the issue of ageing and my arrival at this stage of life arises in family conversation, I am duly told that I am not old. Sure I’m not really, really old, but I have entered the seventh decade of my life.
Researchers at the B.C. Cancer Agency claim that removing a woman’s Fallopian tubes during a hysterectomy or tubal ligation could dramatically cut the rate of ovarian cancer. It is hailed as a cheap, preventative approach to cancer but surely it’s just more mutilation of women’s bodies.
I matured physically long before my friends. The signs of puberty, the underarm hair growth, the budding breasts, and the menarche – they all occurred prematurely. But the concern that developed about my breasts began well before puberty for my grandmother had breast cancer dying at the age of 47, leaving my mother to rear her siblings.