Things people say

I was diagnosed with 2 breast cancers in the left and IDC in the right.  My surgeon and I agreed that double mastectomy with flap reconstruction is the way to go.  

  1.  My insurance won’t pay for reconstruction even though it’s the law in the US.  I’m now in the appeals process and had to cancel my surgery until or if I win the appeal

2 , I’m getting so much pressure from everyone to just go flat

i don’t want to go flat.  My in laws and friends have said I’m vain, they have said ‘so and so went flat’   I’ve been chastised for being ‘superficial.  I’m hurt, surprised and resentful for this treatment.  I’ve actually been told “it’s no big deal, I have a friend who had a double mastectomy and they were fine in two weeks.

I was close to these people and did lots of fun things with my friends and my family.

am I being a baby?  Am I being selfish?

This makes me want to cuss for you but I don’t think it’s allowed on this site. So anyway my emphatic answer is NO, YOU ARE NOT BEING SELFISH! Going flat is an option just like reconstruction is an option. We pick the option based on how we want our lives and bodies to move forward after this awful diagnosis. My husband said he doesn’t care if I go flat and in fact would prefer it because the surgery of reconstruction especially with a DIEP (which I think is similar to what you’re getting) can be quite brutal. Well I explained to him that I’m not getting a reconstruction for him. I’m grateful he doesn’t care if I don’t (I have DDD natural breasts so a double mastectomy is going to be a highly noticeable change), but I’m doing it for me. Because breasts are what I’m comfortable with even as I’m no longer comfortable with the rogue, jerky breasts I got now. And it’s okay that you feel the same way. That is why the US passed a law that states all insurances must cover reconstruction. Because for once we did the right thing recognizing that for some women reconstruction is not just getting new breasts, but an active part in our treatment and recovery. On another note, what kind of insurance do you have that they are refusing to follow the law? I hope you win and win quickly.

I don’t know though if you are delaying surgery hoping for the reconstruction at the same time, but if you are know that you can get it later. I was hoping to be able to combine my surgery and reconstruction but I couldn’t get a plastic surgeon in the time frame I was comfortable waiting with. So I’m getting a double mastectomy first, seeing what treatment I need afterwards, going under that treatment and then will pursue reconstruction as my last step. I hate the idea of being flat for any period of time but who knows, if I like it I might stay, but if not, reconstruction will not be an issue when I go there. My surgeon knows I plan to get a DIEP and will do my double mastectomies with that in mind.

So again, don’t hesitate to do what’s right for you! You’re the one who has to intimately live with this life change. You have a right to decide what treatment best allows you to that.

You are not selfish at all.  It’s your body and if your so called friends knew you, they would support you more x