Published July 21, 2011
I dodged another bullet. My PET scan and bone scan both came back normal. I still cannot figure out why I have pain in my left thigh though, which is where my bone cancer first appeared. I guess I’m just going to "keep on trucking" as my girlfriend Bonnie says.
I decided to launch a website that is separate from the Noreen Fraser Foundation. It’s called Men for Women Now and the mission is to engage men to join in the fight against women's cancer by asking the women they love to get their mammograms and pap smears. Early detection has always been my passion. We need to form an “Army of Men” to watch over women. The number of women who do not get a mammogram or a pap smear in this day and age is astounding. Have we not done enough to spread the word that early detection is as close as we can get to a cure? Are we “walking” instead of thinking? Cancer found in stage 1 can be treated and eliminated with the drugs we already have in our pipeline today.
Men for Women Now is a resource for men to talk with other men. Being a caretaker is physically and emotionally exhausting. But many men do not feel comfortable sharing their feelings face to face with another person. Unfortunately our culture has taught men to be strong, not to cry, and basically buck-up and hold in their feelings. Does this strike a chord in you? Women on the other hand let it all out. Whether they share their feelings with their sisters, girlfriends, moms, or around the office cooler, a woman is more likely to communicate what she is going through and how she feels.
This website also features a discussion board where men can ask other men questions. There is a resource section filled with organizations that may be helpful to you. Men are currently sending in short videos that we are posting on the site. The videos share tips that worked to provide emotional and physical support to the woman they love. We also have videos from our family of comedians such as Jack Black (giving himself a mammogram), Zach Galifanakis, Neil Patrick Harris, and Jason Seigel to name a few.
Men for Women Now is not just for the 30 and up crowd. Teenagers and young adults in their 20s need to learn to talk with their mom, their grandmother, and other family members about making appointments for their tests. They also need to be able to share their feelings and the discussion board is the perfect forum. It’s never been more true that "it takes a village."
Fighting women's cancer is no easy feat – but if we do it together – we will save precious lives. I hope that you will join other men on the site and encourage the men in your lives to use this resource . As a woman living with cancer I know that my husband and my son will benefit greatly from menforwomennow.org.
Please join me in this fight by joining Men for Women Now. We will send you updates on upcoming events, relevant news and ways that you can help. It will allow me to stay in touch with more of you so that together we can make a meaningful difference.
Click here to read more of Noreen Fraser's Staring Down Cancer column.
Noreen Fraser is living with Stage IV metastatic breast cancer. She is co-founder of STAND UP TO CANCER and co-produced the TV show, which raised 100 million dollars for cancer research. Noreen went on to create the Noreen Fraser Foundation to raise money and awareness for women's cancer research. The 'Men for Women Now' program enlists men to ask the women they love to make appointments for their mammogram and pap smear. Noreen can be reached at email@example.com