I’m proud to be a member of the Team Single Jingles Man UP Monday PARENT BLOGGING TEAM! Today, I’m doing my part to spread an important message about Testicular Cancer.
A while ago, fellow parent blogger Jim Higley posted a message in the Dad Bloggers Facebook group about a campaign he’s running to encourage bloggers to do a post to raise awareness about testicular cancer. Now some people would say that I at times talk a load of balls (perhaps both on this blog and in real life), but as the time to write this blog post has come round I’ve started to wonder about how to approach this serious issue. I am often a bit light-hearted when I write on here but realise that realities of cancer are certainly no laughing matter. Indeed, I have lost several relatives to cancer myself over the years. However, what motivated me to write this post is the importance of talking about the topic of cancer and in particular testicular cancer. Here are three important reasons why talking about testicular cancer is important:
- Testicular Cancer is the #1 cancer in young men ages 15 to 35
- Testicular Cancer is highly survivable if detected early
- Young men should be doing a monthly self-exam
Talking about this topic may be awkward, but I guess that talking about potentially awkward topics is something that most parents face from time-to-time as their kids grow up. My wife and I haven’t really reached this stage yet with our son as he’s just over five months old and yet to utter his first words. I can’t say having a chat to my son about testicular cancer is something that I’d really thought about much before starting to prepare this post, but the three facts above provide compelling reasons for facing up to this issue with him at an appropriate time in the future. It’s great that websites of groups such as that of the Testicular Cancer Foundation (TCF) provide detailed and helpful guidelines about how men should go about checking themselves once a month.
I think that it’s also important to place talking about testicular cancer within a wider context. I hope that my son will grow up to be comfortable talking about issues to do with both physical and mental health, and in a society that accepts the importance of both men and women doing so. Where men’s health is concerned, I am really glad to see that campaigns such as Movember are helping to raise awareness of issues such as prostate cancer and mental health as well as testicular cancer.
In one of the first posts I did on this blog, I talked about how I find it frustrating that the phrase ‘man up’ is at times used as a stick with which to beat men in a manner that discourages the showing and discussing of emotions. It’s good to see this sort of usage of the term ‘man up’ being challenged in some quarters, and I found it particularly encouraging to read an article on The Good Men Project entitled 25 Ways to Redefine the Phrase ‘Man Up’. The author Carlos Andrez Gomez talked about principles such as encouraging men to be unafraid to express emotion, communicate their fears and seek help from others rather than carrying burdens alone.
The sorts of aspirations that I have just described seem to fit in with what the Team Single Jingles Man UP Monday is all about, or at least encapsulate my reasons for being part of it. If this blog post can in play even a very small part in helping to promote such aspirations and raise awareness about testicular cancer, then the time that I’ve taken writing it will certainly have been time well spent.
Thank you so much to Jim Higley for coordinating the Team Single Jingles Man UP Monday PARENT BLOGGING TEAM. He runs a great blog and podcast on parenting at his website Bobblehead Dad, so why not check them out.
I’d love to hear your views on this post and the topics that I’ve discussed here, so please feel free to let me know your views via the comments section below. If you want to keep up with this blog, there are ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+. Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin.
I’ve linked this blog with the Something for the Weekend parent bloggers’ link-up organised by Diary of the Dad and The Voice of Sarah Miles.