Last week, on Facebook, an old friend asked me to participate in a breast cancer awareness exercise. Women were to post the color of the bra they were wearing in their status, with no explanation. Without hesitation, I complied, thinking at least "mocha" was obscure enough that many people, knowing my love of coffee, would assume that was what I meant.

In my opinion, I believe breast cancer awareness is overdone. I believe we can all agree, the NFL looked ridiculous wearing all their pink garb! We get it, breast cancer exists and it totally stinks. However overdone awareness campaigns are, I still participated as a sign of solidarity with my sisters in Christ who have breast cancer, are cancer survivors, or who will have cancer down the road. It was a way, albeit silly, of saying, "I support you. I'm praying for you. I'm with you, girlfriend!"

I didn't even think twice about posting my bra color as being immodest, not until the father of our eldest daughter's godfather queried my status with, "What???" There was no way I was going to explain. No way! Ok, maybe I really don't want men thinking about the color of my undergarments.

From the way I read the message, this exercise was just between women, and men weren't supposed to know what we were talking about. Boy, am I ever naive. People were explaining it all over Facebook. Great! Then the uproar began over the appropriateness of the campaign. Whatever. Hey, guess what?! Women wear bras--at least some do and most should! Guess what else?! Women are dying of breast cancer and it truly stinks! Men are dying of prostate cancer, but very rarely do we hear about that. Maybe next week I'll start a campaign for prostate cancer awareness and have the fellas post "boxers or briefs" for their status. Ok, I won't. TMI. I really don't want to know.

One friend then posted this great message for her status: "Breastfeeding reduces your risk of getting breast cancer (and the longer you nurse, the lower your risk). It also helps your daughter reduce HER chances of getting breast cancer. Now post this message instead of the color of your bra!"

What do you think? Is posting one's bra color in a public forum TMI, immodest, scandalous, cheeky, silly, or a positive way of supporting our cancer stricken sisters? I'll be honest, I'm still undecided on this question. Convince me!
**I had to change the title of my post as it was coming up in some wonky searches! Ewww!


Drina said…
Well, a guy friend of mine posted 'black with white polka dots" as his status, just to be funny. And it was! Then he wrote: "Oh, and if you girls got an interesting mental image, now you know how it feels...those mental images aren't fun..." That's convincing enough for me!
Melissa said…
THATS why everyone was posting colors?
Drina said…
Side note: It seems like one thing to say "Women wear bras," and another to say," I'm wearing a (insert color) bra." The first is a general statement. The second is too much information. And how could one expect a guy NOT to have a visual image, whether he wants to or not?
Maurisa said…

Thank you for your comments. I have to tell you, I've vacillated between feeling absolutely mortified and indignant since this Facebook experience.

I am, by nature, very modest. I do not wear shorts, tight clothing, bare midriffs, low cut tops, or skirts above the knee. I've been really thinking about how this disconnect might have occurred. First of all, my intention was to support my sisters not entice men. From my understanding of the message, men were not even supposed to know. Since I believed this was between women, I did not think even consider it might cause scandal.

Secondly, I've nursed 6 babies in my life and possibly I've become desensitized to the idea of bras being enticing. Among my Facebook friends I found younger women were upset and found the exercise inappropriate, whereas my older friends posted their bra colors, no problem. Maybe we're no longer uptight about bras(I am NOT saying that is a good thing!), maybe we've had friends with cancer, or it could be a combination of both.

While the intent was not to be enticing or not, clearly it could have been. Some may argue to what degree are women responsible for men feeling enticed. There has been a very hot discussion going on at Faith and Family Live regarding the wearing of skirts and modesty. I've read on some blogs pants are too enticing and women should never wear them. I've also read elsewhere skirts are the culprit. It's enough to make a woman tear her hair out! Don't you just wish there was a handbook that told us straight out what is appropriate to wear and what is not!?

Anyhoo, the lesson I've learned is to think twice before posting anything on Facebook and consider anyone that might read and or interpret what I've posted.

Teresa said…
I think it's immodest to post the color of your underwear in a public forum. You wouldn't tell a guy friend, "I'm wearing a pink bra" in real life, would you? Same deal, I think.

There's no way not to picture a bra in your mind after reading one of those updates, and guys are generally more visual than girls. And once you've pictured the bras, you've also pictured the breasts. And I don't want all the guys on Facebook thinking about my breasts.

I read a blog post online about this. I can't find it now, but if I do I'll come back and post it.
Teresa said…
Oops, we cross-posted. I should add that I don't think anybody meant to be immodest, I just think it's an unintended side effect. If it had stayed girls-only, it wouldn't have mattered, but since it didn't, things went wrong.
Tonya said…
At first I thought women were posting there underwear colors and thought that was a tad strange. Then I found out what was really going on and just decided no one needed to know what color bra I was wearing that day. Just figured it was tmi. I think I fall on the lines of thinking it was "titillating". The assumption was guys are too stupid to figure it out. They aren't. And, for many of them, I'm guessing it did give them images they didn't need.

As for the women who did it without really thinking, we all do that! :-) I had one friend delete hers and say "there are just some things people on FB don't need to know." :-)

Ah, we live and we learn...

Where's your brother's opinion now?
Tonya said…
This might be the article Teresa is referring to:
Katie said…
There are some very thoughtful comments here, so I will not elaborate on all of that. I will just share my feelings when it all happened. At first, I did not think much of it. And then I thought, I do not want ANYONE picturing me in my bra!
Maurisa said…
Thanks guys. I also began to think of the whole thing this way, "How would I feel if Karate Kid had posted her bra color?" I'm pretty sure I'd have been pretty ticked!

Thank goodness we live and we learn!

I think my brother knows better than to get involved in this bruhaha :/
Teresa said…
No, it was a different article, written by a Christian guy, saying pretty much "You are leading us into sin. Cut it out."
Walt said…
Hey Mau,

That is why I don't post my tighty whities colors!!! EMBARASSING!!!

Love Ya Mau!

Maurisa said…
Thank you, brother! Anytime I am tempted to take myself too seriously, there you are pulling me outta the muck! I love you!
Party of Eleven said…
Great blog post Maurisa :) I was also on the fence, I had gotten a message earlier from a cousin, so I knew what was going on right away. The first thing I thought of was: 1) a dude totally thought this up and is patting himself on the back because he just cashed in on people's love for joining a cause and 2)maybe I am not being pro-breast cancer awareness enough, because I don't really want to post my business. I did "like" my friends status re: breastfeeding, which I thought was appropriate, but I didn't post that as my status. I didn't think I was a modest person, but maybe (in my old age) I am turning into one. BTW, I love the picture of you and your baby on the sidebar!!!
Sarah - Kala said…
What??!??!??! I'm fairly new to FB and I'm still trying to figure out what it means when you POKE someone, and I don't "get" Farmville?!?? I'm in a small loop at the moment as my friends/family FB has only about 15 folks? Probably less - many of those have over 100, which seems insane to me. Anyway, great of that many people want to acknowledge you on FB. Right, I must be a complete loser then. ;)
If I had "caught on" I would have ignored it. I share enough of what I think is important on my blog (and even that is nutters).
Miss you - wish we could have some mocha latte's together!
Sarah - Kala said…
OH, and I had been following that thread on F&F - interesting topic. There's a blogger "Cheeky Pink Girl" who actually bragged on her blog about how she was throwing wrenches in that discussion. I think that CPG looks for fights, personally. Some of the time she makes good points, but she is very vocal in her opinions. I have problems of "in your face" too much. Anyway, I am looking at wearing skirts more often now . . . someone linked to some decent undergarments to wear under them and that would make all the difference. ;)
Judy Dudich said…
Not to mention that the whole pink ribbon campaign was begun by the Susan Coleman foundation...which has given profits to PLANNED PARENTHOOD...UGH
Judy Dudich said…
Sorry...I meant to write KOMEN not COLEMAN
Drina said…
Maurisa, I'm sure a lot of women, including close fb friends of mine, fall under the category of well-intentioned with you. Live and learn is right! I read a post on a blog I've started checking recently: You'll see in the comment section that the writer of that blog went on to start a fb group for "real" breast cancer awareness. I lost a sister-in-law to breast cancer, and it is a cause dear to my heart. This group seems like a much better way of spreading the message.
Michelle said…
I'm not one who "gets" the whole breast cancer awareness bandwagon...who DOESN'T know about breast cancer at this point? I can't even go to the grocery store without being inundated with products in pink packaging.

I'm also not one to participate in any sort of group blog or fb "project". Yesterday, hubby was told to post an old picture of himself on fb. Just because. Whatever. If you want to play the game, fine. I just don't have time for stuff like that.

Of course men were going to figure it all out. I would not have hestitated to explain to my husband why all these women were posting colors for their status. Some other women clued her guy friends in and he passed the info on to my husband before he asked (in fact, he offered to explain it to ME, since he thinks I'm clueless).

I didn't consider that it might be immodest. I asked my husband and he did not feel inspired to contemplate women in bras when he saw the colors, even knowing what it meant. Maybe it is an age thing - and bras and breasts are very utilitarian in this household. But he pointed out: how would it raise breast cancer awreness if it was to be a big secret from half the population what the color posting meant?
momto5minnies said…
I did not participate. My 14 year old is on FB and I immediately thought of her. Thankfully I didn't notice her age group passing that around. I do think the whole breast cancer campaign is overdone. It is very important to spread awareness, but posting bra colors doesn't make me think of breast cancer. I may not be as modest as you (I do wear shorts ...LOL), but the thought of other men I know having that private info on me ... no thanks.

WE've become a world that seems to confess everything.

Popular Posts