You go, Angelina!

I am appreciating the bold move by Angelina Jolie to go public with her medical testing and consequent surgery. It is not an easy decision for any one to make, and certainly not for someone who is in the public eye as much as she is. I heard someone say that she will do more for breast cancer and BRCA testing awareness in one day than the medical field has been able to do in 10 years. I believe that, and I believe that Angelina also sees this and is taking advantage of her position to help others.

Her conviction in her ongoing femininity is important as well, giving confirmation to the notion that one’s sense of what is feminine is driven as much by what is inside as what is observed from without.  That she was able to put her health and the stability of her family above the external demands of her business is laudable and remarkable. She chose to stack the odds in her favor, and by electing to have surgery now, she also spares herself the wondering and the fears that she may have felt she would live with had she not taken this route. She not only removed the element of surprise and shock, but this also meant that she could plan her work, her home life, and how she decided to share her news with the world and when.

I will be interested to see what role she decides to take from here on out, but regardless of what that is I want to send a BIG shout out to Angelina for taking this decisive step and letting us know about it! The more information we are afforded, the less scary something is. Overt discussion can take the air out of the balloon of fear and that is always a good thing.  Thank you, Angelina for opening this discussion in such a dramatic and powerful way. May we all be able to be as courageous!

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About Meg

Meg is a licensed independent clinical social worker with over thirty-five years clinical experience. She holds a Master’s Degree from the Boston University School of Social Work and a Bachelor of Arts from the State University of New York at Binghamton.