I mused to my sister shortly after my breast cancer diagnosis in early 2012.
As a recently-single 30-year-old, I wondered what implications cancer would have on my love life.
They often want to find someone with whom to share their life—and this is a real challenge.
There are times when I am tempted to start a matchmaking service for the men and women, both gay and straight, who tell me how lonely they are and how they long for someone to share their life with. I often hear stories that describe how difficult it is to dip an older toe into the world of dating in 2015; the world is so different from the 1950s and 1960s when last they were single.
Once upon a time, women who have survived cancer will tell you, the fact that you’d been through the horror of a diagnosis and surgery was not public information—not at work and certainly not on a first date.
Flash forward to 2016 and, experts say, there’s a very different attitude.
Women often ask, ' How did you deal when you lost your hair?
' But men go deeper: ' How should I talk to my sister who has breast cancer?
“If you can’t handle that, keep it moving.” (And plenty of dates can handle it: “One of the top things singles say they are looking for is the ability to learn from a partner,” says Laurie Davis Edwards, founder of the online dating-coaching service e Flirt.
First I visited forums where cancer patients and their significant others discussed the challenges of dating after cancer.
As it turns out, men and women both struggle with identifying the best time to tell a new love interest about their cancer history.
“Breast cancer survivors offer a unique understanding of the value of life—and love.”) The women you’re about to meet— Jenny, Kristina, and Nicole—are proof."When I signed up for OKCupid, they asked, What’s the most private thing you’re willing to admit?
My answers: Laundry is my favorite chore, and I’m a breast cancer survivor. The first guy I had sex with after cancer was a beautiful, tattooed philosopher. I’m glad they do, though; now I’m using them to find The One. I have bikini shots on my profile because I’m proud of my body: I want to show my “shark bite”—the scar on my belly from the reconstruction—and my ' Frankenboob,' which used to be higher than the other one but has fallen into place.