What is success in advocacy? That’s a great question and it’s one I’ve been thinking a lot about, and I’m going to weigh-in on today. It’s when an advocate provides accurate information to the community that is unbiased, without prejudice for the better of all, and uses their voice to affect change for the betterment of the community ‘as a whole’. It’s a commitment you make when you take on this somewhat thankless role. I say thankless because when Sondra and I stepped into these roles we did so never expecting anything other than to affect change, but also never anticipating the amount of “vulchers” in the world of cancer! I say vulchers in the nicest way possible – I promise, but some have no issues coming in and pirating others hard work.
Our initial launch was a personal website with our cancer life on it, and for whatever reason it took off. Perhaps, it resonated with others because it was honest, vulnerable and real. Perhaps, people saw themselves in our stories. Whatever the reason we are here today – still advocating – almost 10 years later! We’ve never wavered from our promise to bring honesty and authenticity to the table. However, that’s not true for all advocates.
From the beginning there’s always a handful of advocates that feel the need to “shake their fists” with rage, anger and something we call egoticity! They make others in the community feel their efforts are less-than. These people come in all stages and are flat, one breasted, have breast mound reconstruction – there is no criteria. This type of person wants all of the glory – while not actually doing all of the work. They are relentless behind the scenes, and at this point in our advocacy we are no longer going to be afraid to use our voice to stand up to them. No more bullying, no more lying about work you didn’t do, no more intimation, no more lies, no more cancel culture, and no more bullshit, because it isn’t actually HELPING anyone!
You shouldn’t come into this game with anything other than a giving heart – period. You shouldn’t look for anything other than to heal a damaged community and offer up soulful kindness and education for all and with ALL! I believe that’s what community means.
I think that for those that can’t share in the advocacy credit where it’s due and those that take intellectual and artistic content of others, as well those that bully relentlessly, and those that don’t actually believe there is room enough at the table for everyone, they deserve to be called out.
It’s time to pull your head out of your egotistical ass – yes, you read that correctly, it’s time for everyone, including me, to DO BETTER.
Moving along, Kimberly Bowles (Not Putting on a Shirt), this is NOT what community looks like to me.
You mention “integrity” in your above statement – you say that our “list” has been up for “years” but then claim that we somehow copied your work in an attempt to discredit us? How exactly does that work??? Can you explain this to us?
The above statement was put out by you in a public attempt to bully and try to get others in the community to “shun” and/or “cancel” BSBC on the very day as Sondra was going in for an MRI of her liver for suspected BC METS and while her daughter who was 16 at the time had a tumor in her breast that she would need to have surgically removed soon after. How is that community? At a time she needed community the most, you viciously drove support in the other direction.
Your team of “flying monkeys” – specifically C.A. – knew Sondra was going through all of this and continued the harassment. Take a hard look back at your behavior and the behavior of your “flying monkeys”. As you can see from the screenshots below, Sondra has tried to have kind and respectful conversations with your board members, and they are the ones who will not have any part of it – not the other way around. If this bullying narrative with your team continues, we can release screenshots of every conversation we’ve received from every person who has been told to blacklist us from you, and every single person who has felt or continues to feel bullied by you and has contacted us. It’s many.
NOTHING that your team has actually done supports community. And furthermore, their continued smear campaigns are NOT truthful. Yet – all of you continue to attack. No more! If it’s the last thing I do – I will use my voice to OUT this continued bullshit.
Talk about integrity – and honesty – here’s some for you:
You KNEW for years that this was BSBC’s work and ORIGINAL idea. FACTS: Jessica T started collecting the names of a few flat surgeons and handed them off to you, unbeknownst that BSBC was doing this work already. When Catherine shared that BSBC was already doing this work and it didn’t need to be duplicated, you gave the VERY SHORT list, to Sondra to add to our already LARGE list. And then this email exchange took place. Sondra never intended you to take all the work and own it – you misrepresented a very brief conversation that took place – and keep trying to pass it off as your justification for your bad behavior, but below, we further prove that no such conversation took place.
July 10, 2019 – this article was published in Cancer Health magazine confirming that it was in fact BSBC that had compiled the list – our map has been hosted on the FCN website since its launch in December 2018 – and anyone who write to FCN to recommend their flat surgeon was then given to BSBC – not you. So, I’m asking you, Kimberly, are you calling Catherine Guthrie – a well respected author – a liar since she is the one who was interviewed for this article? Are you also calling this NATIONAL CANCER MAGAZINE – and it’s writer a LIAR? Seems to me that you are.
The saddest part in all of this Kimberly is that despite all of this hurt and heartache and devastation you’ve caused the community and us, we still feel the core portion of your message – flat denial – is of importance. And it’s a damn shame, we couldn’t have worked together for the betterment of the community. I guess because so much of Sondra’s work is ‘done in the background’ you felt that no one would believe her when she actually demanded she be credited for her own work – the work that you stole and have tried to pass off as your own.
Sondra has grieved for the loss of what she thought was a real friendship with you. It’s sad you’ve taken advantage of her kindness, compassion and love as a human being. I have a suggestion for you, Kimberly, you should re-read every one of your actual conversations with Sondra, so many of them told her how thankful you were for her friendship and work.
As for me – I’ve never met you, and I’ll be damned if I ever let you hurt anyone in the world of cancer or advocacy again.