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July 16, 2008 / allyo

Doctors say self-fondling no longer mandatory

My OBGYN has been on my case for YEARS about my failure to conduct self breast exams (SBEs). I even had a placard hanging on my bathroom door for the longest time, but even if I had been inclined to do them regularly before having Jamie, anyone who has breastfed for any length of time will know that SBEs are useless while lactating. And I’ve found that anything remotely related to bearing children – like, say, my flabby spare tire – can be excused long after the baby’s been born or in this case, weaned.

Now there is mounting evidence that they’re not really useful, and instead lead to uneccessary biopsies. Um, duh? Don’t get me wrong, I’m very body-aware. I know what my body should look and feel like. My failure with SBEs had nothing to do with ooginess about fondling my own breasts and more to do with equal parts absentmindedness and failure on my doctor’a part in really making a case for why they were so damn important.

The article I linked to says that women should still be aware of what is “normal” for their breasts, but SBEs are now “an option.” So fondle away if it floats your boat, but go ahead and throw the placard away.


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