Despite the explosion of "pink" awareness, one aspect of breast cancer remains taboo: its impact on a couple's sex life. Although men are sometimes diagnosed with the disease, it mostly "happens" to women's breasts, body parts that remain closely connected to sexuality, no matter how messages are spun ("They're just another body part!" "They provide food for babies!").
It took decades of work by brave women and men to bring breast cancer into mainstream conversation, media, shopping malls — even football fields. And much of this success can probably be attributed to a strategy that necessitated, in a sex-phobic American culture, that breast cancer be desexualized in order to be discussed in "polite company." I don't fault breast-cancer activists for this; it worked. Being able to talk about the disease openly has meant greater visibility, fundraising, and activism, and thus earlier detection and more treatment options — all of which translates into more survivors. There are about 2.5 million breast-cancer survivors living in the U.S. alone. The Daily Beast: Sexy Breast Cancer Ads: Provocative Or Patronizing?
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And yet, to ensure that women not only survive but enjoy happy, healthy, and fulfilling lives, I think it's about time we bring sex into the conversation. True, sex is now frequently used to provocatively garner attention for the disease, or for laughs (think: Save the Ta-Tas, I Love Bookies, Save Second Base, or Rethink Breast Cancer, with its shirtless men) — but these campaigns hardly count as earnest discussion. Here's why we need it.
There is very little frank discussion about what actually happens to a woman's sex drive after breast cancer. Read all the facts on The Daily Beast: Sex After Breast Cancer: What Couples Face
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