I'm Jojogingerhead, a 31 year old artist & musician based in Brighton (UK) satirically documenting the highs and lows of my secondary triple negative breast cancer diagnosis. Trying to see the light in a dark and scary situation without using the words fight, battle, journey or survivor.
At the beginning of this year when I thought I was cancer free, I decided it was time to time to bag myself a man, or at least have some fun and go on a few dates. I haven’t had a serious relationship for well over a year and no amount of mingling at pubs, gigs etc was proving fruitful on the man front so I decided to join the rather dubious world of online dating. I hear all the kids are doing it nowadays.
It also has been a hot topic as of late within the online communities for young people living with cancer that I belong to. Is it okay to actively seek a relationship even though you know that you’re seriously ill and may not be around for long?
I have dished out the same advice on a few occasions. In my opinion, I see my secondary breast cancer diagnosis the same as living with a health condition. People with diabetes, heart disease, cystic fibrosis, MS, ME, and all manner of other health conditions manage to date and find partners, so why shouldn’t I? I don’t consider having cancer as part of my personalty or a personal attribute so why should I mention it on my online dating profile? I do have photos of myself with a shaved head and wearing various wigs and have found it nothing but a positive thing, plus it provides a topic for conversation!
If I can get past the cramp in my thumb from swiping left (i.e. NO), I have made a personal rule that if I arrange to meet up with any potential suitors, I will tell them about my diagnosis. This has happened a few times already and it didn’t put any of them off. In fact, they had some lovely complimentary and sensitive things to say about my honesty. It kind of restored my faith in huMANity.
I don’t expect to find the love of my life through online dating, all I want is a little fun and some maybe some flirting and candlelit footsy. Despite having a buzz cut and a few scars I still think I’m a pretty hot catch. So in the words of that well known song by Sheryl Crow “all I wanna do is have a little fun before I die” and I will NOT let cancer take that away from me.
So if anyone reading this has any single brothers, friends, workmates, fathers and grandfathers please pass them my contact details. Oh, and they have to be tall or they risk looking like a hobbit next to me.
Men, please form an orderly queue and I’ll leave you with some wise words from Sheryl…