Posting Your Cancer on Facebook

10 May

My latest piece for The New York Times on revealing my cancer diagnosis on Facebook.

By SULEIKA JAOUAD 

In the midst of a medical crisis, I found myself preoccupied by a social media question: To share or not to share?Photo Credit: Seamus McKiernan

In the world of social media, we are our own self-portraitists. Our digital identity is doctored to show the best version of our lives. (Maybe a more apt name for Facebook would have been “Best Face” book.) It’s not a new observation to point out the disparities between our online identities and our real selves, but for me, as a cancer patient, that gap has never felt larger.

If you had visited my Facebook profile last June, you would have found pictures of a smiling 22-year-old girl with long, wavy hair. She’s exploring the streets of Paris with a chubby King Charles spaniel named Chopin; eating tiramisù with her boyfriend Seamus at a cafe in the Marais district; having sunset picnics along the Seine with friends after work. This was a happy, successful, carefree person. On Facebook, aren’t we all?

Continue reading, here.

Follow @suleikajaouad on Twitter and on her Facebook Page.

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4 Responses to “Posting Your Cancer on Facebook”

  1. Mao Ossandon May 20, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

    For my students of Spanish Language in Chile, this information es esencial. Saludos fraternos a Suleika. Teacher Mao.

    • Mao Ossandon May 20, 2012 at 1:08 pm #

      In this moment, I read the newspaper “El Mercurio” in Santiago of Chile. My heart is whit Suleika. Mao

  2. Tessa May 24, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

    Suleika! I just love your blog. I wish you didn’t have this topic to blog about and weren’t fighting this battle but your message is a powerful one and it is a nice honest look of what young adults facing cancer are dealing with. I’m also NYC based and was diagnosed at age 26 with breast cancer. I’m one year post diagnosis and can relate to a lot of your stories. I think of myself as pre cancer self and me now. I can’t help thinking that way. Our world is hard to relate to. Keep up the great blogging and getting better. Lots of gentle germ free hugs 🙂

    • suleikajaouad June 9, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

      Lots of gentle germ free hugs right back at you. Hoping all is well with you. xo

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