Optical Women’s Association

OWA Connects Blog

October is Breast Cancer and Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and Domestic Violence Awareness month. These two causes disproportionately affect women more than men. 1 in 8 women develops breast cancer, compared to 1 in 800 men. The statistics for domestic violence are even higher, with an average of 1 in 3 women experiencing domestic violence in their lifetime, compared to 1 in 4 men. To raise awareness, we wanted to share some resources to help those close to these causes.

Domestic Violence Awareness Resources:

Recognizing the signs of abuse could save your or another’s life. Domestic violence is not just limited to physical abuse; mental abuse, control, and gaslighting are all forms of domestic violence. Thehotline.org has resources to help you learn how to support others, create a safety plan, and more. Below are a few critical points on identifying abuse; we encourage you to read the article for more in-depth information.

A few common signs:

  • Extreme jealousy, often resulting in prevention from seeing friends, family, and peers
  • Insulting, demeaning, shaming—often in public
  • Controlling decisions and financial resources
  • Intimidation/threatening behavior, often towards you, your children, and/or pets
  • Destroying your belongings or living space

Please reach out if you suspect abuse for yourself or someone you know. Many towns and cities have local programs; you can search for yours on Thehotline.org. The number for the national domestic violence hotline is 1.800.799.SAFE or you can text “Start” to 88788.

Breast Cancer Awareness:

Early detection is key to breast cancer treatment; if caught early, there is a 93% or higher survival rate within five years. Frequent self-exams, and depending on your age and other risk factors, mammograms or, in some cases, MRI’s are critical to early detection. Please talk with your doctor about their recommendations for you.

Here are a few statistics to consider:

  • 80% of women diagnosed with breast cancer are 45 or older
  • 43% are aged 65 or above
  • 1 in 800 men are diagnosed with breast cancer—yes, men can get it too!
  • Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women

Here are a few sites with helpful information and resources if you or a loved one has been diagnosed:

  • Cancer.Org Programs and Support: This lists helpful resources such as lodging during treatment, rides to treatment, connecting with other survivors, support, and even hair loss and mastectomy products. You can also sign up to volunteer here.
  • Reach: Do you wish you could talk with someone who understands? Have questions but unsure who to ask? You can call or text at no charge with this volunteer-run service to get non-medical answers and support your need.  You can also sign up to volunteer on this site.

Written by: Nicole Joli