Angelina Jolie’s choice need not be yours
You're an international movie star with one of the most famous bodies in the world. You're also a daughter who lost her mother to breast cancer when she was only 56. You have six children of your own to raise. And you find out you carry the BRCA1 gene that increases your risk of developing the cancer that killed your mom.
Okay, now make a choice.
In a bold and candid op-ed for the Tuesday New York Times, Angelina Jolie revealed "My Medical Choice" to be a preventive double mastectomy after her doctors "estimated that I had an 87 percent risk of breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of ovarian cancer." As Jolie writes, "Cancer is still a word that strikes fear into people’s hearts, producing a deep sense of powerlessness. But today it is possible to find out through a blood test whether you are highly susceptible to breast and ovarian cancer, and then take action."
The 37-year-old's act has already been hailed as "brave" from everybody from British Foreign Secretary William Hague to a slew of the women in your Facebook feed. And it's undeniable that it takes tremendous strength to make a grueling medical decision and to share it with the world.