Credit: Facebook Photo: Australia Mom Beth Whaanga, Breast Cancer Survivor

When Australian mother of four Beth Whaanga was diagnosed with breast cancer on her 32nd birthday, it was quite a devastating blow. In order to treat her disease, the young mother underwent a double mastectomy, followed by breast reconstruction surgery. Then, she decided to give something back.

With a goal to create awareness about the importance of self-examination and early detection, Beth teamed up with friend and photographer Nadia Masot to create topless portraits of herself that showed her unadulterated mastectomy scars, and shared them on her Facebook page.

Each day we walk past people,” Beth states on Facebook, “These individuals appear normal but under their clothing sometimes their bodies tell a different story. Nadia Masot and I aim to find others who are willing to participate in our project so that we might show others that cancer affects everyone. The old and the young, age does not matter, self examination is vital. It can happen to you.”

While the topless images may be graphic, Beth stated that the photos are “in no way” intended to be sexual. Nevertheless, when she posted the photos online, she says some did find the images controversial. In fact, Beth say that she lost about 100 of her Facebook friends.

In response, Beth told the Courier-Mail, “The people who think it’s 'just not for them' may just end up being the one who will wish one day they'd paid a bit more attention when it happens to them, only worse because they chose to be offended instead of listening. Ignorance is never a better option.”

Source: Facebook, Courier-Mail