A woman from Rickmansworth who had to have her breasts removed after being diagnosed with cancer has taken part in a national photographic campaign to give people an unfiltered look at the impact of the disease.
Juliet FitzPatrick, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016 and had a double mastectomy, was a topless model for Stand up to Cancer UK’s photographic campaign, Defiance, by photographer Ami Barwell, which aims to make people feel more comfortable with the scars they have on their bodies.
The exhibition, which Juliet modelled for in February along with 15 other women and men, was open at Carousel in London on Tuesday, October 15 and Juliet was interviewed on ITV News the day before to promote it.
Speaking about the experience, Juliet said: “Going on ITV was quite nerve-wracking, but once I got on there I knew exactly what I wanted to talk about and I became reasonably confident.
“The campaign has been an amazing thing to be a part of. I’ve been involved with several topless campaigns and my whole goal is to raise as much awareness as possible and increase visibility for women who have had double mastectomies.
“When you have cancer, you feel like you’re powerless and have no control. Choosing to stay flat was my way of taking back that control and now increasing visibility is my main goal – so it was a huge achievement for me to have people see this nationally.
“When I initially had my mastectomy, I wasn’t made aware of the fact that staying flat was an option – I had to find that out for myself. I’m trying to make people aware that it’s perfectly alright. Make sure your surgeon gives you all the options before you decide.”
To see the full photographic campaign, go to standuptocancer.org.uk/photo-series-cancer-diagnosis-defiance
Juliet also has her own blog, which can be seen at bloomingcancer.co.uk/
Picture courtesy of Ami Barwell for Stand Up To Cancer UK