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  • Writer's pictureSurviving Breast Cancer

Empowering Breast Cancer Survivors Through Community



Humans are social beings. Early humans depended on the community for survival. Living in clans enabled them to share food, care for infants, and build social networks to meet the daily challenges of their environments. We’re not so different today. We forge social connections and embrace communities to learn new things, share our experiences, and gain or give support.


Hardwired to Connect


Extensive neuroscience research shows that humans are hardwired to connect with others. We find solace when we belong. Scientific evidence even demonstrates that mirror neurons in our brains are stimulated when we interact, making pathways in our brain light up to mirror the emotions and behaviors the other person is conveying when talking with someone.


The Importance of Human Connection


Maslow’s “hierarchy of needs” theory, published in 1943, argued that a person couldn’t reach fulfillment without love and belonging and that it followed closely behind basic needs, such as food and shelter. At the time, there was little scientific evidence to support his theory. However, emerging research gives his theory credibility and takes it a step further, suggesting that the human need to connect socially is a basic human need—as crucial to survival as food, shelter, and water.


Even without scientific proof that humans need to be connected, the way we live our lives clarifies that humans desire a sense of community. We thrive in groups; whether belonging to a social group, a religious group, Boy Scouts, or Girl Scouts, a fitness group, we find solace by belonging.


In every culture, women have fostered and nurtured communities. From sewing circles to book clubs, sororities to professional associations, running clubs, to quilting clubs, women have historically understood the power of community.


While some people are quick to point out the downside of modern technology, the other side of the coin is that it can alleviate isolation for those who are unable for various reasons to connect in person. The pandemic made that fact clear. Social platforms such as Facebook provide people with a way to connect with like-minded people based on interests, and you can find a MeetUp online for just about any interest.


The Link Between Community and Health

It doesn’t just feel good to be part of a group; being connected has proven tangible health benefits. Just how powerful is a person’s social connection to health? One landmark study showed that lack of social connection is a greater detriment to health than obesity, smoking, and high blood pressure. Research has also shown compelling evidence that strong social connections can:


  • Increase longevity by as much as 50 percent

  • Strengthen your immune system

  • Help you recover from disease faster

  • Experience lower levels of anxiety and depression

  • Boost your self-esteem


The Breast Cancer Community


Receiving a diagnosis of any serious disease, such as breast cancer, can send a person’s life into a tailspin. Accessing information is essential, but equally as important is connecting with others experiencing similar things. It’s not just helpful for survivors, but their families and caretakers, too.



Online breast cancer support communities provide you with an opportunity to meet other women in various stages, including some who had it many years ago and are living happy healthy lives. Knowing long-term survivors can help you realize that breast cancer doesn’t automatically mean you’re doomed. You can also build a sense of comradeship with those at your stage who understand your fears and concerns because they’re going through a similar experience.


You are never alone when you become part of our global community. Instead, you’re surrounded by others who have been touched by breast cancer.


Our Thursday Night Thrivers MeetUp goes beyond a steady dose of breast cancer stories. Sure, people are generous with their personal stories and helpful hints, but it’s also a chance to form long-lasting friendships. They will support you, laugh with you, empower you, and always be by your side. Not in the mood to discuss cancer? No problem, check out our Breast Cancer Book Club™.


Connect with our community for resources and support, and know that you are not alone!


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Meditation Mondays:

Chakra Chanting with Gloria

Mondays at 10:00 a.m. ET 

RSVP

Thursday Night Thrivers:

All Stages Support Group

Thursdays at 7:00 p.m. ET

RSVP

 

Thursday Night Thrivers:

Metastatic Breast Cancer Support Group

First and third Thursdays

of the month at 7:00 p.m. ET

RSVP

 

Thursday Night Thrivers:

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Support Group

Second Thursday

of the month at 7:00 p.m. ET

RSVP

Tuesday Night Thrivers

Después de un Diagnóstico:

Grupo de Apoyo en Español

2do y Cuarto Martes de cada mes 

7:00 p.m. ET

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Encourage and Empower

For Newly Diagnosed

September 10, 11:00 a.m. ET

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Breast Cancer Book Club

The first Sunday of the month

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Brain Spotting

May 27,  6:00 p.m. ET

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Qi Gong

May 28,  11:30 a.m. ET

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Art Therapy

June 3, 6:00 p.m. ET

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Forest Bathing

Jun 4,  6:00 p.m. ET

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Reflect & Recharge

Expressive Writing

June 10,  6:00 p.m. ET

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Yoga Fitness with Chair Assist

June 11, 11:30 a.m. ET

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Yoga Stretching for DIEP flap

June 11,  6:00 p.m. ET

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Restorative Yoga:

Unearthing Opportunities

June 17 ,  5:30 p.m. ET

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Más eventos en español

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Upcoming Events

1

Surviving Breast Cancer provides breast cancer support, events, and webinars at no cost to you! Whether you are looking to gain more knowledge on a particular topic or meet up with other breast cancer survivors, we have something for everyone. 

2

Our standing appointment on Thursdays is for all stages. We also host specific breakout groups once a month for specific stages and subtypes such as Metastatic breast cancer, and Inflammatory Breast Cancer, etc. 

3

The Book Club meets the first Sunday of every month at 11 am ET. You are welcome to join each month or pick and choose your month based on your availability and the book we are reading. 

4

Through art, writing, and other creative modalities, we hold the power to manage our stress, make sense of our now, and relax into moments of stillness. 

5

Free, monthly, online classes in restorative yoga, yoga for breast cancer, and Zumba. 

6

Después de un Diagnóstico

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