Why not use an image of an ostomate?

My two-pennies-worth!


Ok, here’s my two-pennies-worth, and I’m not a born writer, so don’t expect Shakespeare.


Is it the images people see as shocking or offensive? Is it the wording used? Could Health Canada worded it differently used a slightly more subtle image? Would it get the message across? Either way I personally am not offended, but some people are, why? Anyway, all the hoo-ha seems to of been taken on board by Health Canada, I have read that these images are not actually being used, good or bad idea, that’s down to individuals opinions.

Yes, the worst case scenario is death, and I’m pretty certain a lot of cancer patients are aware of that, I know my father was. With bowel cancer being the fourth most common form of cancer in the UK (Cancer Research UK figures from 2015) could it not down to ostomates, health professionals/organisations and advocates to educate people that life after colostomy surgery is not the end. Life after surgery, as most ostomates and advocates are aware, is a new beginning, a chance not everyone has been lucky to receive.


The 20 Most Common Cancers, UK, 2015

The 20 Most Common Cancers, UK, 2015


Why not use an image of an ostomate?

If these images were to save lives then I would happily allow any advertising company or health authority use an image of my shit pouch. We all say we aren’t ashamed of them and yet there seems to be uproar and a ‘how dare they’ attitude towards this.  To be honest if this stops people smoking or decreases their habit, even slightly, then go for it.

Having an ostomy, for whatever reason, is not the be all and end all, there are other, more hideous, things out there. Let’s not be selfish and self obsessed with our conditions, let’s look at the bigger (worldwide) picture and realise that an image of someone with their colostomy bag on show can help others live longer lives. With so many ostomates wishing to share their experiences and expertise to raise awareness then lets utilise our skills, we should be able to help educate and inform people no matter.

This is by no means a dig at any one person, or any opinions of the adverts, we are all entitled to express our thoughts, it’s not often I do.


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