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Can anyone please explain this kind of ignorance in today's world? Cousin thinks sunscreen CAUSES skin cancer?!

I posted of facebook last night after my hubby and I got home from an outdoor flea market. We'd had a lovely day and the only downside was the large number of babies we saw that were unprotected from the sun. Both my husband and I, and our 1 year old son, for that matter, are very fair and have skin cancer in our families, leading us to be very protective of our son when we go out. We couldn't believe the number of parents that were risking that horrible cancer for their children.

What I posted was "We had a great time at the flea market, but were sorry to see all the kids without sunscreen or shade protection from the sun. Poor kids:( "

Several minutes after I posted this, one of my cousins, another young mom with a 1 year old, posted that sunscreen was the cause in the rise in skin cancer and she wasn't going to "rub chemicals" on her kid. After an exchange, where I told her my beliefs that tanning beds are to blame for the rise in cancer, she finally said basically that I was wrong to post negative comments about other people's parenting on a public network, and if I didn't want a response just to keep my mouth shut.

First of all, we use facebook as a private family network. Our security is set so no one can see us, and we are only friends with family and close friends ( and not even all of them). I have always felt like I can express my views on religion, politics, and parenting without being so rudely censured by my own cousin.

In the world of the internet there is no excuse for being so ignorant as to ignore the causes of skin cancer, and risk your child being struck with it. I am disgusted with my cousin for her stupidity, since it could actually cause a serious illness or the death of her baby, even if it is 20 years from now.

I am posting anon because my cousin is on Cafemom, and I've had enough drama for the week. Besides being tired out with a teething 1 year old, I am 7 months pregnant and going through a depression problem that makes even getting up in the morning difficult. Thanks for reading, moms. Any words of encouragement/ agreement would be greatly appreciated.


Asked by Anonymous at 8:44 AM on Jun. 6, 2011 in General Parenting

This question is closed.
Answers (21)
  • There sure is evidence that suggests it. Sunblock blocks vitamin D absorption...vitamin D helps fight free radicals on the skins surface. Not to mention, all the nasty chemicals in there. There are studies on this that you can google & research yourself. She is not an idiot for thinking that, just do some googling so that you can better understand where she got her info.

    If you buy good organic sunscreen....then it's all good. I have sunscreen that has vitamin D in it & is all natural & organic. It's expensive, but i don't want to take any chances.

    Since sunblock hit the market in the 60's, skin cancer has risen dramatically.

    She is not ignorant.

    Answer by samurai_chica at 8:52 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • Not trying to be a downer, but the more natural route you go, your probably better off.

    Answer by BeachyBabe at 8:56 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • your cousin isnt wrong - look it up - last summer there was a report on that - most sunscreen (there are 2 expensive kinds that do not have this) have free radicals that are also used in road paint! the free radicals act as a barrior but also could be linked to cancer... also in the report - just the idea that you are safe in sunscreen was debunked - if you think you are safe and spend more time in the sun - you are still at a higher risk of cancer.... you have more uv/untrviolent radiation at the end of the day... so it sounds like she is remembering that story - i am sure you can find it on msn or abc. it isnt something even most medical professionals are informed of so dont feel bad. your cousin should try to be nicer to you. and remember just because someone seems to be tan - doesnt mean they will get skin cancer.. i wear 50+ sunBLOCK and still tan - native american geneline - and no cancer in the family.

    Answer by AmaliaD at 8:53 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • Agree with the above.

    Answer by Christine0813 at 8:54 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • I'm not sure about all of the sunscreens, but keeping yourself protected from the sun all the time causes vitamin deficiencies. Especially D. Suncreens do have chemicals and preservatives in them that are harmful to you. You'll have to realize as a mother that each of us chooses how to raise our children and chooses what we think is more harmful than others. I personally think vaccines are horrible, but I would never post anything like, "I was horrified to see the children lining up at the CDC for their shots."

    Answer by attap5 at 8:55 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • EVERYTHING causes cancer. So pick what kind of cancer you want to protect against, because chances are you'll get some form or another with continued exposure to ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING.


    Answer by BeachyBabe at 8:55 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • i agree with you! its your fb and you can say whatever you please on it! hang in there mama, you'll be okay :)

    Answer by flamingomegs at 8:56 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • your cousin was being rude. Some people just like to act like know-it-alls. I feel that your average sunscreen is not healthy for the skin, but i am not going to bother anyone else with my beliefs. I would have said "there is evidence that suggests both, so we'll have to agree to disagree" or something along those lines. take it lightly, maybe she was feeling a bit bitchy that day....

    Answer by samurai_chica at 9:02 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • I read recently that some brands do have some really bad chemicals in them, that could possibly be cancer causing. I steer clear of those brands. I think I would chance something that might possibly, maybe, rather than the uv rays that definitely do.

    Answer by momov4kids at 8:49 AM on Jun. 6, 2011

  • Its a beast of two evils, but I think the NO sunscreen would be worst of the evils. Im right there with you, Im gonna fight to protect my children with everything I can, even if Im wrong at times. Thats just not a gamble I can live with, and you gotta do what YOU think is right and leave her to her opinion. Cancer is cancer and even when you do everything right it still attacks so you have to go with what gives YOU peace of mind. So when dear cousin confronts you with a different opinion, you say "will this is what gives me peace of mind". As a mom of 4 almost grown doesnt get any easier... finding the peace of mind thing, that is. Good luck sweetie, raise your babies the way YOU think is right and you will live longer knowing YOU did everything that YOU thought was right for them, guilt free (thats a hard accomplishment all by itself).

    Answer by lacyjones at 9:05 AM on Jun. 6, 2011