Founder, Male Breast Cancer Coalition
Bret was a typical 17-year-old guy. A senior in high school, on the football team, working at the pool and ice rink, everything was cool, until the day he scratched his chest and felt a lump behind his right nipple. Doctors constantly told him “let’s keep an eye on this…it’s a calcium build up…you’re becoming a man…it would go away.” Well, that never happened. Seven years later Bret was diagnosed with breast cancer.
On May 18th, 2010 Bret had a mastectomy. Along with breast tissue, his nipple and four lymph nodes around the nipple were also removed. The cancer was caught very early and classified as Stage 1. Following the mastectomy, Bret had four rounds of chemotherapy and today he is five years cancer free.
Bret made a promise to his surgeon that no man would ever feel alone when hearing the words, “You have breast cancer.” The day after his mastectomy, Bret started The Bret Miller 1T Foundation with the help of his parents Peggy & Bob Miller. He decided on “1T” because he only has one “T” in his name and now only one breast and one nipple!
The goal of the foundation is to raise awareness in colleges and high schools to tell our youth that breast cancer can happen to anyone. Bret and other male breast cancer survivors share their journeys and let students know they are their own best advocates for their bodies. They tell people if they find something that doesn’t feel right they must talk with a doctor and not ignore anything.
In 2013, we created Male Breast Cancer Coalition, on a mission to let everyone know breast cancer does not discriminate, it happens to MEN too! By sharing stories from male breast cancer survivors all over the world, they have noticed more and more men are now talking about their breast cancer. Providing support, resources and information to men and their families is a priority at MBCC. As Bret’s mom Peggy always says, “Together we will change the world!”
Bret is also working on a documentary about male breast cancer. “Men Have Breasts Too” will share stories from men who are members of what is usually a women’s only club, hear from family members impacted by male breast cancer, understand more about the disease from doctors and help spread awareness that men can indeed get breast cancer too. “Men Have Breasts Too” will ignite a serious discussion about detection and education for men with breast cancer.
Bret’s goal and mission in life now is to spread the word to EVERYONE that men can get breast cancer TOO!! Remember, MEN HAVE BREASTS TOO.
READ MORE FROM BRET: