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Women's magazine makes fun of cancer survivor wearing tutu

SELF Magazine surprised a cancer survivor by using her photo in its April 2014 issue -- and not in a good way.
SELF Magazine surprised a cancer survivor by using her photo in its April 2014 issue -- and not in a good way.Monika Allen/NBC 7 San Diego

When Monika Allen received an email from popular women's magazine, SELF, she was excited at the opportunity to be featured in the magazine, who notes its motto as, "being fit, strong and active means feeling great, being happy and looking your most beautiful" and notes that it "makes it fun and fulfilling to be your happiest, healthiest, best self."

What Allen found when she saw the magazine's April issue surprised her. Her photo, which showed her in a Wonder Woman costume completed with a tutu running the L.A. Marathon, was placed in the magazine's "BS Meter" with the caption noting that "a racing tutu epidemic has struck NYC's Central Park, and it's all because people think these froufrou skirts make you run faster." The caption continued to say, "now, if you told us they made people run from you faster, maybe we would believe it."

In an interview with NBC 7, Allen said the photo was "really offensive for a couple of reasons." She had chosen to wear that particular outfit during the marathon because she was in the middle of chemotherapy and it gave her extra motivation.

“The reason we were wearing those outfits is because this was my first marathon running with brain cancer,” Allen explained.

In addition, tutus have a place close to Allen's heart. Through her company Glam Runners, where she makes and sells tutus for charity, she has raised approximately $5,600 for Girls on the Run, a charity that sponsors exercise and confidence-building programs for young girls.

While Allen reached out to the magazine on Tuesday, March 26, she had not heard back from them as of Wednesday. In a written statement to NBC 7, SELF apologized "for the association of her picture in any way other than to support her efforts to be healthy."