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How do you respond when asked why? - Page 3

post #41 of 65
It's funny, the only people who have asked me why were all medical professionals. So I just responded, "Because it's medically unnecessary." with this response, I learned that my OB is passionately against circumcision.
post #42 of 65
I live in the U.S. but I am Canadian and moved here at the age of 25. The times that it has come up, I have explained that in Canada, it's rarely done, that it's not natural and that the norm is for all people, even men, to be intact. I generally immediately say that I am actually an intactivist and strongly advocate for people leaving little babies penises alone and not performing cosmetic surgery on them, so they know how strongly I feel about it, and that if they don't agree, to point out that well, I will continue to debate the issue if called upon to do so. I have also explained to groups of women during moms' night outs (yes, more than once) the benefits of being with an intact man... and oddly, almost all of them had never experienced these things. I've said (a few times) that I know more about intact penises than any of their circumcised husbands, so if any of them want to ask me what it's like, I'd be happy to tell them all about it. I'm cheeky like that.
post #43 of 65
"We want him to have his foreskin."

This is generally so shocking an idea, that someone might actually find that body part desirable, that it doesn't go beyond that. It's also really hard for them to counter-argue, since it'd be about changing our desire, and not debating "facts."
post #44 of 65
I just tell them that I can't in good conscience subject my baby to that much pain when there are no proven health benefits. I foolishly circ'd my oldest, but I will not make that mistake again.

If they ask dh, he explains the function of the foreskin and how it enhances the sexual experience. He's pretty blunt without being inappropriate and it has convinced even my formerly ultra pro-circ mil.
post #45 of 65
Originally Posted by AllieFaye View Post
"We want him to have his foreskin."

This is generally so shocking an idea, that someone might actually find that body part desirable, that it doesn't go beyond that. It's also really hard for them to counter-argue, since it'd be about changing our desire, and not debating "facts."

I'm happy to see this anwer! A friend of mine used a variant on this, and the way she related it sounded extremely funny.

"You had him circumcised, right?
My friend cocked her head slightly and tried to look her most naïve. "But then he wouldn't have his foreskin...?"

Her friend looked at her like she'd said they brought DS home covered in vernix.
Then my friend moved in for the kill.

"You do know it's healthier and more pleasurable to have a whole penis, right? Most of the developed world knows this. Not to mention so much safer not to have cosmetic penile surgery at birth. More tea?"
post #46 of 65
"After trying out both models, I'd never want to sell my son and his girlfriends (mostly his girlfriends) short by cutting off the best part " (not that I have, nor have I ever been asked, but I'm a smart-butt)

I personally am hoping that I marry a European so that I can just be lazy and use the "look like daddy" excuse when I don't feel like debating it.
post #47 of 65
We live in Germany, so the only people who ask would be my American relatives. I have a built-in reason because almost no one does it here, so that's that. However, I always go on to add "It's mutilation, that's just weird, why would we do that? I wouldn't do it in the US either!"
post #48 of 65
Funny thing is that I was asked by my mother before we knew what my daughter was and it was along the lines
"you aren't circing that baby of yours are you?" (mum)
"well my partner wanted to because he is" (me)
"don't you dare harm my baby" (mum)

My whole mothers family is from england and none of the boys are done, not even my brother(our father is american). My mother would have raised hell is my husband had tried to do it. Luckily we had a rather serious conversation and I said that since we were married at the time I told him I would have him thrown out of the hospital if he tried it. I was lucky though. After a few conversations he came around and we agreed to never do it.
post #49 of 65
I have 2 girls, but I saw a circumcision in the hospital while we were in the nursery checking out. It was not painless or minor. It was heartbreaking. That poor baby there with a uncaring doctor (seriously, how could the doctor listen to the high-pitched crying and just go nonchalantly right along?) his parents in their recovery room, no one there to comfort him. It was traumatic for ME and I wasn't having a piece of my body cut off without anesthetic. I'd say something like that. If I had a boy. Dude, I can't even tell that story without choking up or even full-out crying
post #50 of 65
This came up in conversation once with my aunt. I said "I went on the internet and watched a video of a circumcision and it was horrific." She responded "Yeah, if I had that kind of information back then I wouldn't have done it either."

And I couldn't even make it all the way through the video, I only made it partway through where they tore the foreskin from the glans. I don't care what anyone says about babies being numb and not feeling it. I once had a root canal and I was in agony even though I was given novocaine. The dentist didn't believe that I was feeling anything even though I told him, but he finally gave me more novocaine once I started crying from the pain. So, I can imagine how awful a circ must be. My DS would have to get amazing health benefits for me to even consider circ.

You could also use the response I got from the ped when I told him we would not be circing: "It's purely cosmetic."
post #51 of 65
"Because being born male doesn't require immediate surgery."
post #52 of 65
I've only been asked twice. The first time I was so surprised by the question that I just sort of blurted out that it's medically unnecessary and not our decision to make. The second time I was a little more prepared (and the person was rude about it), so I sort of coldly asked why on Earth I would do such a ghastly, barbaric thing as pay some quack to mutilate a helpless baby's genitals at birth. That conversation ended quickly.
post #53 of 65
I dont think anyone has ever asked me that question before. The nurses at the hospital where my DS was born were very supportive and happy to hear I was not circing him.
They said that they didnt have a doctor on site that did it and they have to make special arrangements to do it. That was at least "nice" to hear, that it wasnt just "routine."

However a lot of dr's are still ignorant about the care of intact boys, I actually had a new male dr. start to try and retract my son's foreskin. I jumped up and was like, "Stop, you dont need to do that, stop!" I was so mortified and shocked, he really believed that this was something he needed to do, honestly it felt creepy.
Needless to say we never went back there again.
I thought it was ironic that my female dr knew that an intact penis did not need any special care, but a male dr was totally clueless.

As far as the OP, if they ask you, maybe they are looking for reassurance, ie *hoping* you had your son circ'ed, it would be like your decision meant theirs was a good one. In that case it wouldnt matter what you said (since you left your baby alone), theyd probably be hurt, since the question wasnt really about you but about them, or they could actually want information but Im a cynic like that.

I remember way before I became a mother and my brother was watching my nephew getting circ'ed and how stressed my brother was. I thought it was really sad, but didnt really "get" the whole circ situation yet. Back then it seemed "normal", now it seems crazy.
All that stress and pain for what really? sigh oh well what's done is done.

My DF said a long time ago before I was pregnant that he'd want his son's to be circed, but I think time has softened his thick skull. Either way there's no way in hell my baby (sex unknown) will be cut up for no reason.
His rationale was something about men in Africa and AIDS.
Yes that sounds perfectly reasonable to me.

I think since you are truly concerned more about getting the question/answer over with and not hurting anyones feelings, just say you didnt see a reason to do it and leave it at that (as others have suggested). If they push you after that, well imo they are asking for it.
I still think it's an odd question, and it seems like someone is either fishing (for info, confirmation, whatever) or judging or both.
post #54 of 65
I have also gone the route of saying that I haven't heard a compelling reason TO circ and I dont' believe in unnecessary surgery. End of story, unless they insist on trying to convince me-then I have no problem listing the reasons why I don't believe in it, whether it offends them or not

I don't think you should feel like you have to defend yourself by overexplaining (although I definitely have felt that way before as well.)
post #55 of 65
"There is no medical need for it and I don't want to hurt my baby."
post #56 of 65
I've heard several explanations...

"If I wanted him to look just like his Dad, I'd have his Dad sit in a ice bath, for an hour, shave everything, and then come out whenever they wanted to compare."

"I didn't cut off my daughter's clitoral hood, why would I cut off my son's penis' foreskin?"

"If it ain't broken, don't fix it."

"My son's eyes are blue. His Dad's are brown. Should I put contacts in the baby's eyes as well, so he looks like his Dad?"

"Why would I have cosmetic surgery done on a newborn? My baby is absolutely beautiful!"

"It's not MY penis."

"If I tied you down and cut off part of your genitals against your will, for your own good, of course, would that be okay?"
post #57 of 65
Nobody ever wonders since I'm European. So I don't have to say much unless someone really wants to know, which happens rarely.
I must say though that all boys born within the last 2 years in DH's family (3 including DS) are intact. One father is European and the others didn't do it because their doctor/midwife/dunno who exactly told them it's not necessary. They live in CA though, I'm pretty sure it would be different if they lived in a high circ area.
DH's mom circed her sons and doesn't get offended. They recommended it to her in the 80ies and she just believes whatever the doc says. She just shrugs and says whatever, and I know she is not offended. She doesn't waste a whole lot of thoughts on that stuff. DH's abuelita (Slovakian/Italian who grew up in Argentina) however thanked us a bazillion times for not circing. She absolutely hates circing.
post #58 of 65
I was only asked once, by my SIL. I just said "No. It's his penis". She has older children and isn't planning on having any more so it wasn't worth getting in to a discussion over.
post #59 of 65
Well, I have no sons and live in a low-circing country so it's not likely to come up. But if it did, I think I'd probably say something like "I'm strongly against it for ethical reasons". It's honest, it's not disingenuous or cutesy, and it's as tactful as I could be about the subject. People could either question me further at their own risk or hastily change the subject.
post #60 of 65
Nobody has ever asked me about the state of my boys' genitals. No doctors, no nurses, nobody.

I do pipe up loudly when the topic arises, but I've never been directly questioned, and would probably give such a nosey person a horrified look and say, "Why do you ask?"
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