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A question Re circ

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

I have read through quite a few threads in this forum over the last few days and have a question. It's regarding fathers who are circ'ed and then the sons that they agree to leave intact.


Do you genuinely feel there is a hurt or pain that can carry on from the father's that are circumsized to their uncircumsized sons?


I've read it a few times in various posts on this forum, so it made me think. Do i have an issue that i need to think about? My son is left intact. DH and i originally would have circ'ed due to no knowledge when we first become parents 7 years ago. But then 5 years ago we homebirthed and our midwives provided us with info and data and research that made us decide to leave any future sons intact.


But, again, i wonder. Is there any issues left unsaid that i need to bring to dh about him being circ'ed and his ds (who is 6 months old and he said from day one of conception if it was a son would be left intact) that i need to delicately bring up? Curious to those who have btdt if there are issues that arise, or if ultimately it's a nonissue?


And another question that this brings up that i havent discussed with dh. In the eventual years, how will we educate ds about sexual activity and what if he is left with a negative sexual conotation if one of his partners is appalled by a noncirc'ed penis?

post #2 of 28

Give dad permission to 'restore', so that he can be similar to his son.

post #3 of 28

I think it's a non-issue for plenty of men.  Dh is circed, ds is intact.  It didn't take much for me to convince dh to leave any sons we might have intact, I just presented some general info and had him watch a video of a circ being done.  I also pointed out some of the complications his own circ had caused (in a gentle way, of course).  That was years before I got pregnant with ds, and we never even had to discuss it again after we found out he was a boy.


Re: potential sexual partners, well, I will tell my son that anyone who is repulsed by his foreskin doesn't deserve him, anyway.  But I don't think it's going to be much of an issue when our children come of age.  The circ rate is down to 32% and keeps dropping.

post #4 of 28
It's been a non-issue with my dh and our sons. He's circ'd and all three of our boys are intact.
post #5 of 28

My kids dad is the other way around from most people - he is circ'ed but his dad and most of his family are intact.  This was back in the day when circs were done automatically, no consent form needed.  They just took the baby away and did it without asking because that was accepted practice.  His younger brothers are not circ'ed because his parents had them in a different hospital and stood up for their rights in keeping them intact. 


I don't think he ever felt "wrong" about it.  He said his parents told them growing up that they made different decisions with the different boys, but all are variations of normal.  The brothers accepted that and it was never an issue for them.  None have ever spoken of being teased in school either.


In my area when my son was born in 2002, the circ rate was down to 40%.  Considering this, there is no chance anyone - circ'ed or uncirc'ed, will be teased by a potential partner.  If someone was that picky about their partner's penis, they not only have too many personal issues but they would also be eliminating half the population as potential partners.  It's really quite silly.


Currently, the circ rate in my state has gone down to just 25%.  Circ'ed boys are now the ones in the minority, the tables have turned.  This does vary by state, but circumcision rates have decreased everywhere over the years.

post #6 of 28

My husband is circumcised and our son isn't. When I first got pregnant, I didn't know much about circumcision and just assumed I'd likely have it done. Still, I decided to do some research before I made a major decision like that. After a while I told my husband that I wasn't so sure I wanted it done. My husband, who was also uneducated on the subject, just made the statement that he had it done and he's okay. Eventually I became almost certain that I didn't want to circumcise my son and discussed the reasons why we shouldn't with my husband. He didn't have a strong opinion either way and simply agreed that we could leave him alone.


I don't think it's even an issue with my husband. If it is, he hasn't mentioned it. He's pretty laid back.

post #7 of 28
I believe for my dh it is a non issue now. In the beginning when I told him I wouldnt allow circ to be done I think it made him think about what he is missing but now he dosnt give it another thought. What he knows is what he is comfortable with.

As for the sexual partner I would hope that I have installed enough self worth in my son that he will look at a woman as shallow and not see himself as being unusual should it ever come up about him being intact.
post #8 of 28

I am circ'd and neither of my sons are.  I was circ'd and my two younger brothers are not.  Neither has been an issue for me or them.  I think it depends upon the man and his relationship with his son. And how he views the decision you both made.  It does not have to be, but it can be.  All you can do is talk about it and see if it is.  And talk some more later and see if that is still the case.  Communication is the key.


As far as how sons will react to what future partners say or feel, hard to know.  My hope is that by using teachable moments throughout their time with me, they will develop confidence about their body and learn the value of their foreskin.  This should help them withstand ignorant or shallow partners that think a foreskin is a bad thing.  But, at some point they will be making their own decisions, right or wrong in my eyes. 



post #9 of 28

My DH was totally fine with leaving our two sons intact (he is circ'd, which I recently found out that his mother regrets, go MIL!), and I have asked him about it and he really doesn't seem to have any issues with it.  I am the one who has issues with it, lol.  I wish he would restore, but I don't think it bothers him enough to be motivated to take the time and effort to do it.  Being cut is all he knows, and it's not as though he doesn't enjoy sex, so ... he just isn't bothered by it.  Of course he is the type who is not bothered by much of anything, so I'm sure it's partially a personality issue. 


As for being rejected by a sexual partner later in life, I would put that in the same box as being rejected for any physical trait (big nose, hair loss, whatever) -- she doesn't deserve you anyway, move along.  I am actually quite skeptical of these new numbers on circs -- I don't think they are really that low, particularly among my demographic group (white upper middle class folk) -- but certainly even at 60/40 circed/intact, which I think is closer to reality, that is a significant difference from my generation where it was literally almost everyone.  I encountered one intact man in my entire dating career, and he was European.  So while it may not be the majority, it will certainly be something that is common enough not to be viewed as "abnormal."  (I still cringe in my head at that episode of Sex and the City where Charlotte said she didn't want one that could make its own carrying case ... sigh.)

post #10 of 28

It is a non-issue in my house. DH is essentially "OK" with his own circumcision, because he feels that when he was born 38 years ago, his parents were advised that circumcision was beneficial and thought they were doing the right thing. Plus, while he is obviously missing the benefits of a foreskin, he doesn't have any of the more severe complications of it. He feels like I do, which is that we know enough now to see that circumcision is unnecessary, so there was no need to put our kids through it.


I am not that worried about the idea of rejection by future partners. For one thing, I have three sons, so they will all automatically know other intact boys/men. For another, I don't think being intact will be nearly as unusual for their generation as it was for mine (born in the 1970s). I plan to tell them why we didn't have it done, if they ask. And frankly, I wouldn't want them involved with partners so shallow and uninformed as to think intactness was a deal-breaker.

post #11 of 28

I think it's only an issue if it's an issue. It doesn't sound like that is the case for your DH, OP, since he was on board from the beginning with keeping your DS intact. My DH had more of a defensive, "It didn't hurt me" attitude, but it was easy enough to convince him it wasn't necessary. Now he has no issue at all with having an intact son, but he doesn't understand my "obsession" with the anti-circ movement and it does bother him that I spend so much time online reading about this topic because he does see it as an indirect attack on his penis, and mentioning restoration just makes it worse because that is a direct attack.

post #12 of 28
Thread Starter 

Thank you all so much for your input! I had read a few threads and thought maybe i was being ignorant by never thinking twice about dh's feelings. But now he is much more of an intactivist than I am! He is the first to tell all his co-workers who have been expecting boys the reasons why they shouldn't circ. So i was feeling pretty confident with it. We discussed it last night and he's perfectly fine with it and reminded me that I left the final decision up to him (little does he know i had hoped the info and videos i put forth to him would sway him so there was no doubt in my mind). And he has zero interest in restoring ( i didnt even know what that was and had to look it up!), and he knows that just as he finds my body after 4 babies and life perfect, I find his body perfect the way it is. So I think we are both ok in that department.


My question regarding other's opinions on it, came up because over the last 2 months i've had 4 negative comments while changing ds's diapers at get togethers. We are all mothers and it's never been an issue to change a diaper in the midst of the chaos. Now I am beginning to feel as if i want to do it away from everyone. I don't want my daughter's to hear one more "That is so ugly, i never could have done that to my son" or "Wow, you know how dangerous it is to leave him like that" comment. Even though I am manned with evidence based research and facts to discredit these comments, I wonder how much of that a 5 and 7 year old really retains and would hate for my girls' to get the impression that natural is gross. And as my son gets older, i would hate for these negative connotations to stick to him. Then it got me to thinking about how sexual partners will react to him, as I myself have never been with anyone that is left intact. I never thought it was gross, but i'd never seen one till I did research about circumsision (and heard lots of whispering about how gross it was from teen friends). I hope that each and every time when I tell my ds that i believe he is perfect and natural, just the way he was intended to be and that some people are scared of that which they don't know (yes i tell him this at 6 months after these encounters because i do believe he understands a lot more than he is given credit for). I would love to live in a nonjudgemental world, or at least one where people didn't spew things that could effect the self esteem and self worth of children.

post #13 of 28
Wow to have people actually say that kind of thing about your ds hammer.gif. How do you keep your cool? I would have to say something like "Do you realize you just insulted me and my ds?!?"

I have never had anyone outside of family say anything about ds being intact thankfully.
post #14 of 28
Wow. I'm pretty blown away that people have the nerve to say those things about your son! Who the eff do they think they are? Why are they entitled to an opinion? I think an open wound in a diaper full of poop is beyond "gross".

You make a good decision! The foreskin is a normal part of the male anatomy. Not a defect. Nor is it a ticking time bomb!
post #15 of 28

I can't believe anyone thinks that it is okay to comment on your son's penis.  Which I would be somewhat inclined to say to them.  Maybe something like "Well, I consider circumcision ugly and disgusting but you have never heard me say anything about your son's penis."


or simply "Wow, most people have manners enough to keep their opinions about other people's genitals to themselves."


or even less judgemental or snarky:  "Please don't talk about my son's penis in front of him and his sisters."




I have never, ever had a single comment.  I have also held my tongue about how upset I've been upon seeing friends' circed boys' penises during diapers. 

post #16 of 28

I've never heard a negative comment about my sons. If I did, it would piss me off. Since when is it OK to attack the appearance of someone's child, especially right in front of that child and his parent(s), and especially over a normal body part?


And on a lighter note, aren't all peni kind of, well, silly looking?

post #17 of 28

OP, that's awful!  Do they think they're being funny when they say crap like that?!  It really shows you the extent of the brainwashing that's taken place when mothers feel like they can say that about another baby's perfectly normal genitals infront of him and his family.  I think a rude comment deserves a rude response if you're up for it.  I also hate to hear that you're considering hiding out during diaper changes because (personally) I wouldn't want to give the impression that I'm ashamed of ds's penis.  Wow.  irked.gif

post #18 of 28

OP-  Next time they say something like that say at least he has all the parts to his penis. That's what hushed my mom up when she commented saying my son's penis was weird looking .



post #19 of 28

The "I could never have done that to my son" line blows my mind. You didn't do anything to your son. You specifically didn't do anything to your son. That's kind of the whole point.


I can't imagine someone telling me my son's penis was ugly. I think I'd respond with something like, "it's really weird that you're concerned with the appearance of an infant's penis" and leave it at that. That's so messed up.

post #20 of 28

I wonder whether leaving the room or "hiding" to change diapers, as you mention you're considering, might also ratify the slurs that the other moms are making towards intact peni (both to those moms, and to your dds). 


Personally, I'd err more towards the "Why are you looking at my baby's penis?" or "This is what a normal penis looks like," or "I'd be happy to explain to you why every major medical organization in the USA and the Western world says that there are no medical benefits to circumcision," or something snarky like that.


I don't have a son, and we're hitting the point where we may not have a third child (age and economics) -- but have explained, on a rudimentary level, what circumcision is and why we wouldn't do it (I don't remember how the topic came up).  I think it's fine to talk about this, within parameters that you are comfortable with, with your dds.  If they understand that your family doesn't do this, and why, they're quite likely to grow up to be intactivists themselves. 


(What I told my 7 year old dd, is that circumcision is an operation that is sometimes done on baby boys, and that it hurts a lot.  That doctors thought that it was good for the babies when we started to do it, but now we know better.  That her daddy and I would never do it to a baby boy if WE had one, but that some parents still don't understand or are afraid of change, so it will take awhile for everyone to stop doing it). 

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