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Circumcision argument with husband!

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 

I go for my ultrasound in less than 2 weeks, and I am so worried that this baby is going to be a boy (my 3 yr old dd insists she's having a baby sister so I hope she's right). Normally I'd love a boy, but dh won't even talk about circumcision. He insists that it is happening, and that is it. I told him to convince me, and he left the room! I've left material against circumcision out and he crumples it up and places it in recycling without even reading it! If I let my baby boy be circumcised, I know that I will be a complete wreck and always regret it. Although I really want this baby and can't wait, I'm afraid I will be so upset if it is a boy not a girl just because this one issue is creating so much misery.

post #2 of 56

BIG HUGS.  Here are some links for YOU to read and think about.   Don't show them to your dh, though.  Also come visit us over at The Case Against Circumcision forum...you'll get lots of support!!

 

http://www.udonet.com/circumcision/vincent/vulnerability_of_men.html

 

http://www.noharmm.org/feminist.htm

 

A quote from this second link:

"Today, it is often the more passive, compliant mother who will allow her son to be circumcised, acquiescing to the demands of medical professionals, husband, family or other outside sources - probably against her better judgment. The more self-determined, confident mother is more likely to insist that her son remain intact, since she has the strength to withstand the outside pressures of a circumcision oriented society."

 

 

 

post #3 of 56

Once my DH SAW a video of the procedure, he never questioned not doing it again.  In the end, I would have stood my ground but I am glad he saw the light.  I can't even imagine what it would have come down to in your shoes.  I have a friend who is of the Jewish faith and she was SO upset that between religion and her DH they did circ but much later (he was in the NICU for a while and she wouldn't even consider it till later).  She made her DH do all the diaper changes and circ care till it was healed because she just couldn't.

 

(((hugs)))

post #4 of 56
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the links. In Canada, many people don't circumcise, but here, everyone thinks I'm being unreasonable. You know all the arguments; cleanliness, bullying, it will have to be done later anyways, the baby doesn't feel anything...

 

These will help me understand the whole ideology better behind both sides. I just can't bear the thought of mutilating a newborn infant.

post #5 of 56

*sigh*  I'm sorry.  BTDT.  I did at least get my hubby to agree to hold off unless there were obvious reasons it needed to be done.  DS is now 5 and still intact.  It helped that we had a home birth and it's not done then and we'd have had to make a special appointment to have it done.  DH is still not exactly convinced to being intact is better per se, but he doesn't push it with me anymore.  I love that the stats are going more and more people are intact and circing is being done less and less.  I love that many insurance companies no longer cover it as well.  It really helps the case to not have it done automatically and people really have to think about their reasons.

post #6 of 56
I know how you feel. *hugs*

I was so relieved to find out that I'm having a girl. My son is circumcised, after a huge debate and my husband ultimately convinced me. But I knew it wouldn't happen again, and I just hoped that we would have a girl, so it would be a non-issue.

I hope things work out for you :-)

Sent from my SPH-M910 using Tapatalk
post #7 of 56

((hugs))  I'm so sorry.  :( 

 

I'm very grateful at times like these that my husband has agreed to not circ if we have another boy.  My 1st son was circ'd and I regret it.  Our only worry about it is what to say to my son if he asks why his penis is different and how to make this baby (if it's a boy) not feel out of place since my husband is circ'd as well.  I WISH I had actually looked into it before I had my 1st child instead of doing it just because "everyone else does!"  :/

 

 

 

post #8 of 56

What is DH's reason for his opinion? He obviously has very strong feelings on it and maybe there is a reasonable explanation behind it. My DS was born in 96 and I was told at the time the decision was about 50/50 nation wide and as far as I know it still is. I left him intact gladly, however he was born with phimosis (narrowing of the forskin) and developed painful adhesions. By the time he was 10 he was is a lot of pain and still couldn't pull it back to wash it. I took him to a specialist at our local childrens hospital who explained that he was risking major infections over time which could leave him scarred, so we made the sad decision to have him circumcised. This was not an easy choice. I received a TON of shit for it from my anti-circ friends when I just needed support on a very awful time. I work in the OR and I have seen many cases like this when a boy or man has suffered through dozens of infections and they are left with horrible scarring and I wasnt about to let that happen to him either. Keep in mind this is very rare but it does happen. I know this subject enrages many on both sides of the fence but it is a personal one. I have a friend who's DH went through the same thing as a boy and now is adamant that he won't it happen to his son and it isnt even a discussion. My point is that maybe your husband has a justifiable reason for his opinions. Maybe he had a late circ that he was traumatized over it and doesnt want to talk about it..Im sure you would know, but..... Or perhaps he made fun of other boys when he was a kid and just doesnt understand that times have changed? Many men who are not intact view the intact penis as "gross" and "dirty" and have no problem with making fun of other guys who are intact. Perhaps it's just social pressure he can be pulled from when he understands more? My advice would be to have a discussion about it in the presence of someone who can be a neutral advocate, like your midwife perhaps, and maybe he wont be as likely to turn his back to you. Tell him your willing to educate yourself on the argument to circ if he is willing to educate himself on the argument NOT to just to give him the opportunity to open his eyes to other information. Can you call your MW and ask her to casually bring it up at your next appointment?

post #9 of 56

DDCC because this is an issue that I may have to deal with it soon, and I've already had discussions with DH over it in the past. We have two girls, and I am pregnant with our third child. If this is a boy, he will not be circumcised. My husband is circumcised, and feels rather strongly about having it done to his son as well, should he have one. The only argument he can come up with, is:"Well, I was circumcised too, and I want my son to be like me."

That doesn't hold water with me. What if his nose is different than DH's? His hair? His built? His eye color? You can't expect your child to be like you in every respect, why would you deliberately cut off perfectly healthy tissue that has a reason for being there to make your child more like you? 

As for the "other boys will tease him": these days the number of circumcised boys is much lower anyway, and how much time do they spend in the shower studying each others' body parts? Doesn't hold water with me either.

I feel so strongly about this that I will not back down. There are a great many things I will, and have, compromise(d) on, but this particular hill is the one I will die on if need be. I did not spend nine months building this perfect little human being only to have random parts cut off of him right after he's born. 

post #10 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snugglebugmom View Post

DDCC because this is an issue that I may have to deal with it soon, and I've already had discussions with DH over it in the past. We have two girls, and I am pregnant with our third child. If this is a boy, he will not be circumcised. My husband is circumcised, and feels rather strongly about having it done to his son as well, should he have one. The only argument he can come up with, is:"Well, I was circumcised too, and I want my son to be like me."

That doesn't hold water with me. What if his nose is different than DH's? His hair? His built? His eye color? You can't expect your child to be like you in every respect, why would you deliberately cut off perfectly healthy tissue that has a reason for being there to make your child more like you? 

As for the "other boys will tease him": these days the number of circumcised boys is much lower anyway, and how much time do they spend in the shower studying each others' body parts? Doesn't hold water with me either.

I feel so strongly about this that I will not back down. There are a great many things I will, and have, compromise(d) on, but this particular hill is the one I will die on if need be. I did not spend nine months building this perfect little human being only to have random parts cut off of him right after he's born. 


These were all my hubby's arguments too.  thankfully I was able to say, "Well, my dad wasn't circ'd and my brother's weren't circ'd" and I even asked my dad about it right in front of him and asked him about if he'd every had any problems and what women thought about it, if he was teased, etc.  It didn't necessarily change his mind, but it did take some steam out of his sails thinking he knew what was best in that instance.  :)

 

post #11 of 56

Just to weigh in from a slightly different perspective... 

 

At first I was avoiding posts on this subject for the reasons below, but I realize I have to be comfortable with the decision my husband and I have made, not just hide my head in the sand.

 

Before I get into it, let me just say that your husband's attitude - throwing out information you've obtained, refusing to discuss it - is rude and inexcusable.   All you're asking for is a conversation!

 

I am Dlynn's friend who has the husband with the strong opinion based on his medical history.  My husband had serious health issues and wound up being circumcised when he was much older, old enough to remember the pain and trauma.  It is clearly something he feels very strongly about, and to be honest, he's usually just not like that.  He's very easy going and open-minded. 

 

Personally, my gut instinct/assumption was that I would not circumcise my baby.  However, I also "assumed" that the father would feel the same.  (You know what happens when you assume!)  I'm really surprised to hear so many men in favor of it just because they are circumcised.  I agree that this seems like a weak reason to subject a baby to a medical procedure that is considered unnecessary in most cultures/places.  (Oh, and when I say most, I'm including the US - our insurance company considers this to be elective surgery for which we will pay out of pocket.)

 

This is a decision that parents should make together, in an informed way.  It's no more fair for one parent to insist the child be left intact and refuse to back down than it is for the other parent to storm out of the room when that is suggested.  My husband has a strong opinion but it wasn't some sort of final decree that I just have to live with.   We discussed the issue and I was convinced that he is speaking from a place of great pain and concern for his son.  For that reason, I am getting myself comfortable with our decision.  We did discuss this, together, with our MW, so again, this is not an uninformed decision. made for cosmetic or social reasons.

 

I guess I don't have much advice, so much as I just wanted to share my thoughts as someone who was anti but has compromised.    I agree that you will feel regret for a very long time if you don't get comfortable with this decision.  Likewise, your husband needs to get comfortable with the idea if you decide not to circumcise.  It sounds like you're approaching him in a non-confrontational way, asking him to tell you his reasons, etc.  Just keep at it, explain your feelings and why you are so uncomfortable just as you did above - that you don't want to feel regret and remorse every time you change a diaper!   All your asking for is some understanding.

 

 

 

 

post #12 of 56

I just wanted to offer some support...my DH is circd and my son is intact...he didn't put up such a fuss about it but still! your opinion and your concerns aren't any less vaild because you're a woman or you don't have a penis so you "don't know what it's like" or any other BS excuses you might hear! You should have an equal say in this matter because you are his mother and you are half of the parental unit.

 

Besides, you can always circ him later but you can never take it back...to me that is a good enough reason not to circ :(

post #13 of 56

DLynn, that happened to my dad! He was pro circumcision all the way, since getting circumcised as a 10 yo is kindof traumatic on some levels. I let my hubby decide, and from my dad's basic explaination of his experience, I decided I was ok with either way. Hubby decided for circ. We BOTH were in the room with baby, at the ped's office, they used something for numbing, sugar water/ pacifier, it lasted 2-4 minutes, and I nursed him the second he was put back in my arms. I am hoping the next one is a girl, but if it is a boy, I'll still let hubby decide.

post #14 of 56
Bradley childbirth classes brought up the subject and showed us a video. Then the instructor said.. "all this pain for something unnecessary". And that was that.. my hubby said... "no one doing that to my kid". All I can say if that goodness for Bradley because all my little nephews on my husband's side are circed... poor things.
post #15 of 56

DDCC b/c I just went through this with my last pregnancy.  We weren't going to get the 20 week sono, but we knew if we ended up having a boy we were going to have to debate circumcision.  And as it turned out, we did have a boy!  It was really good that we had 4-5 months to figure things out.  I started out by saying I did not want to circ.  My husband started out by saying he wanted to and it was weird not to.  So I started doing a bunch of research, which he refused to read.  He said that it had nothing to do with research, facts, figures, etc. and everything to do with how he felt.  I kept telling him that I needed him to give me a better answer than that, that we needed to actually discuss the decision.  I brought it up every couple of weeks, but he never changed what he said.  It wasn't until the very end that he finally seemed to give up.  He knew how strongly I felt and realized that his feelings were not rational.  So he agreed that we could leave our son intact.   Several days after the birth he was changing ds' diaper and looked up at me and said, "I'm really happy with our decision not to circumcise.  Now that he's here, I never could have had it done." FWIW, dh was raised Jewish, too.  So for us it took time and an exorbitant amount of patience on my part to let dh just sit on his feelings.  As a pp mentioned, you might be able to compromise with simply putting it off for a while after the birth.  Perhaps like my dh, your dh could have a change of heart once he's holding his helpless, trusting, perfect baby boy.  Good luck!!

post #16 of 56
OP, please, please visit the Case Against Circumcision forum here. I feel that you are getting some misinformation in this thread.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzyQ-ME View Post

This is a decision that parents should make together, in an informed way.  It's no more fair for one parent to insist the child be left intact and refuse to back down than it is for the other parent to storm out of the room when that is suggested.

I strongly disagree. It is VERY fair for one parent to stand up for their child's rights not to have their genitals mutilated. It is VERY fair for that parent to take a strong stance against the mutilation and refuse to back down.
post #17 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dlynn918 View Post

What is DH's reason for his opinion? He obviously has very strong feelings on it and maybe there is a reasonable explanation behind it. My DS was born in 96 and I was told at the time the decision was about 50/50 nation wide and as far as I know it still is. I left him intact gladly, however he was born with phimosis (narrowing of the forskin) and developed painful adhesions. By the time he was 10 he was is a lot of pain and still couldn't pull it back to wash it. I took him to a specialist at our local childrens hospital who explained that he was risking major infections over time which could leave him scarred, so we made the sad decision to have him circumcised. This was not an easy choice. I received a TON of shit for it from my anti-circ friends when I just needed support on a very awful time. I work in the OR and I have seen many cases like this when a boy or man has suffered through dozens of infections and they are left with horrible scarring and I wasnt about to let that happen to him either. Keep in mind this is very rare but it does happen. I know this subject enrages many on both sides of the fence but it is a personal one. I have a friend who's DH went through the same thing as a boy and now is adamant that he won't it happen to his son and it isnt even a discussion. My point is that maybe your husband has a justifiable reason for his opinions. Maybe he had a late circ that he was traumatized over it and doesnt want to talk about it..Im sure you would know, but..... Or perhaps he made fun of other boys when he was a kid and just doesnt understand that times have changed? Many men who are not intact view the intact penis as "gross" and "dirty" and have no problem with making fun of other guys who are intact. Perhaps it's just social pressure he can be pulled from when he understands more? My advice would be to have a discussion about it in the presence of someone who can be a neutral advocate, like your midwife perhaps, and maybe he wont be as likely to turn his back to you. Tell him your willing to educate yourself on the argument to circ if he is willing to educate himself on the argument NOT to just to give him the opportunity to open his eyes to other information. Can you call your MW and ask her to casually bring it up at your next appointment?


This was so hard to read because we went through a very similar experience last year when my son was 6.  His issue was a bit different in that it was his frenulum that was too tight.  The options were to circ and be done w/ it or cut the frenulum and have to keep retracting it every day to make sure it didn't grow back (or some such thing - I've kind of blocked it out, it makes me so sad).  We opted for the circ because we thought it would end up being the least amount of pain.  We can never know if it was the right choice or not but it worked out ok.  He's fine.  But I still hate that he had to go through that.  Which, of course, leaves me in a terrible quandary w/ this baby who *is* a boy.  My instinct is to leave him be but I can't find any info on stats of this condition or if it's hereditary or what.  Not looking to be "convinced" by anyone, BTW.  Just wanted to thank you, Dlynn, for sharing because I know how hard that is. 

 

post #18 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofu the Geek View Post

I strongly disagree. It is VERY fair for one parent to stand up for their child's rights not to have their genitals mutilated. It is VERY fair for that parent to take a strong stance against the mutilation and refuse to back down.

 

How is is fair for one parent to steamroll the other on something that matters to them - or worse yet, that they may have pre-conceived misunderstandings about?  Doesn't what @Jaimee wrote, about taking time to work through an issue together - learning together - sound more effective?   

 

Somewhere, the original poster's husband is having this conversation with his dad or uncle or someone else who is pro, and they are saying the same thing you are in the reverse - that he has every right to stand up for what he wants for his child's manhood and refuse to back down or read any of the research she has carefully collected.  How does this accomplish anything?    Would it not be better if people stepped back and made an attempt to understand each other?   I'm not saying anyone should just capitulate on something that matters to them.  Trying to win someone over to your way of thinking is best accomplished through rational discussion and education, not ultimatums. 

 

In the end, this is a yes-or-no question: someone is not getting what they want (or what they thought they wanted).  They deserve to be heard and to have their concerns addressed in a respectful way, not just dismissed. 

 

 

 

post #19 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofu the Geek View Post

OP, please, please visit the Case Against Circumcision forum here. I feel that you are getting some misinformation in this thread.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzyQ-ME View Post

This is a decision that parents should make together, in an informed way.  It's no more fair for one parent to insist the child be left intact and refuse to back down than it is for the other parent to storm out of the room when that is suggested.



I strongly disagree. It is VERY fair for one parent to stand up for their child's rights not to have their genitals mutilated. It is VERY fair for that parent to take a strong stance against the mutilation and refuse to back down.

She wasn't advocating circumcising or otherwise but *gasp* behaving like a team w/ one's partner.

 


Edited by hck73 - 5/5/11 at 4:20pm
post #20 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzyQ-ME View Post



 

How is is fair for one parent to steamroll the other on something that matters to them - or worse yet, that they may have pre-conceived misunderstandings about? 



This is an issue to steamroll over.

I see you are new here but at MDC we do not endorse the cutting of baby boys.

There are moms here who cut their spouses out of the homebirth decision, the never vaxing decisions and the extended breastfeeding decision. I worked through all those with my husband as a partner should. But I was willing to draw a line in the sand over hurting my beautiful boy. All men are born with a foreskin.. Mother Nature makes them this way
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