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How to change someone's mind?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

My sister is pregnant with her first child and they don't know what the sex is yet. She had never thought too much about it but just figured when and if she had a son she would not get him circumcised. I have 2 boys that aren't. Her and I were chatting last night and she mentioned it to her husband and he FLIPPED. He has NO reason! (not that there really is one) He just kept yelling "It's F-ing gross"(not to circumcise)  My poor sister was so upset. I sent her a bunch of articles and sites to show him and he doesn't care at all. He says absolutely nothing will change his mind. She was so upset she said she hopes she has a girl just so she doesn't have to fight about it. I told her to make him watch a video of it being done and he said he won't.

I am aware that he sounds like a total jerk and I'm not his #1 fan. Believe me. BUT he is going to be the father and she needs to find a way to make him discuss it with her and keep an open mind. Any suggestions? And if he really won't budge then what?  TIA

post #2 of 13

This is for only her to read:

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

 

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thank you

post #4 of 13

I feel for you.  Ignorance can sometimes be hard to understand.  Her husband is probably not even aware of the natural functions of the foreskin..... I wasn't until I did the research on it!  Even my husband was surprised when I shared it with him.  I was never a fan of circumcision because of the brutal nature of it, but until I did the research and actually understood everything about it, I was ignorant too.  I think it is sad to be hoping for a girl because of contention over this, but your sister needs to stand her ground.  The more you feed her information and she becomes stronger with having the knowledge, perhaps she can persuade him to explore the information with her.  Sadly, though, even then, some women will cave to their spouse to keep the peace.  Even if it means cutting their newborn son needlessly.  good luck.

post #5 of 13

I think it's so important that BOTH parents agree before an irreversible procedure is done... and it bugs me to no end here in America that the default gets set to surgery somehow. The fact that dh has a penis is irrelevant, because he doesn't have a foreskin... and therefore can't argue from an informed place. Rather than try to convince a dh who isn't budging, your sister could just emphasize that circumcision can always be done at a later date if the son wants it done. It is only a permanent state if the boy WANTS it that way, which is how it should be. My dh wasn't budging at first either. I had to give up giving him info because that did no good. His argument was purely emotional, and no rational thought could pierce it. Tell your sis to stop fighting and not bring it up, but to stand firm whenever the conversation is broached... be calm and rational, and reassuring to her dh (who just needs to know she is happy with his penis and that her decision about her son isn't because she is against a circ'd penis... but rather for informed choice) and to emphasize that it can always be done later if need be (and it won't be needed, but that would be a measure of comfort for her dh). Just repeat repeat repeat... his penis, his choice.

 

You could send her to

www.circumcisiondecisionmaker.com

 

A very rational site that is calm and methodical in its presentation. Seriously, I would never let my dh even try "eww, it's gross!" because that isn't an argument. He needs facts and reason (which aren't there) to support his claim

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys. I'll pass the info along to her. I agree it's weird that the standard seems to be well just do it.  It is SO frustrating because he has no argument! It's not like he's saying "It's not hygienic"  and you can show him something to ease his worry. He 's just acting like a child with his fingers in his ears going LALALALALALALA. ( PLUS I think it's wicked rude because she was talking with me and saying that my kids aren't and he still kept saying how "gross" it is........ grrrrrrrrr) She feels strongly about it too and i don't think she'll budge either so we'll see what happens.

post #7 of 13

Our society values human rights and the right to bodily integrity is one of those rights.  Circumcision with no medical reason to justify it violates those rights.

 

It is widely accepted that a parent's duty is to make medical decisoons in the best interest of their child, not what they feel emotionally.

 

Based on these two points, your sister needs to be strong and logical about this.  His actions so far sound like the border on abuse.  At the least he is emotionally threatening her and being like a child and having a tantrum.

 

What she needs to do is remain calm and insist that he provide his reasoning.  He needs to explain why the pain, stress, amputaion of sexually important body parts (important to both partners, btw), and disfigurment (at least in some peoples eyes) is worth it.  Not just be ranting and yelling.  But by giving a carefully reasoned argument that others can follow logically.

 

She may uncover his insecurity and inability to think logically.  She may find he is at a loss and can only react in anger and emotion.  She has to hold steady and insist

 

She can provide references for him to read, if he can't discuss it.  But he needs to have the disciplin to read and think his arguments through.  This will be good training for him, he will certainly have many more issue to deal with and need to have good reasoning, when raising children, based on my experience. 

 

One good reference, because it is written by doctors, is this one:

 

http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision.org/pdf/GenitalIntegrityStatement.pdf 

 

A simpler one, much easier to read is this one:

 

http://circumcisiondecisionmaker.com/ 

 

Please support her and help stand firm.  It sounds like her husband has not learned to have tough discussions which result in consensus.  She may have to play the role of the adult on this one, unfortunately.  But her son will thank her for it.

 

One final thought to keep in mind.  Leaving her son intact now is not saying he will never be circumcised.  Some would argue that doctors can actually do a much better job circumcising later in life, so she can throw him a bone to help him save some face by getting agreement that when her son is old enough to decide for himself, he can always have it done. 

 

Note:  The old argument that it should be done when an infant because of pain is a lie, imho.  The only reason that was ever used to justify RC was because most men who have actuallly experienced sex with a foreskin before getting circumcised would kill the SOB that did it after realizing what they had lost.  Pain management is much easier as an adult.  Understanding why is much easier as an adult.  Having it done because you want it done makes it much easier to deal with..

 

Regards

post #8 of 13
I always say I am not against circumcision.... Only when it is done to helpless newborn boys who cannot make the decision for themselves. Then I point out that there could be less of a margin of error when done to adults, since the penis would be fully grown. It's only easier on babies because the doctor can do it quicker but there is a greater chance of error. I am sure if provided the most accurate information, parents would be able to see the value of not circumcising babies. I avoid words like "anti".... because some people like to label people as "anti circumcision" and it is an immediate, oh you are one of them. I want to enlighten people, not give them an opportunity to brush me aside as one of those.
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mare54 View Post

I always say I am not against circumcision.... Only when it is done to helpless newborn boys who cannot make the decision for themselves. Then I point out that there could be less of a margin of error when done to adults, since the penis would be fully grown. It's only easier on babies because the doctor can do it quicker but there is a greater chance of error. I am sure if provided the most accurate information, parents would be able to see the value of not circumcising babies. I avoid words like "anti".... because some people like to label people as "anti circumcision" and it is an immediate, oh you are one of them. I want to enlighten people, not give them an opportunity to brush me aside as one of those.


That's a good point. I am anti making that big of a decision for someone else.

 

post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks Greg. I agree his apparent inability to have tough discussions will be a difficult thing for them both. I am trying *VERY* hard to get along with him just because there is going to be a baby and because I don't want my sister upset. They ran off together- He was literally shipping off the next week. He is in the army and got deployed. While he was oversees their relationship was fantastic. Now that he's back it seems like they don't exactly see eye to eye on many things. I'm being supportive from afar because she's moved half way across the country with him. She is hopefully going to come back home to have the baby and then I think she will feel more confident. Anyway.

Thanks for the resources. I think having a more clinical argument is a good approach with him maybe. Getting emotional about it probably won't help her cause. I'll help her to just present the facts.

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

Yeah she's totally right. I have decided to give my kids tattoos also because, hey, it's called parenting. I decide!

post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Siouxsie View Post

Yeah she's totally right. I have decided to give my kids tattoos also because, hey, it's called parenting. I decide!

That's not parenting.  And where do parents get the idea that they "own" their kids bodies?  It's as bad as a man thinking he owns a woman.  But, that said, it is still legal for parents to "decide" to put their child through an unnecessary  "cosmetic" surgery when  the facts do not support it (and neither does the AAP for that matter), at least until it becomes "illegal".  At least the tide is changing and more and more parents are choosing to be better informed,  thank God for that!!!! 

 

post #13 of 13
I have removed a post that directly quoted from another board. We do not wish to host conversations that are adverserial about other boards. This leads to board wars and causes copyright issues.
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