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What to do, what to do? UPDATED! - Page 2

post #21 of 50
The thing about being made fun of is ludicrous. That might have happened decades ago when boys were circumcised without even having to get parental consent (at least my mother-in-law said no one asked her about my husband - he just came back from the nursery circumcised one day), but it is much more common to leave boys intact now, so it won't be a big deal. Close to half of boys are not being circumcised, and that number will hopefully continue to grow.

This is one argument I didn't have with my husband because he said the most popular boy in his school when he was growing up was also one of about two who wasn't circumcised. He said it never stopped this kid from getting girls.
post #22 of 50

looking like daddy & other mutilated boys:

I'm posting the text of Ronald Goldman's (Author of The Hidden Trauma: Infant Circumcision" letter calling to account the AAP spokesman who glibly proffered the "look like Daddy" fallacy to reporters.


Michael Copeland
American Academy of Pediatrics
141 Northwest Point Blvd.
P.O. Box 927
Elk Grove Village, IL 60009-0927

April 7, 1997


Dear Mr. Copeland:

The following quote has been called to my attention in a newspaper
article connected with the April 2 JAMA article on circumcision:

“If Dad is circumcised and junior is not,” said Michael Copeland,
spokesman for the American Academy of Pediatrics, the son “may have
some psychosocial issues in that he looks different from Dad.”

As a psychologist and the author of Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma, I
have done a thorough search of the literature to investigate this
belief. There is no published evidence whatsoever to support your statement.

This myth is the product of a psychological defense mechanism called
projection, the process of attributing feelings to others that belong to
oneself. It is the circumcised father who may have some psychosocial
issues if he looks different from his son. The fear of confronting these
issues in themselves motivates circumcised men to cling to the myth
that uncircumcised sons will have such issues. Furthermore, when the first
generation of American boys was circumcised, they looked different
from their uncircumcised fathers. This myth was not prevalent then because
uncircumcised men had no repressed feelings about how their penis
looked.

As part of the research for my book, I interviewed uncircumcised men
about their feelings. Their statements and other pertinent information
lead me to the following inferences regarding the decision to circumcise
for social or “matching” reasons:

The circumcision status of the father is not necessarily known or
important to a male child.

A circumcised boy who “matches” others may nevertheless have
negative feelings about being circumcised. These feelings can last a
lifetime.(1)

It is not possible to predict prior to circumcision how a boy will feel
about it later.

Even though uncircumcised men are in the minority, there is some
indication that most uncircumcised men are happy to be that way.

An uncircumcised man who is unhappy about it can choose to be
circumcised, but this is rarely done. The estimated rate of adult circumcision
in the United States is 3 in 1000.(2)

An uncircumcised man who is unhappy about his status may feel different
after learning more about circumcision and the important functions of
the foreskin.

The social factor is much less of an issue for boys born today because
of the lower circumcision rate (approximately 60 percent nationally,
under 40 percent in some states(3)).
These two accounts from mothers of uncircumcised sons add another
perspective to the discussion of choosing circumcision for social reasons.

“My youngest son [seven years old] is completely content at being
‘different’ from his father and [three] older brothers. When I
explained circumcision to him, his face took on a frightened expression as he
cupped his hands over his genitals and loudly declared, ‘That is
never going to happen to me!!’ “(4)

“When my eight-year-old son was five, he noticed a difference in the
appearance of the other boys’ penises. I told him that’s because
they had their foreskins cut off. He said, ‘That’s horrible.’
He’s very adamant about it.”(5)

I asked the second mother if I could talk with her son, Michael.
Because he lives in an area with a very high circumcision rate, he is the
only boy in his class who is not circumcised.

RG: How did you first learn about circumcision?

Michael: My mom told me when I was little, and she didn’t want that
to happen to me.

RG: How do you feel about her not wanting to let it happen to you?

Michael: I’m glad ‘cause it’s scary. It’s scary for a little
baby.

RG: At school, do the other kids have foreskins, or are they
circumcised?

Michael: They’re circumcised.

RG: How does it make you feel when you see that they’re circumcised?

Michael: Kind of sad, because they had it cut off.

RG: Do the other boys notice that you have a foreskin and they don’t?

Michael: Uh huh. And they say my penis looks weird.

RG: What do you think when they say that?

Michael: I say, “No it doesn’t. Yours looks weird.” Then I tell
them why there is still skin over mine and not over theirs.

RG: Then what do they say?

Michael: Some say they don’t believe it. Some just walk away.(6)

It appears that if an uncircumcised boy is given proper information, it
is possible to prevent a negative impact from extreme minority status
in a group of circumcised boys.

I hope you now understand that by perpetuating the “matching” myth,
you do a great disservice to the American public and undermine the
credibility of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The public is
understandably confused about circumcision. Your statement only serves to
increase the confusion. It would certainly help if the AAP issued a news
release to correct your mistake.

As you know, the AAP will be reporting on circumcision in the near
future. Many people who care deeply about circumcision are looking for the
AAP to report accurate, factual information about this complex issue.
If, for whatever reason, you cannot resist the temptation to express
your personal beliefs when you talk to the media about circumcision, then
perhaps someone else should take over this responsibility. Reporting to
the public about circumcision is too important to risk this mistake
being made again.


Sincerely,


Ronald Goldman, Ph.D.
Executive Director



(1) Goldman, R., Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma (Boston: Vanguard
Publications, 1997), 103–115.

(2) Wallerstein, E., Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy (New
York: Springer Publishing, 1980), 48.

(3) National Centre for Health Statistics, telephone conversation with
author 1997. Rate is for 1994.

(4) Romberg, R., “Circumcision Feedback” (letter to the editor),
Mensa Bulletin, May 1993.

(5) Huggins, R., telephone conversation with author, February 1996.

(6) Huggins, M., telephone conversation with author, February 1996.
post #23 of 50
Sorry, I don't have time to write a personal answer, so I just copy-paste what I wrote in another post.

Unfortunately, sex is less fun even with perfectly preformed circ. Started as a cure for masturbation it didn't stop it, but definitely made it less pleasurable as it did sex .

1. Ridged band and Frenulum are THE MOST sensitive parts of the penis are removed by circ http://www.icgi.org/touch-test/touch-test-article.pdf
http://www.icgi.org/touch-test/ .

2. Skin of the glans becomes thick, rough (the prosess of keratinization that makes the glans to loose quite of sensitivity) due to being rubbed against underwear (the same way it does on your feet); dry (so a man can't really have sex or masturbate without artificial lubricant). On the other hand intact men do not need it at all. Foreskin slides up and down the shaft of the penis providing an easy and smooth penetration, lubrication and additional pleasure for both partners.

3. Permanent emotional scar. While full permanent psychological impact of circumcision is still mostly unknown, it’s logical to assume that just like any extremely painful http://www.cnn.com/HEALTH/9712/23/ci...on.anesthetic/ and traumatic event—even if forgotten—it can lead to a permanent emotional/psychological scar/damage.
There has been also a study that proved that intact boys and girls have higher thresholds of pain than circumcised boys. It was published in the Lancet (British medical journal) in 1997.

4.Even a perfectly performed circumcision does not guarantee that a person will not have more serious (beyond the mentioned above) problems in his future sexual life. Such problems as, for example, too tight (sometimes even painful) erections can be due to removal of too much foreskin and whatever left over just not enough to accommodate a normal erection are much more common than many people think since it’s nearly impossible to know for sure how much is “too much” until the penis reaches its full-grown size. Removal of too much foreskin can also lead to a shaft of the penis being hairy (it pulls skin from above to more or less accommodate an erection).

5. Worth while mentioning most recent scientists discovery that Langerhans cells that are present in the foreskin are behave as ‘natural barrier’ to HIV. Bellow are the links.

http://body.aol.com/news/articles/_a...28234109990019
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...030500357.html
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/q..._uids=17334373
http://www.womenshealth.gov/news/english/602421.htm

As any surgery, circumcision may have some very serious (even life threatening) complications. http://www.circumcisionquotes.com/complications.html
http://www.cirp.org/library/complications/ . Of course, the most horrible complication is death and there were quite few of them as well (this is the most recent one http://healthblog.ctv.ca/blog/_archi...2/2967860.html ).
Also, make sure you show your dh this video (with speakers on) of the procedure WITH the use of anesthesia (as doctor claims) http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...27632617&hl=en . If he wants to put the baby though that, he at least must have guts to see that.

yulia.
post #24 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post


You wrote it because you want him to be horrified and see it like you do. That may or may not happen.

But you know how to protect your baby either way.

-Angela
He has said "I thought we weren't circ'ing. I'd be ok with that. Yes, it would be nice to hear him say "it is horrible to torture a boy for no reason" but for all kinds of reasons that would be very dificult for him.

If he brings it up again when the Dr asks then simply remind him that he told you he didn't think you were circ'ing, so you made plans to keep him intact.
post #25 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
I would NEVER allow my husband to decide to mutilate a child of ours, no matter what the marital problems.

You are the mom. You are giving birth to this precious baby. It is your obligation to protect him.

I might talk it to death between now and then, but I would make it quite clear that I would never allow it to happen.

-Angela
I totally agree.

If you say, "Over my dead body", he will never circ, right?
post #26 of 50
My husband is intact and my FIL is circumcised. My dh is VERY grateful that he doesn't look like the only other male in his family as far as circumcision status goes (he's an only child). My dh and I were both born in 1983 when circumcision rates were still sky-high. He never ever had any trouble in any locker rooms. He was never teased and never felt inferior to any of his circumcised friends (and the vast majority of his friends were, indeed, circumcised).

My ex-boyfriend also had no problems being teased. He was born in 1982 - to a military family, no less. He also had no problems whatsoever finding numerous girls to sleep around with (in case your dh brings up the "girls won't find his penis "attractive"" argument).

The vast majority of boys in my generation were circumcised, and I've met many many guys my age (we were generally in high school when we talked about this...) who wish they had been left as they were made. I have yet to meet an intact guy who wishes he had been circumcised though I do have a friend who chose to be circumcised when he was 19 or 20. He doesn't regret that his parents left the decision up to him though and according to him the surgery as an adult really isn't that bad except for painful erections for a couple of weeks... and babies have erections too and don't get the benefit of powerful pain meds either.

Best wishes with your dh! It does sound to me as though he has accepted that your ds will not be circumcised though I would make sure that he's on the same page with you (at least that he understands that it'll happen over your cold, dead body) and then do what you know is right

love and peace.
post #27 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by kldliam View Post
Michael Copeland
American Academy of Pediatrics
141 Northwest Point Blvd.
P.O. Box 927
Elk Grove Village, IL 60009-0927

April 7, 1997


Dear Mr. Copeland:

The following quote has been called to my attention in a newspaper
article connected with the April 2 JAMA article on circumcision:

“If Dad is circumcised and junior is not,” said Michael Copeland,
spokesman for the American Academy of Pediatrics, the son “may have
some psychosocial issues in that he looks different from Dad.”

As a psychologist and the author of Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma, I
have done a thorough search of the literature to investigate this
belief. There is no published evidence whatsoever to support your statement.

This myth is the product of a psychological defense mechanism called
projection, the process of attributing feelings to others that belong to
oneself. It is the circumcised father who may have some psychosocial
issues if he looks different from his son. The fear of confronting these
issues in themselves motivates circumcised men to cling to the myth
that uncircumcised sons will have such issues. Furthermore, when the first
generation of American boys was circumcised, they looked different
from their uncircumcised fathers. This myth was not prevalent then because
uncircumcised men had no repressed feelings about how their penis
looked.

As part of the research for my book, I interviewed uncircumcised men
about their feelings. Their statements and other pertinent information
lead me to the following inferences regarding the decision to circumcise
for social or “matching” reasons:

The circumcision status of the father is not necessarily known or
important to a male child.

A circumcised boy who “matches” others may nevertheless have
negative feelings about being circumcised. These feelings can last a
lifetime.(1)

It is not possible to predict prior to circumcision how a boy will feel
about it later.

Even though uncircumcised men are in the minority, there is some
indication that most uncircumcised men are happy to be that way.

An uncircumcised man who is unhappy about it can choose to be
circumcised, but this is rarely done. The estimated rate of adult circumcision
in the United States is 3 in 1000.(2)

An uncircumcised man who is unhappy about his status may feel different
after learning more about circumcision and the important functions of
the foreskin.

The social factor is much less of an issue for boys born today because
of the lower circumcision rate (approximately 60 percent nationally,
under 40 percent in some states(3)).
These two accounts from mothers of uncircumcised sons add another
perspective to the discussion of choosing circumcision for social reasons.

“My youngest son [seven years old] is completely content at being
‘different’ from his father and [three] older brothers. When I
explained circumcision to him, his face took on a frightened expression as he
cupped his hands over his genitals and loudly declared, ‘That is
never going to happen to me!!’ “(4)

“When my eight-year-old son was five, he noticed a difference in the
appearance of the other boys’ penises. I told him that’s because
they had their foreskins cut off. He said, ‘That’s horrible.’
He’s very adamant about it.”(5)

I asked the second mother if I could talk with her son, Michael.
Because he lives in an area with a very high circumcision rate, he is the
only boy in his class who is not circumcised.

RG: How did you first learn about circumcision?

Michael: My mom told me when I was little, and she didn’t want that
to happen to me.

RG: How do you feel about her not wanting to let it happen to you?

Michael: I’m glad ‘cause it’s scary. It’s scary for a little
baby.

RG: At school, do the other kids have foreskins, or are they
circumcised?

Michael: They’re circumcised.

RG: How does it make you feel when you see that they’re circumcised?

Michael: Kind of sad, because they had it cut off.

RG: Do the other boys notice that you have a foreskin and they don’t?

Michael: Uh huh. And they say my penis looks weird.

RG: What do you think when they say that?

Michael: I say, “No it doesn’t. Yours looks weird.” Then I tell
them why there is still skin over mine and not over theirs.

RG: Then what do they say?

Michael: Some say they don’t believe it. Some just walk away.(6)

It appears that if an uncircumcised boy is given proper information, it
is possible to prevent a negative impact from extreme minority status
in a group of circumcised boys.

I hope you now understand that by perpetuating the “matching” myth,
you do a great disservice to the American public and undermine the
credibility of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The public is
understandably confused about circumcision. Your statement only serves to
increase the confusion. It would certainly help if the AAP issued a news
release to correct your mistake.

As you know, the AAP will be reporting on circumcision in the near
future. Many people who care deeply about circumcision are looking for the
AAP to report accurate, factual information about this complex issue.
If, for whatever reason, you cannot resist the temptation to express
your personal beliefs when you talk to the media about circumcision, then
perhaps someone else should take over this responsibility. Reporting to
the public about circumcision is too important to risk this mistake
being made again.


Sincerely,


Ronald Goldman, Ph.D.
Executive Director



(1) Goldman, R., Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma (Boston: Vanguard
Publications, 1997), 103–115.

(2) Wallerstein, E., Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy (New
York: Springer Publishing, 1980), 48.

(3) National Centre for Health Statistics, telephone conversation with
author 1997. Rate is for 1994.

(4) Romberg, R., “Circumcision Feedback” (letter to the editor),
Mensa Bulletin, May 1993.

(5) Huggins, R., telephone conversation with author, February 1996.

(6) Huggins, M., telephone conversation with author, February 1996.
Ahah!! This is what I was thinking of when I wrote THIS post! Thank you for reposting it, I'll have to save it somewhere!

To the OP - I know how you are feeling. I really wanted DH to be on the same page as me, no matter that I was determined not to let the circ happen. I'd be content with his statement, even without delving into it further. I'm confident that with time he will appreciate your decision to leave your son intact. DH may not quite be an intactivist, but he definitely understands now that it is the best thing for the baby, after watching our son grow up whole.
post #28 of 50
You could even throw in there that if DS decides for himself when he is 18 that he wants a circ, you will be happy to pay for it. The possibility is highly unlikely, and you will ensure that the choice is left up to him (your son) as owner of the penis in question.

Once its done, you can never get it back. Let the boy decide for himself.
post #29 of 50
I think you should talk to him before your son is born. If he's like my dh, he will think, at this point, that you have agreed to the circ. Many men don't read between the lines and think we mean exactly what we say (sorry to generalize). If the time comes, and you refuse, he will probably feel that you made the decision without him.

Speak from the heart about how you feel about handing your son to a stranger to have that done to him. Tell him that circ. is about 50/50 in the US now (the last thing I read said 57% of Americans circ'd, and I think it was only 30% in the west).
post #30 of 50
I would have loved for dh to be on the same page as me when this came up but he wasnt. I made the decision to leave ds as he was born and it has taken nearly 3 yrs for dh to see that it was a good thing. He is not a intactavist at all but he dosnt see ds any different and I think he has finally start to realize he lost something very important.

So he may not get it now but he will down the road. Your ds shouldnt have to pay such a high price just so your dh will feel ok with his own self.
post #31 of 50
One of the things I really hate about circumcision is how it turns marriages into a battleground in this country, especially because those of us who are less than mainstream are already researching and making many other non-mainstream choices, like breastfeeding/extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, babywearing, eating organic, not vaxing, what have you. I think a lot of guys think "well, I'm the dad, I should get to decide something, and since I have a penis, how junior's penis should look should be up to me."

But the fact is, circumcision of all issues should not be up for discussion, any more than we should be sitting down with our partners during pregnancy and having a debate on the merits of female circumcision at birth for our babies. It just shouldn't be a choice to be made in the first place because it's not our bodies!!!!

Just looking at all the various parenting decisions we make from the perspective of the family -- breastfeeding involves the mother's body, co-sleeping involves whoever sleeps in bed with the baby, eating organic is more expensive, babywearing takes a grownup to do, eating organic affects the family budget, homeschooling is hard work and most often requires a SAHP, having another baby affects the whole family, having a homebirth or a doula is usually more expensive than a hospital birth, even not vaxing has the potential to affect other people in terms of disease transmission (please don't start debating vax, just using it as an example), attachment parenting in general just requires more work and time and attention from the parents. All of these things may be the right thing to do in general, but all of them affect the adults and the other children in the family in different ways for positive or negative and all merit discussions and informed decision-making.

Circumcision alone of all possible parenting issues affects no one else but the baby during childhood when the baby is in his parents' custody. Adulthood and the effect of circ on sexual partners is a whole different issue, but again it's got nothing to do with parenting. So circumcision is not really a "parenting" decision at all because it's not going to affect anyone else in the family in any detrimental way. IMO it shouldn't even be in the same category as parenting decisions, because there's nothing to decide that will have impacts on the rest of the family.

I think when you take the issue off the table as something to be decided -- it's simply "his body, his choice, we're not going to do something to our baby's genitals without his permission" -- then the whole thing becomes a lot simpler and easier. It's not about disrespecting your dh -- it's about respecting your son's personhood and human rights and right to bodily integrity. Your dh can help you decide about issues that will affect you, him, and/or the family as a whole. Neither he nor you can decide to do something to your baby that will permanently alter his body for no legitimate medical reason -- it's just not your decision to make.
post #32 of 50
: very well said Quirky
post #33 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quirky View Post
One of the things I really hate about circumcision is how it turns marriages into a battleground in this country, especially because those of us who are less than mainstream are already researching and making many other non-mainstream choices, like breastfeeding/extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, babywearing, eating organic, not vaxing, what have you. I think a lot of guys think "well, I'm the dad, I should get to decide something, and since I have a penis, how junior's penis should look should be up to me."

But the fact is, circumcision of all issues should not be up for discussion, any more than we should be sitting down with our partners during pregnancy and having a debate on the merits of female circumcision at birth for our babies. It just shouldn't be a choice to be made in the first place because it's not our bodies!!!!

Just looking at all the various parenting decisions we make from the perspective of the family -- breastfeeding involves the mother's body, co-sleeping involves whoever sleeps in bed with the baby, eating organic is more expensive, babywearing takes a grownup to do, eating organic affects the family budget, homeschooling is hard work and most often requires a SAHP, having another baby affects the whole family, having a homebirth or a doula is usually more expensive than a hospital birth, even not vaxing has the potential to affect other people in terms of disease transmission (please don't start debating vax, just using it as an example), attachment parenting in general just requires more work and time and attention from the parents. All of these things may be the right thing to do in general, but all of them affect the adults and the other children in the family in different ways for positive or negative and all merit discussions and informed decision-making.

Circumcision alone of all possible parenting issues affects no one else but the baby during childhood when the baby is in his parents' custody. Adulthood and the effect of circ on sexual partners is a whole different issue, but again it's got nothing to do with parenting. So circumcision is not really a "parenting" decision at all because it's not going to affect anyone else in the family in any detrimental way. IMO it shouldn't even be in the same category as parenting decisions, because there's nothing to decide that will have impacts on the rest of the family.

I think when you take the issue off the table as something to be decided -- it's simply "his body, his choice, we're not going to do something to our baby's genitals without his permission" -- then the whole thing becomes a lot simpler and easier. It's not about disrespecting your dh -- it's about respecting your son's personhood and human rights and right to bodily integrity. Your dh can help you decide about issues that will affect you, him, and/or the family as a whole. Neither he nor you can decide to do something to your baby that will permanently alter his body for no legitimate medical reason -- it's just not your decision to make.
i love this post...it makes so much sense to me...

peace...
post #34 of 50
Wow Quirky, that one should become an article or pamphalet or something.
post #35 of 50
Quirky, I think that's a good place to start..........but hopefully my son won't consider circumcision a "choice" when he becomes an adult. (I want my son and my daughter to keep their full, intact genitalia and not want to cut part of it off.)
post #36 of 50
I want to offer you lots of encouragement!!!

I think you have involved DH by having conversations about the issue already. You have heard his concerns.

As for the decision -- here's a thought -- anything that a married couple don't both enthusiastically agree "YES" on, is a "NO." If you aren't BOTH saying yes to circ, then it's a no-go.

Skip the gauze and I wouldn't bring it up with him unless he brings it up. You will always have time to talk about it, a circ doesn't have to happen right away, so you shouldn't feel pressured at all, and if he seems urgent about it, ask him to relax and you both can take your time discussing it when you are ready.

Hope that helps and congrats and good luck with the birth!!!
post #37 of 50
Were you able to get the video to work for you?
post #38 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A
Quirky, I think that's a good place to start..........but hopefully my son won't consider circumcision a "choice" when he becomes an adult. (I want my son and my daughter to keep their full, intact genitalia and not want to cut part of it off.)
Oh, ITA, but that's a bridge that can be crossed later. The biggest issue here is getting this baby home and grown up safely intact; there's 18+ years after that to educate him about the value of his whole body.
post #39 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by becoming View Post
You are so right. I don't think I ever intended to let it actually happen. I don't know why I wrote those stupid things on that stupid list. I would just really love it if DH could see my point of view and feel like he was involved in actually refusing consent for it.
If know I said this before, but I will say it again. Perhaps it's how I am, but I can't let something like this rest unless it's sorted. I would have to say to my husband 'ok so just to clarify we are NOT having him circumsised and I will NOT sign the consent forms.' You have years to turn your DH into an soldier for the cause but right now the important thing is to protect your little guy form this.
post #40 of 50
Just keep saying to your dh, "I'm sorry, but I can't let you circumcise our son."
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