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Makin my first post

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
Im a pregnant mommy to a boy! Ive got 2 girls and finally my boy. Ive never even thought about this issue until now and Ive got tons of questions.

Why are ppl so against it? Not just a no thats bad but hugely against it. I understand to a point, but the huge amount of advocacy for it, I guess is where I dont.

My little brother was left intact and had a medical problem at age 5 that required him to get circumcised. I dont want that happenin to my lil guy.

I dont think Im up for videos yet, that my make me sick to watch a baby go through that.

I just need some insight, without references to 100 links, just talkin

post #2 of 49

1, congrats for at least thinking about circ. most mothers don't even question the practice.

2. i suggest you read the sticky of testimonials from mothers who saved their boys from circ and from those who circed and now regret it.
post #3 of 49
Why are people so against it? Where to begin.... basically you take a person at their most vulnerable time in life and cut off healthy tissue from the most vulnerable part of their body without their consent. It's painful and not medically necessary yet people still insist on doing out of fear, ignorance, and even worse, because they like the look of it. Cosmetic surgery on a newborn's healthy genitals. Is there anything more awful?!

If it makes you sick to watch the videos then surely you won't want your little guy to have to go through it. The chances of your guy needing to be circed later in life are slim to none unless you go to a circ. happy doc so you needn't worry about that - your brother probably didn't even need it done unless of course he had gangrene which I doubt.

And even if it did have to be done later at least your guy would get proper anethesia and then pain relief afterwards unlike the poor little newborns.
post #4 of 49
Circimcision is a simple yet complex issue I think.

The more you learn, the worse it gets.

If you read the posting guidelines for the forum (located at the top of the page) it touches on the various aspects of the issue. I'll copy/paste for you:

Factors to consider regarding circumcision are many and cover such areas as:

Legal and ethical rights: human rights, bodily integrity and informed consent

Advocacy and education: understanding routine infant circumcision history, breaking through the myths and educating family members and friends

Surgical complications: bleeding, infection, anesthesia complications and even death

The functions of the foreskin: protection of the glans, sexual function, the medical debate and myths surrounding cleanliness and disease (cancer, HIV etc)

The care of the intact child: the physiology of the natural foreskin separation process, forced retraction and it's damage and the education of caregivers on such matters

The cost of circumcision: loss of sexual sensation, emotional impact, complications and financial impacts

It is also appropriate to post issues that may relate to the circumcised child such as physical complications of the surgery (remanant foreskin re-adhesion, meatal stenosis, etc), differences in circumcision status amongst siblings and parental emotions surrounding circumcision such as guilt and anger.
The above list should give you some insight into the issue.

For me, the most important issue is that I believe a person has the right to their whole body. No one has the right to remove healthy tissue from a child without their consent. What other "cosmetic" surgery would you advocate for a child?

I also have huge issues with the sale of infant foreskins to the biotech industry without the knowledge of parents or the consent of the owner of the foreskin- the baby!
post #5 of 49
Unless your little brother had penile cancer, frostbite or gangrene your parents were lied to and he didn't need to be circumcised. Those are actually the only medical reasons to do it. All other problems have much less drastic solutions.

It's also possible that your parents were taught improper care for him and were forcably retracting him which will cause tears and invites infection. This is how doctors got the opportunity to circ boys that they missed the first time around.

To the original question - circumcising infants is a human rights violation. It is their penis and how it functions should be their choice. Undergoing painful cosmetic surgery and body modification should also be their choice.

Think of it this way - Did you ever consider altering your daughter's genitals? I would assume that you didn't. If not, why do you think it's OK to alter your son?

The question you should be asking yourself is why should I, rather than why shouldn't I since not doing it is the default.
post #6 of 49
Here's my reason for being against circumcision.

Newborns are strapped down and are forced to endure an outrageously painful cosmetic surgery on the most sensitive part of their bodies with NO or inadequate pain relief.
And for what reason? NO major medical organization recommends it?
post #7 of 49
Thread Starter 
Why arent newborns given any pain medicine?

I cant remember what medical condition my brother had, but I know it wasnt due to my parents lack of knowledge or for not caring for him properly!
post #8 of 49
Hi and Congratulations on your pregnancy!! and your little boy!!

All I can say is do your research!! Circumcision is irreversible and extremely painful.

I am against it because it is purely for cosmetic reasons and I was not going to put my son through cosmetic surgery to “fit in” it is a completely unnecessary surgery.

Can you think of 1 good reason to alter your son’s genitals that you wouldn’t alter your daughter’s genitals for the same reason?? If not then maybe you should really think about WHY you would want to do that to your son.

FYI- Circumcision is most painful on an infant, older children and adults get proper pain relief when infants get next to nothing. And I would agree with the PP that your parents were lied to about your brother “needing” to be circumcised. There is less then a 1% chance of a medically necessary circumcision.

Good luck!!
post #9 of 49
Nobody meant to insult your parents. What they're saying is that doctors have been poorly trained on the matter and have given parents the wrong information. In Europe, where intact boys are the norm, it is very rare (less than 1%) for boysor men to need a circ later, because doctors are better informed, and thus, so are the parents.

Originally Posted by mommyintx View Post
Why arent newborns given any pain medicine?

I cant remember what medical condition my brother had, but I know it wasnt due to my parents lack of knowledge or for not caring for him properly!
post #10 of 49
I dont think Im up for videos yet, that my make me sick to watch a baby go through that.
This was the crux of it for me. If I can't watch a stranger's baby suffer how in the world could I do it to my son?
Dh and I decided there would have to be a HUGE medical benefit to warrant a circumcision, and there just isn't. (FWIW dh is circ'ed and was pro-circ before our research) We did a ton of research (and unbiased research at that - medical journals and the like) and explored all pain relief options and there just isn't any concrete evidence that it is worth it. (one of the more disturbing research articles I found was the study on pain relief during circumcision. They measured pain (as well as you can in newborns, heart rate brain waves et cetera) during circ using different pain relief measures. (sugar water, cream, nerve block) The study was aborted halfway through because the researchers felt it was unethical to continue when they realized the pain these poor babies were experiencing.
We also talked to several intact men. My grandfather, and uncle by marriage are intact as are my brothers. My brothers are 25 and 19, grew up in suburban PA and were born in the very circ happy 80s. Both said they never had any problems in the locker room (as the younger one said no guy would ever admit to looking at another guy's junk) and no one we talked to ever had problems with infections or anything like that. (the locker room thing was a big deal to my husband)
My mom did tell me that she first pedi tried repeatedly to get her to circ the older brother so she just found a new one with knowledge of intactness and never heard about it again.
My husband was also worried that J would feel weird that his looked different than daddy. J is only two but has seen Dh's a few times and if anything he get really excited that dad has one too. We plan to just explain it to him in a age appropriate way if he asks.
The younger of my brothers said something pretty interesting. He said he doesn't mind being intact and he likes the fact that he has a choice. If research is ever done that shows there is a true medical benefit to circumcision he can have it done. If research continues to show that intactness is beneficial he's covered but his friends are screwed.
I've never see a video either. I just can't do it. Knowing what happens to these babies is enough heartache for me, I don't need to see it (or hear it). As for me I just kept thinking 'knowing what I know about Circ, how could I hand over my beautiful brand new baby knowing that he was going to hurt?' and I couldn't DH was holding J in the hospital and said that seeing him and holding him he could never hand him over either.
We were both horrified seeing the recently circ'ed son of Dh's best friend. His poor penis was so swollen and bloody and they had to keep wrapping him in gauze and applying ointment. Dh said to me at the time "and they say this is easier to care for?"
I personally am very anti-circumcision because I believe so many parents choose circumcision out of lack of knowledge.
It's amazing the things DH and I believed about circ and intactness before we researched it. DH, his brother and my sister's FI believed that the head of their penises looked that way because of circ. They believed that the foreskin was cut and then stitched back to form the head of the penis. (and these are college educated professional guys).
I believed that circ was a little snip of the tip of the foreskin. I had no idea the glans was fused to the foreskin and ripped off during circ.
None of us knew that an intact penis looks almost exactly like a circumcised penis when erect. (I asked my brother what his girlfriend said about him being intact and he told me that she didn't realize it until he told her. - the other brother is a slut and he said it's never been a problem)
None of us ever imagined that the only pain relief routinely used is sugar on a pacifier.
Circumcision is such a closed door thing. People don't talk about it. Doctors don't give you the information you need to make an educated decision. Some out of greed (look into the cash cow circ is - some companies (that make skin grafts) can make up to $20,000 per foreskin!) some out of ignorance, and some are so afraid of offending you as a parent they don't give an opinion. (This happened to me - we said no to circ and our ob said she was relieved. She hated doing them and there was no real medical benefit anyway. I wish now I asked her why the hell they didn't tell parents before hand.)
It is really difficult to find unbiased research. Fanatical stuff from both sides is everywhere but it takes a lot to find real information. People hear "Circ to prevent AIDS!" They don't look into that study and see that is very specific to a region in Africa, that it has been retracted by one of the researchers, and that cleanliness and safe sex are much bigger contributers to STDs and AIDS than circumcision. Some people just don't really think about it. If circ prevented AIDS and STDs wouldn't the US and Israel have the lowest percentages of AIDS and STDs in the world?
I hear so many mothers saying they regret circing their sons and they wish they knew then what they know now. I make it my business to prevent that from happening to any mother or baby that I know. A lot of mothers that I've talked to have been very open to information about circumcision. The ones that do circ at least have the knowledge of pain relief so hopefully their sons won't suffer.
Sorry for the novel.
I hope I answered your questions. Yay for you for researching this very important issue for your son. MDC is a really great resource for information.
Feel free to PM me with any other questions!
post #11 of 49
Thread Starter 
Ok, I have a maybe hot question...

Ive just recently started reading the bible and it talks about circumcision a LOT. Is that really even an issue in 2008?

Ive had sex with a lot of men, only 2 were "intact." It was kinda weird, maybe because I was used to other men. I know this may seem like a weird reason, but I dont want women thinking my son is weird or look bad. I know this is a naiive (sp?) reason, but its honest and Im learning.....
post #12 of 49
As I understand it, there are a couple of reasons why newborns aren't given any pain medicine for a circumcision. First, it is dangerous to anaesthetize someone so young, (which perhaps should be a clue that we shouldn't be operating on them in the first place unless actually necessary). And second, there is still this fallacy floating about that newborns can't feel pain. Frequently, you will hear doctors and nurses tell you that the reason the baby is screaming is not that they're in pain from getting part of their genitals sliced or crushed off, but that they're "uncomfortable" from the board they're strapped to. And then, when the baby passes out from shock (patients who are operated on without anaesthesia frequently pass out because the pain overwhelms what they can take), they use that as further proof that it doesn't hurt, saying, "see, he fell asleep!"

Keep in mind, when you talk to your doctor, that they may not be fully educated, or unbiased on the matter. Circumcision makes docs a lot of money, unfortunately.

I hope for your son's sake that you choose not to do this to him. There are several very good links in the "stickies" at the top of this forum, many of which don't have pics or video, that you can use to educate yourself.

I also hope you choose not to circumcise for your future daughter-in-law's sake. I've been with more men than I ought to have, frankly, and never really loved sex like I do with my husband. He has his whole penis, and the sex is so much better! I know it's weird thinking of your tiny baby having a sex life, but why would you want to diminish one of life's great joys for him? And even more so for his wife!
post #13 of 49
I'm glad that you are posting here and asking these questions now. I know the other posters will have plenty of reasons and advice for you. I just wanted to share that I made the mistake of circ'ing my son. I did what I thought was "normal" and "right" and just "what you do" when you have a baby boy. How horribly mistaken I was, and it's the biggest regret of my life. I only wish I had soaked up the info on this board before he was born... My future children will be left intact.

Please keep questioning this, and do get all the info you can (including videos, I know they're not pleasant to watch - but if you're leaning toward circ'ing you really should), and don't make the same mistake I did. Bring your sweet baby boy home with all of his parts, perfectly whole as he was meant to be.
post #14 of 49
The simplest way I look at it. Not my body not my choice. Plus they are born with it for a reason kwim.

Just do you research ask your questions and make the right decision for you and your family
post #15 of 49
A lot of people have touched on my reasons for not circumcision (and thinking RIC is an atrocity...) When I was pregnant I didn't know anything at all about circumcision except that most people - in the US anyway - seemed to do it. When we found out I was pregnant with a boy, then I started to research it, and it didn't take us long AT ALL to decide that we weren't going to be doing it to any of our sons. I didn't even have to get as far as watching a video - reading about it and seeing a couple of photos (and also holding a Gomco clamp - an instrument used to do some circs) in a childbirth education class was enough for me. My reasons:

It is purely cosmetic. RIC is not recommended by any medical organizations. Advocates of circ claim that it prevents or reduces the risk of UTIs, STDs, HIV/AIDS, and penile cancer, but in reality most of these "benefits" are either non-existent or so small that they don't outweigh the risks and downsides to circ.

80% of the world's men are intact. And guess what, their penises aren't falling off and they're not having all these mysterious medical problems that allegedly plague intact men. So, by leaving your son intact, he will be in good company, even though American society would have you believe otherwise. Less than 1% of intact males need circ for medical reasons, and these are the biggies like cancer, frostbite, or gangrene. Many of the problems that American doctors want to circ for, like skin infections, UTIs, "phimosis", are either completely bogus or can be resolved through less invasive means, like antibiotics. (Imagine that!!)

Some people use the "locker room" argument - that other kids will tease an intact boy. But, it isn't as common for boys to get naked in the locker room anymore. And, if a boy got caught examining another boys privates, I think HE'D be the one to get teased. And, kids are going to find plenty of other things to tease each other about - weight, glasses, braces, acne, etc. So, circ isn't going to make our boys "tease-proof"

And then there's the "look like daddy" thing (if dad is circ'ed). I think if I kid compared himself to daddy, the size and hair would be a lot more noticeable than the foreskin/no foreskin anyway. And if they do notice, why does it matter? Daddy and son are going to look different in a lot of other ways too.

I don't care whatsoever about what American women think or what my son's girlfriends, fiancee, wife will think about his foreskin. If a woman is THAT superficial that she'll reject him based on just his foreskin, she probably isn't good enough for my son, kwim? And furthermore, penises just aren't the most attractive things in the world, intact or circumcised. So why do we have to put our boys through this just to make them "cute" or "pretty" for the sake of his future sexual partner(s)?

Speaking of that issue, removing the foreskin can have negative consequences in a man's sex life because it removes a lot of very useful tissue. My DH was circ'ed as part of of hypospadias surgery and it is a very, very tight circ. I'd be lying if I said it hasn't hurt the quality of our sex life.

Circ'ing is not part of my religious beliefs. In fact, my beliefs led me to decide that it was best to leave DS the way he was designed. If he was created a certain way, it doesn't really make sense to alter it with cosmetic surgery.

Circumcision HURTS. The claim that newborns don't feel pain is BOGUS. They do. You'll hear mothers say that "oh my baby didn't cry one bit during his circ, so it must not have been that bad!" but when a baby doesn't cry, it is because he is in shock, not because he is relaxed and comfortable! It is very rare for a doctor to use proper pain relief during infant circumcision. A sugar paci is NOT proper pain relief. Even when doctors do use pain relief, they don't always give it enough time to work before they start the procedure. Would you really want to put your baby through that? If an intact boy/man does really have to be circed or chooses to be circed at an older age, he probably will be put under general anasthesia for the circ and will get all the pain relief he needs during and after.

I believe that RIC is a human rights violation. What have our baby boys done to deserve something like this?

Hope that helps!
Good luck with your pregnancy.
post #16 of 49
Thread Starter 
Im so glad I joined. Ive lurked for ages but never felt comfortable enough posting. This board gets a lot of publicity for being kinda wild and I wasnt sure if I could jump in strong enough!

I thank yall for educating me and not preaching to me. I really want to do whats best for my children. I dont have a husband to ask about this kinda thing, Id just always thought ok Id do it if I ever have a son, but I never will. AND NOW I AM!! LOL
post #17 of 49
Thread Starter 
Is there anyone here that DOES agree with it? I doubt it, just putting it out there to hear maybe another side?
post #18 of 49
Originally Posted by mommyintx View Post
Is there anyone here that DOES agree with it? I doubt it, just putting it out there to hear maybe another side?
You probably won't hear it on here - it is against the UA to advocate for (non-religious) infant circ.
post #19 of 49
Originally Posted by mommyintx View Post
Is there anyone here that DOES agree with it? I doubt it, just putting it out there to hear maybe another side?
It has been my experience that the only people who are "for" RIC are either grossly misinformed (and then see the "light" and change their thought on it) or have fully understood that there is absolutely no medical benefit - and that circ can actually lead to serious complications (whether that be because of hemorrhaging or an adversely affected sex life) - but still cling to circumcision as being "right" because they cannot, for the life of them, wrap their heads around the idea of leaving their son intact in a circumcised America. Even the fact that the numbers are going down doesn't persuade them.

In other words - the people I've talked to who know know know KNOW it's purely cosmetic and has its risks, still do it, because to them that's the way an American boy should look.

It's sick. And it's disturbing on so many levels that I can't even begin to comprehend it.
post #20 of 49
Originally Posted by mommyintx View Post
I cant remember what medical condition my brother had, but I know it wasnt due to my parents lack of knowledge or for not caring for him properly!
I'm sorry if it came off that I was insulting your parents...It was actually about the doctors...they are the ones who still to this day tell you to retract and clean...they also are the worst culprits of forceable retraction during exams.

I really believe they are trying to cause problems so they can get the $$$ for a circ and tell parents that they should have done it in the first place!

If your parents retracted your brother, it was because they were following doctors instructions...it wasn't their fault!
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