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Expecting soon - help me sway DP

post #1 of 69
Thread Starter 
Hi,
I'm expecting my 1st baby in October. I've read enough about circ to know its not something I want to do if I have a boy. This was brought up a few months ago & my DP is 100% dead set on circ. He is circ'd. We dropped the argument back then to avoid WW3, but I know it will need to resume at some point.

I'm actually hoping for a girl for NO other reason then this.

Here is the thing - My DP is not stupid, he is intelligent & I think just the small amount of info I have already gave him is almost enough to make him agree w/ me from a health standpoint. He probably understands that there are no medical benefits from doing a circ, and that the procedure will be painful for the baby.

The reason he is unwilling to sway from his position is that he sees un circ'd as a bad thing from a social standpoint. The only people he knows who don't do circ are the migrant farm workers & very low income type people. He associates it with being low class, dirty, uneducated, etc.

I plan on putting my foot down on this issue, so I don't really need anyone giving me more info to solidify my position. I have felt this way ever sense I read something in a magazine when I was like 16 about female circ in a third world country. I came away from the article in tears, and knew I would never do that to a child, male or female.

My DP is a wonderful person though, and I would much rather have him agree with me then just put my foot down and let the chips fall where they may. We usually settle disagreements, not trump one another, and I dont want to create resentment surrounding a new baby. I would at least like to TRY again to help him feel more like I do.

Does anyone have suggestions on how to help him break away from his social prejudices regarding this issue? I'm only looking for constructive thoughts, not flaming. He isn't a bad person, just a bit set in his ways.

I really need more of a social argument then a health argument. Its not about being "different" its about the type of people he associates it with.

(for the record-If my son came to me and really wanted to be circ'd for his own reasons that I felt were fair & reasonable, I am totally willing to let him make that choice-so I'm not against it 110%, I just think its not my penis so its not my choice. I would never pierce my daughters ears untill she was old enough to request it.)
post #2 of 69
It depends on which state you're in for that average, but the national average is 56% and climbing every year. He won't be as different as he would have been in years past, so that's really not much of an argument anymore.

Maybe bring up the point that 100 boys die every year from circumcision? Is it really worth your baby dying for a procedure that isn't even medically necessary? Sure that's not a lot, but that's 8 boys a month, so around two a week.
post #3 of 69
I was actually thinking about this recently. I think that things are shifting such that not circ'ing is starting to be an upper class thing, and circ'ing is getting to be lower class. It seems like the people likely to do the research and decide not to circ are people with higher education, professional types, etc. Lesser educated people are likely to just go with the flow of the medical world, which is usually circ'ing so they can make some $$$.
post #4 of 69
Well, I know that each person is different in the way they communicate, etc., but I can share with you what worked with my DH.

He is a very open minded person, but he doesn't do a lot of research on his own where things like this are concerned. He also tends to dig his heals in if he thinks he is being told what to do or if he thinks his opinion isn't being considered. Soooo...when we found out we were having a boy, I knew 100% that there was no way on earth I was going to allow my son to be circ'd, but I didn't tell DH that. I let him think it was an option.

I waited a couple of days after we found out the sex and then casually brought up the topic..."So, since we are having a boy, guess we need to discuss the circumcision thing. How do you feel about it?" DH, being circ'd and only knowing circ as "normal," was of course of the assumption that we'd have our son circ'd. He actually didn't even realize it was much of an option. I asked him why he wanted to have our son circ'd and he didn't have many reasons other than "Cause that's what you do." "He'll get teased." "Isn't it cleaner?" etc.

I didn't overreact. I just said "Ok. Well, I've done some reading up on the topic and the more I find out about it the less I think it is something we should do. I think we should really find out all we can about it before we make a decision one way or the other." So again, I was letting him think his point of view was being considered.

Then over the course of the following weeks I showed him a few articles and websites, including Penn & Teller's Bullshit episode on circumcision. He asked me why everything I was showing him was anti-circ and I told him that I couldn't find any pro-circ material but that he was welcome to do his own research. A couple more weeks went by and he informed me that he really couldn't find any valid reasons for doing it...that the P&T episode really made him think and that he thinks we should NOT have our son circ'd.

So it never got to a point where we were on opposite sides fighting to try to be right. Of course, if he had not decided on his own that circing was a bad idea, I would have HAD to fight and I would have and he would have lost...heh...but letting him think his opinion was being considered in the beginning was key in our situation.
post #5 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kim919 View Post
Hi,

The reason he is unwilling to sway from his position is that he sees un circ'd as a bad thing from a social standpoint. The only people he knows who don't do circ are the migrant farm workers & very low income type people. He associates it with being low class, dirty, uneducated, etc.
Um, my son is uncirced and he is none of those things. I am studying for an EdD, am a Marketing Manager...my DH is an Electrical Engineer. I think we are pretty educated. We aren't poor (but not "wealthy"). I personally feel not-circing is the sign of a highly educated person. These people have researched and understood what most of the uneducated "sheeple" don't - that circ is wrong.
post #6 of 69
Your DP doesn't want to admit that his parents did something harmful to him and that's why he's clinging to this; wanting to inflict the same harm on his son, that his parents do to him. It's a vicious cycle of abuse.

If your husband truly feels it's of 'lower class standing' to be intact -- despite 80% of the world's men enjoying life w/ a complete penis -- including the Royal family in Denmark (for example), or the truly blueblood of the British upper class, then, sorry, that's being a snob and it's not reasonable thinking. It's a phobia against the foreskin that he needs to sort out.

My minister is 60-year-old British man who grew up in the highest of classes (large house, well stocked staff of help, who ALSO didn't circumcise! elite boarding schools, etc.) and came to Canada when he was 18 (IIRC) and he's intact!

Now even if your DP accepts that "yeah, every other high class in the world doesn't circumcise, but American high class do and that's what matters", then that should show him the cultural brainwashing in your country and not to buy into such insanity... which circumcising because it's "cleaner" or a "pedigree" is! Not that this could happen, but if you could do a penis check in the neighbourhoods of "trailer trash", "rednecks", it would show you there's plenty of mutilated outright poor boys, too. Circumcision unfortunately happens in the U.S. from ALL classes. So, again, to get all uppity and say it makes him of better cultural standing is just b.s.
post #7 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kim919 View Post
...
He associates it with being low class, dirty, uneducated, etc.


Does anyone have suggestions on how to help him break away from his social prejudices ...?

I really need more of a social argument then a health argument. Its not about being "different" its about the type of people he associates it with.
(Bolding mine)...

I spent a great deal of time typing a response but it got "lost" and I'm way too tired to redo it.
Here's a condensed version:

This is what uncircumcised children look like :
(edited for privacy)
Their parents are white/non-immigrant, college educated, middle class and non-dirty.
The little boy is intact, his father is circumcised. It's a non-issue.

IRL, I have no idea if most men or their kids are intact or circumcised. It's just not something most people go around asking. Of those children my kids age that I do know are intact, most come from professional families who are either middle class or upper-middle class. Most have parents who are doctors, nurses, engineers, a pilot, a professor, a teacher, a vet.

I don't have the type of stats you're looking for, but it's a safe bet that the poorest kid in town is just as likely to be intact as the richest kid in town. And chances are they'll never know because they don't go around talking about it or comparing gentials.

Maybe these links will work:

http://www.noharmm.org/appeal.htm
http://www.noharmm.org/raising.htm

Famous intact men:
http://www.circumstitions.com/Famous2a.html
http://www.circumstitions.com/Famous3a.html
*Pamela Anderson and Ricki Lake have both stated their boys are intact and I'm pretty sure Ben Affleck advocates for intactness as well. Hopefully your husband can relate to some of those people.
Good luck!
post #8 of 69
The dirty and low class thing is pretty upsetting. Perhaps you could seek out some families with intact children and introduce your DH. Maybe that will help him see past his stereotype., and these families don't need to be wealthy government officials; even a migrant worker is undeserving of such sentiments and perhaps getting to know the actual people will help him move beyond...
post #9 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamieCole View Post
Well, I know that each person is different in the way they communicate, etc., but I can share with you what worked with my DH.

He is a very open minded person, but he doesn't do a lot of research on his own where things like this are concerned. He also tends to dig his heals in if he thinks he is being told what to do or if he thinks his opinion isn't being considered. Soooo...when we found out we were having a boy, I knew 100% that there was no way on earth I was going to allow my son to be circ'd, but I didn't tell DH that. I let him think it was an option.

I waited a couple of days after we found out the sex and then casually brought up the topic..."So, since we are having a boy, guess we need to discuss the circumcision thing. How do you feel about it?" DH, being circ'd and only knowing circ as "normal," was of course of the assumption that we'd have our son circ'd. He actually didn't even realize it was much of an option. I asked him why he wanted to have our son circ'd and he didn't have many reasons other than "Cause that's what you do." "He'll get teased." "Isn't it cleaner?" etc.

I didn't overreact. I just said "Ok. Well, I've done some reading up on the topic and the more I find out about it the less I think it is something we should do. I think we should really find out all we can about it before we make a decision one way or the other." So again, I was letting him think his point of view was being considered.

Then over the course of the following weeks I showed him a few articles and websites, including Penn & Teller's Bullshit episode on circumcision. He asked me why everything I was showing him was anti-circ and I told him that I couldn't find any pro-circ material but that he was welcome to do his own research. A couple more weeks went by and he informed me that he really couldn't find any valid reasons for doing it...that the P&T episode really made him think and that he thinks we should NOT have our son circ'd.

So it never got to a point where we were on opposite sides fighting to try to be right. Of course, if he had not decided on his own that circing was a bad idea, I would have HAD to fight and I would have and he would have lost...heh...but letting him think his opinion was being considered in the beginning was key in our situation.

post #10 of 69
I also love how MamieCole handled it!
post #11 of 69
Wanting to circ so your son so he won't be like a 'dirty' 'uneducated' 'low class' migrant worker is prejudice and offenisive. I would have such a hard time with that if it was my dh.

In my area the parents educating themselves about circ and choosing not to do it are middle class and up. The migrant workers (and immigrants) around here already have the good sense and respect for their boys to not even need to be educated about circ, they already know it's wrong. And most are strong enough to not back down to the doctors and nurses in the hospital when they are pushing them to circ their sons. I am so sad that some think they are just dirty and low class.
post #12 of 69
Here are a couple of articles for YOU to read. NOT to show your dh:

http://www.stopcirc.com/vincent/vuln...ty_of_men.html

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




And this is one that you should show your dh:

http://www.noharmm.org/appeal.htm
post #13 of 69
My DH really wanted to circ our son on the basis that he'll be different from other kids if left intact (DH is also circ'd). But I found out that 90% of the boys at my daughter's (3yo) preschool (very expensive preschool, btw) are left intact. These kids are all upper-middle class and mostly white in L.A. (Hollywood-ish area).

You might be surprised to find that where you live, circ is no longer the norm among people you consider to be your "demographic."
post #14 of 69
I agree thats very offensive. Personally most of the people I know who have circ'd were either A.) very low income and unwilling or unable to research the issue well or B.) older parents who didnt think it had changed since they were younger and therefore, didnt research it. I have known people of all walks of life who havent circ'd, including us (both college educated and dh works at Microsoft).

It would definately help to know where you live-the national average is around 50/50, so even just going by that he wouldnt be the only kid intact-but regionally it can vary a lot. On the west coast its around 30% circ'd-ie the intact boys are the majority. I know most of the kids around here are not circ'd. Two who are had older parents who were shocked when I said it wasnt done for medical reasons anymore (they already had their sons circ'd, but they said they wouldnt have done it if they'd known) and my semi-ex-friend did it done because she's Jewish supposidly (really it came down to personal preference and family pressure; personally I found it really weird that parents care what their sons penis looks like)
post #15 of 69
Ask your dh if he wants to teach his son that we do harmful, irreversible things to our bodies just b/c they are considered posh or fancy or if he rather teach his son that he should treat his body with love and respect regardless of what others are doing? Is he really going to let others tell him what is best for his child? Does anyone need to know the status of his son's penis? Is he insecure enough to think that his uncut son's penis can diminish the status of his family?

This is the first step he can take to protecting his son (should you have one).
post #16 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by asunlitrose View Post
Maybe bring up the point that 100 boys die every year from circumcision? Is it really worth your baby dying for a procedure that isn't even medically necessary? Sure that's not a lot, but that's 8 boys a month, so around two a week.
Is this worldwide, or in the US alone? I'm assuming worldwide, but if I quote this to someone I'm trying to convince, I wanna be sure I know what I'm talking about.
post #17 of 69
I found it here under "Quick Facts," but I know I got it from somewhere else.

http://www.babyboy.info/birth_care.html

They don't say either, but I assume worldwide.
post #18 of 69
Definitely read the article A&A posted.
Quote:
Originally Posted by carriebft View Post
Perhaps you could seek out some families with intact children and introduce your DH.
How exactly does one figure out which families have intact males? I suspect stalking the locker room at the YMCA would go over badly.
post #19 of 69
Finding your tribe area of MDC would probably put you in touch with families who have chosen not to circumcise. A local NOCIRC branch may also do this.

Just a few days go someone posted here looking for support in the philly area for leaving a child intact. We met up at a park and hung out
post #20 of 69
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by New_Natural_Mom View Post
Um, my son is uncirced and he is none of those things. I am studying for an EdD, am a Marketing Manager...my DH is an Electrical Engineer. I think we are pretty educated. We aren't poor (but not "wealthy"). I personally feel not-circing is the sign of a highly educated person. These people have researched and understood what most of the uneducated "sheeple" don't - that circ is wrong.
I agree with you 100%. My son won't be circ'd either way- I'm trying to get my dp to agree with me to avoid resentment over the issue.

I called our local hospital and the circ rate is 95%.

The people who are not circ'd around here are the ones without health insurance - hense the social stigma.
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