Circumcise Debate - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 07:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello Mothering Ladies,

 

I was wondering if anyone has some good resources for me.  We are having our first Boy and I am against circumcision however I feel like this is something I should leave up to my husband.  He said that he will do some research before he decides, which I was happy to hear.  Anyway, I doubt he has looked at anything yet, so I was wondering if you all had any good sources of information I could pass along to him. 

 

Thank You in advance!

 

Beachygranola =)

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#2 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 08:44 PM
 
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There is a whole forum on here filled with great information....

 

 

Here is the link for you

 

http://www.mothering.com/community/forum/list/44/the-case-against-circumcision


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#3 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 09:34 PM
 
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There is a whole forum on here filled with great information....

 

 

Here is the link for you

 

http://www.mothering.com/community/forum/list/44/the-case-against-circumcision

But of course that will only give you the AGAINST side. You'll have to look elsewhere for the reasons TO do it.

“What is evil? Killing is evil, lying is evil, slandering is evil, abuse is evil, gossip is evil: envy is evil, hatred is evil, to cling to false doctrine is evil; all these things are evil. And what is the root of evil? Desire is the root of evil, illusion is the root of evil.”
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#4 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 10:07 PM
 
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I went on http://www.drmomma.org and found a place to order a circumcision information binder. I'm in the same situation with my husband. The binder has several articles, DVDs showing the procedure, medical studies, etc. I think it's a good resource if you wanted something to present to him. Mine agreed to look over the material before the baby is born.


 


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#5 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 10:38 PM
 
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Don't leave it up to your hubby.. that's a cop out. Be firm and tell him no gets cut who lived in your uterus!

http://circumcisiondecisionmaker.com/
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#6 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 10:43 PM
 
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Be firm and tell him no gets cut who lived in your uterus!/
Or learn the pros and cons of both sides and decide rationally for yourself based on the facts.

You know... either way. smile.gif
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“What is evil? Killing is evil, lying is evil, slandering is evil, abuse is evil, gossip is evil: envy is evil, hatred is evil, to cling to false doctrine is evil; all these things are evil. And what is the root of evil? Desire is the root of evil, illusion is the root of evil.”
- Buddha
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#7 of 60 Old 04-23-2011, 11:11 PM
 
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This website has good info and is published by a very reputable source.  It also does a great job of giving a realistic appraisal of "both sides" of the issue:  http://www.caringforkids.cps.ca/pregnancybabies/Circumcision.htm

 

This page can be a great resource for women who are talking to their husbands about circumcision.  Gives you a bit of an insight on why it can be a difficult discussion for them and might help you bring the subject up in the most constructive way.  (sorry for ddc, my sister is due in August!)  http://www.udonet.com/circumcision/vincent/vulnerability_of_men.html


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#8 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 04:41 AM
 
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This article is very good- http://www.enotalone.com/article/3509.html

I would recommend picking up a copy of the book, What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Circumcision. Amazon has a link entitled look inside which gives a pretty good idea of the content. http://www.amazon.com/What-Your-Doctor-About-Circumcision/dp/0446678805

 

Here is an article for you- http://tlctugger.com/Archives/EmpoweredWoman.htm

 

 

 

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#9 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 06:48 AM
 
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@beachygranola - I was in the same situation a few months ago and did all the research.  These are some great links - especially the one's from Carlyle.  (JulianneW - I wish I had seen those to pass them on but it wouldn't have made a difference in my situation). Personally, I'm against it especially since there is absolutely no medical reason to do it.  However, we ended up getting our son circumcised because of a very complicated interpersonal relationship between myself and my future ex-husband.

 

The point is - you can do all the research you want but in the end you can only do what feels right given your circumstances.  We are looking out for the future and happiness of these little creatures but it's not always easy or even possible to get your way all the time in a relationship.  And given that, no matter what the status of the relationship, it took two to tango, the father/husband does have a say whether we want them to or not.

 

Just my opinion - but having been there and having had to make a decision that wasn't my ideal I can say that all the evidence against circumcision will not sway someone who wants their son circumcised.

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#10 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 07:04 AM
 
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I just wanted to say that the circumcisiondecisionmaker link does not do a very good job of explaining the significance of circumcision to Jewish people.  I would venture to say they did not talk to any Jews about it while making that site.  I don't know if that applies to you, OP, I just wanted to say something about it because I didn't think that site was very fair or well-researched on that particular topic.


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#11 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 07:52 AM
 
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I would say just let him watch a video of one being done.  That was enough for me and my DH.

 

But I do agree that if both parties are educated about the process, and the decision still comes down to doing it, it's better than just falling back on a lame reason (like just looking like his dad, or something like that).


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#12 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 08:35 AM
 
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And given that, no matter what the status of the relationship, it took two to tango, the father/husband does have a say whether we want them to or not.

 

Just my opinion - but having been there and having had to make a decision that wasn't my ideal I can say that all the evidence against circumcision will not sway someone who wants their son circumcised.

It must be tough to feel like your husband has a say in this if you two disagree, since there's no "compromise" on an issue like this, and I agree that it can be a really emotional issue for many men (see the link I posted earlier)!  As Fireflyx mentioned, all the evidence in the world may not change a man's opinion if he's dead set on circumcising.  The nice thing is that your son can choose to get circumcised when he's old enough and mature enough to develop his own opinion.  You can let him be the "tie-breaker," you know?  Really, it's your son's body and HE'S the one who really should have a say!  By circumcising him when he's a baby, you're taking the decision away from him since there's no "undoing it" after it's done.

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#13 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 11:07 AM
 
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Be firm and tell him no gets cut who lived in your uterus!/
Or learn the pros and cons of both sides and decide rationally for yourself based on the facts.

You know... either way. smile.gif

The facts never tell you to cut on your newborn baby. The foreskin is not a birth defect.. it is standard equipment for human males.
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#14 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 11:25 AM
 
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In my opinion, the closest thing to a compromise is to leave your son intact and let him decide for himself. It's really a non-decision.


 

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#15 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 11:35 AM
 
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http://circumcisiondecisionmaker.com/decide/infant-circumcision/religion/jewish/orthodox/

 

The site actually says this for Conservative Jewish parents:

Circumcision is a strong part of the Orthodox and Conservative Jewish religion as well as Jewish identity and therefore is likely advisable for you.

 

I'm not sure they really need to explain the significance of Jewish circ since most people who feel that way in their religious belief will already have established their own feeling of the significance. I could say more but MDC doesn't want to host religious circ debates. But I did want to chime in and say I do think circumcisiondecisionmaker.com is fair and balanced and does not always discourage circumcision. Each parent needs to do the research. If parents disagree, the wise thing to do is to do nothing (meaning leaving intact). That way, the owner of the penis, the child, gets to choose what he may or may not want to do with his own body part.

Instead of you providing links to dh on my you shouldn't circ, why not have him provide medically backed research on why you should circ the baby. Not feelings, but facts. No medical organization in the entire world recommends routine infant circ. You both can sit down with a list of medically proven pros and cons and hopefully that will help you both feel comfortable with a decision.

 


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#16 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 11:56 AM
 
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Don't leave it up to your hubby.. that's a cop out. Be firm and tell him no gets cut who lived in your uterus!

http://circumcisiondecisionmaker.com/


A cop out to give your husband a say in what happens to a baby that is as much his as it is mine because it lived in my uterus? That's a new one! 

 

OP I think it's a great idea to get the binder with the video, give him all the information he needs and both of you sit down and discuss it as rational adults. It doesn't sound like he's dead set. Good luck! :)

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#17 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 11:58 AM
 
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Also, you could suggest to DH that maybe you take the baby home and think about it some more until you can reach a decision you both agree on. Chances are good he won't ever even think about it again at that point and even if he did and you wanted to get DS circumcised you could do it when he is older and sufficient anesthesia will be used. Just an idea!


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#18 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 01:45 PM
 
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I don't really have any advice to give OP, but good luck with this difficult decision! 


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#19 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 03:33 PM
 
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A cop out to give your husband a say in what happens to a baby that is as much his as it is mine because it lived in my uterus? That's a new one! 


I'm usually on the other side of this kind of thing. I'm always telling the homebirth mamas that they should get their dhs on board.. that its his baby, too. And all hell breaks loose on MDC. Lots of MDC moms gives their dhs little say on vaxes, cloth diapers. pediatricians, babywearing, and such.. they just say "this is how we are doing it". And most good daddies fall in line for the sake of family harmony if nothing else.

But in this case.. the husband is arguing for the irreparable harm of the child.. no harm should come to my child whom I carefully nurtured nine months in the womb and then gave natural childbirth to.
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#20 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 04:43 PM
 
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In my opinion, the closest thing to a compromise is to leave your son intact and let him decide for himself. It's really a non-decision.


 


yeahthat.gif  Leaving him intact= no decision to be made!  

 

There is no risk to leaving him intact, as long as you know not to ever pull back (retract) his foreskin which is painful and damaging.  The foreskin is fused to the head of the penis in infants and young children, and it has a sphincter at the end that keeps it closed around the penis when the boy is not urinating.  This keeps the meatus and the uretal opening closed off and protected from icky diapers and uncomfortable rubbing against diapers/underwear.  Later on, the foreskin serves an irreplaceable sexual function: first with the tens of thousands of fine-touch receptor nerve endings it contains, and secondly as a shaft that allows the penis to smoothly glide through which makes things more enjoyable for both partners.

 

There are significant risks to circumcision, including severe pain (many to most are still done with NO anesthesia, and the anesthesia that some boys get is not sufficient for such a painful procedure), infection, blood loss, cutting too much skin off (which results in a lifetime of pain), cutting too little skin off (which leads to adhesions and the potential for the "need" to re-circumcise), and a high risk of meatal stenosis later in life.  During the recovery period, the open circumcision wound is daily being exposed to urine (which stings!) and poo (which is an infection risk).

 

You will only have to care for your son's penis for a short while.  But it will be an important part of his body for his entire life.  Leave the decision up to him!  It's super easy to care for an intact penis.  If he wants to be circumcised as an adult it will be less painful and much less risky.  First, his foreskin will already be retractable.  Because a newborn's foreskin is fused to the penis, much in the same way that a fingernail is fused to a finger, the foreskin must be ripped away before it can be crushed and cut.  This is VERY painful.  An adult skips that "step."  An adult will also get full anesthesia (too risky to give to newborns) and sufficient post-op pain medication.  An adult knows what will happen when he chooses to be circumcised.  A newborn is being subjected to a painful surgery and recovery in his first days of life and does not understand why.  An adult's penis is obviously much bigger, and it is easier for the doctor to be precise when cutting.  A newborn's penis is tiny, and there is much more risk of cutting too little/too much or even cutting into the head of the penis itself.  An adult can stand to loose a lot more blood before his health/life is at risk.  A newborn is at risk for critical health complications after losing as little as 1 oz of blood (two tablespoons full).

 

Do check out the Case Against Circumcision forum here at MDC.  Obviously you will encounter many there who are "against circumcision," but there is a wealth of information there about the risks of circumcision and the benefits of leaving babies intact.  Post your question there, and you'll get dozens of recommendations for websites and books to begin your research.

 


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#21 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 04:50 PM
 
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I dated a man whose doctor slipped and cut off a good chunk of his penis. They sewed it back on but 27 years later there's still a big scar and he doesn't have good sensation in it. Oops!


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#22 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 05:10 PM
 
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Everyone else has given good ideas.  The main thing to remember is that it is the normal way for a penis to look.  There are really just two reasons to do it:

 

1. you are Jewish and it has religious meaning to you.

2. It is important for your boy to have a penis that looks 'typical'.

 

 

There are no real health or sexual benefits, so it is a purely cosmetic choice.


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#23 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 05:21 PM
 
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2. It is important for your boy to have a penis that looks 'typical'.

 


And even this is becoming less of a reason now that the overall circumcision rate in the US has dropped to less than 50%.


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#24 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 05:22 PM
 
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2. It is important for your boy to have a penis that looks 'typical'.

 

 

A typical-looking penis is an intact penis.  A recent study of more than 6.5 babies estimated that 67% of newborns were being left intact in the US.  This is a big change from even a few years ago.  Worldwide, the incidence of circumcision is MUCH lower.  Rates vary a lot depending on the region of the US.  Fewer than 25% of newborns in the west coast states are circ'd.

 

The silly "locker room" argument no longer applies.  Our boys' peers are more likely to be intact than circ'd!

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#25 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 05:24 PM
 
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There are no real health or sexual benefits, so it is a purely cosmetic choice.


And there are sexual detriments to being circ'd.  

 

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#26 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 05:47 PM
 
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Yeah, I grew up with two intact brothers, so it isn't weird to me.  My poor Hubby wants his foreskin back! lol.  I have never dated an intact man, but I ended up dating a lot of jews, so that's not surprising. :D

 

 


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#27 of 60 Old 04-24-2011, 06:15 PM
 
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And even this is becoming less of a reason now that the overall circumcision rate in the US has dropped to less than 50%.



If you head over to the case against circumcision there was a thread about this not long ago and sadly that is very far from the truth. greensad.gif


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#28 of 60 Old 04-26-2011, 06:39 AM
 
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I suspect that most people who are on this site predominately feel that circumcision is not necessary.  I too do not believe it is necessary but as I said earlier, my relationship unfortunately dictated this decision despite all the evidence, including the doctor's recommendation against circumcision.- I was not the sole decision maker.  I feel that I did my son a disservice but given the circumstances I did the best I could. Life is not always fair and one does not always get one's way despite overwhelming evidence in one's favor.

Regarding religious reasons for circumcision, I believe that Islamic religion/culture also believes in circumcision.  In general, it is largely a cultural thing whether it be for religious or other reasons.  Demographics also play a part in the choice.  For instance, California has one of the lowest rates of circumcision and the demographically it has almost twice the percentage of Hispanic population than the rest of the US. http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/06000.html

I did a lot of research on statistics believing that that would influence my future ex-husband but it did not.

The interesting thing about statistics is that now that circumcisions are not routinely done in hospitals it is difficult to know what the rate really is. I think that this link http://www.boystoo.com/history/statistics.htm tries to adjust for differences between in hospital and out of hospital.

Here are some other statistics for circumcision worldwide. I don't know if these sites are pro or con circumcision but they do have statistics (which may or may not be valid)

http://www.circinfo.net/rates_of_circumcision.html
http://www.malecircumcision.org/publications/documents/HIV_MaleCircumcision_A4_Global_web.pdf


I also did a lot of research on letting my son make the choice later and found that there seemed to be many more complications when circumcision occurs in adulthood rather than in infancy. So that did not seem to be a very good option.  I would assume that a choice made by my son would be post adolescence or maybe during adolescence as I don't think a little boy would be able to decide something like this on his own.  

 

http://www.ivillage.com/circumcision-decision/6-a-127854?p=1Very good article
http://www.llli.org/llleaderweb/LV/LVOctNov00p94.html  About circumcision and breastfeeding
http://www.babyzone.com/baby/newborns/article/circumcision-debateGeneral article
http://www.udonet.com/circumcision/vincent/index.htmlArticles (all of the links on this page are interesting) by a guy who was left intact by circumstances.  Take with a grain of salt.
http://www.kellymom.com/bf/start/concerns/circumcision.htmlVariety of links - some you are broken and you have to just search on the titles in Google to get the new links.
http://www.kellymom.com/bf/start/concerns/circumcision.htmlCare and complications of circumcision
http://www.circlist.com/considering/consider.html Seems to be a decent site with a lot of good info.
http://www.circs.org/index.php/Library A library of articles on circumcision

Must go pump now - I hope the links help. 

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#29 of 60 Old 04-26-2011, 09:08 AM
 
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I will caution you that circinfo (and Dr. Brian Morris, its owner) are notorious circumfetish sources.  Google 'Gilgal society' and 'circumfetish.'

 

For accurate information about the real risks of genital cutting, please don't look to circumfetishists.    

 

Also, Mothering as a publication has worked tirelessly to debunk the myth that male circumcision prevents HIV transmission or infection.  

 

http://www.mothering.com/health/the-truth-about-circumcision-and-hiv

 

 

For accurate information on routine infant circumcision, please see here:

http://www.drmomma.org/2010/01/are-you-fully-informed.html

The vast majority of adult males in the world have normal (intact) penises and never need any kind of surgery on them.  And if they do want to be cut later in life (or tatooed, or pierced, or whatever) it's a decision that people appreciate making themselves.    I know my DH is extremely regretful that his parents modified his genitals without his consent.  


 

 


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#30 of 60 Old 04-26-2011, 11:05 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jennyfah View Post


I will caution you that circinfo (and Dr. Brian Morris, its owner) are notorious circumfetish sources.  Google 'Gilgal society' and 'circumfetish.'

 

 


Thank you for the warning!! Yuck.


Mommy to THREE sweet boys & ONE sweet girl + a newb due in February!  I need a nap. 
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