Broaching circumsicion issues with pregnant/recently delivered friends - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 11-21-2011, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have two friends who recently delivered boys. My own son is intact, and while they were pregnant I fowarded them both some informational websites that had helped convince my husband that we should not have our son cut.  I was hoping they would help convince my friends as well.  Now that they both have sons, I am curious what they decided, but in the event that they chose the other path, I do not want to sound judgmental.  I do feel very strongly that circumsicion is wrong however, so I am conflicted as to whether I should try to censor my natural reaction (horror, dismay, pity) if they did that to their sons, and what a plausible reaction would be.   I feel like I did everything I could and it is too late to change it now, so I don't want to strain our friendships if they went the other way. 
Any words of wisdom or advice?

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#2 of 11 Old 11-21-2011, 10:16 AM
 
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You did what you could to educate them which is great. Their kids' penises are none of your business now though. Why ask? So you can be upset if they didn't take your advice? So you can judge their choices? Leave it be....

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#3 of 11 Old 11-21-2011, 10:17 AM
 
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If these are friends you value and want to keep, say nothing.

Whatever has been decided has already happened or not. Saying anything won't change that. You gave them the information when they were pregnant and if they had wanted to discuss this issue with you, they would have done so then. They didn't, and that says a lot about their comfort level with you on this.

A public reaction of horror, dismay or pity at the birth of a child is never appropriate and will be remembered. I would have serious reservations about continuing a friendship with someone who acted that way to me as a new mother. Be joyful for your friends and their new babies and leave it at that.
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#4 of 11 Old 11-21-2011, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks ladies!  You are so right.  I will not be the one to bring it up. 

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#5 of 11 Old 11-26-2011, 11:34 AM
 
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I agree w/ almost everything zinemama said except for the friends comfort level with you. That might be true but it might also be that they were already planning on keeping their son intact so they felt no response was necessary. Like if someone had sent me an article on the benefits of breastfeeding I doubt I'd feel the need to respond back with "of course I already knew that and I'm planning on breastfeeding". However, chances are high that they circumcised their boys anyway and didn't want to say anything. Like others said, what's done is done, no going back now. If you are afraid knowing that they circed their boys might alter your friendship, best you not ask unless you really want to know. But I will say good for you for sending them info. Lots of people (even here on MDC) think it's outside of friendship etiquette to send pro-intact info. I say it's not. I was an OB nurse for over 10 years and it's amazing how many mothers in this day and age do NOT realize they have a choice in keeping a baby intact. So informing people is the first step in educating them and allowing them to know their is a choice. Feel good in knowing you did all you could do and don't be afraid to send more info to other expectant parents in the future. :-)

 


Mom &  RN   intactivist.gif
Pardon the typos - CWOK (cat walking on keyboard)   signcirc1.gif

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#6 of 11 Old 11-26-2011, 11:52 AM
 
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I say, send them stuff beforehand. Let them know your son is intact if they have any questions and then back off.
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#7 of 11 Old 11-26-2011, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the support! I'm not sure how I gave the impression that they never discussed it with me again though - one was convinced but was still working on her husband, the other is a guy and just joked that he couldn't watch the video and forwarded it to his wife. 

I'll see the older boy tomorrow, but I am definitely not bringing it up.  I think you are all right that it's none of my business now. I'm glad I asked for advice since I'm sure otherwise my curiosity would have eclipsed good manners. I think part of why I want to know is just to gauge what their parenting styles will be. I am always terrified of bringing parenting stuff up with old friends - it is so contentious and emotional. And knowing them well in their pre- parenthood life seems to be no guide either. I myself told everybody there was NO WAY my baby would sleep with us. But once he was born, I could not imagine doing anything else. 

I wil continue to at least bring it up with pregnant friends though. I felt like forwarding them the info wasn't too pushy or soap boxy. I know from my experience trying to convince DH that how the issue is broached is important.

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#8 of 11 Old 02-03-2012, 12:03 PM
 
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I'm such a wuss I'm having trouble saying anyhing unless they are a really good friend. And then I really only feel comfortable doing it in person. The thing is, I've come to feel even more strongly about keeping boys intact now than when my son was born. I used to feel that if a person had a really strong religious conviction about circing that it was OK with me, but now I'm rethinking it. It makes me afraid to bring it up unless someone asks me about it specifically, regardless of whether or not it's a religiously-based question. Any suggestions for how I can send info gently on FB or email. (I know we're not supposed to discuss circ and religion here; just explaining my paddy-a$$ attitude, and looking for help.)

 

Thanks!

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#9 of 11 Old 02-08-2012, 11:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi Trumpetmom

i keep an email that I sent my husband when we were arguing about circ after it had become too contentious to discuss it further so I sent him a bunch of informational links. We never did talk about it again but when the midwife asked if we had thought about it and I paused, he said 'we're not doing it' and that was that.

I've sent them to two friends and they were well received though I still don't know the outcome. But my friends still talk to me so no harm was done either. I think the important thing is not to get too impassioned about it ( mistake I made with DH) but just provide the info and leave it at that.

These are the links I sent, though clearly there are many more:

 

http://mothering.com/health/the-case-against-circumcision?page=0,1

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#10 of 11 Old 02-18-2012, 07:26 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrumpetMom View Post

I'm such a wuss I'm having trouble saying anyhing unless they are a really good friend. And then I really only feel comfortable doing it in person. The thing is, I've come to feel even more strongly about keeping boys intact now than when my son was born. I used to feel that if a person had a really strong religious conviction about circing that it was OK with me, but now I'm rethinking it. It makes me afraid to bring it up unless someone asks me about it specifically, regardless of whether or not it's a religiously-based question. Any suggestions for how I can send info gently on FB or email. (I know we're not supposed to discuss circ and religion here; just explaining my paddy-a$$ attitude, and looking for help.)

 

Thanks!

Hi TrumpetMom,

 

I don't know why, maybe because a lot of pro-circ people are SOOOO pro-circ, it makes it difficult to bring up?  Or maybe because we don't want to be seen as perverts or something.  ANd, also, I think because people take everything personally & think you're attacking them if you ask them to just *think* about it :-/.  

 

I, too, have a lot of difficulty in bringing it up.  I know for me, I have to do this kind of thing over email.  I don't think fast on my feet so when I try to talk to someone about it, I can't think of good responses on the fly (even if I've thought about them ahead of time).  I can rewrite what I want to say as many times as I want.  I don't send these kinds of emails (when the opportunity is there) much anymore because I don't have the time to spend on getting it right.

 

What I've started doing (and I know it's not seen as a good idea, even by people here, and I'm okay w/ that ;-)), is sending the penis packs from the Whole Network to expectant parents anonymously.  I figure when a woman is pregnant she gets all kind of baby stuff in the mail, thanks to all the "sign up for these freebies," cards she fills out at the drs. office.  I figure its the best I can do right now & I hope that it has resulted in positive outcomes for the babies whose parents I sent them to (well, I know one of the babies was a girl, but there may be more babies after that one).  

 

And, when I can do nothing else, I hope really hard that the baby is a girl.  Seems the only way to just about guarantee the baby will stay whole in this culture.

 

Sus
 

 


Baby the babies while they're babies so they don't need babying for a lifetime.
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#11 of 11 Old 02-18-2012, 08:26 AM
 
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I have discussed it with several pregnant friends. But usually in one of two ways.

 

1. Friend - "Hey JollyGG did you circ. your son"

   Me - "No, and here's why"

   This is usually because they are researching and looking for other opinions. In our high circ. area I must not be very convincing. These parents usually circ. because everyone else they asked that question to responded   

    with "Yes, and here's why".

 

2. I bring it up with my friends from other countries. After having a few friends who told me that the first time it was brought up was by the nurse in the hospital asking if they wanted it done. Often the option had never occurred to them being from countries that don't practice routine infant circumcision. They were actually unfamiliar with the word (in English). One had a nurse explain what it was and why you would do it is such positive terms and explained to the parents that pretty much all American parents have it done and why it's such a good idea. They told me that they could very easily have been talked into doing it.

 

Since then I let my friends know that they will be asked if they want it. What it is. Some of the pro and con arguments out there. But explain that it is largely cosmetic, and unnecessary. They all elect to leave their kids whole but usually thank me for the heads up once their kid is born as they also report staff that could have easily convinced them to do it without them really understanding what they were agreeing to.


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