Circumcision Decision!?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 03:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have three girls and just found out #4 is a boy!! YEAH!!! BUT.....in the past i have been so grateful for girls because i didnt have to deal with the circumcision issue. Now we do and i have no time to waste. i have tried for years to educate my hubby on why i would never want to circumsize my son but since we werent having a boy he just thought it was silly to argue about. He lets me make most of the health decisions reguarding vaxing and well everything else so i think he will end up letting me do what i want or in this case dont want to be done. but i really want him to understand and be supportive.

any new info or great articles you gals have run into?? what are you all planning to do if its a boy??

Angela: Catholic Homeschooling Mom to Sierra(11/00), twins Addison & Kendall(3/03), Jack(4/06), Brielle (7/08), Levi (2/2011); due with#7 (9/13). Birthed every witch way.....hospital. C section. VbAC. Unassisted water birth (hypno/painless). Assisted waterbirth to an almost 10lber! (Not painless!)
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#2 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 04:25 PM
 
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There was an article a few years back in a men's magazine, Men's Health maybe? It was very good and informative, and written for men. After me talking about it for months, it helped clinch the decision with my dh.
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#3 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 04:26 PM
 
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sounds like you have a great 50-50 relationship with your dh. I told my dh before our dd was born and we didn't know what she was "there is no way in hell anyone is going to mutilate our newborn sons penis. there is zero good evidence that is is a health benefit and there is no reason he should have to look like you down there.....end of story."

but i guess if we had a 50-50 relationship, you might try and find video of a baby being circumcised, they either scream bloody murder or are so traumatized that they go to sleep. maybe if you don't want it done, you can have the view of, "well, there isn't medical evidence to do it, so lets allow him to decide when he is of age whether or not he wants it done...if he does then we will pay for the procedure."

i'm kind of hard core about this type of thing, but i really believe it is up to mothers to take a stand for our children, even if it goes against what our husbands wants. there will be many times when you will give in to what he wants regarding the children...i think this one is worth fighting for.

peace,
sarah

Mama to girl (11), boy (7) and girl (4).  "Can't we all just get along?" joy.gif
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#4 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 05:07 PM
 
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I was very surprised that when discussing Circ w/ my DH it didn't seem like a big deal to him to not circ. My dh is cric'ed and his dads side of the family is jewish so I was expecting some resistance from him. We are probably going to run into some heat about the issue if it comes up, but its our baby and we are not circ'ing. Plain and simple. BTW, we don't know the sex of this baby and are not finding out.
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#5 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 05:19 PM
 
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Mothering mag's second to last issue - the pregnancy one - has a whole article on circumsicion - my DH didn't take a lot of convinceing - I showed him one of those horror videos and he was shocked out of his shoes.

I think circumsicion is a human rights issues and need to be discussed as such rather than a parent's choice issue. It violates medical ethics codes of informed consent and many doctors who preform RIC think the risks far outweigh the benefits (since there are none).

Say later in life your son knows some circ'd boys and some uncirc'd boys and comes to you and DH and asks why you had him circ'd or why you left him intact. Discuss how you would reply with your DH. It's hard to answer that it prevented diseases becasue that's not true and this is the age of the internet. It's different to explain that it is part of God's commandments if you are Jewish. Imagine saying it was for aestheitic reasons? Imagine the message that gives to your son about how he born (looking funny) or that you didn't want him teased (implying intact boys should be teased). Now imagine your replies to why you left him intact.

It's his penis and you didn't want to make an irreversable choice about it for him.

Circumsision causes pain and suffering.

He was born perfect.

You trust nature and his body to work as it should.

You loved him so much you couldn't bare to part with any of him.

His foreskin is an important, functioning part of his body.

He'll enjoy sex more this way.

You spent a lot of time researching the issue and could find no compelling reason to do so - only lots of reasons why not to.

You didn't circumsize his three sisters, why change your tune now. (cultures that circumsize daughters give the same reasons for such practises as our culture does for the circumision of boys - there is a great comparison chart on-line somewhere - the debate board folks will give it to you in a heartbeat.)

You really wanted to get him a little onsie that says "Intactivist" on it!
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#6 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 05:30 PM
 
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is there a place online that i can get that onsie? or do i have to make it myself, i love it!

sarah

Mama to girl (11), boy (7) and girl (4).  "Can't we all just get along?" joy.gif
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#7 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 05:38 PM
 
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Not in your group, but thought I'd pop in and suggest you head over to the case against circumcision forum for lots of great support and ideas.

-Angela
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#8 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 06:22 PM
 
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I'm kind of in the same boat as you are...dh still thinks it's just a "snip" Ugh. I know I will prevail, but like you, I'd like him to be on board with me.

I told him he would have to go with our son, hold his little hand while they strapped him to the board, and watch the whole thing happen. I think that may be changing his mind.

Like I said, I will prevail. But becasue we had dd first, I never had to get my argument organized. So that's what I'll be working on now.
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#9 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 06:25 PM
 
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Luckily I made my mind up on this one even before we found out it's a boy. It's just plain not necessary IMO. It's becoming more and more of the norm not to circumcise. I hope eventually it just becomes a no brainer for all.
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#10 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 10:00 PM
 
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We've only had girls so far too, but if this one is a boy we will absolutely NOT circ him. Dh wasn't on board back during my first pregnancy, and I was relieved that I didn't end up having to fight with him about the issue (I would have won, btw). Now that he's seen Penn & Tell's Bullshit show on circ, he's completely changed his tune (despite the fact that I had told him all the same info he got from the show). I do believe they show a baby having it done and show how he goes into shock afterwards (looks just like sleep but they explain that his system simply can't take it and has shut down - I didn't watch it). That might be a good thing to have him watch, since it will probably be relatively entertaining to him as well (since they're comedians, not the topic). It can be bought on eBay (search for "penn teller emmy" and you'll find it) or perhaps someone on the Circ board could make you a copy.

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#11 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 10:02 PM
 
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Don't do it, mama. Head to Case against Circ. They'll get you EVERYTHING!
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#12 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 10:21 PM
 
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I just made him go over the information with me. We were both VERY VERY pro-circ and actually thought people who weren't were wierd for a long time. Luckily, some wonderful women on another board posted many things about it and I decided it was actually worth researching. (We both come from families that are almost all circumcised) Once I looked into I knew I could never ever do that to my boys, but DH was soooooo mad about my decision. Luckily, I researched this 2 years or more before we even became pregnant and kept bringing it up. Now that we're actually pregnant, he's been a bit more open minded and knows that the best decision is not to circumcise. The latest things I've made him go over are these two things. Some pictures and a video. Really hit a cord with him.

(These made me cry, just fair warning)
http://www.circumcisionquotes.com/video.html
http://www.circumcisionquotes.com/complications.html
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#13 of 31 Old 11-16-2005, 10:21 PM
 
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My first son was circed because I didnt know any better and my youngest ds is not cut. Its just as easy to take care of. I regret having my older son cut and so does dh.Now we are both advocated for the intact penis and I think my brother is definately convinced now so when he has kids in the next year they wont cut either.
Good luck!
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#14 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 02:04 AM
 
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I also am very anti-circ. I think convincing the husband can be a tricky thing to do. I always wondered why, but then I think I figured it out. Saying it's "wrong" in a heated and emotional way, especially, makes HIM feel like there is something wrong with HIM. With His Most Sensitive Part. So it's important to sort of phrase the discussion in a way that doesn't make him feel bad, and that's not the easiest thing to do.

I think I have that penn and teller show on my computer somewhere- I'll try to find it- and if anyone needs a copy to help convince their husbands, I"ll see if I can make it available somehow.

I think one other convincing thing to say is that you can *always* have it done later. You can't un-do it. That may buy you some time with a particularly stubborn husband. It's also much safer to do it later, in terms of mishaps or taking off too much, etc- so that's also an argument.

Finally, btw, there are reliable studies that DO say it reduces transmission of some diseases- particularly AIDS. To that, I say, well, why don't we just cut the whole thing off and just solve that problem altogether?! It doesn't eliminate the studies to say they don't exist- however, if you have the arguments about why that doesn't matter as much in these cases (i.e. a society that understands and accepts how to prevent hiv transmission), and all the negatives (which I know other people posted very nicely, and there are just *so many*), it helps it become a clear choice.

I think I convinced my husband, but his dad the peditrician that actually performes the procedure- I'm not looking foward to talking to him about it. Yikes. I hope he doesn't ask.
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#15 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 12:25 PM
 
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We're lucky being in the UK that it isn't a decision we really have to make - routine circ's just dont happen here Both my DH and DS are intact (and every other male in our families )and of course any futures DSs will be too.
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#16 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 12:43 PM
 
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Before I explain this, I'd like to clarify that I am absolutely, 100% against routine infant circumcision.

I'm Jewish; if this child is (as I believe) a boy, he'll have a Bris. BeanBean was born without a proper foreskin (as were both of my brothers, I think it's just a weird, x-chromosome thing) so he didn't have a Bris Milah but another, similar ritual called a Ha'tferet dam Bris; that's probably what will happen with this one, too. BeanBean looked exactly the same after his Bris as he did before (again, he didn't have a proper foreskin to begin with) so I couldn't see anything to get hysterical about; it's not like his body was really changed all that much.

In the event that I have to go to the hospital, I will just state again and again and again that I don't want my son circumcised there. I had to answer this question about a zillion times, because BeanBean was in the NICU and it seemed like every shift the new nurse would ask me again. If I get my UC, it won't be an issue at all.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#17 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 02:52 PM
 
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I think in cases where religion is not a factor, aside from the horror side of it, there is also the fact that it's just not medically necessary and it's just not being done here anymore as much-- so it's not like a little boy born now will be "wierd" for not being circumcised, probably at least half of his contemporaries won't be either. Also the fact they don't do it in Europe or in most other societies where religion doesn't dictate it. So all social fears can be relieved from the outset, then you can talk about the medical factors (doesn't help prevent STDs, etc) then the things that can go wrong with it (and the principle of if ain't broke, don't fix it). I think if you start out with the fact it is by no means what "everyone does" nowdays, the rest of it flows along more easily.

Fortunately for me DH is a non-Jewish Russian and wouldn't dream of circumcising, but I've thought about the arguments some.
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#18 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 03:26 PM
 
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We're having an u/s where we'll find out the gender of the baby (our first) in a couple weeks, so we'll know whether or not we have to deal with the circumcision issue. My DH is a non-practicing Muslim from a country where boys are generally circumcized in early childhood. He had it done at age 5, and it was not at all pleasant. I guess that the only advantage of having the circumcision done in infancy is that the child will not be likely to have traumatic memories of the event. Don't get me wrong, I am not pro-circ (unless there is a compelling reason like religious beliefs).
I don't know if this is the appropriate place to ask, but I'm wondering if we do have a boy and choose to have him circumcized, is the procedure less risky after a certain age?
Also, I'm wondering if anyone has statistics on the percentage of boys born in the U.S. that are circumsized as infants. I want to show DH that there is a movement against routine circumcision.

Hannah
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#19 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 03:42 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannahi
Also, I'm wondering if anyone has statistics on the percentage of boys born in the U.S. that are circumsized as infants. I want to show DH that there is a movement against routine circumcision.
I found this doing a quickle google on 'statistics circumcision united states':

http://www.cirp.org/library/statistics/USA/

Mama to four remarkable kiddos, all born at home.
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#20 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 06:34 PM
 
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I agree with the pp's recommendation to visit the Case against Circumicision forum here. After reading the info there, there is NO way that we'd do that to our son. Please, please read the great info they have there if you aren't 100% on board with not circumcising yet. It really wasn't that huge of a deal to me until I read about it further...now I am VERY anti-circ.

~Rebecca~
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#21 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 06:37 PM
 
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I did it with my 4yo DS. I didnt check the pro's/con's. Now I did some research and found out that my ds didnt cry during the circ....because he passed put from the pain..They did not give him any pain meds and he passed put. I have to live with that, I feel bad...Words cannot explain the pain I feel for causing him that pain.... I will never do it again. Do some research mama.

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#22 of 31 Old 11-17-2005, 07:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannahi
I'm wondering if we do have a boy and choose to have him circumcized, is the procedure less risky after a certain age?
I'm not sure if the risk is associated with age as much as with who performs the circumcision and under what circumstances. Older children are more likely to be anesthetized if the circ is performed in a hospital, while in many places newborns aren't. ( : ) There would be the usual risks that apply to anesthesia, but not the pain risks, kwim? With a much older child/teenager, I would think that there would be less chance of removing too much skin because the anatomy would be clearer, and the pain associated would be different because a child that age would have a lot more input into the decision. There are countries where circumcision is performed as a coming of age rite, around puberty, and most men who have been circ'd under such circumstances (npi) view the experience as a positive one, regardless of whether or not they were anesthetized.

If you do choose to have a religious circumcision ceremony, your best bet is to do your research. Many traditional ceremonies have pain control built in, right along with the meaning and ceremony. Find out how it is traditionally done, who performs the ceremony, etc, etc. Ask family members how it went for their sons, cousins, and brothers. You could easily have your fears put to rest.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#23 of 31 Old 11-18-2005, 04:29 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannahi
I don't know if this is the appropriate place to ask, but I'm wondering if we do have a boy and choose to have him circumcized, is the procedure less risky after a certain age?
Hannah
I agree with the other posters on here, definitely. I did want to add that for an infant, the foreskin doesn't retract- part of the terrible, painful part of the circumcision is the *peeling off* of the foreskin from the glans. (shuddder). For that reason alone, if someone must get it done, I'm sure it is *much* better to get it done later in life. Also, by then, as the rates in the US are dropping, the child/parents might just not want it anymore.

I hope this doesn't sound weird, but I don't think a religious reason is a "compelling" reason to get anyone circumcised. It's wrong, period, and just saying a religion says it's right does not make it right. Religion says the horror that is female circumcision is right- and it's obvious to most of the civilized world that that's not the case. Sometimes humanity and modern knowledge have to trump certain religious practices, and I think (and hope) more and more often religious practices (like the briss) are being modified to take recent knowledge into account. Mutilating infants .. isn't that the place to draw the line?!
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#24 of 31 Old 11-18-2005, 11:52 AM
 
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Hope this isn't inflammatory to anyone. It's not supposed to be.

Well... Let me start out by saying that I initially wanted my son circumcised, mostly because I didn't want him ostracized by women for looking different. I don't think men don't really care one way or another. But as a women in the US and not having been with an uncirc'd man, I thought it would be just weird for other women, since I had a hard time picturing it myself. I know in other countries, it's standard to be left intact. But in the US and in my age group, it's more rare.

Anyways, after browsing through some websites and learning more about how the intact penis works, I'm pretty sure that I want to leave my son intact and hell it's pretty neat. All the heated arguements don't really work on me, so it was helpful to visit doctors' sites to read up about this more. I will not watch a video or ask my husband to, as he is even worse than me as far as being reactionary to too much pressure. So I do need to show him some of these websites, but it will be a slow process. If I do otherwise, he will just stop listening to me.

Also I do think there is an issue with circ'd men's pride on this topic. I'm trying to approach this topic carefully, as I think my husband was initially a bit hurt by my spouting off about the sexual benefits of an intact penis. But I'll be treading lightly here, even though this is the main reason for me to not go circ.

As additional resistance to the circ issue for us, my husband has a friend with an intact penis who was very unhappy that his parents chose this for him. I believe he went and got a circ as an adult. But I thought I would just mention this, since my husband uses this as fuel for his fire in his arguement for circ.

I will keep trying though.
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#25 of 31 Old 11-18-2005, 12:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenny-g
I hope this doesn't sound weird, but I don't think a religious reason is a "compelling" reason to get anyone circumcised. It's wrong, period, and just saying a religion says it's right does not make it right. Religion says the horror that is female circumcision is right- and it's obvious to most of the civilized world that that's not the case. Sometimes humanity and modern knowledge have to trump certain religious practices, and I think (and hope) more and more often religious practices (like the briss) are being modified to take recent knowledge into account. Mutilating infants .. isn't that the place to draw the line?!
It doesn't sound weird, it sounds like the beginnings of a discussion that does not belong in this forum.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#26 of 31 Old 11-20-2005, 03:46 PM
 
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I had totally forgotten about this until right now, so I wanted to add it!

When DH and I were square in the middle of the big circumcision debate I made a deal (of sorts...) with him that we could have the baby and NOT circumcise him and wait a bit of time, like a year. The main reason I used was that circumcision can make a baby refuse to nurse and that was just too important to me, and DH knew that. After he hit a year then we could re-evaluate the situation. If DH still wanted it done, we could consider that and if it had to happen the baby would at least have gotten to nurse for a year.

NOW, I did this knowing full well that after an entire year taking care of our child with an intact penis, he wasn't even going to remember circumcising him was an issue. But that said, 2 years after the conversation we're pregnant with our first who won't be circumcised no matter what. He has done the research and knows whats best for our son (if this is a boy). If your husband thinks you're letting him make the decision, or at least no completely blocking out his opinion it works a LOT better for you!
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#27 of 31 Old 11-28-2005, 06:18 PM
 
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We didn't circumcise our first ds, and we won't if this baby is boy either...We have decided it's just not necessary. Ds has not had any problems at all since we brought him home from the hospital.
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#28 of 31 Old 11-28-2005, 06:46 PM
 
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Not a decision that we are planning to make for our child if we are blessed with a boy. My DH felt very strongly about circing until I showed him some of the video links from the circ board. Now he is with me, thank goodness. I have never felt that is was right, even before I educated myself about it.

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#29 of 31 Old 11-28-2005, 06:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i guess i didnt post my question very clearly because i didnt really get the kind of feed back that i was hoping for. oh well. you never quite know how a post is going to go. There is no question whether we will or will not circ. we are not going to. i just want it to be OUR decision and not just mine. when his folks ask why we didnt, and i know they will say something, i want him to say "WE decided it wasnt something WE wanted to do" NOT "Angela doesnt want it done". anyway thanks to those of you who gave me links to other places to find more info and thanks to those who talked about how best to talk to your husband. so far i have been very sensitive in the way i talk to him about the issue. i just hope to find some good info on why doctors are saying its not medically advisable anymore and print it off for my hubby to read. thanks all.

Angela: Catholic Homeschooling Mom to Sierra(11/00), twins Addison & Kendall(3/03), Jack(4/06), Brielle (7/08), Levi (2/2011); due with#7 (9/13). Birthed every witch way.....hospital. C section. VbAC. Unassisted water birth (hypno/painless). Assisted waterbirth to an almost 10lber! (Not painless!)
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#30 of 31 Old 11-28-2005, 09:38 PM
 
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I haven't heard a peep about it since I emailed a link to Dr. Sears' article on circumcision. http://askdrsears.com/html/1/t012000.asp

It wasn't graphic or anything...just stated the lack of medical reason for it and came right out and said it shouldn't be done just so he looked like you. We are Christian...but as far as I'm concerned...physical circumcision is not a part of our faith. And religious reasons were the only ones Dr. Sears suggested to be a good reason to have it done.

Mandy

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