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#1 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 05:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I feel kind of stupid posting this but I need to discuss it.
If you are offended by this or feel like I am a stupid person, please don't respond.
SO, I'm going to be completely honest here and hope that I'm not alone and someone here has been in my shoes and can chnage the way I'm thinking right now.
My son will be 2 in April.
He is intact.
It has been a choice I have had to defend to family members and friends since the beginning.
Initially I saw circumcision as an unnecessary procdeure that is cruel to the infant boy.
But, as time goes on I sometimes wish he WAS circumcised.
I feel guilty for feeling this way.
My main reason for feeling like I wish he had been is because I feel like the boys who are circumcised, although there is a window of time after the procedure where there is concern about infection, that is the only time they really have to worry about the penis and it's developement.
I feel like with an intact boy there is a constant worry (for me) that there may be something wrong.
Just recently his urine started to smell a little bit "off". I immediately worry that he is developing a UTI which I don't feel he would be at risk for if he was circumcised.
Then I read posts on here about redness, fevers, soreness, question after question about retraction and the damage it can cause.
I worry about letting him touch it because I'm afraid his dirty little kid fingers will introduce infection.
I worry about him developing smegma pearls and having to endure irritation to it during the separation process.
These are things I don't think I would worry about if he were circumcised.
I have my father constantly telling me I made the wrong decision and reminding me that there are 3 men he knows that had circumcisions performed later in life due to recurrent infections.
My grandfather is not circumcised and he too tells me that he thinks I made the wrong decision for my son because he wishes every day that he were circumsised.
I don't want to mention my concerns to my husband because I had to convince him that not circumsising was the right decision but now I'm not so sure and I don't want to admit that I possibly made the wrong decision.
I guess, the "norm" for me is a circumsised penis and so I still have alot to learn about the intact penis, but I feel like there is nothing to learn about a circumsised one. After it's healed, there are never really any problems.
You don' have to worry about seperation or developement, or redness and soreness and all these other things that you all claim are "normal" about an intact penis.
And I don't think that comparing it to a vagina is accurate. '
There are a lot of posts that question whether or not they think a female should have the hood of her clit removed to prevent problems and question why we can't just treat the intact penis like we treat the vagina. But honestly, it doesn't seem like the vagina goes through as many changes during developement. Not as many outward changes anyway-changes that a girl can feel and may question as normal.
I just worry that a problem will arise and I will have to defend my decision not to have circumsised my son.
There seem to be many more possible complications and inconveniences of an intact penis than a circumsised one.
Please remind me why I made this decision.
And be gentle with me.
I'm not posting this to be confrontational or cause anyone to feel defensive or insulted.
I know I have a lot to learn and I'm looking to learning it.
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#2 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by ~NewMa~ View Post
There seem to be many more possible complications and inconveniences of an intact penis than a circumsised one.
Honestly, I don't see it that way. I see lots of threads here asking about how to deal with problems/infections of intact boys, but I attribute it to MDC being a great place to get info on caring for intact boys, not because leaving boys intact creates more problems that circumcision would solve.

I believe there are more issues with circumcised penises that aren't blamed on the circumcisions themselves, or if they are, they weren't "done correctly". The mentality to circs seems to be "one quick snip" and all the problems will go away. I completely disagree. I think that's when problems begin.

I'm an uncircumcised male. I'm 32 years old. From what I remember, I've never had any issues with having a foreskin. This is pretty common throughout the world. Here in the US most of us have been taught to believe that cutting the foreskin off creates a more clean or infection free environment. The research done has proven most of that to be incorrect. However, the myths about circumcision won't die because there is passion and emotion behind it.

I am sorry if your son has gone through any troubles, but I would not attribute them to your decision to not circumcise him. Children will get plenty of infections of all sorts as they grow up. We should never blame ourselves for them.

As far as care for a boy's intact penis, I've always seen it as much easier than a circumcised one. You simply wipe it like a finger and leave it alone. Compare that to the instructions for cleaning a circumcised penis after it is done. It would make me dread changing my son's diapers every time.

Oh, and one more thing. You've given your son the choice on what to do with his own body when he's older. If he chooses to have a circumcision done when he's old enough, that's fine because he will be making the choice for himself. You should be proud as a mother that you have given him that choice. I'm proud of you.
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#3 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 05:30 PM
 
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" After it's healed, there are never really any problems.
You don' have to worry about seperation or developement, or redness and soreness and all these other things that you all claim are "normal" about an intact penis. "

I think these thoughts are absolutely incorrect. My husband has had MANY issues with being circed during his lifetime. So what if your son was circed and it was botched? Or like my husband and so many others, he was not left with enough skin to grow into, causing extremely tight and painful erections, which are not pleasant during sex for me either due to the friction it causes? Or the pain he feels where the frenulum was removed due to scar tissue? Or the lack of sensitivity up to a certain point, then over-sensitivity after that point? My husband experiences some form of pain due to his circ. on a weekly basis, plus the pain of the procedure itself (oh yeah and he REMEMBERS that too) is WAY worse than separation pain, which is temporary.

There are many men who have sexual disfunction issues due to circ. So teach your son how to properly care for himself as he gets older, and then he will be spared the worst of both circ and intactness.

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#4 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 05:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ~NewMa~ View Post
I feel kind of stupid posting this but I need to discuss it.
I toyed with the idea of circumcision myself back and forth, many times, after we left our son intact. It was a long time until intact finally became normal in my mind, and I was comfortable with it.

Quote:
Just recently his urine started to smell a little bit "off". I immediately worry that he is developing a UTI which I don't feel he would be at risk for if he was circumcised.
I think you might need to educate yourself on the intact penis and what the foreskin does, how the penis develops, etc. That might lessen your worries. As for the UTI thing, the increase of UTIs among intact boys was in the FIRST year of life, only. And even then the studies are shaky, because they compared intact preemies to full term circumcised boys, and preemies will always come out sicklier.

Quote:
Then I read posts on here about redness, fevers, soreness, question after question about retraction and the damage it can cause.
BECAUSE this is one of the only sites out there where parents can ask questions to people who are knowledgable about foreskins and intact care.

Quote:
I worry about letting him touch it because I'm afraid his dirty little kid fingers will introduce infection.
Girls touch their bits, too. Urine flushes out most everything. A soak in the tub at the end of the day does a good job, too.

Quote:
I worry about him developing smegma pearls and having to endure irritation to it during the separation process.
Will you worry about growing pains as his bones lengthen? Cramping your daughters will experience when they get their periods? Tender breasts at puberty? Ingrown hair follicles when your teens start to shave? Do you worry about tonsilitis? Appendicitis? Possible broken bones throughout the course of life?

It's all a part of growing up. But you're being conditioned by your family to see a problem where there is no problem - to them the foreskin is "unknown" and "scary", like a bomb waiting to explode. It's no more scary than any other part of the human anatomy.

Quote:
These are things I don't think I would worry about if he were circumcised.
No, you're right. You can't worry about ingrown toenails if you have no toenails, so of course you wouldn't worry about separation pain and smegma pearls if there was no foreskin. But..... (see part in bold below)

Quote:
I have my father constantly telling me I made the wrong decision and reminding me that there are 3 men he knows that had circumcisions performed later in life due to recurrent infections.
And I would tell my father that the topic is not up for discussion. I would also tell him that 80% of the world's men are intact and how is it they aren't falling over dead from disease and infection? Maybe he doesn't realize that Americans are the only ones who culturally circumcise.

Quote:
My grandfather is not circumcised and he too tells me that he thinks I made the wrong decision for my son because he wishes every day that he were circumsised.
And I would tell my grandfather that he's a grown man and go on and GET circumcised then and quit moping about it.

Quote:
but I feel like there is nothing to learn about a circumsised one. After it's healed, there are never really any problems.
You don' have to worry about seperation or developement, or redness and soreness and all these other things that you all claim are "normal" about an intact penis.
Circumcision brings with it its own source of problems. If you circumcised him, and researched the harms of circumcision later, you might be worrying about tons of other things.

Will he develop an infection in the hospital? Will he get MRSA? It's becoming more common in circumcised boys, after all. Will he bleed to death unnoticed since there's always a diaper covering him? Will he have problems nursing?

And then later: Meatal stenosis. Will his urethra scar closed? Will he have to have surgery later? And often repeat surgeries - 10% of circumcised boys have meatal stenosis. Will he be one of them in the next several years?

What about while it's healing? Will the "leftover" skin reattach? Will my doctor forcefully tear it off his glans? Will it bleed? How long will it be raw and tender after it's ripped back apart again? Will it hurt when he has erections? Will it keep reattaching? Will they tell me he needs to be recircumcised?

Will he develop "buried penis?"

And still later: Will he have any sexual problems due to his circumcision? Was too much skin taken off? Will the skin be pulled too tight and hurt? Will the skin pull too tight on just one side causing his penis to twist or bend? Will he have skin bridges, skin tags, etc? Will his circumcision cause hair to pull up onto his shaft, causing more friction for his partner? Will he eventually be one of the men who needs erectile help? (Granted, you won't be actively worrying about this stuff then, because he'll be a man, but these are real problems and most men have no idea they are related to their circumcisions.)


In the end, just remind yourself that YOUR SON is NOT the first person to have a foreskin. Men have lived with them for thousands and thousands of years. Only in the last few decades did we start taking them off, and even now most men still have them.

They are normal, natural, and easy to care for. And I would stop the talk in your family PRONTO before they really mess up your son's self image.
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#5 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 06:09 PM
 
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I also have wondered in the past if we should have circ'ed our son, but not due to family pressures and criticism. Ds' foreskin is not normally developed and required a consult with a urologist in the hospital before release and another consult at one year old. It's been deemed a cosmetic defect and while initially we were steadfast in our decision not to undergo unnecessary surgery, we have now become worried about the complications of his development through puberty and beyond. I mean, here's a kid that is intact amongst many (assumed) circ'ed boys, with the added pressure of looking 'different'. So I often thought about circ just to relieve some of those far-away self-esteem concerns.

But I never, ever considered that a circ'd penis is easier or less worrisome that an intact penis. I've worked in a surgery center where a many circ-correction surgery took place (ie, meatal stenosis). Please don't think that circumcision will alleviate any worries about UTI's or proper development...circ is not a guarantee or protection from anything.

Like a PP mentioned, you've left the decision up to your son. You should be proud of yourself!! I know that if my ds comes to me one day and thinks circumcision is necessary, I'll have a hard time but I will accept it. Hopefully you can come to this point of view too.

Since '05 just me and B, but in 2/08 E made three!
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#6 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 06:37 PM
 
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Something to think about: We, as woman, have so much more extra skin than any male. Why in the world would intact men be more prone to UTI's and why is there such a negitive stigma about uncut men when we, the woman, have more skin than they do.

My dh is intact. He's never had smegma, an infection, or any issues. There is no special care needed. I think you are worrying about things that are more "stereotypes" and not reality kwim.

(hugs) it will be fine.

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#7 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 06:38 PM
 
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The circumcised penis is very very far from trouble free.
  1. First you have the initial risks of the surgery, the most common one is severe bleeding. Which is more common than UTI's in intact boys.
  2. There is the initial period of healing with wound dressing changes and worries of infection
  3. Next you need to worry about adhessions.
  4. Then starting at around 3 yo and through early childhood there is about 10% chance of meatal stenosis in circumcised boys.
  5. Finally there are the effects only adult men need to think about, such as hair being pulled up onto the shaft during errections, lack of sensation, smaller size on average than intact men, etc.

I would just stop worrying about all these looming problems you are being warned about. (I know a lot easier to say than do, but really true.) Let's do a quick look at all these worries you have.

The first one was abut UTIs. If we take these non-randomized studies at face value. The studies that indicated an increased risk of UTI for intact boys show it only in the first year. Since your DS is nearly 2 yo the period in question is over. Another study showed that most of these intact boys getting UTIs had urinary tract anomalies that were caught early b/c of the UTIs. Circumcised boy were just as likely to have these anomalies but were less likely to have them diagnosed and treated early. Remember this was only a 1% chance, compared to a 2% chance of bleeding or infection directly from the surgery and then other later risks such as a 10% chance of meatal stenosis or the even greater risk of adhesions. In comparison UTIs are easy to treat.

The biggest risk associated with separation is that someone will think it's a problem when it isn't. If there is minor pain and swelling with it, it will clear up on it's own in 24-48 hrs. However, most of the time it just happens with hardly anything happening. The story of DS's separation is amazingly uneventful:

One day I found some whitish stuff in his underwear, I wondered if it was smegma or if he had dropped ice cream down there (he was 2 1/2 so dropping ice cream into his underwear was a distinct possibility.) A week later there was another white spot inside his underwear. A couple of weeks after that he tried to stick the USB plug from a mouse inside his foreskin. He was separated no fuss, no drama, no pain.

DS's experience with this is much much more common than the swelling, redness, pain and stuff.

If he ever does have an actual problem with his foreskin, the absolutely worst case scenario is that he will need to be circumcised. Which is very rare, rarer than needing surgery to correct a problem arising from being circumcised as an infant. Since that is the absolutely worst thing that could possibly result from not circumcising your DS, what exactly does circumcising right off the bat prevent? It just has you take the most drastic course as you very very first step.

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#8 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 06:51 PM
 
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Well, a good reminder would be to talk to the large number of circumcised boys/men who have had serious damage done (beyond the obvious). My son could tell you about the joy of ripping open his meatus when it fuses together due to his circ.

You made this decision because you want the best for your son after knowing why circ. is wrong. I applaud you and wish I had known as much. We all worry about making the wrong decision about something or other...I wouldn't dwell.

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#9 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 07:02 PM
 
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Other people have stated things very well, but I will just add another voice to it. I don't really understand what you are going through because I am so thankful that I learned the horrors of circ. and kept my son intact. He is 3 and so far has had NO problems.

Only the people who are having problems are going to post questions. People don't come on here to post "My son had another uneventful day being intact." I'm not saying that to be snarky, just to remind you that the percentage of people having problems is probably really low compared to all the people not having any issues.

My father, one of my brother's and my BIL are all intact. I haven't talked to my dad about it but I've never heard of any issues from him. My brother and BIL are both very happy they were kept intact.

I really don't understand your grandfather's arguement. If he's so unhappy being intact, why hasn't he gotten circumcised?

Your son is fine. Relax.
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#10 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 07:31 PM
 
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It sounds like more research would help relieve those fears.

MRSA Infection of Circumcised Boys:
http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcisi.../DOC/mrsa.html

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...ubmed_RVDocSum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...ubmed_RVDocSum


Circumcision does not prevent UTI/ Circumcision may also cause UTI:
http://www.cirp.org/library/disease/UTI/altschul/

Circumcision causing uti:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...t=AbstractPlus

http://www.circumstitions.com/Utis.html

http://www.cirp.org/library/disease/UTI/goldman/

Flesh Eating Disease, Meningitis, HPV, herpes and others increased with circumcision:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...=pubmed_docsum

http://www.infocirc.org/fourn.htm (very graphic)

http://www.cirp.org/library/complications/scurlock1/

http://www.ispub.com/ostia/index.php...meningitis.xml


http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/j...TRY=1&SRETRY=0

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/j...10265/abstract

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...RVAbstractPlus

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...ubmed_RVDocSum

Carcinoma developed in circumcision scars on the penile shaft.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...t_uids=3944860

The tumors involved the prepuce (n = 1), prepuce and distal shaft (n = 1), circumcision scar line (n = 2), circumcision scar line and distal shaft (

http://journals.lww.com/ajsp/pages/a...&type=abstract

Circumcision increases infant mortality because some babies die from complications of circumcision.37 Studies show that intact boys have better penile health during the first three years of life.39,40 Other drawbacks and disadvantages include psychological and sexual problems in adult life.40
http://www.drmomma.org/2009/12/effec...cision-on.html

This page with illustrations demonstrates the functions of the male prepuce:

http://www.circumcision.org/foreskin.htm

Here is another page, written by Dr. Peter Ball, on the function of the foreskin:

http://www.norm-uk.org/function.html

This page is my favourite, as it is most accurate due to showing real photos and slides to demonstrate how the foreskin works:

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

Here is the study showing pain in neonates led to reduced opioid receptors in the brain (decreased pain sensitivity in adulthood):
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0927130048.htm


A circumcised penis is much more troublesome, not only during the initial period where the baby is at risk of fatal complications such as bleeding, MRSA or other infection, etc, but also throughout his entire life.

Adhesions, regrowth, buried penis, stenosis, scarring...all of these can begin in early childhood and require medical attention. They bring pain, risk of infection, additional effort and might even require another circumcision surgery.

As he reaches and goes through puberty, growth of the penile shaft might cause extreme pain, especially if he has an American-style circumcision where much of the foreskin is removed. Scrotum skin might stretch onto his penile shaft as it grows, causing his penile shaft to have hair and odd looking skin that can be embarrassing and uncomfortable. This lack of foreskin might also cause his penis to bend and that can cause pain and embarrassment as well.

As an adult, he is missing a vital part of his sexual anatomy, so his sexual performance and sensations are permanently missing. Additionally, he might experience sexual dysfunctions such as erectile dysfunction, painful intercourse and his partner will be affected by the missing skin that provides gliding action and pressure against her clitoris.

As he reaches his midlife, those little pains and sexual losses will sometimes turn into big pains. This is incidentally, when many men start to restore coverage of the glans in an attempt to reverse the damage done from exposing the sensitive glans to the outer world for their entire life. They try to stretch any remaining skin so that it comes down and covers the penile shaft to protect the glans from dryness and irritation.

---------------------------

So here is some information to delve into:

What is the foreskin? Here is a medical school lecture on the foreskin:
http://redirectingat.com/?id=848X156...TSC_256k_D.wmv

Complications as an adult

http://www.cps.ca/english/statements/FN/fn96-01.htm

http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcisi...rells_2007.pdf
(study published in the April 2007 issue of the British Journal of Urology, demonstrating that the five most sensitive areas of the penis are on the foreskin, and that the most sensitive area of the circumcised penis is on the circ scar)

http://tinyurl.com/2h69us (study from Korea, where the vast majority of men undergo elective circumcisions as adults, demonstrating that a significant majority experienced less sexual satisfaction after circumcision)

http://www.math.missouri.edu/~rich/MGM/blog/

http://www.circumstitions.com/Complic.html (adults with lasting circ complications)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/en...t=AbstractPlus
Effect of neonatal circumcision on penile neurologic sensation. Bleustein CB, Fogarty JD, Eckholdt H, Arezzo JC, Melman A. "In the dysfunctional group, circumcised men (49 +/- 16 years) were significantly younger (P <0.01) than uncircumcised men (56 +/- 13 years)."

Foreskin:

Observe for yourself the mobility of a real foreskin with these moving gifs:
http://tinyurl.com/38wvfp

The three zones of penile skin:
http://www.foreskin.org/3zones-c.htm

The functions of the foreskin:
http://research.cirp.org/func1.html

Circumcision:

Contrast and compare pictures of cut and uncut penises:
http://www.circumstitions.com/Restric/comparison.html

Baby Circumcision Photo Collection:
http://tinyurl.com/3523bz

An excellent comprehensive overview with pictures:
http://wreckingboy.livejournal.com/318545.html

What is lost due to circumcision?
http://www.norm.org/lost.html

Circumcision's Medical History:

Historical Circumcision Quotes in medical journals by doctors:
http://www.sexuallymutilatedchild.org/shorthis.htm

Histories of Circumcision in USA, Australia and Britain:
http://www.historyofcircumcision.net/

A doctor summarizes circumcision's modern history:
From birthpsychology.org -- http://tinyurl.com/2q3lo6

UTIs
http://www.infocirc.org/uti2.htm

Risks and Complications
http://www.circumcisionquotes.com/complications.html
http://www.fda.gov/cdrh/safety/circumcision.html (clamping methods)
http://www.infocirc.org/fourn.htm (plastibell)
http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/content/full/169/3/216 (plastibell)


Breastfeeding
http://www.nocirc.org/statements/breastfeeding.php
http://www.cirp.org/library/birth/

Cancer
http://www.cirp.org/library/statemen...s/1996-02_ACS/

Intact vs Circed penis care
http://www.nocirc.org/publish/4pam.pdf
http://www.nocirc.org/publish/5pam.pdf
http://www.cirp.org/library/normal/

Hygiene&problems
http://www.cirp.org/library/complications/vanhowe/

Won't it Have to be Done Later?
http://www.mothering.com/articles/ne...uncircson.html

Pain
http://www.cirp.org/library/pain/
http://www.circumcision.org/response.htm
http://www.infocirc.org/babypain.htm
http://pediatrics.aappublications.or...full/100/4/626

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#11 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 07:40 PM
 
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In short, I don't spend any time at all worrying about my intact ds's penis. Not anymore time than I spent worrying about my dd getting labial adhesions, or yeast infections, or UTIs. I just don't. I've never worried about it, I've never had a concern (except for when a stupid doctor tried to retract him once) and it occupies no space in my head.

I think people get it into their heads that they are doing something really radical and dangerous by leaving their son intact, when really, you're just leaving him normal. There's no reason to spend time worrying about it, really.

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#12 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 08:34 PM
 
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There are people much more qualified than I to answer your other concerns and I see they've given you lots to read and think on. I just wanted to respond to one thing. I skimmed the other posts so I'm sorry if this has been said already.

Quote:
My grandfather is not circumcised and he too tells me that he thinks I made the wrong decision for my son because he wishes every day that he were circumsised.
Well his foreskin can't be too much of a bother to him because all he has to do to get rid of it is call the dr. and set up an appointment to undergo the same surgery he wants you to have preformed on your DS. He could have chosen to be circumcised at any point in his adult life and yet he's chosen to remain intact long enough that he's become a grandfather. You've allowed your son to make the same decision for himself.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

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#13 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 09:08 PM
 
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My husband is one of 3 sons who were all intact as children. His younger brother made the decision at 18 to be circumcised. My husband and his older brother on the other hand are grateful for being whole.

The thing about it with my BIL is as an adult he got to make the choice about his body on his own. Maybe one day your son will decide he want to get a cosmetic surgery on his penis, or maybe he will become an intactivist. I think it's important that you respect that your child will come to their own decision and as of right now cannot give consent.
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#14 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 09:09 PM
 
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My main reason for feeling like I wish he had been is because I feel like the boys who are circumcised, although there is a window of time after the procedure where there is concern about infection, that is the only time they really have to worry about the penis and it's developement.
I don't find this to be true at all. In real life (not on the net), I know of more situations where circ'd boys/men (4, 5 including myself) had to be recirc'd due due to botched circ's than intact guys (8) that had to be circ'd (none!). Two of the intact guys didn't fully retract until their early 20's and say it's sometimes a bit senstitive still, but that's really one of the benefits because they still have plenty of time to get use to it and will appreciate having some of the sensation when they hit their 40's that many cut guys have lost. Other than that, to a person, none of them can recall having issues or "problems" growing up and really can't see what everyone thinks the big scary deal is about having a foreskin. I only know of one guy that chose to have a later circ at 15, not because of any problem but because of a perceived peer pressure that turned out to not exist. While he's not hugely regretful (mostly because he knows it's a done-deal now), he says he will freely advise anyone else considering it to not do it!

I would tell grandpa that the grass isn't always greener on the other side, and if he's really that serious there are any number of docs who would be willing to rid him of his fore$kin.

Just relax; you did right by your son!
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#15 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 09:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thank you for all the responses so far.
Claddaghmom, you have given me so much information! Thank you for taking the time to educate me.
I feel kindof foolish for worrying about it so much. I can't help it
I guess if he were circ'd I'd be worrying about that too.
I didn't realize all the complications of the circ'd penis, I guess cause most circ'd men don't realize that some of their discomforts and abnormalities are a result of this process.
You've all given me a lot to think about and arm myself with.
Thank you for being understanding and respectful with your responses!
I feel ashamed for having doubted myself, but I'm glad I came here to voice my concerns.
I do feel better.
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#16 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 09:48 PM
 
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thank you for all the responses so far.
Claddaghmom, you have given me so much information! Thank you for taking the time to educate me.
I feel kindof foolish for worrying about it so much. I can't help it
I guess if he were circ'd I'd be worrying about that too.
I didn't realize all the complications of the circ'd penis, I guess cause most circ'd men don't realize that some of their discomforts and abnormalities are a result of this process.
You've all given me a lot to think about and arm myself with.
Thank you for being understanding and respectful with your responses!
I feel ashamed for having doubted myself, but I'm glad I came here to voice my concerns.
I do feel better.
Don't feel bad about questioning. Questioning things is what leads you to make sound, researched decisions that will eradicate fear.

Of course, on some level, we'll always fret over our babies.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#17 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 11:38 PM
 
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but I feel like there is nothing to learn about a circumsised one. After it's healed, there are never really any problems.
You don' have to worry about seperation or developement, or redness and soreness and all these other things that you all claim are "normal" about an intact penis.
That is a really major misconception that you are laboring under. You might want to try hanging around the mainstream boards and see some of the stuff those moms go through with their sons "problem free" circed penises.

Those boards are absolutely packed with accounts of adhesions, often that get painfully ripped apart at every doctor's visit; the necessity to apply vaseline at evey diaper change, for months or even for years on end to prevent said adhesions; the boys with hidden or buried penis (so common that it's simply regarded as a variation on the "normal". And then there are the boys who end up needing some sort of corrective surgery, usually under general anesthetic. To say nothing of the boys who later go on to develop meatal stenosis.

You made the right decision, but you are still a product of your cultural conditioning as we probably all are to some extent (I panicked the first time one of my boys got a little bit of redness at the tip). We've all been taught to think of the foreskin as some sort of ticking timebomb, and that view is being constantly reinforced by your family.

I think you just need to step back a little bit and get some perspective. You also need to look at the bad stuff that really does happen with these "maintenance free" circed penises.

Single mom to the Crunchy Froglets, Keith and Carlin, twin boys born 1/30/09. Frozen for 10 years, now unleashed on the world.
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#18 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 11:51 PM
 
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Many others have posted some great information (that I too will brush up on!), so I won't touch on that. If you aren't used to being around an intact boy/man, then it does take some getting used too.

Also, I hang out on one other mainstream board (not a huge one, but it has its own parenting section). There are have been a ton of threads over there about circ complications - including having to recirc due to the first circ "not taking."

I think that over time, you will find that the fear you have will lessen and you will (hopefully) feel more confident about the great decision you made.

Wife, mom to DS (4), DD (2) and baby heart 2.7.13

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#19 of 62 Old 02-25-2010, 11:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Crunchy Frog View Post
You made the right decision, but you are still a product of your cultural conditioning as we probably all are to some extent (I panicked the first time one of my boys got a little bit of redness at the tip). We've all been taught to think of the foreskin as some sort of ticking timebomb, and that view is being constantly reinforced by your family.
I think this is so true. I am 100% sure about my decision to leave DS intact but I find that I still worry because my son is not what I was taught to believe is the norm.

Melissa, wife to Brian, mommy to my home born, breastfeeding, sling-riding, sleep sharing, cloth diapered, intact kiddos Adam 11/09 and Leah 8/12.

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#20 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 12:02 AM
 
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And although you didn't mention this in your list of concerns, I wanted to mention that I think you've done the right thing by leaving this cosmetic decision up to your son.

Everyone else has already given you a ton of information to consider, but I wanted to direct you also to the stickied resources at the top of the main TCAC forum page. There might be something there that will help put your mind at ease, too.

Don't feel ashamed for coming here to ask for input as you are questioning things. That's what TCAC is for, and I'm glad you felt like you could post here. Hang in there, and keep reading!

Have you seen the updated user agreement yet?
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#21 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 12:12 AM
 
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I just can't believe that there is all this penis talk going on the OP family! Especially among the men. The topic of my son's penis has never been discussed with anyone in our family, and I have both intact and circ'd males on my side of the family. My MIL is probably the only one who regularly changed my 2 ds's dipes, and although she is extremely conservative, has never mentioned or questioned our sons' penises. I would find a way to firmly put this issue to rest in the family. It's been TWO YEARS!

Heather-- I'm a <>< SAHM of two fabulous boys 8/05 and 2/07
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#22 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 04:43 AM
 
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Sometimes it seems like you always have to worry about the intact penis, because the only time you hear about them is when there is a problem. Circ' problems are almost never discussed as *circ* problems, just as normal penis problems.
The only time I have the slightest concern for my intact boys, is when we see a new pediatrician. Normal activity, like your son touching it etc. will NOT introduce infection.
I think the attitude of your family and larger society is getting to you, which is completely understandable. You seem to be working under the assumption that foreskins are inherently dirty and problematic. It just isn't true. 80% or more of men in the world live their entire lives with their foreskins. Childhood tugging, adolescent exploration, and later sexual activity go on in countries and cultures with much lower standards of hygiene than we have in the States. Yet, those men, as well those in a lot of developed nations manage just fine!!

Mom of 4 aspiring midwife "Friend"ly seeker
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#23 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 06:38 AM
 
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I'm in the UK. Without exception, every single boy i know under 5 is intact. I know circ'd adults, but only 3 or 4 IRL.

Of all those boys who are all intact, i know their mothers and families. We never talk or think about their penises. Never. NONE of them regret doing what is culturally normal to us - leaving their boys whole. It must be so hard not doing what is considered normal, even if what the default of that is is nature's normal. But really, you don't need to worry so much about his penis. Do you worry about him generally? Or just over this issue?

Next time grandpa mentions circ'ing i'd give him the number of a good surgeon - it's his penis, why doesn't he get it done if he hates his foreskin so much!?
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#24 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 11:21 AM
 
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Thanks for bringing this up because I am loving all the wonderful replies, even though I feel great about not circing our son.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~NewMa~ View Post
I have my father constantly telling me I made the wrong decision and reminding me that there are 3 men he knows that had circumcisions performed later in life due to recurrent infections.
My grandfather is not circumcised and he too tells me that he thinks I made the wrong decision for my son because he wishes every day that he were circumsised.
I heard this from a great uncle. I'd say that cultural conditioning is playing the biggest part here with how they feel. All the messages about "dirty" and all that growing up for themselves. I think things are different now and how you interact with your son about his body can be a lot more empowering. I'd say, as a pp did, thank you, but that's it. End of discussion. Period. Be confident in yourself, proud of your decision and help your son be proud of his body. Stop being so worried about germs, and dirtiness, and not letting him touch himself and transmitting those feelings to him.
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#25 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 11:43 AM
 
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Circ. or Non, Boy or Girl... some things that you can do to prevent UTI's.:
Clean diapers (minimum to not contact of fecal with the penis), non use of soap in the genitals, take care of the diet: lots of probiotics, low sugar & processed food.

Take care and relax about your decision!

Mama of and , partners.gif with  Love
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#26 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 12:09 PM
 
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I just can't believe that there is all this penis talk going on the OP family! Especially among the men. The topic of my son's penis has never been discussed with anyone in our family, and I have both intact and circ'd males on my side of the family. My MIL is probably the only one who regularly changed my 2 ds's dipes, and although she is extremely conservative, has never mentioned or questioned our sons' penises. I would find a way to firmly put this issue to rest in the family. It's been TWO YEARS!
I agree. Other than when my ds had to have a meatotomy, this never came up. Even when we didn't know if we were having a boy/girl. It's just never ever been discussed. Even in my Jewish family. It was expected since everyone else did, but it wasn't *discussed* or asked.

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#27 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 12:09 PM
 
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I think it's really common in our society to view an intact penis like some kind of a ticking time-bomb. Doctors certainly do, that's why circ is so frequently recommended as a solution to totally normal issues.

Just remember that you left your son the way he's supposed to be and his body is functioning the way nature intended it and the way men all through time and all over the world's bodies function.

Alison: BFing, BWing, ERFing mama to KidA (12/25/07) and KidO (6/26/10) nocirc.giffamilybed2.gif

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#28 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 01:24 PM
 
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Sometimes it seems like you always have to worry about the intact penis, because the only time you hear about them is when there is a problem. Circ' problems are almost never discussed as *circ* problems, just as normal penis problems.
I think this observation is pretty spot-on.

Have you seen the updated user agreement yet?
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#29 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 01:51 PM
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I think this observation is pretty spot-on.
I second that.
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#30 of 62 Old 02-26-2010, 01:58 PM
 
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thank you for all the responses so far.
Claddaghmom, you have given me so much information! Thank you for taking the time to educate me.
I feel kindof foolish for worrying about it so much. I can't help it
I guess if he were circ'd I'd be worrying about that too.
I didn't realize all the complications of the circ'd penis, I guess cause most circ'd men don't realize that some of their discomforts and abnormalities are a result of this process.
You've all given me a lot to think about and arm myself with.
Thank you for being understanding and respectful with your responses!
I feel ashamed for having doubted myself, but I'm glad I came here to voice my concerns.
I do feel better.
My older son is circ'd (my younger is not) and his foreskin started to readhere and had to be ripped open. It was horrible. It is a misconception that circ'd penis' are maintenance free.

April thankful mommy to my boys Big Red 3/06 Little Z 9/08 and happily awaiting the arrival of 10/10 :
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