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#1 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This is my first post, but I've been reading this forum for the past week or so. My son is 6 months old and is intact. So far his penis has been perfectly normal and healthy.

 

Some of you mentioned having intact boys a few years older than my son who are having issues. Now I'm a little concerned. Should I expect the care of his penis to become more difficult once his foreskin starts to retract? Will there likely be infections to deal with? I've heard that you're not supposed to pull back his skin to clean him once he has retracted. He's supposed to do it himself. So what if he doesn't? Is that okay? I hear that problems come from trying to clean it and also from not taking care of it. I'm so confused!

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#2 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 08:06 PM
 
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I have 4 boys who are all intact. I have never done anything special to care for them, and I really haven't taught them to do anything other than wash normally. We've never had any problems with infections or anything. HTH

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#3 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 08:13 PM
 
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Remember that people don't post threads to say, "I'm not having any problems", so it's easy to get a distorted idea of how often these things happen. Also, many of these problems and "infections" really aren't anything serious - they just look scary to parents and medical professionals who don't know what to expect.

 

That all said...my brother was/is intact, and I don't think he ever had any problems (certainly not up to when he moved out). DS1 and ds2 are both intact, and neither of them has ever had a problem, either.


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#4 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 08:21 PM
 
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You have a bit of the info mixed up...Nobody should ever try to retract him.  (except himself) he'll know.  You should not do anything but wipe it like a finger.  You may never know when he's retractable, it might not happen until puberty, but don't worry, he'll know...he'll find it out all by himself.  When the time comes, he'll also pull it back to clean it in the shower..I've heard men can't resist doing that in the shower with no parental provocation whatsoever.


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#5 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 08:25 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Fyrestorm View Post

You have a bit of the info mixed up...Nobody should ever try to retract him.  (except himself) he'll know.  You should not do anything but wipe it like a finger.  You may never know when he's retractable, it might not happen until puberty, but don't worry, he'll know...he'll find it out all by himself.  When the time comes, he'll also pull it back to clean it in the shower..I've heard men can't resist doing that in the shower with no parental provocation whatsoever.



This... its not 'you aren't supposed to pull back ONCE he has retracted' but instead it is 'you aren't supposed to pull back AT ALL.'  That can actually lead to problems and can be painful for the boy.  He'll know when he can do it on his own... otherwise problems that are actually serious aren't particularly common.  Things like UTIs and Yeast infections are as serious in boys as they are in girls... treat them the same way and move on.

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#6 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 08:59 PM
 
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Like the others have said we don't usually start threads saying every thing is OK today.  I have two intact boys and an intact husband.  DH is 33 and hasn't had a single problem with his foreskin.  My older DS is almost 9 and he has never had a problem with his foreskin.  My younger DS is 4 and did have one small bout of swelling that lasted three days and went away on their own without meds.  Some boys will experience what is sometimes called separation trauma.  Which is what I think my youngest experienced. I believe that there is a older thread called "Intact and no problems" or something like that. It was started in response to another tread just like this one. Your not the only one that looked at the threads here and thought "Oh No what problems am I going to have to deal with?"


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#7 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 10:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm glad to see that many of you have intact sons who haven't had problems. I don't try to retract my son's foreskin. I was just confused about what I should do once it's no longer attached. I am secure with my decision to leave him intact, but the few posts I've read just had me a little concerned. The main thing that bothers me is that he might someday question whether his penis looks "right" because of the society we live in. I wish the intact penis could be the norm the way a normal vagina is, but I know that's not the case. Hopefully, I (and many of you) can help change that.

 

Thanks for the help!

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#8 of 15 Old 12-04-2010, 11:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drs0410 View Post

I'm glad to see that many of you have intact sons who haven't had problems. I don't try to retract my son's foreskin. I was just confused about what I should do once it's no longer attached.


Nothing. Nothing at all.

 

 

I truly don't think he'll be concerned about it. As far as I can tell, only a very small fraction of men have had that issue, even when circ rates were much higher than they are now.


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#9 of 15 Old 12-05-2010, 11:10 AM
 
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Nah, not any more than you would "expect" problems from any other part of the body.  My son had to have a tooth pulled when he was 2.  It was upsetting, but we got past it.  He's almost 6 now and probably needs glasses.  I worry about it...will he be too rough with them and break them?  Will he get made fun of?  Will we find out his eyesight is VERY poor?  These things worry me, but in the end we just do what we have to for our kids.

 

For what it's worth, my son has never had a problem with his penis.  My daughter on the other hand, has had a couple of vaginal infections.  We used antibiotic cream and she was fine.  Knowing it was a possibility that my kids could have problems in that area doesn't make me expect it.  I've never had a vaginal infection and I'm 27.  Sometimes it happens and sometimes people NEVER have a problem.

 

It's very true that this board gets an disproportional amount of questions about penis problems.  But what the pp's said is true...we don't hear about every NONproblem.

 

When I had DD and she was born not breathing we had to have her transported to the local hospital.  One of the *horrible* nurses said to my husband "These women are SO stupid because this happens with EVERY homebirth".  Obviously the hospital does not see the GOOD homebirths.  Only the bad ones.  Somehow from that she got that this happens at every homebirth.  This board is the same way.  You are going to see all the problems because this is where the experts hang out.

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#10 of 15 Old 12-05-2010, 03:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drs0410 View Post

I'm glad to see that many of you have intact sons who haven't had problems. I don't try to retract my son's foreskin. I was just confused about what I should do once it's no longer attached. I am secure with my decision to leave him intact, but the few posts I've read just had me a little concerned. The main thing that bothers me is that he might someday question whether his penis looks "right" because of the society we live in. I wish the intact penis could be the norm the way a normal vagina is, but I know that's not the case. Hopefully, I (and many of you) can help change that.

 

Thanks for the help!


 

I see this sentiment quite often on this forum ... that American women don't/won't consider the intact penis "normal" or "attractive" or "desirable" or etc etc etc.  Really, I don't see this as an issue that boys (and girls) born today will face in the future.  I was born in America and never saw an intact penis until I was in college, and then it was covered with a condom.  The first intact penis I saw in full view and with the lights on was my husband's, after college.  It just was a non-issue for me, and most men in my generation are circumcised.  Now that I have been with my DH for a while, and now that I am educated about the structure and function of the foreskin and the social issues surrounding routine infant circumcision, an intact penis is "normal" to me.  Now when I see a circumcised penis, I see it as altered, and I can spot the tell-tale scars from the infant circumcision, and it makes me a little sad for that man.  Gently, I think that many times when a woman makes a comment like this, it is about *her* feelings regarding an intact penis.  There isn't anything wrong with this, or anything to be ashamed of, it's just a product of our society and our generation, when most men are circumcised and internet comment boards are full of ignorant and/or erroneous ideas about the unaltered state of the penis.  Girls in the next generation will encounter more intact penises and won't have the same level of bias.

 

And I definitely don't think it is now or will be common for an intact man to feel shame about his penis.  Most intact men that I have known feel lucky and superior.  Haha!

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#11 of 15 Old 12-05-2010, 06:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pirogi View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by drs0410 View Post

I'm glad to see that many of you have intact sons who haven't had problems. I don't try to retract my son's foreskin. I was just confused about what I should do once it's no longer attached. I am secure with my decision to leave him intact, but the few posts I've read just had me a little concerned. The main thing that bothers me is that he might someday question whether his penis looks "right" because of the society we live in. I wish the intact penis could be the norm the way a normal vagina is, but I know that's not the case. Hopefully, I (and many of you) can help change that.

 

Thanks for the help!


 

I see this sentiment quite often on this forum ... that American women don't/won't consider the intact penis "normal" or "attractive" or "desirable" or etc etc etc.  Really, I don't see this as an issue that boys (and girls) born today will face in the future.  I was born in America and never saw an intact penis until I was in college, and then it was covered with a condom.  The first intact penis I saw in full view and without the lights on was my husband's, after college.  It just was a non-issue for me, and most men in my generation are circumcised.  Now that I have been with my DH for a while, and now that I am educated about the structure and function of the foreskin and the social issues surrounding routine infant circumcision, an intact penis is "normal" to me.  Now when I see a circumcised penis, I see it as altered, and I can spot the tell-tale scars from the infant circumcision, and it makes me a little sad for that man.  Gently, I think that many times when a woman makes a comment like this, it is about *her* feelings regarding an intact penis.  There isn't anything wrong with this, or anything to be ashamed of, it's just a product of our society and our generation, when most men are circumcised and internet comment boards are full of ignorant and/or erroneous ideas about the unaltered state of the penis.  Girls in the next generation will encounter more intact penises and won't have the same level of bias.

 

And I definitely don't think it is now or will be common for an intact man to feel shame about his penis.  Most intact men that I have known feel lucky and superior.  Haha!


No, it's not about my feelings. I just know how people are. You even said yourself that the internet is full of ignorant comments about the intact penis (which I've seen myself). My family doesn't even know whether my son is circumcised because I don't want to hear their stupid comments. My MIL knows he's intact because she once asked about the circumcision she assumed he had and I told her we didn't do that to him. She was really surprised and said "still?!" and then asked "are you ever going to?". When I told her no, she was like "never?". After that, all she could tell me was that it's "interesting", as if we were somehow weird or unusual. It's things like that that have me worried about the comments he might have to deal with later.

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#12 of 15 Old 12-06-2010, 09:01 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drs0410 View Post

This is my first post, but I've been reading this forum for the past week or so. My son is 6 months old and is intact. So far his penis has been perfectly normal and healthy.

 

Some of you mentioned having intact boys a few years older than my son who are having issues. Now I'm a little concerned. Should I expect the care of his penis to become more difficult once his foreskin starts to retract? Will there likely be infections to deal with? I've heard that you're not supposed to pull back his skin to clean him once he has retracted. He's supposed to do it himself. So what if he doesn't? Is that okay? I hear that problems come from trying to clean it and also from not taking care of it. I'm so confused!


I think a lot of the "problems" that I have seen posted here are not actually problems but concerns that stem from unfamiliarity with the normal process of separation. So if you can familiarize yourself with what to expect (I can't find the thread on this anymore), you can probably save yourself from worrying about what is normal when the time comes. You should not "expect" infections, but you may see things that look like infection. 

 

Once your son is retractable, you can tell him how to clean himself, but I wouldn't worry if he doesn't until puberty. At that point he likely will because a) it feels good, and b) he will become self-conscious about his body and cleanliness. The problem is that some people think they need to overclean in an effort to "take care of it", when in fact it needs very little cleaning. As you know, this means no retracting before it is retractable, and then it just has to be rinsed with water--not soap--in the shower or bath.


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#13 of 15 Old 12-06-2010, 10:25 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drs0410 View Post

 

No, it's not about my feelings. I just know how people are. You even said yourself that the internet is full of ignorant comments about the intact penis (which I've seen myself). My family doesn't even know whether my son is circumcised because I don't want to hear their stupid comments. My MIL knows he's intact because she once asked about the circumcision she assumed he had and I told her we didn't do that to him. She was really surprised and said "still?!" and then asked "are you ever going to?". When I told her no, she was like "never?". After that, all she could tell me was that it's "interesting", as if we were somehow weird or unusual. It's things like that that have me worried about the comments he might have to deal with later.


The people who are posting on the internet, and your MIL, are a lot older than your ds. When he's growing up, and meeting girls, intact penises aren't going to be as rare as they are now. Your MIL is also likely to be dealing with her own baggage about "I had my son's foreskin cut off, and now they're telling me it's not necessary?". You just have to look at the regrets thread to know that some people are going to avoid facing that one square on, because it just hurts too much.

 

And, I have to say that my brother is intact, and he's 47. Believe me, there weren't too many intact boys in his generation, at least not around here. I cretainly don't know (and don't want to!) any details about his sex life, but I can tell you that he's always been very successful with the girls/women. In his early 20s, he had one girlfriend with no boundaries, and she used to gush about how incredible he was in bed (yes, to his teenaged sisters - BLECH). I really don't get the impression that having a foreskin hampered his love life in the slightest, yk?


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#14 of 15 Old 12-06-2010, 12:12 PM
 
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Whenever you start to worry about this, think of the rampant infectious-foreskin epidemic that Switzerland and Japan have experienced over the last 100 years.

 

.....No, you haven't heard of them.  Because they don't exist.  If foreskins were a major medical hazard, most of the world's men would be in a world of hurt.  There are no Scottish mass-circumcision clinics, no lines of Frenchmen demanding "Less Foreskin Now" - no problems with foreskin as a public health dillemma *anywhere* but places that favor circumcision, like the middle east, Africa, and here.  Chinese men have foreskins.  Russian men have foreskins.  Indian men have foreskins.  Columbia, Peru, Mexico, Ireland, Jamaica, Germany, Iceland, the list goes on and on.  We're weird.  Foreskins are normal, healthy body parts.

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#15 of 15 Old 12-07-2010, 06:02 AM
 
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I have three sons who never had any problems. The oldest one once had a particularly bad diaper rash once that included the foreskin, among other things, but that wasn't a foreskin problem per se and was easy to treat with prescription ointment. I think you should expect NOT to have any problems.

 

I think people post about the rare issues (or normal retraction/separation) on here because they feel they are not getting objective advice from some pediatricians and want to know if other people have sons who are not retractable at various ages.


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