Had DS's 4-year doctor's visit today. I felt unpreprared at his 3-year visit last year, when the doctor just wanted to see "how far he retracts", and told me that kids should be able to retract when they are around 3. Thankfully, she didn't do much, but I read up about it when I left and didn't want that to happen again. So I had a no-circ pamphlet with me when we went in today. He didn't have to get undressed, so I thought maybe she wouldn't even look. But sure enough, when he was lying down, she pulled his pants down to check out his "privates". So I was right there, and as soon as she went to touch his penis, I stopped her and said that she didn't need to check his penis. So of course she looks kind of shocked/surprised, and I just said I'd read a lot about it, and that there was no need to retract at all (I was so flustered, I probably didn't sound that convincing...) So she said, "I wasn't going to retract it, I just wanted to see how far it would go", kind of indignantly (she's a very nice lady, so she wasn't rude, but it was just tense). So I just said I felt there was a lot of misinformation and that there was no need to touch is penis. So she said said she just wanted to check, but she woudn't if I didn't want her to, and I said I'd prefer she didn't, so she stopped and that was it - she just told me some issues that could arise and what to look for, and I said we haven't noticed any issues at all (no ballooning, tight foreskin, etc - whatever...) But ugh, I just hate confrontation. I know it's my job as a parent to protect my child, and I'm going to do that, but I do suck at standing up to people sometimes!
I wanted to ask did see say that ballooning was a problems? Because if she did then she dosnt know much about the intact foreskin as that is a Normal part of the separation process for some boys. A thread that talks about it and other normal things and a few not normal things in here if you havnt seen it before http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=764732
SAHMlovin' to DD 10/00 & DS 10/04 If your son is intact, keep him safe, visit the Intact Care forum Circ, a personal choice, Your SONS 11/98 6/99 Thyroid cancer survivor. With 5 & 2 Boxers wishing for
Good for you for standing up for your boy, his rights as a patient and your rights as a parent!!!
The group, The Whole Network, has complied an info packet targeted at care givers about the proper care of the intact penis, the issues about retraction and why NOT to do it. Perhaps you could get one and give it to your doctors office so that you can educate them but not have to feel confrontational about it.
this is the part that flips me out all the time, how the hell was she going to "see how far it would go" without retracting it!!!??????
i have a 5 month old boy and i just dont trust anyone, but also dont feel like picking preventative fights all the time. but when folks are willing to pull back the foreskin and till honestly think they are "not retracting" my little boy is not safe in their care
So what if I don't fit cleanly into a defined parenting style, my kids don't fit into a personality archetype either!
Well done for seeing that your wishes were respected and for having the courage to challenge the Dr. There really is no need to 'see how far it will go' unless there is a specific problem that requires attention. One wonders what is to be gained from measuring how far the foreskin will travel. What would the course of action been after she discovered how far she was able to retract? Nothing! - because unless your son was having a specific problem, had an infection or was having difficulty with urination there was absolutely no need to manipulate the penis in any way.
Thanks for posting and giving other parents the courage to speak up.
"seeing how far it will go" IS retracting it. (She must be one of those who think it is only "retracting" if it is pushed back the whole way behind the glans. Which is not accurate!)
As PP's said, there is no reason to "check how far it will go".....except to start the badgering and pushing for circumcision... as in, "hmmm, it should be moving farther by his age... if it is still "tight" by X age, we're going to have to circumcise...." (which of course is a huge crock!!)
Good for you for standing firm, even though it is so uncomfortable!
I think you should give her the AAP's guide on intact penis care and tell her that she really shouldn't be messing with ANY child's foreskin.
Honestly, if she's that ignorant about intact penises, can you really trust that she knows enough about the rest of his body to provide adequate medical care?