Feeling a little defeated - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 03:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
Charmie981's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 4,391
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I started my apprenticeship to become a midwife in January. I love my teaching midwife and know that she has a lot of information to teach me over the course of these 18 months, but as time wears on, I'm finding things that I disagree with her about. For the most part they're minor things, but the circumcison thing is really getting to me.

A month or so ago, I found a book on her shelves called _Say No To Circumcision_ and was so excited to see that she is presenting this information to her clients. Then a client asked her outright about circ while I was in the office. She (the MW) said that she planned to not circ her sons, but one was a hospital birth and the doctors did it without consent. Her second son, she left intact but he later "had" to be circ'ed because his foreskin didn't retract. Then she mentioned that in her time as a nurse, she saw "so many" men who had to be circumcised as adults that now she suggests mothers circ their newborns because it's so much "less traumatic" for a newborn. *eek*

I couldn't disagree with this perspective more, and I hate to see women choose a gentle homebirth only to have their sons violated by circumcision a week later. The only thing that's been getting me through is thinking of how I'll counsel my own clients on this subject, and that when they're my own clients, I can pass my information, which is correct, on to them.

This week at the office a mom to a two week old baby asked me to look at her son's circ site to be sure it was healing well. I did, and just about cried . In a year it'll be over, but for now it's killing me...

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
Charmie981 is offline  
#2 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 05:45 PM
 
LavenderMae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: where I write my own posts!
Posts: 13,477
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
That must be so hard for you. I just can not understand wanting your baby to enter the world in the most gentle way and then turning around and violating them.
I hate that a midwife is giving out this misinformation, it just sucks.

OUR DAUGHTERS ARE PROTECTED SHOULDN'T OUR SONS BE TOO! :
LavenderMae is offline  
#3 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 05:47 PM
 
Mommiska's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 5,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh, Charlotte - that would be just awful. I can't imagine...

Is there anyway you could give this midwife one of Dr. Fleiss' articles - she's obviously poorly informed, and it sounds like perhaps she might be open to accurate information (since she did originally leave her second son intact) if it was offered?

It's great, though, that you will be out there soon yourself, giving parents-to-be accurate information about circumcision.
Mommiska is offline  
#4 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 08:25 PM
 
Sarah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Indiana
Posts: 2,134
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Has anyone give her info on suing over the unconsented circumcision? That seems like a very obvious thing to me!

Love Sarah
Sarah is offline  
#5 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 09:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
Charmie981's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 4,391
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It was 20 years ago and I think her DH wanted it done...there was some confusion at the hospital about the consent, but she didn't give it.

I'm thinking that since she has _Say No to Circumcision_ on her shelves and she doesn't put anything on the shelves without reading it first, she knows everything that's in the Fleiss articles. It's a really good book and addresses all of the reasons not to circ, as well as reasons people tend to say circ is medically necessary and how it really isn't in those cases, but she's not convinced. Or maybe it was that book that originally convinced her (I don't know how old it is?). She has videos of circs being done so that mothers can be informed of the procedures and loaned the video out to the client who asked about circ (who ended up having a girl *whew*).

There's a Mohel sort of in the area that she refers everyone to. I got one of his pamplets from the info area and was nauseated. It grosses me out that someone can make a living doing this! My anti-circ stance was one of the many reasons I decided to go into midwifery rather than obstetrics. Never, ever, would I be able to mutilate a little boys genitals as part of my profession. I'm having a hard time just knowing that some (most) of the moms I deal with decide to circ.

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
Charmie981 is offline  
#6 of 10 Old 07-30-2004, 11:20 PM
 
hcsl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: NC
Posts: 383
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I know it's hard to openly disagree with someone who is teaching you. Maybe after she says her peace about circ to the mothers you could just 'innocently' add an alternative option. (Like maybe saying "Of course, it is the baby's penis, and he has a lifetime to decide if he wants to cut part of it off, so there's no need to rush in to anything!") Have you thought about talking to her privately about it? I've found that sometimes if you ask people questions as if they're helping you understand something, when they get their defenses down, you can gently slip in your point of view by playing devil's advocate. They can't get mad or offended because you're just asking questions trying to learn. Sometimes you can 'back them into a corner' and they won't have a choice but to consider the valid points you're making. ("Oh, circing helps prevent penile cancer? Wow, cancer is bad. So do you know lots of people who have had penile cancer? Prior to routine circing was it as common as breast cancer is now? )

I think it's great that you're training to be a mw! More people in ob/gyn and l&d authority positions should have your gentle values!
hcsl is offline  
#7 of 10 Old 07-31-2004, 03:06 AM
 
Frankly Speaking's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: North Atlanta
Posts: 5,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charmie981
There's a Mohel sort of in the area that she refers everyone to. I got one of his pamplets from the info area and was nauseated. It grosses me out that someone can make a living doing this!

Did you know that mohels have no medical training? Did you know that mohels do not do it in a hospital so that if there is any emergency complication like the heart stops beating or the baby stops breathing, they have no equipment to handle the emergency? Did you know that mohels can not prescribe any medication for pain relief? Did you know that mohels can not get malpractice insurance for their business and if there is an accident or complication, you're on your own? I wonder if that midwife knows that? I would suspect that if she doesn't and learned it, she would stop refering clients to him.




Frank
Frankly Speaking is offline  
#8 of 10 Old 07-31-2004, 10:06 AM
 
hummingbear's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Rocky Mountains
Posts: 1,019
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
As far as those circumcisions referred to below....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charmie981
Her second son, she left intact but he later "had" to be circ'ed because his foreskin didn't retract. Then she mentioned that in her time as a nurse, she saw "so many" men who had to be circumcised as adults that now she suggests mothers circ their newborns because it's so much "less traumatic" for a newborn. *eek*
Has she considered that perhaps most of these circumcisions were not actually "necessary" but a result of a medical community that jumps to the procedure when less drastic measures may have solved whatever the problem was that brought them to a doctors care? When was her 2nd son circumcised .... maybe it would be too much for her to think that maybe it didn't have to be done. I know that Frank has referred to the many things that can be done to address foreskin retraction before circumcision becomes necessary.

It seems like you could be opening an incredible learning dialogue with her.

Good Luck
hummingbear is offline  
#9 of 10 Old 07-31-2004, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
Charmie981's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 4,391
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Okay, so now you have me thinking constructively about ways I could prope her about this. I don't feel like I can talk to the clients about it as directly as you suggest. They are *her* clients and she is nice enough to let me practice on them, so I feel like there's a need to respect what she's telling them, even if I totally disagree with it. I have told both clients who asked me about who does circ's "for us" : that circ is not necessary in most cases and have they considered leaving their sons intact? They were grossed out by the idea and one even used the word "deformed," to which I replied (snottily) "My sons aren't circumcised and I don't think they're deformed at all."

Anyway...I digress. My constructive way of dealing with this: I think next time she mentions how many circs had to be done on older men during her nursing career, I'm going to ask what the circs were for and when they were done (decade-wise). I know that a vast majority of the medical field is still eager to cut off every foreskin out there, newborn or not, so my guess is that most of the ones that she saw were unnecessary. So maybe if she tells me why they were done I can have the opportunity to interject: "wow, you know, I was reading the other day that ____ is one of the reasons people will try to tell you to circ, but really it's not necessary and you can deal with that problem by ____."

We'll see...thanks for the support. The info on Mohels was particularly interesting. The lack of malpractice insurance doesn't bother me (uhh...I won't have it either and I think the insurance companies are idiots), but the lack of recussitation equipment and training is a little startling.

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
Charmie981 is offline  
#10 of 10 Old 07-31-2004, 12:59 PM
 
Frankly Speaking's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: North Atlanta
Posts: 5,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by hummingbear
maybe it would be too much for her to think that maybe it didn't have to be done. I know that Frank has referred to the many things that can be done to address foreskin retraction before circumcision becomes necessary.

There seems to be too much concern about this subject. That is of boys being retractile. The truth is that less than 1 out of 100 have any problem at all and of that less than one, less than 1 out of 10,000 would need a circumcision. The Scandinavians seem to be the most meticulous record keepers in this area and their experience is that out of 100,000 men, 99,994 of them go to the grave with their foreskins. Consider other maladies that humans suffer and this is almost at the bottom of the list of hundreds.

The real problem is that some American medical "expert" wrote decades ago that all boys should be retractile by three years old. Forget that there has been quite a few that have also written that it is normal for them to not be retractile until the late teens and one found that almost half were not retractile until after puberty, every medical provider seems to have read the single research paper that says three years old and by Gawd and by golly, if that thing won't pull back to his butt hole, it needs to be cut off or all kinds of horrible things are going to happen including death!




Frank
Frankly Speaking is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off