Dirty foreskin because sex is 'dirty'? - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-30-2006, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just thought of something. In our extremely sexually repressed society, sex is often referred to as dirty. Children are taught that 'touching themselves' is dirty and their normal healthy sexual body parts are 'dirty'. Did this figure of speech become so ingrained in American culture that people began thinking that certain body parts were literally filthy? Is this why women of the 1950s douched with Lysol? The belief that the foreskin is literally dirty is now one of the major reasons baby boys are circumcised. It seems that this is really a lingering vestige of extreme sexual repression. A belief that normal healthy sex is filthy and wrong and shameful. Somehow sex being dirty has been translated to be literally equal with dirt, bacteria, and bad hygiene. It is so unfortunate and sad that baby boys are still paying the price for their parents' bizarre fears about sex.

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Old 01-30-2006, 06:58 PM
 
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I think it started before that... in the Old Testament - uncircumcised is referred to as unclean. it's more of a symbolic thing though b/c circumcising the body was a symbol of circumcising the heart (dad preached about this topic for well over an hour). hence where it says that the people were circumcised yet uncircumcised. I don't want to get the thread shut down though... so... also nak

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Old 01-30-2006, 07:45 PM
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You're right. But also, America is turning around about the "dirty" syndrome. Even very mainstream parenting books and mags say that it's normal and healthy for a kid to masturbate, ect. And circ rates are dropping, too. So, I think they are related somewhat.

And LYSOL!? PLEASE tell me you are exaggerating! Where did you hear that!? Ick. I can't even stand the thought of regular douching.

On a side note...I always thought sex was sloppy, but not really dirty. That's different right?
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Old 01-30-2006, 08:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry, I'm not exaggerating about the Lysol douche. Here is a copy of the old advertisement:

http://www.mum.org/Lysol48.htm

And I agree that America is turning around IRT attitudes about sex, likewise, the circ rate is dropping.

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Old 01-30-2006, 08:49 PM
 
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Pornography= dirty.

You know like dirty magazines and dirty pictures. Why were they called dirty? Anyone know when that started or why?

Mama to ds 6/00 and dd 1/09
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Old 01-30-2006, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenOfThePride
Sorry, I'm not exaggerating about the Lysol douche. Here is a copy of the old advertisement:

http://www.mum.org/Lysol48.htm

:Puke

I don't see how ANYBODY with a shred of common sense can buy into that. Seriously. I can understand women thinking regular douches are ok, but Lysol is just crazy.
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Old 01-30-2006, 11:29 PM
 
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The way i was raised it was implied that all private parts were dirty. Sex to me in any other form but in marriage was for dirty emoral people. Since I have been old enough to understand and give it thought I do not think of it that way any more. I am trying my best not to pass along to my kids that there parts are dirty. But it makes me extremly uncomfortable to see my dd scratching herself Mostly cause i know that she may put her hands in her mouth later or just the thought of the smell. :

My biggest problem is getting them to understand that your bottom has nasty things come out of it without actually calling the parts down there dirty. If that makes any sense.

 
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Old 01-31-2006, 12:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamamillet
Pornography= dirty.

You know like dirty magazines and dirty pictures. Why were they called dirty? Anyone know when that started or why?
I don't know why sex is called dirty, but I think you understand what I'm trying to say.

I think we are going through a whole cultural revolution about sex, but the word dirty still lingers, and is even embraced by some trying to advertise sexually-themed merchandise.

People who are sexually abused or assaulted often feel literally dirty afterwards and have a strong impulse to wash up. These days one in three girls and one in six boys will be sexually assaulted during childhood. I bet decades ago, the numbers were even higher. Sexual violence victims often grow up with a muddied view of sex, perhaps believing that all sex is dirty. The idea of sex being carnal and evil was (is?) held by the Catholic church for a long time. Many people, having both of these influences in their life, no doubt would hold a skewed view of what constitutes healthy sex. Maybe this is where the sex=dirty idea came from? Who knows.

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Old 01-31-2006, 02:49 AM
 
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I think that America is more concerned about germs/dirt than other cultures. This probably DID contribute to circ being accepted and then the foreskin being considered dirty. In addition, teaching girls that sex is bad and dirty also contribute to lack of knowledge. Men who have been circed dont' know what it is like to be intact and don't assume anything is wrong. Men wouldn't talk about things that were wrong in this area too.

The cycle continues until it is broken

Sorry, got interrupted by dh and I've got to go....

Jessica

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Old 01-31-2006, 03:07 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MRDCatLvr
My biggest problem is getting them to understand that your bottom has nasty things come out of it without actually calling the parts down there dirty. If that makes any sense.
I think that makes sense. I figure on approaching it the same was as teaching them that they must wash their hands if they pick their noses or whatever. That falls under the same hygeine rules as washing after using the bathroom or touching genitals for whatever reason, but people don't grow up thinking noses are "dirty" the same way.
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Old 01-31-2006, 04:23 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenOfThePride
Children are taught that 'touching themselves' is dirty and their normal healthy sexual body parts are 'dirty'. ... A belief that normal healthy sex is filthy and wrong and shameful. Somehow sex being dirty has been translated to be literally equal with dirt, bacteria, and bad hygiene. It is so unfortunate and sad that baby boys are still paying the price for their parents' bizarre fears about sex.
Absolutely. When you read this...; http://www.sexuallymutilatedchild.org/shorthis.htm

...you see how masturbation and foreskin were both concidered dirty.

Also female circumcision was done in western countries for exact same reasons...from approximately 1900 - 1939, FGM was practiced in Australia kindergartens as a method of 'curing the precocious masturbator'. This included Australians of European heritage.....In Britain, the greatest period of clitoridectomies was from 1858 - 1866. Clitoridectomis were continued in the United States until 1925, circumcisions continued through as late as 1937, and possibly 1948. It was believed that these procedures would stop masturbation, reduce women's mental disorders, cure female complaints and prevent or stop nymphomania.

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