Why are you against circumcision? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have been reading this board for a while, and have been surprised by the reasoning for why many here became anti circ. Many seem to be against it because they found out that it may cause harm. For example parents who circ their first son find out that circing could be harmful, so they decide to not to do it to their second. But does that mean they would circ their future boys if it did not cause harm? I ask this because personally I believe above all else the most important point here is that boys are having their basic human rights taken away from them. Are there people here who would not be anti circumcision if the process did not cause any physical harm?
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#2 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:11 PM
 
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I'm anti-circ for human rights reasons, too. I don't support the non-consensual mutilation of anyone's body.

It is hard for me to envision a hypothetical situation in which physical harm would not be part of the picture, so I really can't answer that part.

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#3 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:15 PM
 
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It is hard to seperate the two.

How can you forcibly remove a part of someone else's genitals without causing physical harm?

It's pretty much hand in hand.

But to answer your question: Yes, if chopping off someone's foreskin was all daisies and felt like rainbows fluttering on the person's body I would still be against it seeing how it's not actually my penis and not actually my decision.
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#4 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:16 PM
 
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I'm pretty sure the vast majority here believe that it is the right of the boy to do what he wishes with his own body. But so many other reasons are mentioned because some people don't accept that reasoning, so if you have lists and lists of reasons why not to circ, then perhaps someone who is intent on circ'ing, or thinks it's no big deal, might possibly be swayed.

I simply think natural is best and it never made sense to me to cut a baby at birth, or any time thereafter.
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#5 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm anti-circ for human rights reasons, too. I don't support the non-consensual mutilation of anyone's body.

It is hard for me to envision a hypothetical situation in which physical harm would not be part of the picture, so I really can't answer that part.
Well there are parents on this board who circumcised their first son, knowing that THEY were modifying their sons body forever, yet thought they were not doing any physical harm. But once they found out they might be causing physical harm, they became anti- circ. That makes it seem like those parents do not see it as a human rights issue. They did not see their son had a right to his full penis. If they did see it as their son had that right, then I would imagine they would have never cut their first son.
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#6 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm pretty sure the vast majority here believe that it is the right of the boy to do what he wishes with his own body. But so many other reasons are mentioned because some people don't accept that reasoning, so if you have lists and lists of reasons why not to circ, then perhaps someone who is intent on circ'ing, or thinks it's no big deal, might possibly be swayed.

I simply think natural is best and it never made sense to me to cut a baby at birth, or any time thereafter.
I guess my question should be directed at parents who circumcised their first son, but not their second.
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#7 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:36 PM
 
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Why would anyone circumcise, it's totally unnecessary surgery. Never mind if it wouldn't 'hurt', it's still totally crazy to do that to an infant. Why not give them nosejobs and face lifts while they are days old too?

Circ doesn't work! Stop the violence of circumcison. Had another UP/UC/HB in August!
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#8 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:37 PM
 
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Inherently I was afraid of something going wrong. When I separated myself from the cultural brainwashing that it must be done, I saw it for what it really is, which is the loss of bodily sovereignty and human rights violation that choosing to alter someone else's body really is.
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#9 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:41 PM
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i am against circumcising anyone that cannot consent to or want to be circumcised.for all of the reasons everyone here has said plus these.

i was circumcised at birth and it has caused me physical and mental problems.

circumcision is not completely reversable.

the multiple surgeries that can replace some of what circumcision removes cost about $120,000.00. if a man wants this done he would have to sacrifice alot in life or be very rich.

restitution for circumcision is impossible after the age of 19 because of the statute of limitations.how many men at that age know what has caused their problem?especially if their parents and doctors told them they would outgrow them.


most intact men and women choose to stay uncircumcised.if circumcision was so great why don't they feel cheated?
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#10 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:45 PM
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I saw it as a student in 1989 and cried for days afterword and had the doc talk about it like he was not causing any harm. The baby cried so hard he passed out. I could not work as an L&D nurse either since, though I loved maternal child health, I could not stomach all the mutilation/pain imposed on almost all women (vacuums, episiotomies, cesareans and unnatural pushing).
Mutilation is mutilation and when it is unnecessary as circing is, I am against it.
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#11 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 07:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by perspective View Post
Well there are parents on this board who circumcised their first son, knowing that THEY were modifying their sons body forever, yet thought they were not doing any physical harm. But once they found out they might be causing physical harm, they became anti- circ. That makes it seem like those parents do not see it as a human rights issue. They did not see their son had a right to his full penis. If they did see it as their son had that right, then I would imagine they would have never cut their first son.
The thing is, most people are convinced by doctors, parents, society at large that circ'ing isn't just neutral and cosmetic, but positive and saving their child from HIV/penile cancer/UTI's etc. It's not that they think their son doesn't have the right to a whole penis, but that they think they are protecting their son from health problems. Sometimes it isn't until the layers are peeled away and mothers realize that it is at best not helpful and at the worst actually causes harm that they even start to contemplate the larger issues of consent and human rights.
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#12 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 08:43 PM
 
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this is why:

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=781890

in short because its a violation of human rights its barbaric and unnecessary cosmetic surgery on an un-consenting person.
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#13 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 08:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perspective View Post
Well there are parents on this board who circumcised their first son, knowing that THEY were modifying their sons body forever, yet thought they were not doing any physical harm. But once they found out they might be causing physical harm, they became anti- circ. That makes it seem like those parents do not see it as a human rights issue. They did not see their son had a right to his full penis. If they did see it as their son had that right, then I would imagine they would have never cut their first son.
See second quote.

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Originally Posted by eclipse View Post
The thing is, most people are convinced by doctors, parents, society at large that circ'ing isn't just neutral and cosmetic, but positive and saving their child from HIV/penile cancer/UTI's etc. It's not that they think their son doesn't have the right to a whole penis, but that they think they are protecting their son from health problems. Sometimes it isn't until the layers are peeled away and mothers realize that it is at best not helpful and at the worst actually causes harm that they even start to contemplate the larger issues of consent and human rights.
I circed both my boys. I DO VERY MUCH see it as a human rights issue. I thought I was HELPING. That is possible.

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#14 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 08:55 PM
 
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Circumcision done for cosmetic reasons (in other words, if it isn't part of your religion) is barbaric and unnecessary. It causes pain to an infant who has no choice in the matter.
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#15 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 08:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by perspective View Post
I have been reading this board for a while, and have been surprised by the reasoning for why many here became anti circ. Many seem to be against it because they found out that it may cause harm. For example parents who circ their first son find out that circing could be harmful, so they decide to not to do it to their second. But does that mean they would circ their future boys if it did not cause harm? I ask this because personally I believe above all else the most important point here is that boys are having their basic human rights taken away from them. Are there people here who would not be anti circumcision if the process did not cause any physical harm?
Good questions.

Firstly, it's hard for me to fathom amputating up to half of the skin on the penis including oodles of blood vessels and nerves, so there's no independently mobile skin as not causing harm even if he's one of the rare boys that escapes immediate or long-term surgical complications. The permanent loss of healthy tissue is inherently harmful. Sadly, common sense isn't always common.

Secondly, as with any medical procedure-prophylactic or otherwise-the ethical test is whether the potential benefits outweigh the known risks and harms. Routine infant circumcision definitely doesn't meet that criteria when you consider the guaranteed toss of sensitivity and sexual function -and- the immediate surgical risks (hemorrhage, infection, death) -and- the long-term complications like a 71% risk of penile adhesions, a 10% risk of meatal stenosis, and at least a 1% chance of recircumcision/revision.

Circumcision is primarily a cosmetic surgery and it's performed on the most intimate part of a future man's body at the most vulnerable time in his life. Why should parents have a right to take needles, clamps, and scalpels to their perfectly healthy children's private parts?

If it's a human rights atrocity to make even a minor surgical alteration to a little girl's genitals-universally condemned as female genital mutilation (FGM)-why in the name of equality and reason is doing the same thing to a restrained little boy upheld as just another ho-hum parenting choice?

Circumcision isn't just about pain.

Circumcision isn't just about harm.

Circumcision is about human rights, body autonomy, gender equality,
and freedom of choice for the person the body part belongs to.

WE DO NOT OWN OUR CHILDREN.

Jen
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#16 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:07 PM
 
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because my little boy is beautiful just exactly as he was born!

i had no idea how passionately i would feel about this issue until i started looking at all the info on here. now it makes me feel sick that i almost snipped him w/out even questioning it!
and my husband is jewish and i had to convince him ( pretty easy) and we had to tell the grandparents (not happy).
but ultimately it's his body if HE want's to be circ'ed he can do it when he's older and can have proper pain mgmnt.
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#17 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:08 PM
 
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Circ always does harm.

The real question is why does anyone support it?

It makes me think of the Emporers new clothes story.

It should be commonsense that it inherently ridiculous,
(the emporer is not wearing any clothes), but because
other people (in the US) are doing it there is an assumption
that there must be something in it.
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#18 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perspective View Post
I guess my question should be directed at parents who circumcised their first son, but not their second.
Quote:
“I don't know if I continue, even today, always liking myself. But what I learned to do many years ago was to forgive myself. It is very important for every human being to forgive herself or himself because if you live, you will make mistakes- it is inevitable. But once you do and you see the mistake, then you forgive yourself and say, 'well, if I'd known better I'd have done better,' that's all. So you say to people who you think you may have injured, 'I'm sorry,' and then you say to yourself, 'I'm sorry.' If we all hold on to the mistake, we can't see our own glory in the mirror because we have the mistake between our faces and the mirror; we can't see what we're capable of being. You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end the real forgiveness is in one's own self. I think that young men and women are so caught by the way they see themselves. Now mind you. When a larger society sees them as unattractive, as threats, as too black or too white or too poor or too fat or too thin or too sexual or too asexual, that's rough. But you can overcome that. The real difficulty is to overcome how you think about yourself. If we don't have that we never grow, we never learn, and sure as hell we should never teach.”
-Maya Angelou
Most parents I've encountered who regret circumcising their sons honestly didn't realize or understand the full extent or inherent, irreversible harm every circumcision causes. So, they are often the first to say "I had no idea it was so damaging!" It it were merely painful & unnecessary and didn't have any impact on sensitivity or sexual function it might not elicit quite as much guilt.

Jen
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#19 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:13 PM
 
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wat do i do if me 13year old son is still not reacile yet, wat shall i do he is very upset and embaresed i need some good advice.:
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#20 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:20 PM
 
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We originally decided not to circ our first boy simply because of the pain. I believed that if I was going to expose my baby to that much pain and trauma, there would have to be a life or death reason to do so, and there was not.

Nearly six years (and a lot of research) later, and the pain is still very much a part of the argument, and extremely compelling, but it is not the whole argument.

A child has a right to his whole body, and to his full sexuality. Someone needs to defend that.

Homeschooling mom of 2 rambunctious, loving, spectacular boys, wife to an incredible man who has been my best friend on this journey <3

 

 

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#21 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:24 PM
 
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To see it as a human rights violation one has to understand the proceedure. Many do not. Many equate it with other medical proceedures that we consent to having done for our childs own good or simply b/c it is what is done.


I consented to having DS's umbilical cord cut. This was unnecessary and mostly for convienence though we did also have his cord blood stored which

might have future medical benefites. He could have kept it and it would have caused him no harm till it would have fallen off naturally, but I consented to it's removal anyway. I do not see this as a human rights violation, b/c it had little effect on him.

I consented to blood draws to test his bilirubin levels. It was painful, but I felt it was for his health.

I consented to have his tongue tie corrected. This was a permanent surgical alteration to his body. It was a difficult decision to make b/c I couldn't be sure he would want it done. In the end we decided the benefits out weighed the risks, and that he would be happier about it in the long run. For various reasons it had to be done very shortly after birth so I could not wait till he was old enough to choose for himself.
Many, many parents think of circ'ing as being similar to on or more of the examples I gave above of things that I do not see as human rights violations.

They don't see the foreskin as an integeral part of the human body. They believe in potential health benefits. They realize that they can not avoid all painful medical proceedures and just think of this as one more. They think they have to decide now or it will be too late.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
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#22 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:24 PM
 
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cazza,

You may want to start your own separate thread to get more responses to your question. However, it is my understanding that some boys/young men do not become retractable until well into puberty. Perhaps your son just isn't ready yet. Is it causing him some problem other than embarrassment?
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#23 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:26 PM
 
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I don't come here very often because really it's too traumatic for me still right now...I don't read here the stories because it takes me back to that day for my son when we were both very traumatized.

To answer the question, even if didn't harm my hypothetical second son, even if it didn't hurt, I wouldn't circ. There is no need to take off something from the human body that is healthy and not causing problems. There is no reason for it to be done on a girl, so why should it be done on a boy?

I truely would do anything to take back that day for my son. Why the *(&(*$ I didn't come here and READ and just let people tell me what to do in my hormone fog I will never know. I was already a member here. WHY WHY WHY didn't I come here??? I was such a complete idiot.

DH and I had a huge argument over this months ago, and I finally got him to admit that it's a cosmetic procedure. Honestly, why more men are not willing to stand up and protect their sons is beyond me...men are so protective of their reproductive organs as adults, why on earth is it not the same for a baby?

I so desparately want a second boy....we're even doing the Shettles method to hopefully get another one. I want to prove to myself and all the naysayers that convinced me in the first place that I can care for the intact penis. I'm sorry I didn't mean to derail, obviously this is why I don't come here often, unless I see something I can answer to without getting too emotional.

fambedsingle2.gifnovaxnocirc.gifHappy to be a mommy and teacher to D fencing.gif, born 1-17-06 via waterbirth.jpg  and A  blahblah.gif, born 10-6-08 with a homebirth.jpghomeschool.gif

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#24 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 09:29 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cazza View Post
wat do i do if me 13year old son is still not reacile yet, wat shall i do he is very upset and embaresed i need some good advice.:
Embaressed? First I would definitely try to find out where that is coming from. Not being retractable at 13 is normal. Some studies show only 40-55% of boys at age ten being retractable.

http://www.cirp.org/library/normal/

Usually, once he has begun masturbation coupled with the hormones released in puberty, the foreskin will become retractable. If he gets to be further on in his teenage years (18 or so) and is still not retracting, there are numerous methods:

http://www.cirp.org/library/treatment/phimosis/beauge/

Stretching, creams, etc have all been shown to be effective.

"Parents are simply trustees; they do not own the bodies of their children"-Norm Cohen  Martial arts instructor intactlact.gifhomebirth.jpgnak.gif and mom to 4: DD1 (1/05) DS (7/06) DD2 (5/08) DD3 (2/11)
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#25 of 51 Old 11-03-2007, 11:46 PM
 
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When I learned the reason for my useless wreck of a penis was because of a circ...which further caused a re-circ and a later "procedure" to treat the meatal stenosis it caused. All were completely unnecessary and NO ONE ever asked my permission to do any of it. Since then, thanks to places like this, I have learned many, many more good reasons why it shouldn't be done, and have yet to find a compelling reason why it should be a parent's "choice."
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#26 of 51 Old 11-04-2007, 01:21 AM
 
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I am against circumcision because the thought of putting a baby through unnecessary COSMETIC surgery absolutely breaks my heart.

Mama to a 3.5 yo dd
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#27 of 51 Old 11-04-2007, 01:27 AM
 
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But does that mean they would circ their future boys if it did not cause harm?
Wait, what?

I'm anti circ for so, so many reasons.. that the idea of being pro circ is totally and completely foreign to me. Human rights reasons. Sexual reasons, from both sexes. Common sense reasons. Humane reasons. I could go on all night.
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#28 of 51 Old 11-04-2007, 01:08 AM
 
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My ds was mutilated and now has bad meatal stenosis. I never even knew people didn't circ until relatively recently, and had never seen an uncirc'd penis. I was raised Jewish, and it was never brought up.

Circumcision is always wrong. Unfortunately I had to learn the hard way. And no, I would never circ if "it didn't cause harm". It ALWAYS causes harm. You are cutting off a body part for no reason. It is never right. Ever.

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#29 of 51 Old 11-04-2007, 01:25 AM
 
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Not my body, not my choice. Plain and simple.

E Veg*n Mom to ds 6 : dd 3
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#30 of 51 Old 11-04-2007, 01:36 AM
 
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Originally Posted by perspective View Post
I guess my question should be directed at parents who circumcised their first son, but not their second.
I circ'ed DS. But would never do another child.

I honestly just didn't think there was anything wrong with it. All the penises I had ever seen (except one) were circ'ed. DH is circ'ed and wanted DS to be.

NOW I know that it causes harm, but even before I knew that it caused harm I felt horrible about it. I took something from him that he can never have back. That wasn't my choice. It is harmful, and DS's circ has gone horribly wrong, but even if it hadn't I still would never do it to another child. The day it was done I felt sick to my stomach and knew I would never do it to another child. If I had only stopped it before it happened...

CPST and SAHM to DS (4/20/06) and DD (6/13/08)
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