I think I'm going to vomit- my sister is going to circumcise my nephew - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 30 Old 03-23-2010, 10:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My younger sister is 20, and I found out today that she plans on circumcising my nephew when he is born.

I thought I was is the clear, because she has been anti-circumcision for YEARS! I educated her when she was 16, and she's been adament that no sons or her would ever go through it. Until she met, and got pregnant by her controlling boyfriend. He is demanding the baby to be circed, and she is going along with it. He has told her he will not be involved in any way if she doesn't, and she's so desperate to have him around that she's going to do this to her baby SHE KNOWS BETTER! She has seen the videos, read the research, and she's ignoring everything.

Everyone in my life thinks I'm crazy for not wanting to talk to her, but I feel like vomiting every time I think of her baby going through that for no reason at all. I truly feel that if she goes through with this I won't be able to speak to her ever again. I view it as child abuse, especially when you know what it entails, and to k nowingly subject your child t it is beyond my reasoning.

I guess I just need validation because everyone else thinks I'm nutso.

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#2 of 30 Old 03-23-2010, 10:41 PM
 
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I am so sorry you are going through this right now. It seems like there are a lot deeper issues for your sister than the circ though (as serious as this is). Have you talked to her about her partner or, perhaps, suggested counseling? If she was anti-circ before, I'm sure she is not feeling too good about this right now and probably needs lots of support and help possibly bringing baby's dad around, if that's possible. I, personally, would think that a guy who is willing to leave his baby's mother over this issue won't stick around for long. That is JMO. But maybe you could gently remind her that this is her child, who will be in her life forever, no matter what, and a partner who is showing some negative characteristics, and may not be her partner forever (even though he will be the baby's father forever obviously)?

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#3 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 12:42 AM
 
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I can really relate to your frustration, my SIL recently did the same thing. I bet most of us folks who are opposed to the idea of circumcision, or at least circumcision of a newborn baby w/o his consent, have similar experiences of watching friends and family members choose this route. I totally share your frustrations fwiw...
That said, I think that you really want to be careful to not let this decision damage your relationship with your sister any further. None of us are perfect, and we'll all make some pretty bad choices here and there in our life, your sister very well may need your support (especially considering your opinion of the health of her relationship). I've found that I pretty much just cannot broach that topic with my SIL, who I've always really had a positive relationship with in most other respects. I'd try and offer her some love and support of the kind only a sister can, and perhaps she'll think twice about her BF being so pushy about this issue. If not, then I think all you can do is shake your head sigh... we can't choose our siblings and we're sort of stuck with the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Hang in there, she probably needs you very much.
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#4 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 01:02 AM
 
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I'm so sorry, OP. My sister made the same choice for my nephew when he was born a few months ago. She watched a real live circ in nursing school, which she said made her "almost pass out," and still decided this was what was going to happen when he was born.

I don't live near her anyway, but for the rest of her pregnancy (once I learned of her intentions) we stopped talking on the phone altogether and I didn't visit over the holidays when I otherwise would have. I'm not claiming this was the best way to handle it, but I honestly couldn't stand talking to her knowing what was going to happen. It has certainly damaged our relationship. My view of her has simply changed forever and I can't pretend otherwise.

Best of luck to you as you face this, and to your innocent nephew as well. As a PP said, it sounds like your sister may be more in need of support than mine was, so that may be another factor to consider when deciding how to handle this situation.

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#5 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 01:14 AM
 
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My brother and SIL have made it clear that any nephew of mine will be circ'd, and if I dwell on it, I do get sad. However, I value my relationship with my brother and don't want to alienate them, ruining my relationship with my beloved nieces, so I've come to terms with it. There's nothing I can do about it (just like right now, there's nothing YOU can do), so the decision comes down to if you want to further alienate your sister, or can you bite your tongue and maintain your relationship with your sister (and ultimately your nephew).

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#6 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 01:14 AM
 
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Originally Posted by StephM76 View Post
My younger sister is 20, and I found out today that she plans on circumcising my nephew when he is born.

I thought I was is the clear, because she has been anti-circumcision for YEARS! I educated her when she was 16, and she's been adament that no sons or her would ever go through it. Until she met, and got pregnant by her controlling boyfriend. He is demanding the baby to be circed, and she is going along with it. He has told her he will not be involved in any way if she doesn't, and she's so desperate to have him around that she's going to do this to her baby SHE KNOWS BETTER! She has seen the videos, read the research, and she's ignoring everything.

Everyone in my life thinks I'm crazy for not wanting to talk to her, but I feel like vomiting every time I think of her baby going through that for no reason at all. I truly feel that if she goes through with this I won't be able to speak to her ever again. I view it as child abuse, especially when you know what it entails, and to k nowingly subject your child t it is beyond my reasoning.

I guess I just need validation because everyone else thinks I'm nutso.
Isn't it interesting that people think you're nuts for caring so much about what happens to your nephew's penis, but no one blinks an eye at his father threatening to completely abandon his unborn son unless he has his genitals surgically altered? Social conditioning is really something, I tell ya....
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#7 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 01:33 AM
 
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Originally Posted by StephM76 View Post
My younger sister is 20, and I found out today that she plans on circumcising my nephew when he is born.

I thought I was is the clear, because she has been anti-circumcision for YEARS! I educated her when she was 16, and she's been adament that no sons or her would ever go through it. Until she met, and got pregnant by her controlling boyfriend. He is demanding the baby to be circed, and she is going along with it. He has told her he will not be involved in any way if she doesn't, and she's so desperate to have him around that she's going to do this to her baby SHE KNOWS BETTER! She has seen the videos, read the research, and she's ignoring everything.

Everyone in my life thinks I'm crazy for not wanting to talk to her, but I feel like vomiting every time I think of her baby going through that for no reason at all. I truly feel that if she goes through with this I won't be able to speak to her ever again. I view it as child abuse, especially when you know what it entails, and to k nowingly subject your child t it is beyond my reasoning.

I guess I just need validation because everyone else thinks I'm nutso.


Ugggghhh. I'm so sorry.

The only thing I can think to suggest is to force yourself to maintain your relationship with her...and sneakily try to get to the boyfriend before the baby is born.

If you can't get through, at least you tried...

At least you can continue your relationship with your sister, damaged as it may be, and go on to have a relationship with your nephew. Just like he didn't ask to be circumcised, he also isn't asking to be alienated by his loving aunt.

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#8 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 02:05 AM
 
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Eugh, I'm really sorry. I'm close to my sisters and can't imagine how awful it would feel to know one of them was going to circ. If your sister's a bullied intactivist, she'll probably regret circing forever - so I think it's definitely worth fighting for. Remind her why she used to be anti-circ - her BF may have worn her down until she's forgotten the ethical and medical arguments, so reminding her might strengthen her resolve.

Does she live near you? Any chance you can offer her a place to live if her BF skips out?

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#9 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 02:22 AM
 
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yeah, don't give up hope. it's not a done deal yet, and -- who knows -- the guy sounds like a real flake, maybe they will break up before the baby is born.

maybe you can still talk her into not doing it. let her know that you're on HER side and you will support her REFUSING to sign for the procedure. (it's the mom's signature that is needed to do the circ. in the hospital on a newborn baby... the dad can take the child in at another time to have it done, but if you want it done during the hospital stay, the mom MUST consent.)

if i were in your shoes, i'd stay real close to my sister at this critical juncture, tell her she doesn't have to make any decisions yet. (in fact, there is no "decision" to make at all if you refuse to circumcise. the "decision" as it were is to HAVE the surgery).

try to get your sister to see that if the guy is going to hold this out as a "requirement" for his involvement and she goes along with it, what's next?

those two aren't going to stay together "forever" are they? in reality?

and yet she will have to account to her son forever.

keep trying to get through to her. be super super nice about it, try to get on her side by understanding where she is coming from (ie, she's scared, scared she is going to have to be alone, maybe scared of the boyfriend and his withdrawl of support, etc.) and then chisel away at why she doesn't need to be so scared, and keep your eyes on the prize. maybe just maybe she will change her mind. keep us posted!!

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#10 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 07:01 AM
 
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Isn't it interesting that people think you're nuts for caring so much about what happens to your nephew's penis, but no one blinks an eye at his father threatening to completely abandon his unborn son unless he has his genitals surgically altered? Social conditioning is really something, I tell ya....
Aha.

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#11 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 12:37 PM
 
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I, personally, would think that a guy who is willing to leave his baby's mother over this issue won't stick around for long.
This. I feel for you and your sister. My mother has been with several controling men like this. This guy is such bad news if he's using abandonment of his son as a bargaining chip to get her to agree to cut off a piece of their son's penis.

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#12 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 03:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone.

Just talking to them together it is so obvious that he if emotionally abusive. She is scared to say anything around him. He is unwilling to listen to any reason to eave his baby intact. This is another way of breaking her and controlling her.

When I spoke to her seperately, she told me she doesn't want this, but arguing with him is "too much for her to handle"

So I changed my tactics, and asked him if he'd be willing to do it in the least painful way possible. He agreed to consider allowing the baby to stay intact until 6 months, and then get circed by a urologist under anesthesia. I'm hoping that he'll agree to that, because I think he'll be long gone by the 6 month mark and she'll be able to leave her baby alone.

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#13 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 03:42 PM
 
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I'm so sorry your family is going through this. I tend to think he won't stick around anyway, since he is blackmailing your sister. At least I hope he doesn't for both their sakes.
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#14 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 03:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by KaylaBeanie View Post
My brother and SIL have made it clear that any nephew of mine will be circ'd, and if I dwell on it, I do get sad. However, I value my relationship with my brother and don't want to alienate them, ruining my relationship with my beloved nieces, so I've come to terms with it. There's nothing I can do about it (just like right now, there's nothing YOU can do), so the decision comes down to if you want to further alienate your sister, or can you bite your tongue and maintain your relationship with your sister (and ultimately your nephew).
Instead of going along with the guy that is emotionally abusing her sister with blackmail it would be much better to help get her out of the relationship all together. The OPs sister is pro intact and being blackmailed. She doesn't want to circ her son, unlike your brother.
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#15 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 03:48 PM
 
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In that case maybe you're putting all your effort in the wrong direction. Perhaps rather than working on either one of them about the circ decision you may want to start working on helping your sister get some help in leaving him. If he's this controlling, or even abusive as you suggest, then the loss of his foreskin may not be the biggest issue this child (or your sister) will have to deal with . This sounds like a poor environment for a child to grow up with, so you could try to appeal to your sisters maternal/protective instincts that she may not want this man to the father to her child. Help her to find the strength, courage, and clarity to move on and leave him if he's that bad. Or the other tactic might be to make it really obvious to him that he's going to be miserable if he's stuck with you and the rest of your family as his inlaws (ok, mostly kidding there... well sort of kidding)
Good luck,
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#16 of 30 Old 03-24-2010, 09:33 PM
 
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He is only a boyfreind? He has no legal standing for this decision. He sounds manipulative and potentially abusive. He is not making an argument that holds any water.

She should put her foot down. If he is worth keeping in the relationship. then he wil change his mind and help her after her intact baby is born. If not, she will then know he is not worth it and she can leave him.

She should not bargain over her son's body. And you should not bargain this way either.

His body, his decision.

Best wishes for your sister, sound like the wrong partner for her.

Regards
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#17 of 30 Old 03-25-2010, 02:27 AM
 
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(((Hugs)))
That is the hardest for me. I can honestly handle it when mamas circ because of misinformation, or social conditioning, or belief system, but I have such trouble handling it when they bow to family/partner pressure. It is sooo sad, because they still have to sign! And to know that they are bullied into choosing family/partner over what they believe is best for their LO is such a heartbreaker!!!
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#18 of 30 Old 03-25-2010, 06:59 PM
 
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I know the feeling. If my siblings circ'd any future nephews of mine I will feel sick to my stomach. I agree with pps. He sounds manipulative. She doesn't owe him anything. My DH said he would never change any diapers if our boys kept their foreskin. He has changed just as many diapers as me maybe more. Scare tactics. She needs to be strong in what she believes. He will stay or leave but the most important element is that perfect boy. Help her see that.

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#19 of 30 Old 03-26-2010, 02:56 AM
 
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Instead of going along with the guy that is emotionally abusing her sister with blackmail it would be much better to help get her out of the relationship all together. The OPs sister is pro intact and being blackmailed. She doesn't want to circ her son, unlike your brother.
If she's willing to stick around and defend a guy who is THIS emotionally manipulative, there is no way the OP can get her out of the relationship. As much as it absolutely sucks, she can press the issue (and VERY likely fail, if we're being totally frank) or she can take the hard road and suck it up, ultimately being there down the road when (hopefully) the guy bails and the sister is devastated for her son, and upset that she stuck around in such an emotionally abusive relationship.

One of my best friends has been emotionally abused by her dad for her entire life, but she sticks around because he's her dad and she loves him. No amount of reason will get through to her. With romantic relationships, that is amplified. It in no way excuses what she is allowing to be done to her son, but this isn't a normal situation we're talking about here, and if the OP distances herself from her sister, that could have negative consequences down the road, and ultimately lead to her sticking around this guy longer.

OP, hopefully they follow through with waiting six months! It would be much more expensive which will ideally deter them, and hopefully they'll realize how easy and clean intact really is. If all else fails, at the very least your poor nephew would get adequate anesthesia and (hopefully) pain relief afterward. That's more than most circ'd boys can say But here's keeping fingers crossed that he stays intact (whether by this dirtbag boyfriend bailing, or waiting 6 months and then deciding it's not worth it).

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#20 of 30 Old 03-26-2010, 04:40 AM
 
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OP, hopefully they follow through with waiting six months! It would be much more expensive which will ideally deter them, and hopefully they'll realize how easy and clean intact really is. If all else fails, at the very least your poor nephew would get adequate anesthesia and (hopefully) pain relief afterward. That's more than most circ'd boys can say But here's keeping fingers crossed that he stays intact (whether by this dirtbag boyfriend bailing, or waiting 6 months and then deciding it's not worth it).

If this guy sticks around push the six month deal hard because lots of insurance co's no longer cover RIC and without a VALID medical reason they almost certainly will not cover it on a 6 month old.It is way more expensive than regular newborn circ.Unless this boyfriend wants it so bad he's willing to pay about $6,000+ out of pocket for it.
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#21 of 30 Old 03-26-2010, 05:12 AM
 
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It is so funny that guys would WANT to see their LO's glans! I consider it insanely private/intimate, and DH, who was initially ambivalent about Circ agrees! We were both agreeing tonight that if DS were not intact we would have to have him covered up 24/7 because we would both feel like it was not right for us to be looking upon a private internal organ like that. We feel like the foreskin gives DS that much more privacy, which you would think dads would want between themselves and their sons.
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#22 of 30 Old 03-26-2010, 11:50 AM
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I know its a serious subject for you but I was LOL when I saw the title of this thread. My first thought was, "I hope she washes her hands first!"
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#23 of 30 Old 03-30-2010, 02:03 AM
 
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I feel sorry for both the mom and the baby. This sounds like abuse to me, pure and simple. I would worry about what else he will threaten to leave her over.

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#24 of 30 Old 03-30-2010, 02:12 AM
 
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wow, your poor sister. being in an abusive relationship can be very scary. i wonder what else he has threatened. emotional abuse can easily turn physical. i would want to get her out of there. how sick is it that he uses his son's penis as leverage to get her to do what he wants?
maybe he will be gone before the baby even comes. yuck.

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#25 of 30 Old 03-30-2010, 09:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Unfortunately every relationship she has been in is physically or emotionally abusive. I offered her a place in my house but she refuses to leave him. He's isolated her from all of her friends and now h's slowly isolating her from her family. I feel like him pushing this isssue is just a test to see how far he can make her go when she doesn't want to

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#26 of 30 Old 03-30-2010, 01:45 PM
 
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Unfortunately every relationship she has been in is physically or emotionally abusive. I offered her a place in my house but she refuses to leave him. He's isolated her from all of her friends and now h's slowly isolating her from her family. I feel like him pushing this isssue is just a test to see how far he can make her go when she doesn't want to
I'm really sorry to hear this . Sounds like she need counseling and emotional support badly herself. Perhaps trying the angle of asking her what she would do if it was the other way around; if she knew that you were in an abusive relationship, would she let it happen or intervene? While it's probably been said already, it also might help to keep reminding her that she will now have the child's health and happiness as her responsibility too; if not for herself, then at least for the sake of the child DUMP HIM. Don't know, but I wish you luck in your role as her sister, and soon to be Aunt.
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#27 of 30 Old 03-30-2010, 02:53 PM
 
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Ugh. I know how you feel. My sister circed my twin nephews, who are now 15 months old. She's a nurse, so that made it all the more surprising, for some reason. Anyway, I knew it wasn't something within my power to change at the time. All I know is that I didn't want anything to affect my bond with my nephews. I do feel sad every time I see them naked, and I wouldn't change their diapers until they were a year old. I love them dearly, and they're just the sweetest little things.

It has opened up the opportunity to talk to my own children about circ, though. My dd is 8 and my ds is 5, and they like to take a bath with their little cousins. They've both asked about why their penises look different. I tell them the truth. They're shocked that parents would allow a doctor to do that to their baby.

That said, I would have a heart-to-heart talk with your sister and express your concerns about her partner's blackmail. She'll really need your support if (and I think it's a good possibility) things fall apart with him in the future. I'd straight out ask her how she would feel if he jumped ship and she'd done something to hurt her baby because of him.
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#28 of 30 Old 03-31-2010, 11:07 AM
 
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Your sister needs you!!! She's being emotionally abused, and thats a terrible thing. I suggest you let her know that anytime, day or night, she can come to you if she needs to run.

And, if her bf is being successful at controlling and manipulating her, he will stick around. She's going to have to be really strong to get away from him. She can do it, its been done (I've done it) but its really hard - and without family support I probably would have lost my son (luckily for me, circ wasn't something my ex chose to be controlling about, and my son is intact). Circumcised nephew or not, your sister needs you right now. Do not argue about this with her!! Instead be as supportive as you can.
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#29 of 30 Old 03-31-2010, 03:11 PM
 
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Your sister needs you!!! She's being emotionally abused, and thats a terrible thing. I suggest you let her know that anytime, day or night, she can come to you if she needs to run.

And, if her bf is being successful at controlling and manipulating her, he will stick around. She's going to have to be really strong to get away from him. She can do it, its been done (I've done it) but its really hard - and without family support I probably would have lost my son (luckily for me, circ wasn't something my ex chose to be controlling about, and my son is intact). Circumcised nephew or not, your sister needs you right now. Do not argue about this with her!! Instead be as supportive as you can.
Ditto above, minus the personal experience. As terrible as circumcision is for your nephew, the best way to help him right now is to help her. If/when she's ready, help her.
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#30 of 30 Old 04-02-2010, 01:30 AM
 
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While agree that this probably isn't a very healthy relationship for your sister to be in, what about sending the Penn and Teller Bullsh.. circumcision video for the boyfriend to watch? Maybe that episode might change his mind.

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