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#1 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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In my last pregnancy, before we knew I was carrying a girl, we discussed circ. At that time, I knew I did not want to do it, and my DH knew that he did want it. Pretty common story around here.

This time, I'm pregnant again, 10.5 weeks... between pregnancies, DH very begrudgingly said that we could skip it if it was that important to me. Well, of course we will skip it. But I think about what I would do if he remained adamant.

Have marriages broken up over this? I wonder then if the physical harm of circ might be less than the cumulative lifetime harm of an otherwise loving Dad being less in the picture, because mom and dad split over circ.

I am sure many moms cave because they have similar thoughts.

Not exactly sure where I am going with this... thoughts?

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#2 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 11:48 AM
 
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I told my husband that I would end a relationship/marriage over this long before we ever got married or decided to have kids, because I wanted to avoid a situation like what so many posters here described. I feel that circumcision constitutes irreparable harm to the genitals and I would not to want to be in a relationship with anyone that believes in it.

However, for people who don't feel as strongly as I do or felt like they didn't need to bring it up or whatever, I feel that the issue in the relationship is not harming the son's penis vs. the happiness of the marriage, it's whether the partners in the marriage can communicate and respect each other's differences on the issue. It seems to me that it would be relatively simple to say "I'm deeply against it to the point that it would affect my feelings toward you if you tried to force me to have it done or went behind my back and did it, so let's just wait and let him make his own decision when he gets older".

If that didn't work and the argument somehow DID lead to a split, IMO the split wouldn't be over circ, it would be over incompatibility in the area of decision making as a couple. Circ isn't a situation where one parent has to get their way even if they don't agree- the boy can always make the choice to be circed or remain intact when he grows up if that's what he wants.

My husband and I had a discussion like this over vaxing- he's not anti-vax, but when he heard that someone on this board had been through their husband having their child vaxed behind their back, he said he felt it was a divorce-worthy offense, not because of harm to the child, although that was certainly part of it, but because of the DEEP violation of trust and lack of respect it would take for one partner to do that against the wishes of the other.

Intactness is the "default setting" of human beings. It's not like you can order your little guy with foreskin or without. So, to me, I don't see how the pro-circ partner could possibly continue to push for circ against the deeply held beliefs of the anti-circ partner in any sort of respectful or ethical way when we all know the OWNER of the penis can be circed as an adult if he chooses to do so. If I had a partner that was continuing to push circ, at that point I would have a lot of questions about the relationship that would be a lot more about that person's level of respect for me and for our baby than their beliefs about circ.
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#3 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 12:21 PM
 
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I am one of those people who most certainly would have done whatever it took to protect my child from genital cutting. (did not say divorce here because divorce and protection are not the same thing) At first, it looked like it might actually go that way- that things might get just that dire... but my husband did have a change of heart and it never came to that.

a few thoughts though- #1 divorcing a baby's pro-circumcision parent does not necissarily protect the child from genital cutting... that problem does not go away.

#2 I imagine that it's not the actual disagreement that causes the divorce- but the fundamental parting of ways that might bring all the ugly stuff to the surface in a way that simply can't be avoided or put off.

#3- I'm always annoyed by the way this question is tabled against the genital integrity parent for not budging, (and it's almost always mom against the circumcision dad is for it.... and I think most of the time- the mom gives in and the baby is circumcised and the mother supresses the story of her original objection... we hear... "I guess I need to let him have this one because I just don't want to ruin my marriage or deprive my son a full time relationship with his father over this one thing...it's not as important as the rest of it in the BIG picture."

and I almost agree with that- EXCEPT

if that is the case... she is married to a man who would be willing to destroy his family and most probably lose out on a major part of raising his children should it come to a divorce with custody issues... because HE could not face the prospect of raising a son with normal human genitals. HE is the one who is also destroying his family over this!!... it's not just the mom- it's the dad too!
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#4 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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if that is the case... she is married to a man who would be willing to destroy his family and most probably lose out on a major part of raising his children should it come to a divorce with custody issues... because HE could not face the prospect of raising a son with normal human genitals. HE is the one who is also destroying his family over this!!... it's not just the mom- it's the dad too!
I don't think it is because "HE could not face the prospect of raising a son with normal human genitals." I think it is because an accepted fact in his life- something his own loving mother did, many (or all) of his friends had done on themselves and their sone is now being portrayed as not only unecessary, but a horrific human rights violation.

That is a whole lot to ask someone to accept, and a major change of thinking. The majority of people I have known well lack developed critical thinking skills, or the ability to just be objective on a deeply personal topic like this- I don't think it is an issue of bringing dark ugly things to the surface. You are asking a person to grow a great deal, and that is very tough.

It is oversimplification to say 'well, I don't want to be with someone who would circ anyway' when they are immersed in a culture that has never associated anything negative with circumcision before.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#5 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 02:28 PM
 
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If I were married to someone who was vehemently in favor of circumcision despite being faced with all of the information about it and being aware that a son could elect circumcision on his own if he ever wanted it, that would be a deal-breaker for me. I would feel like my spouse was so wrapped up in his own issues that he was desperately in favor of harming our son. And, I would feel he was being overly conventional in a non-critical thinking kind of way, which is an unattractive trait for me.

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#6 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 02:29 PM
 
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But, IRL, 99% of these cases end up with the mother caving and having the son circumcised, because the dad is "the one who has the penis."

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#7 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 03:51 PM
 
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I would take my children and go underground before I'd let them be [redacted] just to appease their father. If I'd married someone who simply refused to let my child keep his bodily integrity, there would be one hell of a legal battle and, if that didn't protect him, we'd vanish. I'd never let my child be [redacted] just so his father didn't have to come to terms with what his own parents had done to him.

It would be heartbreaking but my first and foremost responsibility is to my children's safety, and I take it very, very seriously.

Fortunately, my (circed) DH is a reasonable man with good mental health and very good analytical skills. He doesn't like talking about circumcision, but he acknowledges that it's unnecessary and barbaric, which is good enough for me. Our children will always be left perfectly intact.

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#8 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 04:54 PM
 
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I've talked to one person where the marriage did end...but because mom caved and then resented her husband so much she couldn't even look at him. I think they did counseling for a while. The counselor told her it wasn't a big deal and she needed to get over it.

Most of the time though, I hear of couples arguing a lot but then finally agreeing on something. I hear a LOT of moms say "over my dead body" and their husband's pout for a while but then get over it. Which is what happened with me. My kid's dad actually THANKED me later for standing up to him!
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#9 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 04:57 PM
 
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THAT^

As a parent, my job before ANYthing else is to protect my child from any preventable harm. To (knowingly) not do that would be to fail as a parent and I will NOT just bow down and accept failure to make my spouse happy...

This is a tree on fire with love, but it's still scary since most people think love only looks like one thing instead of the whole world. *
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#10 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 05:03 PM
 
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I would be concerned more than most probably, but i'm in the UK, and it's totally non-routine here. You'd have a hard time getting a circ for no reason, and thus i'd have a REALLY hard time reconciling with it - that my partner went to great lengths to have my son's genitals mutilated...i mean i would restrict or attempt to deny even visitation after leaving!

I would hope any partner i have would always be capable of rational analytical thought, and thus they would see the plain truth that it is unnecessary and harmful, whether or not they survived it themselves.
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#11 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 05:07 PM
 
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If I had an adamantly pro-circ husband, I would not divorce him over it. However, I would also not cave and allow it to be done. If he left me over it, that would be on him and I'd get a court order, if necessary, to prevent him from doing it. If he didn't divorce me over the argument, but took our child to have it done behind my back - that would be a deal breaker for me.
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#12 of 43 Old 11-02-2010, 05:20 PM
 
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Originally Posted by lynsage View Post
I told my husband that I would end a relationship/marriage over this long before we ever got married or decided to have kids, because I wanted to avoid a situation like what so many posters here described. I feel that circ is genital mutilation and I would not to want to be in a relationship with anyone that believes in it.

However, for people who don't feel as strongly as I do or felt like they didn't need to bring it up or whatever, I feel that the issue in the relationship is not harming the son's penis vs. the happiness of the marriage, it's whether the partners in the marriage can communicate and respect each other's differences on the issue. It seems to me that it would be relatively simple to say "I'm deeply against it to the point that it would affect my feelings toward you if you tried to force me to have it done or went behind my back and did it, so let's just wait and let him make his own decision when he gets older".

If that didn't work and the argument somehow DID lead to a split, IMO the split wouldn't be over circ, it would be over incompatibility in the area of decision making as a couple. Circ isn't a situation where one parent has to get their way even if they don't agree- the boy can always make the choice to be circed or remain intact when he grows up if that's what he wants.

My husband and I had a discussion like this over vaxing- he's not anti-vax, but when he heard that someone on this board had been through their husband having their child vaxed behind their back, he said he felt it was a divorce-worthy offense, not because of harm to the child, although that was certainly part of it, but because of the DEEP violation of trust and lack of respect it would take for one partner to do that against the wishes of the other.

Intactness is the "default setting" of human beings. It's not like you can order your little guy with foreskin or without. So, to me, I don't see how the pro-circ partner could possibly continue to push for circ against the deeply held beliefs of the anti-circ partner in any sort of respectful or ethical way when we all know the OWNER of the penis can be circed as an adult if he chooses to do so. If I had a partner that was continuing to push circ, at that point I would have a lot of questions about the relationship that would be a lot more about that person's level of respect for me and for our baby than their beliefs about circ.
I totally agree with what you said especially the bolded. If the marriage brakes up there is more going on than the state of the childs penis.

 
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#13 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 02:07 AM
 
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I would rather get divorced then alter my child's body. It's THEIR body, not an object that parents can haggle over.
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#14 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 03:01 AM
 
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Originally Posted by jeminijad View Post
I don't think it is because "HE could not face the prospect of raising a son with normal human genitals." I think it is because an accepted fact in his life- something his own loving mother did, many (or all) of his friends had done on themselves and their sone is now being portrayed as not only unecessary, but a horrific human rights violation.

That is a whole lot to ask someone to accept, and a major change of thinking. The majority of people I have known well lack developed critical thinking skills, or the ability to just be objective on a deeply personal topic like this- I don't think it is an issue of bringing dark ugly things to the surface. You are asking a person to grow a great deal, and that is very tough.

It is oversimplification to say 'well, I don't want to be with someone who would circ anyway' when they are immersed in a culture that has never associated anything negative with circumcision before.
first off, it is time for people to start associating the negatives of circumcision, with circumcision. if not now, when?? if now you (the collective you -- the mother who is "aware"), who??

secondly, you may be correct that most grown men can't separate their deep, negative emotional associations about having had their own penis cut up as a newborn, from the perceived "need" to justify this by doing the same to their child. and that's exactly why these men NEED women who can see the ILLOGIC of continuing this harmful practice and are strong enough to stand their ground on the issue (yes, let it be a hill to die on).

the men of america need to start keeping their whole penises! anyone who questions why should look up the harm that circumcision causes -- everything from men's deep seated fear of doctors and consequental failure to proect their health with regular checkups... to contributing to our highly violent culture. not to mention diminished sexualilty for life...

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#15 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 08:12 AM
 
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I want to remind everyone of the TCAC forum guidelines:
Quote:
In an effort to minimize language which might alienate those seeking information, we are cautious about using pejorative terms such as abuse, barbarism, mutilation, etc. when routinely discussing circumcision. Let the facts speak for themselves.
Please avoid these terms and please to not directly quote from posts that these terms appear in. Thanks!

 
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#16 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 01:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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first off, it is time for people to start associating the negatives of circumcision, with circumcision. if not now, when?? if now you (the collective you -- the mother who is "aware"), who??
I agree with this. It just doesn't make it any easier on any given mother.

I would love to know how many mothers of circumcised boys did not want to do it, either a little or a lot, but gave in.

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#17 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 02:27 PM
 
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If you look at the Regrets sticky you will see more than a few It has nearly 600 posts and I would guess about half of them are from mom's who gave in and are living with the consequences either their ds having issues or they carry the guilt daily.

 
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#18 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 02:55 PM
 
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I think that if the parents can't agree to leave a son intact, it's better just to default to leaving him intact and he can decide what he wants as an adult.

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#19 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 03:39 PM
 
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I do think it's best to leave the decision up to the person whose body it is - the son.

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If I had an adamantly pro-circ husband, I would not divorce him over it. However, I would also not cave and allow it to be done. If he left me over it, that would be on him and I'd get a court order, if necessary, to prevent him from doing it. If he didn't divorce me over the argument, but took our child to have it done behind my back - that would be a deal breaker for me.
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#20 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 04:01 PM
 
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You can always change you mind an do it, but you can't undo it.

I'll tell you what I wish I had done with DH for DS, make him promise to read some literature before discussing and deciding.

DS is circ. I don't regret the decision or I should say I don't carry the regret because I compromised that it was Dh's decision and he had to watch and hold DS when they did it. BUT

Now I've gotten Dh to read more articles and he is on board with leaving other children intact. This maybe because he thinks this one is a girl, but honestly I think now that he is more informed he is more comfortable and understands I'm not attacking him. He is realizing while walking the walk how uninformed medical providers are. I don't think he truly believed this was the case, but after meeting quite a few...

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#21 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 04:06 PM
 
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I would choose to die on that hill.

We also discussed it before learning that DD would be a girl, and essentially agreed to disagree. If we have a boy some day, he will not be circ'ed. Not going to happen. My child(ren) will ALWAYS come first. I can't see him sacrificing our marriage over it, but if he were that shallow, then good riddance... I know it sounds harsh, but this is my job as a mama--protect the babies at all cost, even to myself.

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#22 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 06:16 PM
 
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If I had an adamantly pro-circ husband, I would not divorce him over it. However, I would also not cave and allow it to be done. If he left me over it, that would be on him and I'd get a court order, if necessary, to prevent him from doing it. If he didn't divorce me over the argument, but took our child to have it done behind my back - that would be a deal breaker for me.
This is what I'd do too. If I "let" my dh circ a son (if we had one), I could never look at myself or him the same way again. The marriage would be dead anyway, regardless of whether we divorced. Fortunately my dh agrees that circ is weird.

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#23 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 08:10 PM
 
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I've wondered about this-- what would I do, in that situation. When we found out DS was a boy, I brought it up with DH the same day. At that time, I didn't know too much, but I'd been around here on MDC long enough to realize I needed to learn more. DH had no idea what he thought about it, either. So we went and researched it together, and within a day, DH had made up his mind: "Hell no," was his decision.

It was watching a video of the procedure being done that swayed him. DH is not a particularly rational man-- he tends to act impulsively, do things off the cuff based on his emotional responses, rather than thinking things through. He's also not the type to research things-- that's always been my role. But he's very compassionate, and understands babies, and he knew as soon as he saw how that baby in the video SCREAMED that this wasn't something he was going to let anybody do to his child.

So I'm really glad that it didn't come to that, for me-- that I would have to choose between my DH and my DS. Because I don't think DH would win.

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#24 of 43 Old 11-03-2010, 09:49 PM
 
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If someone were adamantly opposed, what reason is good enough to circ to sway the person? I mean, what reasons are really, truly valid enough to do it when one person is firmly saying "no"? If I were in this situation, I wouldn't consent. Period. And, I put my partnership before my children in a lot of ways, but I simply wouldn't circ because my partner wanted it. It's the same way I wouldn't formula feed simply because my partner wanted me to.

I don't really understand the word "compromise" in relation to circumcision and I'm not even a hardcore intactivist.
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#25 of 43 Old 11-04-2010, 12:32 AM
 
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This would definitely be a hill to die on for me.

It doesn't matter what the father thinks. It doesn't matter what the mother thinks.

The ONLY person whose opinion matters is the adult that the baby will grow to be. And the only way to keep his options open is to leave his penis alone.

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#26 of 43 Old 11-04-2010, 12:36 AM
 
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I was informed about circumcision as soon as I learned what it was as a teen. It was instinctively and viscerally wrong to me to amputate a part of a healthy normal baby.
I knew that I would not ever consent to circumcision and because of this, I had the conversation with my dh quite early into our dating and getting to know each other. His response to "What do you think about circumcision?" was "Hell no! I'd never do that to a child and frankly, I'd like mine back." Due to my inate reaction to the knowledge of circumcision and my husband's equally instinctive reaction, it was not an issue with us.
If I had not been informed prior to marriage and children and I became informed and had to convince my partner against it, I would go to what ever lengths necessary to protect the bodily integrity of my child. I would also go to great lengths to preserve the relationship so that our child could have both parents in the household together but never at the expense of his foreskin.

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#27 of 43 Old 11-04-2010, 10:10 AM
 
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I would not compromise on the circ issue, but also would not end the marriage over it- that would be him leaving and therefore him ending the marriage. I certainly wouldn't bend to circ my child over a threat to divorce me if I didn't do it. Besides, he couldn't forcefully have our child circ'd anyhow, doesn't the mother have to be the one to consent? If he had say, given consent while I slept off birthing our child, knowing how strongly I was against it, there would be SERIOUS problems in the marriage. Anyhow, I see it like this: if my dh wanted me to get a boob job and I refused whose fault would it be if the marriage broke up?? HIS!

Thankfully, this is all conjecture in our case. When I first learned the ugly truth about circ I was convinced I was going to have a big fight on our hands. Dh walked in the door from work and was greeted by an anxious crying pregnant woman (who didn't even know the sex yet, but was rightly guessing boy), and I immediately started in on him with the facts, dragging him to the computer to watch a video of circ. He was shocked and horrified, couldn't watch more than a few seconds of the video and was in full agreement with me that any sons of ours would be left as nature intended. It has been competely a non issue ever since.

Jewels & Jon (Married 11+ yrs)- Homeschooling, No Circ, BF, CD Mama to:
Alex 8 Gabby 6 (Homeborn!) Gideon 2.... chickens, ducks, cats and a dog
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#28 of 43 Old 11-04-2010, 04:10 PM
 
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It is my main hill to die on.

I told dh that I would divorce him before the baby was born and not put his name on the birth certificate before I would let the baby be circumcised. My seriousness made dh read about it and now he is an intactivist!

DS1 2004 ~ DS2 2005 ~ DD1 2008 ~ DS3 2010 ~ DD2 due Dec. 2014
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#29 of 43 Old 11-04-2010, 10:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MrsJewelsRae View Post
I would not compromise on the circ issue, but also would not end the marriage over it- that would be him leaving and therefore him ending the marriage. I certainly wouldn't bend to circ my child over a threat to divorce me if I didn't do it. Besides, he couldn't forcefully have our child circ'd anyhow, doesn't the mother have to be the one to consent? If he had say, given consent while I slept off birthing our child, knowing how strongly I was against it, there would be SERIOUS problems in the marriage. Anyhow, I see it like this: if my dh wanted me to get a boob job and I refused whose fault would it be if the marriage broke up?? HIS!

Thankfully, this is all conjecture in our case. When I first learned the ugly truth about circ I was convinced I was going to have a big fight on our hands. Dh walked in the door from work and was greeted by an anxious crying pregnant woman (who didn't even know the sex yet, but was rightly guessing boy), and I immediately started in on him with the facts, dragging him to the computer to watch a video of circ. He was shocked and horrified, couldn't watch more than a few seconds of the video and was in full agreement with me that any sons of ours would be left as nature intended. It has been competely a non issue ever since.

To the Bolded:
Yes in the hospital the mom has to sign unless she is not able to do so. But once you leave the hospital then your dh can take the baby to any ped to have it done without mom being there to consent.

 
SAHMlady.gifread.giflovin' trekkie.giffan intactivist.gifwinner.jpg to loveeyes.gifenergy.gifDD 10/00 & superhero.gifmoon.gifDS 10/04 ribbonpb.gifIf your ds is intact, keep him safe, visit the Case Against Circ forumnocirc.gifCirc, a personal choice, Your sonsyes.gifbrokenheart.gif11/98brokenheart.gif6/99ribbonbrown.gifanti-tobaccoribbonyellow.gifThyroid cancer survivor. With cat.gif& goldfish.gif & (Boxer)dog2.gif wishing 4 whale.gif&ribbonwhite.gifsigncirc1.gifselectivevax.gifdelayedvax.gif

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#30 of 43 Old 11-05-2010, 12:50 AM
 
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To the Bolded:
Yes in the hospital the mom has to sign unless she is not able to do so. But once you leave the hospital then your dh can take the baby to any ped to have it done without mom being there to consent.
I think this may vary from state to state or even hospital to hospital. Every time I refused something for DD in our hospital, they immediately tried to get DH alone to convince him to sign the form and consent. Fortunately we were both on the same page about everything. He was empowered to sign for whatever he wanted to in the asylum where DD was born though

Victim of Birth Rape & Coerced ribboncesarean.gifUnnecesareanribboncesarean.gif What makes people think they can cut up someone else's genitals? nocirc.gif
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