Mothering Forum banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,048 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
...what do you say to them about not circumcising any other sons? Unfortunately I let my husband make the decision with ds, and didn't do my research, but after seeing what they do, I certainly won't do it to any future sons. How awful.<br><br>
But anyway, I was wondering how you approached the subject with your circumcized sons...I won't want to make ds feel badly about his body or anything, or that we care about the other sons more and hurt him but don't want to hurt them...<br><br>
Any other babies are still awhile off, but I'm already thinking about it. Anyone with experience have advice?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
555 Posts
When the time comes if/when we have another son I'll just explain to him that when we had him we thought it needed to be done but we learned later on that it's not true so we didn't have it done to ds2. I'm sure he'll ask because he'll be older if we have another boy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,757 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>GoodMomma</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8170224"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">When the time comes if/when we have another son I'll just explain to him that when we had him we thought it needed to be done but we learned later on that it's not true so we didn't have it done to ds2. I'm sure he'll ask because he'll be older if we have another boy.</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">: I don't have a circumcised son, but that's the approach that I took with my mom who circumcised my brothers. I told her that I knew that when my brothers were born that she thought it was healthier/better/etc, but that now there is plenty of evidence to show that it's completely unnecessary. I plan to tell my brothers the same thing if they ask about their future nephews. I'm much older than they are and we want a large family so I should have at least one son before they even think about getting married let alone having children.<br><br>
My mom is totally on board with us not circumcising her future grandsons <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> I think it's partially because I took that approach with her... I didn't attack her decision because I know she didn't know any better (based on things that she's told me in the past) and I just pointed out that there are many things that people used to think were best and now we know they are not <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"><br><br>
love and peace. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,578 Posts
My husband and I talked obsessively about this while I was pregnant with number two. And, eventually, my oldest did bring it up. Basically, I told him the absolute truth. Then I told him that when I saw how much I had allow the doctor to hurt him, I swore I would never allow something so wrong to happen to any of my other sons. I apologized to him, and we moved forward. He mentions it sometimes, even now. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,770 Posts
I think you have to walk a fine line.<br><br>
On the one hand, you don't want him to feel negatively about his body too early, before he's mature enough to handle it. And when he's young, you shouldn't over-explain and you shouldn't discharge any grief and guilt you have on him -- your emotions shouldn't overwhelm him. I think keeping it simple, along the lines 'we thought it was necessary and the doctors told us it was, but then we learned better by the time your brother came along' is enough.<br><br>
On the other hand, when he's older (I'm thinking teen or later here, when he's mature enough) -- you need to let him know that circumcision is harmful. For two reasons -- first, so that you can point him in the direction of restoration information for him to pursue if he wants to; and second, so he won't circumcise his own children to look like daddy.<br><br>
It's a hard thing, but if the cycle of violence is going to stop, circumcised men and boys have to be brought into the picture, not kept in the dark so that their feelings aren't hurt.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,530 Posts
Lexmas, your description is exactly what we did and have considered. We circumcised son #1 (age 5) because, to be honest, we just didn't have any information to the contrary and "to like like daddy" seemed good enough. We left son #2 (age 2) intact and that time made a truly informed choice.<br><br>
I think, first of all, that a lot of people assume boys do a lot more penis comparing at a young age than they actually do, or that they're excrutiatingly perceptive in their analysis, lol. My boys take a bath together every night (well, ok, not EVERY night lol) for 2 years and are naked in the backyard and ds1 has often seen me change ds2's diaper, and never once has either of them noticed anything. Furthermore, dd (age 5) bathes with her brothers all the time (they all still bathe together... no self-consciousness yet) and she notices EVERYTHING and is always pointing out this or that and she's never noticed either. Son #1's penis looks a fair amount different than son #2's because he's twice his age, kwim? It's bigger. That's the most obvious difference. Just like comparing penises to daddy is going to produce a lot more differences than "it's missing this flap of skin on the tip"... i.e., um let's see, daddy's is a lot bigger and has all this hair for starters. That's a lot more noticeable to children, kwim?!<br><br>
I do not allow conversations about circumcision in front my children but that has nothing to do with our situation. Like if we go to AP/NFL playdates in our area and some moms are talking about it or if a new mom is talking about circ care, I do not let dd or ds hear it - most people having these discussions use extremely graphic language and terms like "butchering" and "cutting off" and "pain" and it's just waaaaaay to scary and bizarre to my little kids to hear about it. I think it's just flat out inappropriate to talk about the pros and cons of circumcision with them. Once they're (a lot) older and can grasp what it entails, but not as little boys. They can be taught to say anything, you know? You can have a 3 year-old saying "I'm intact the way G*d created me" or whatever but that doesn't mean he has a clue what he's talking about.<br><br>
When the time comes - and I expect this would coincide with when I would feel my son were capable of informed consent himself (i.e., fully and totally able to grasp pros and cons of any medical procedure and able to make a decision for himself) - that we will talk to him about it. I do not have any plan to unload my crap on him... even tell him that I feel guilty about it (which to be honest, I don't) or that I would have done it differently if I could go back and change it. We will just be pretty open and honest about it, namely, that we made the best decision we could given the information we had, and a few years later when his brother was born, things were different and that information changed and we made a different decision. As he gets even older (I'm talking adulthood here... but before he is married much less expecting a baby), I'm sure we will have many conversations about routine infant circumcision and will go into more detail about why he was circ'd but his brother wasn't, making certain he understands.<br><br>
If they notice beforehand, or if some child notices and says something, I will say something nonchalant but true, such as "all penises are different" <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"> and will certainly not launch into a big explanation.<br><br>
All in all, I have found it to be SO MUCH LESS of a big deal than I was worried about. Dh doesn't view son #2 (intact) any differently, it's just how he looks, and he's proud of him and teaches him to respect his body just as he does with son #1 (circ'd). Even my parents - mainstream poster children - have totally forgotten about it, my mom changes ds2's diaper (yes, she knows not to retract) and it's no big deal. I think dh's and my attitude, which was basically, this is our decision and we've made it now back off (but nicely <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> ),has helped... we do NOT communicate to people that we are hemming and hawing or regret anything or feel guilty or whatever. It's just, hey, it is what it is and here's why, now let's move on.<br><br>
OK so this is the longest post ever lol. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/blahblah.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="blah blah"> But I hope this has helped allay your fears a little bit. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,684 Posts
Hi, lexmas. I'm in the position of having circ'ed ds1 and leaving ds2 intact.<br>
DS1 asked about the difference abuot a year ago (he was 5). I think the most important things are not to scare the child with too much detail, and not to get overly emotional about it (because you don't want your child to think there's something wrong with him). Here's how our ocnversation went (to the best of my recollection):<br><br><i>(in the tub)</i><br>
DS1: Hey, Mom, how come my penis looks like this and Ds2's penis looks like that?<br><i>(My heart stopped and I took a minute to start breathing again and collect my thoughts)</i><br>
Me: Well, in this country, a lot of people think that when a baby is born, it's a good idea to cut off that part of his penis, and when you were born, everyone we know thought it was a good idea, so we let the doctor do that to you. But when I was pregnant with your brother, I learned that you don't have to do that, that it's better to leave it alone. So we didn't let tham do that to him.<br>
DS1: You mean I don't have the whole thing?<br>
Me: You have the whole thing except that part.<br>
DS1: I want that part, too.<br>
Me: I know. I'm sorry. But the good news is, you're both perfect. DS2 is perfect, and you're perfect.<br>
DS1: But, Mom, that hurt me! That hurt even more than being born! There was all this goopy jelly.<br>
Me: I know. I'm sorry. We loved you very much and we really thought we were doing what was best for you.<br>
DS1: Mom, if you ever have another baby, please, don't do that to the baby.<br>
Me: Oh, I won't I promise.<br>
DS1: Good!<br>
Me: I even tell other pregnant moms that they don't have to do it.<br>
Ds1: Good.<br>
(Then they went back to playing, and they have not brought it up again. DS1 does not seem to be dwelling on it or even to have given it another thought.)<br><br>
You don't have to convince kids that circumcision is wrong. They know it intuitively. You have to be <i>taught</i> that it's okay to cut off a piece of a baby's genitals.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,832 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lexmas</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8170191"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">...what do you say to them about not circumcising any other sons? Unfortunately I let my husband make the decision with ds, and didn't do my research, but after seeing what they do, I certainly won't do it to any future sons. How awful.<br><br>
But anyway, I was wondering how you approached the subject with your circumcized sons...I won't want to make ds feel badly about his body or anything, or that we care about the other sons more and hurt him but don't want to hurt them...<br><br>
Any other babies are still awhile off, but I'm already thinking about it. Anyone with experience have advice?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
My son is intact, but if he weren't I'd definitely be gentle with him when he is a kid (just would say that I thought it was a good idea, but now I know that it wasn't, that it was unnecessary and that I'm sorry that I hurt him). BUT when he's older (about 18) I'd absolutely tell him the whole blunt truth. I would have told him what a horrible mistake I made and that I felt overwhelming guilt every day of my life because of that (which I'm sure I would). I'd make absolutely sure that he fully understands what circ means and would NEVER circ his sons in order to "match the daddy". I know that much that if I were to start this circle of mutilation I’d be the one to finish it whatever it takes even if my son learns how much I failed him!<br>
yulia.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
31,346 Posts
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> superpickle Thanks for sharing that, you did great!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,684 Posts
Thank you so much, Arduinna! That means a lot to me. I was really nervous. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,350 Posts
That was very well done, Super Pickle, and I'm glad the whole conversation (actually, education that plants seeds, but to ds1, an answer to a question he had ). Bravo to you and I'm sure you'll do well, to, lexmas.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top