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September 01, 2005



First I totally support the right of anyone to choose to do this, particularly for religious reasons. But, also frankly if it is really something that they feel very psychologically tied into.
(My favourite is when someone is in favour of it, solely so the child will look like Daddy. Oh.)
I don't like it and truly do not see a medical basis for it (as you point out so well). I do want people to be informed and frankly if someone does choose this as an option for their baby, I want them to be there to comfort the child while it happens.
I had to leave the "common" nursery area at the hospital where one of my kids was born because they were just strapping an infant to the body board in order to show a nursing class how circs were done. The parents weren't there and didn't want to be there.
That was much worse, to me, than opting for it in the first place.


I didn't have my son circumcised, either. But when we were in the hospital after he was born, a nurse came in and said, "he's going to be circumcised now"! I said, "No he's not!" And she was very surprised, said baby boys were always circumcised. I'm just glad I was there to prevent it from happening--even after I'd signed all the papers saying I didn't want it done and everything, it was such a matter of course that they just assumed he was scheduled for it.


I was sort of glad Nat was a girl, because before she came I "educated myself" about it along the lines you did and decided against it (we have no religious reasons for doing it, either). I think it would have been a fight with Cole, though, because I think she would have wanted it.


Thanks for a great post. I think it is rather silly to circumcise, if we can call lobbing off parts of the genitalia of defenseless infants silly. I think it is a little talked about but important topic. ps, one of the things they are doing in muslim Africa is showing fathers a video of a little girl being circumcised, and apparently many many many fathers are saying no, because they had never thought about it before, never realized the pain and horror of the child, and once they actually see it with their eyes and imagine their own daughter, they are likely to opt out.

Kristin H.

Thanks, great post! There is a 50% chance this will be something I need to decide on in the near future, and I am glad to have read this beforehand! I am leaning heavily towards your side, I think your decision made a while lotta sense!


Your post is one of the very best I have ever read on why an American mother should opt out of routine infant circumcision. BTW, mothers are a good deal more sensible than men when writing on this tender topic.

Reader, are you a woman who is curious about what it is like to be male and circumcised? Here are two little daydreams. First imagine that the hood of your clitoris has been cut off. For several months, you would be irritated every time you wore trousers, especially jeans. Eventually your glans would toughen up and the sensitivity would fade.

Another daydream. Imagine that your inner lips had been mostly cut off.
Your pee stream would be thinner and straighter, and you would lose some sensation during intercourse. Both operations, while minor, would be quite painful, of course, if performed without local anesthetic, which was always the case for baby boys in the last century, and is still often the case now. Most of all, if these daydreams outrage your feminine dignity, and your desire to have your sexuality and bodily integrity respected, rest assured I am with you all the way and you are entirely normal!

I am a rare bird: an intact American Baby Boomer. I come from an innocent world: I heard the word "circumcision" once before senior high health class. I am not sure if I ever heard the word "foreskin" before meeting my spouse. I have never had any problems with infections or mechanics. Being intact was socially awkward in my younger days, but is no issue at all now and I value my foreskin. Yet no woman ever told me that I was an unusually satisfying lover! It is lips and tongue, not foreskin, that makes for great sex.

Circumcision may reduce STDs and cervical cancer, but only for men who reject traditional sex lives and refuse to use condoms. And never forget that AIDS is far more serious in the circumcised USA than in intact Europe.

I really wish it were universally understood that, if you want to Walk on the Wild Side, to throw Biblical morality overboard, the man has to wear a condom. Sex without a condom should be reserved for marriage. Incidentally, condoms make it impossible for the foreskin to play much of any role in intercourse. Them's the breaks. It does not bother me that some pleasures are rightly reserved for marriage.

I completely agree with what you've said here.I'm a teen and its things like this that are really talked about in my be honest,I'm really somethimes sucks to think there is like nothing you can really do about it.I asked my mother why she did it and she said that the doctors recommended it because it would be easier for me my "first time".I told her "so you scar me for life over the first time?"any circumsized man would say that they would rather be uncircumsized than circumsized.the fact that parents are stupid enough to get talked into this is all mothers out there-dont circumsize your baby boys,think about how they would feel knowing that they have the chance to fully pleasure a woman and they lost it 3 days after their birth.these are one of the things not meant to be dont go off and change parts of a human me its almost considered a sin.

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