I have a friend who just found out she's having a boy (okay, I have two friends and a SIL who are having boys - does this destine me to have a girl? :lol ). As you can see in another thread, I am working on what to say to SIL, and one of the friends I know will circ because she did it to her other son - I'm just not going there with her. But this other friend's dh is adamant about circing, and she doesn't want to. The tricky part is this: I can understand why he's so pro-circ... He was not circ'd as an infant and had infections, yeast issues, etc. all his adult life... and he and his wife couldn't conceive for nearly ten years. Then he got circ'd at age 36, and they were able to conceive their first child, and he hasn't had any more problems from infections. So, from his POV, it makes a lot of sense. Of course, what we don't know is... was he retracted prematurely when he was younger, which led to problems throughout his life? Or is this just some rare instance where he really needed to be circ'd? I can see making the case about "if it ain't broke, don't fix it," meaning they should let their son decide down the road what he wants to do if it gives him problems...
But what kind of info does anybody here have that could help the mother to make her case? It's obviously a very close-to-home situation for them, not just the dh being argumentative because he wants the kid to look like him...
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- 7 Comments
- OK, it makes no sense to me that the circ would have anything to do with their success in conceiving...even if his foreskin were completely non-retractable it's not like sperm would be trapped in there and not get to where they need to go. :scratch
I think maybe the best approach would be that every person is unique, and no one should have preventive surgery because of someone else's medical issues unless there's a clear and compelling reason.
Like, for example, breast cancer -- it makes sense for some women who have the breast cancer gene and a strong family history of breast cancer to have prophylactic mastectomies. But this isn't done at birth, it's done when these women are adults and can make their own informed decisions based on genetic counseling and family history.
It doesn't make sense in almost all other situations to cut off a useful body part before you know it's going to have problems that only surgery can solve. So even though I had a tonsillectomy at age 20 for repeated strep infections, and having the strep infections multiple times yearly sucked, and I haven't had a single one since I had my tonsils out -- I'm not getting my kids tonsillectomies to prevent the same miseries I went through. Because at least so far, neither has ever had a single case of strep -- and there's no guarantee they'll ever have one.
I think it's worth trying to explore with him what his parents were taught about retracting/cleaning, and trying to inform him that his problems may well have been caused by bad medical advice and treatment. You can gather information on proper care of the intact penis and show that for most babies and the men they turn into, if the foreskin is left alone, it isn't problematic. After all, the vast majority of the world's men reproduce just fine and don't suffer from repeated infections, and there's no reason to think their son would be outside the norm.
Looking at it from another perspective, if the mom's parents had been taught to douche her for hygiene and she suffered from repeated yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis, and she was only able to conceive and have a normal life after surgery to say remove her labia, she wouldn't remove her dd's labia at birth because she would know that the labia are important and you don't just cut them off without a true medical indication specific to that person.#1; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:21:00 GMT
- We're not getting the full story from this guy.
It's funny, this man's experience is exactly the same as the Louis XIII (i could be wrong on the numeral there) myth that he had infections and blah blah blah and couldn't conceive a child until he was circ'd. This of course was debunked as a myth and nonsense.#2; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:22:00 GMT
- I had a horrible time with my gallbladder and needed it removed (interestingly could never carry to term before I had it removed but I believe that had more to do with other things and I nearly lost DS at 23 weeks with PTL anyway.) My mother and GM needed their gallbladders out as well. I am way way happier and healthier without my gallbldder, it gave me nothing but grief for years.
So, did I have DS's gallbladder removed at birth?...
I would ask this guy if he's had anyother surgery done. If he's had anything else removed tonsils, appendix, toe nails, whatever point out that he isn't having that surgery done on the baby.
If he's never needed anything else fixed what about his wife?#3; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:23:00 GMT
- Here we go, it's Louis XVI:
It is widely reported that Louis XVI of France could not father children until he was circumcised. Unfortunately for the story, he was already a father well before the alleged operation. Remondino invented this lie in his history of circumcision. It served his need to find historical precedent for circumcision in Europe, to make the ritual seem less alien and more familiar. These were calculated lies without any historical basis. A more scholarly study from France (Le phimosis de Louis XVI (1754-1793) aurait-il t a l'origine de ses difficults sexuelles et de sa fecundit retarde? [Prog Urol. 2002; 12(1):132-7] by G. Androutsos) thoroughly debunked this myth.
http://www.circumstitions.com/Misc.html#4; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:24:00 GMT
- if you want, I could talk to him/them on the phone. I could tell them that I'm from a country where no one is circ'd and I haven't even heard about boys/men having problems in this deppertment. Concidering the fact that even now most of american doctors are ignorant about intact penises it's most likely that he was retracted (most likely many times) which was exactly the cause of his problems.
yulia.#5; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:25:00 GMT
- Thanks everyone... it sounds like the "plan of attack" should be first, asking his mother to find out what kind of care he got as an intact infant... did doctors retract him? Did they tell her she should pull the skin back and scrub it? Did he have repeated infections as a young child? And if so, this may have caused him to continue to have problems through his life. Second, his wife can present the info on the fact that we don't remove body parts when they are healthy just because there may be a problem with it later... I will ask her if either of them have had tosillectomies (sp?), appendectomies, etc. Also, the point that as an adult, the man can then have better anesthesia during the operation, and the skin doesn't have to ripped from the glans. I will talk to her more about it and see what she can do to convince her dh. I know she is also concerned about it interfering with early breastfeeding and bonding...
She did mention maybe they could go home after 24 hours and just not have it done... but I bet some docs will do them less than 24 hours after birth, huh?#6; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:26:00 GMT
- even if she doesn't convince him, she's going to have to stand up for her son. i realize she has some time yet to go the gentle route, but talk to her and let her know that in the end, it is in fact her decision. if she doesn't want it done now, i imagine if she goes through with it she will never forgive herself, and that can be hard to live with. much harder than having a foreskin i would think.
good luck and keep us posted!#7; Mon, 10 Dec 2007 22:27:00 GMT