Genital Integrity is a basic human right.

A educational blog about routine infant circumcision and intactivism.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

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Don’t want to circ, but partner does?

Here's a great overview article

A good article for insight into how DH may be feeling

This is a good article to print out and share with your DH, from Men's Health magazine.

Some mom's also have good luck with sharing a video with their DH:

Video 1

Video 2

Video 3

I've heard the suggestion made to have him put headphones on with the volume turned all the way up to get the '"full effect". :-(

Some moms have also had luck with showing their dh this photograph of a very horrific complicaiton of circumcision
(WARNING: Not for the faint of heart or stomach!)

Also, on another messageboard I recently read a mom's account of how she convinced her husband, and it was an approach I'd never even thought of before:

"When he arrived home from work I greeted him with excitement. "Come see what I found!" He came, and I pulled up the restoration website, and with exaggerated excitement I said, "Look! You can regrow your foreskin, and by the time a boy is old enough to notice any difference, you will be the same! And nobody has to have any surgery! Isn't that great?" At first he was interested, then bewildered, the after looking at the fimo bells and stuff pictured I never heard another word -- about regrowing, but more importantly, about circumcision."

One mother suggested this approach: "The thing is, intact is the default, the do-nothing option, the pain-free and reversible decision. If you both can't agree, then nothing gets done. Quite frankly, I would print him off a list of all the boys that have died from circumcision. I would present this to him and say, "These boys have all died from an unnecessary surgery. There is no way I am going to take the risk, no matter how small it is, that this could happen to our son when he is perfectly fine and healthy the way he is. Since we can't agree, we'll be doing nothing."

In response to the argument of her husband that he’s the one with the penis, so he should be the one to make the circumcision decision for their son, one woman responded to her husband, “Well, since I’m the only one who knows what it’s like to be intact, I should be the one to decide.”

Another mother quips, “Any man who wants his genitals to match his son’s should shave his pubic hair and wear ice in his shorts until the boy hits puberty.”


More links:

Like Father, Like Son by Mary G. Ray

Looking Like Dad a Reason to Amputate Foreskin?
Circumcision to Look Like Others

Aesthetic and cultural reasons for circumcision

A circumcised father (Wayne Hampton) explains why he left his son intact

Another circumcised father (Roy M. Payne, PhD.) shares his thoughts


Many parents will admit that there is no medical justification for routine infant circumcision, but for many fathers, "matching" and concerns about locker-room teasing weigh heavily during the decision making process.

Recently, in another forum, a fellow mother shared an analogy which I found a bit shocking, but facinating nonetheless. What she said was directed at a mother who didn't want to circumcise her son but didn't feel she had any other choice because her husband was happily circumcised, and essentially, "He's the one with the penis."

"Just to point out, you are the only one in the marriage with intact genitals. You may not have a penis, but your dh has no idea what being intact entails and what it's like to have a foreskin. Most intact men, if you ask them whether they'd like to be circed, would look at you in horror and cup their crotches protectively - the same reaction you'd get from intact women if you suggested they get circed.

I read a very interesting article in the Washington Post about a Deaf lesbian couple who had a baby through artificial insemination with sperm from a gay friend who is also Deaf. They were hoping that the baby would be deaf like them - in fact they were deliberately trying for a deaf baby and were overjoyed when the baby was born deaf too. They didn't see anything wrong with hoping for a baby with a major handicap such as deafness; they had both been deaf from birth and didn't know anything different. They saw no advantage to being hearing. For those of us who are hearing, it's very hard to understand that mindset - knowing what it is to hear other people's voices, listen to music, hear the birds, etc. I would be devastated if my child were born deaf.

In this situation, you are the hearing one and your dh is the deaf one. Except that instead of wishing for his baby to be born deaf like him, he wants to take active steps to remove from his baby the sexual potential he himself never got to realize, or make him deaf to the sensations the foreskin provides.

If my dh were deaf and I were hearing, I would never allow him to do something to make our baby deaf to be like him. He simply would not be in a position to decide what's best for our baby because he would not be acting with experience of the normal, only with experience of the handicap."

Now, a few people reading are probably rolling their eyes. Circumcision, a handicap? Yeah right, whatever. Well, not so fast...

When a newborn is circumcision, more is lost then just the foreskin.

More, on how circumcision actually affects the way the penis functions:

NOHARMM: Anatomy and functions of the male foreskin

CIRP: Anatomy of the Penis, Mechanics of Intercourse

CIRP: The Penis and Foreskin: Preputial Anatomy and Sexual Function

(Please keep in mind that while the above sights are purely educational, they do contain drawings and photographs.)

Someone else shared this explaination:

"A man who is circ'd will inevitably say that he is just fine, that he enjoys sex and that there is nothing wrong with him. He's not desensitised! He will swear up and down that this is the case.

He is like a person with no sense of taste. Sure you can still eat, and probably even enjoy the varying textures, smells and tempratures of the food. they might say "what do you mean food could be better? I love eating, its so satisfying. I couldnt imagine it ever being any better than this." But thats the problem, having never had a chance to experience taste, he woulnt be able to even imagine what he is missing.

Not only that, a person with no sense of taste can still EAT and CHEW as well as anyone, so obviously their mouth works just fine, right? They can blow bubbles with bubble gum, whistle, play a wind instrument... there is nothing WRONG with a mouth that can't taste.

A man having never experienced a foreskin would be unable to imagine that sex could be better. He would have nothing to compare it to. It just isnt possible. Its liek trying to describe colors to a blind person. they might get the vaguest idea of what it is, but they just don't know. Or sound to a deaf person. Or taste to a tasteless person. Its something outside of thier experience."

But, what about bonding?

One mother had this to say, “Your son will not bond with your husband because their penises look the same. Your son will bond with your husband because your husband will hold him, play with him, read books to him, bounce him to sleep, kiss his owies, give him a bath, play trains with him, feed him his dinner, kiss him goodnight, carry him around all day, etc. Their penises will have absolutely nothing to do with the bond they form.

The early years are when the bond is formed. Your son will have no clue that his father's penis is different from his for many years to come - long after he has bonded to his daddy.”

One mother was asked how she’d respond if her son asked why he didn’t look like his father. She responded, “ok, he'll probably be asking those *kind of questions when he's about three or four, right? if his penis looks ANYTHING like a grown man's at that point in time, we have bigger problems than whether or not he is intact."

I think it's hard for a lot of us to imagine, because for so long we've been told circumcision is just a "little snip" and the foreskin is "extra skin"...but it's not "extra", it comes standard...and circumcision removes 1/3-1/2 of the penile skin system, or what would become 15 square inches, including 3-4 feet of blood vessels, 240 feet of nerves, and 10,000-20,000 specialized nerve endings. I can't help but think what sex might be like if I'd had a similar amount of genital tissue removed from my most private parts, but went through puberty and grew into adulthood never knowing any differently.

So, what if ultimately you cannot reach an agreement?

One mother advises:


Do nothing by not trying to convince your spouse
Do nothing by not signing the consent forms
Do nothing by not scheduling an appointment
Doing nothing = no circumcision

If the two of you never agreed on circumcising, by doing nothing, the automatic result is an intact baby boy. Just tell the doctors and nurses that you don’t want circumcision, and it won’t happen."


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