I'm an intactivist; my goal is to get any pregnant woman in my vicinity or whom I come into contact with, to take a second guess when it comes to circumcision. I'll use respectful terms when talking about this, because I don't want a debate. I don't judge women who have already circumcised their children, I really don't. Most women circumcise because the resources just aren't out there. I too, was strongly thinking about circ'ing Trey at birth, because no one had ever told me otherwise, or given me the resources to educate myself on the subject; I understand the ignorance around it. Doctors and nurses don't come out and tell you what's really up, they just ask you: yes or no. I was jolted to reality by a rude comment which made me realize how ignorant I was on the subject, and I spent hours looking it up. My goal is NOT to make women who have made the choice feel badly about it, my goal is to try and convince other women to reconsider it if they're expecting a little boy. Please leave this as a resource, a purely informational page: no drama, no debate. I'll use respectful terms, if I can have that from your guys' side, just leave it for resources, no debate. I spent hours on this, since my last circ resource thread was accidentally deleted, trying to rebuild it, recreate it. So alas, here it is.
- Myths & Facts About Infant Circumcision:
Myth: Unmyelinated nerves do not transmit pain.
Fact: Not only do unmyelinated nerves transmit pain, they transmit the most excruciating kind of pain.
Myth: Babies don’t feel pain because some of their nerves have not become myelinated.
Fact: Babies do feel pain, especially since they have more unmyelinated nerves than adults.
Myth: Local Anasthetic makes the circumcision painless.
Fact: Injecting the anaesthetic into the genital area is painful for the baby. Because the anaesthetic wears off soon, the postoperative pain that lasts for days is just as bad for a baby who had anaesthetic than for one who had none. Most circumcisions, anaesthetic is not used at all.
Myth: Circumcision prevent urinary tract infections, HIV or other STD’s.
Fact: Cleanliness and proper hygiene should be routine - not circumcision. Actually, it is rarely documented that the rate of infection in circumcised infants is much higher during the diaper stages when the healing glans is exposed to feces and urine.
Myth: A baby’s intact penis is harder to keep clean and take care of than a circumcised penis.
Fact: Because of the extra care that one must take in caring for and bathing a circumcision wound that is in the process of healing, and because of the frequent complications such as meatal ulcers that occur in circumcised penises, the intact infant penis is actually much easier to care for. It basically needs no care, no retraction, no nothing. An intact penis is very much self-cleaning.
Myth: Male family members will have psychological problems if some have circumcised penises and others have intact penises.
Fact: Boys and Dads do NOT need matching penises. Circumcision has become a cycle in our culture; one that needs to be broken. Removal of a functioning part of a child's body violates human rights, goes against medical ethics and ultimately damages men.
When the English abruptly stopped circumcising most of its population, there were no psychological problems reported about the circumcised fathers and intact sons.
-Julia Bertschinger, CCE, in Midwifery Today Issue 17
Myth: Boys will get made fun of in the locker room if they aren’t circumcised!
Fact: With routine infant circumcision down to 59% of newborn boys, hey that leaves a whole 41% of boys staying intact. The number of routine infant circumcisions are steadily dropping anyways Your son would NOT be alone.
Myth: It’s only a piece of skin, it’s not that important.
"A piece of skin the size of a quarter
contains more than three million cells, 12
feet of nerves, 100 sweat glands, 50 nerve
endings, and almost three feet of blood vessels."
- The Human Connection
Ashley Montagu and Floyd Matson
- One of the main points: Circumcision is NOT MEDICALLY NECESSARY. You can find the American Academy of Pediatrics’ press release HERE, stating that there is no medical reason whatsoever for routine circumcision; it is a cosmetic procedure. Many Doctors/Surgeons won’t even perform infant circumcision, and many insurance companies won’t cover it as it’s considered cosmetic. All myths surrounding the medical aspects of circumcision have been debunked; they’re just not true.
- Many men who’ve been circumcised against their will, take it upon themselves to restore their foreskin through many ways; all of which are painful, extensive, expensive and would have been completely unnecessary if the mother had decided against routine circumcision. One way is a surgical restoration, which involves taking skin grafts from somewhere else on the body and recreating a foreskin around the penis. Another way is a device sold, which men hook onto the tiny bit of skin they have left there, and spend years wearing this contraption in an effort to naturally stretch the skin to recreate their own foreskin.
- Intact penises are incredibly easy to clean. The foreskin is there for a purpose. There’s no need for retraction, scrubbing, special measures. The foreskin is attached to the gland for most of childhood and should naturally retract on it’s own, anywhere from 2 years of age, to 6-7 years of age. Until then, you just have to wash it as you would wash your sons elbow. A quick sudsing, a rinse, and you’re done. The foreskin naturally protects the glans, and is very self-cleaning. Circumcision shouldn’t be used to prevent UTI’s, proper hygiene should.
- The biggest key to me, is that Circumcision is a Definite Human Rights Violation. If your son chooses to remove his foreskin when he’s of age, then that’s great and an easy fix; but on the other hand, if he chooses to have it BACK, it’s damn near impossible. You lose nothing by leaving it alone. He’s not consenting to the surgery, and the parents should NOT have a right to force him into it. It’s not your body, it’s not your baby’s daddy’s body, it’s your son’s body.
- Compare it to Female Genital Mutilation. How would you feel if someone suggested that if your daughter was born with too large labia, that you should cut them off to prevent UTI’s in the future? It’s routine in a lot of countries, to circumcise female babies. It’s funny how something so similar is labelled mutilation, whereas circumcision is still so widely accepted. It’s the same thing. You’re removing a perfectly functioning part of someone else’s body without their consent in both cases. Would you pay someone to surgically remove your daughter’s labia? Or would you educate her on proper hygiene, and smack that person for even suggesting it?
- Religion. You don’t follow every aspect of your religion, do you? Point is, many people in many religions are opposing or delaying routine circumcision; either doing away with it entirely, or waiting until the child is old enough to decide for himself.
- Circumcision is not a loving welcome into the world.
What Happens During a Circumcision? (Warning. This contains graphic pictures of a routine infant circumcision. Probably not the best to look at if you’re at work.) These pictures is what actually happens during a circumcision. What happens during a circumcision is so graphic that many doctors (Docs Against Circ) and nurses (Nurses Against Circ) take part in one, and refuse to ever go back in.
- Still Not Sure? Order a Video which shows every part of a routine infant circumcision procedure. Hell, if after all this you’re still considering circumcision and can’t afford the video, please PM me and I’ll buy the video FOR you. (Don’t ask me to if you’re just curious to see it, seriousness only please, the videos 20 bucks).
- Want somewhere to go to, to further discuss infant circumcision? Please join the LJ community The Unkindest Cut. This community contains mothers of circ’d boys, mothers of uncirc’d boys, men who are going through restoration, and a whole lot of people who are knowledgeable as hell and welcoming to all who wish to learn more, help spread the word, or just chat.
Or check out Mothers Against Circumcision.
- Has your son been WRONGLY circumcised? Can’t find a lawyer who will take a circumcision case?
That’s it. If you reading this, have any other questions, need other links, resources, etc, or just want to talk about it, please, please, please feel free to PM me, and I’ll be MORE then glad to help.
Much love to you all, and I leave you with some resources:
List of Resources:
Circumcision Information and Resource Pages - http://www.cirp.org
NOCIRC (National Organization of Circumcision Resource Centers) - http://www.nocirc.org
Stop Infant Circumcision Society - http://www.stopinfantcircumcision.org
NORM (National Organization of Restoring Men) - http://www.norm.org
NORM-UK - http://www.norm-uk.org
Doctors Opposing Circumcision - http://faculty.washington.edu/gcd/DOC
Foreskin - http://www.foreskin.org
Ashley Montagu Resolution and Petition - http://montagunocircpetition.org
Circumcision Resource Center - http://www.circumcision.org
Female Genital Cutting Education and Networking Project - http://www.fgmnetwork.org
Attorneys for the Rights of the Child - http://www.arclaw.org
Law Office of David J. Llewelyn (wrongful circumcision attorney) - http://firms.findlaw.com//llewellynlaw/practices.htm
Circumcision Quotes - http://www.circumcisionquotes.com
BoysToo - http://www.boystoo.com
In Memory of the Sexually Mutilated Child - http://www.sexuallymutilatedchild.org (warning for disrespectful talk)
Intactivism Pages - http://www.circumstitions.com
International Coalition for Genital Integrity - http://www.icgi.org
Mothers Against Circumcision - http://www.mothersagainstcirc.org
Jews Against Circumcision - http://www.jewsagainstcircumcision.org
Catholics Against Circumcision - http://www.catholicsagainstcircumcision.org
Circumcised at 13 - http://www.jusay.com/circ13
History of Circumcision - http://www.historyofcircumcision.net
Circumcision Information Australia - circinfo.org
Intersex Society of North America - http://www.isna.org
Intersex Initiative - http://www.intersexinitiative.org
Students for Genital Integrity - http://www.studentsforgenitalintegrity.org
Musicians United to Stop Infant Circumcision - http://www.musiciansunited.org
Nurses for the Rights of the Child - http://www.nurses.cirp.org
Intact - http://www.intact.ca
Sex As Nature Intended It - http://www.sexasnatureintendedit.com
StopCirc - http://www.stopcirc.com