Saturday, January 8, 2011

Confessions of a Circumcised Man




© 2011 Kirk


”For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved sunsets and impressionist oil paintings. The subtle interplay of color and light has always struck me as beautiful, even sublime. I couldn’t imagine anything being more lovely.

So much so, that I was dumbstruck to learn at the age of 18 that I was color blind. “It can’t be,” I insisted to the eye doctor. He matter-of-factly explained that I had failed the full Ishihara color-vision test. Out of a series of 38 polka-dotted circles, I could only see the embedded numbers in four of them. There was no doubt. I was color-blind.

My denial was complete. I didn’t believe him. “I can see colors,” I insisted. “My jeans are blue. My shirt is light blue. Your slacks are dark grey.” He tonelessly explained that yes, I could see some colors. But what I saw was not nearly as vivid or as complete as seen by people with “normal color vision.” My color vision was radically muted.

I still didn’t believe him. I showed the test to my sisters. They both passed, easily.

It took me a while to process this discovery and accept that I was one among the 20% of men who are color-blind because of a genetic defect. It was nobody’s fault. Nothing to be embarrassed about. Just bad luck.

But this discovery and my experience with overcoming denial enabled me to finally confront something else. I was able to confront another area where my perception of the world is significantly diminished. This area is diminished in a way that I never imagined possible. It is another place where my perception of the world is not nearly as vivid or as complete as “normal people.”

The area I’m talking about is my sexual perception – my physical appreciation of normal sexual contact. My sexual perception is radically muted, too. But this time, it is not a blameless, unlucky genetic defect. This was done to me by other people. My sexual perception was taken from me.

It was taken intentionally. It was taken by doctors. It was taken without my knowledge or consent. It was taken when I was a defenseless baby. And, perhaps most shockingly, it was taken with my parents’ approval.

This time the denial was harder to overcome. This time the denial didn’t just protect my self-image of being fully “normal.” This time the denial protected me from knowing that the people I have trusted the most, the people I have loved the most – had betrayed me. The denial guarded me from fully knowing and feeling the painful discovery that I had been hurt badly, and forever, in the most intimate and personal part of my life.

I was permanently sexually maimed. Intentionally. By the people who claim to love me the most – my parents.This has been a very hard path of self-discovery to follow.

But, in confronting all of the feelings that were waiting for me behind my curtain of denial, I found more than just pain and anger and depression. They were there, certainly, in large amounts. But, I also found understanding and personal growth and some hope.

I understand now why I sometimes have difficulty maintaining an erection or achieving orgasm. This isn’t a shameful failure of my masculinity. This isn’t evidence of my physical and emotional disinterest in a sexual partner. This isn’t proof of my shortcomings as a man. I’ve learned that this is proof of the operation’s success. Erectile dysfunction and diminished sexual pleasure are THE desired surgical outcomes of circumcision. My operation was a success!

Many people believe that sex is inherently wrong. They believe masturbation and recreational sex are immoral. Sometimes these beliefs are religiously motivated, sometimes not. Genital cutting is the intervention that directly addresses the evil of human sexuality. Medical textbooks used to be very specific about the effectiveness of male and female circumcision in preventing masturbation. That is what genital cutting is designed to achieve – undermining human sexuality by dramatically reducing sexual pleasure. I understand that now. I also understand that this intention was never explained to my parents.

I understand now that my radically muted sexual sensations aren’t the result of a botched, or extraordinarily aggressive, circumcision. They are greatly dulled because my circumcision was a normal one. I am numb. I feel less than a normal man, an intact man. The most sensitive parts of my penis are gone. The “lips” of my prepuce were taken. My Ridged Band was taken. My Frenulum was taken. My Outer Foreskin was taken. And lastly, my Glans and Inner Foreskin are desensitized from constant chaffing from contact with the outside world. I also understand that these exquisitely sensitive parts of my anatomy and their functions were never explained to my parents.

Effectively, the “eyes and ears” of my system of sexual perception are gone. I can still have sex and I can still conceive a child, but most of the fun and much of the frequency are gone. I know about the reduced frequency from my experience with failed efforts – and fear of failed efforts. The loss of pleasure, the fun, is something I can only try to understand about by reading.

But, I know about numbness and loss. The memories of being unable to maintain an erection with women I loved, with women I was deeply attracted to both physically and emotionally, are still very sharp. So, too, are the memories of my feelings of inadequacy and their feelings of being undesirable to me. As are the memories of those relationships drifting apart and inexplicably ending. Now, I understand why. I also understand that these predictable results of my circumcision were never explained to my parents.

I know about numbness and disease. I was taught about safe sex and I understand he importance. But I also know that when I’ve tried to use condoms, I become completely numb. For me, condoms equal abstinence. With a condom, I am rarely able to maintain an erection and I’m never able to achieve orgasm. I understand why that is now. But faced with the choice of unsafe intercourse or no intercourse, I chose to be unsafe. And I paid the price.

Circumcision isn’t the only thing that lasts forever. Some diseases last forever. So too, do the memories and anguish of an unwanted pregnancy. I’ll carry both of these for the rest of my life. Now I understand. I also understand that my parents never knew circumcision would put me in a situation where I’d need to take those risks in order to share intimacy with a loved one.

I’ve undergone a lot of personal growth throughout this process of dealing with my circumcision. I’ve researched about my body – what I was born with and how it functions. I’ve researched how the medical community has deceived generations of parents about the practice of circumcision. I’ve researched about the difficulty of overcoming denial and breaking the cycle of ritual abuse that can exist within families. And I’ve researched the changing trends in choices that families are making for their sons – and this gives me hope.

Hope isn’t a word that easily comes into my heart and mind when I think about genital cutting. I am a survivor of an abusive sexual assault that I don’t remember…but can never forget. I will never know what sex is supposed to be like for a man. I will never look in the mirror and see a complete male form.

But, I have learned that I can forgive my parents for letting strangers hurt me so badly. I have learned that I can love them still, in spite of my pain and anger. And that gives me hope. I have hope because I know that I can love and forgive. I can love and forgive because my parents were misled and they didn’t know any better. They had no easy access to research through the Internet. They heard no voices of child advocacy pleading on my behalf. They had no reassurance from a large and growing group of parents who were challenging and rejecting the horrifying violation of routine infant genital mutilation.

My parents weren’t unwilling to learn – unwilling to protect me. They were deceived. And I forgive them.

I have hope because I can channel my negative feelings of betrayal, anger, pain and depression into something positive. I can advocate protecting the newborns of today who will become a generation of men tomorrow. I can help in a small way to educate today’s parents and be the voice for them that I wish was available to my parents. I can help break the cycle of violence against baby boys in the same way that it has been broken for baby girls.

Hope won’t return to me what was taken so long ago. But if I can help even a few parents choose to courageously challenge their doctors and their families in defense of their sons, it will be worth enduring all of the pain that I found hiding behind my own curtain of denial.

A million baby boys a year are crying out for someone to help them. I cannot remain silent. I cannot collude through inaction. I must try to do my part to help them however I can. Please join me in this effort. Our generation can protect the next generation.

In deep and sincere solidarity with my newborn brothers,
Kirk"




How Male Circumcision May Be Affecting Your Love Life:
There is some hope. Join thousands of men attempting to heal from circumcision through manual restoration:
http://www.facebook.com/RestoringForeskin
http://www.thewholenetwork.org/14/post/2011/08/a-journey-to-foreskin-restoration.html

Are you a circumcised father?
https://www.facebook.com/chooseintact


78 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing your story, Kirk. I am happy to know that my children will never know this betrayal.

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  2. Thank you for being open and honest. I also stopped this cycle in my family.

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  3. Thank you so much for sharing your story. In a society where you are supposed to deal with this and get on with it , you are a brave man to share with so many and in such a powerful way . Perhaps by sharing you will save at least one ( and hopefully many more ) baby boys from this assault that you have had to overcome in your life. My heart goes out to you and every other survivor of Genital Mutilation in a very real way .

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  4. That is the most succinct, amazingly heartbreaking story I have read, which explains the loss so well. I am grateful that you shared it and I will ensure many Moms-to-be read it to save their sons from this cruelty. I am ever so grateful that my 2 boys - 28 and 13 years old - never knew this situation for themselves.

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  5. Thank you so much for sharing Kirk!

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  6. Thank you again, Ms. Daly for another outstanding short memoir of American medicalised sexual violence.

    Kirk, you confirm a suspicion that quite a few of us intactivists harbor: tbe desensitisation of circ discourages condom use and hence encourages irresponsible sexual behaviour.

    I love the way you decline to hate your parents for what they allowed to be done to you. I tell one and all that the American Foreskin Holocaust should be blamed on medical school profs.

    I was spared circumcision, only because my mother threatened to divorce my father if he and his mother did not stop obsessing about it after I was born... in 1949. Thus I grew up the only intact male in my family of origin, and one of only 3 intact boys in my entire K12 education. I felt extremetly self-conscious about this.

    Since 1985, I have read many memoirs written in the same spirit as the one above, which have stunningly and belatedly vindicated my mother's instinctive preference, for sexual reasons she never suspected.

    Because nearly every penis I saw in the flesh while growing up was circumcised, the exposed glans looks fully normal to me. Is that too perhaps very minor psychological damage from American circ? At any rate, it took me decades to realize, very gradually, that circumcision can be sexually damaging. I was 57 when I first met a man who told me that he was sexually damaged by circumcision. American medical and sexual research have been radically dishonest about cases such as Kirk's.

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  7. Amazing article! Everyone who's expecting a baby boy should be required to read it in its entirety. I am so glad that nobody in my home has ever known this loss, because as we see here, it is a significant one. Only when people are willing to talk about these things frankly and honestly, as Kirk has done here, do more people break the cycle of cutting that has pervaded our culture for so long. Keep getting the word out. That's how change happens!

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  8. Thank you for sharing your story. So many men don't understand what they are missing and do not see foreskin as something that is important. They have their sons cut because that is what was done to them. It is time to end the cycle and stand up for those who can not stand up for themselves.

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  9. I was circumcised at birth. As a circumcised man, I never knew what I was missing. As I got older, I though the decrease in sexual pleasure and enjoyment was natural. Then I learned about foreskin restoration. Restoring my foreskin has allowed me to regain some of what I lost. I am amazed at the differences a foreskin makes, even a restored one. I am saddened to think that I spent the first 50 years of my life not being able to experience the full range of sexual pleasure.

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  10. This will probably get deleted, but I think this is a load of crock.

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  11. Thankyou for sharing courageous honesty!!!!

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  12. Thank you for sharing your story. I'm sure that it will change the minds of some parents and help save penises of the next generation of men.

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  13. Meh, I was circumsized and never had any of these problems. Almost all of my friends are also and never have any of these problems.

    I think what happens is men who have been circumsized and are also impotent for unrelated reasons are looking for something to blame. But they, you, are not really "to blame" for your impotence either. You need to come to terms with what is really going on.

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  14. Many American's don't really know what the foreskin is. Their perceptions of it have been managed by people who controlled the availability of information about it. Anatomy textbooks don't show the prepuce. This problem is recognized by Doctors Opposing Circumcision. They have a very interesting web site. They have a very well written policy statement that has an extensive bibliography at the end of each chapter. There is an educational video that I highly recommend to anyone who still thinks the foreskin is a stinky flap of useless skin.

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  15. Why is it when a woman comes forward to talk about her circumcision as a child, everyone is supportive and talks about how horrible it was, but then when a man does the same, he get responses like, “load of crock” and “You need to come to terms with what is really going on.” Why is a man not able to be unhappy with what was done to him without his consent. Wake up America and stop cutting baby boys!

    Kirk - Thank you for having the courage to step up and speak out for all of the babies that are not able to say “No!” I am sorry that others have to be mean in order to make themselves feel better. Hopefully strong men like you will help lead to the end of this horrible practice that has become a cultural norm hidden under the lies of junk science.

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  16. "Almost all of my friends are also and never have any of these problems."

    You really think if your friends were having such problems that they'd talk about it? Please.

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  17. How can desensitization be "a crock" when it was the POINT of the entire surgery throughout much of history? Only recently have Americans tried to deny that effect of circumcision and give it more lofty goals.

    Not to mention that real scientific studies have validated the difference in sensitivity and linked circumcision with an earlier onset of ED.

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  18. This is a beautifully written article- thank you so much for sharing your story. It seems that the cycle continues because so many men aren't willing to face what you have- they'd rather insist that nothing happened to them, that there's nothing "wrong" with their penises. To prove that there's nothing wrong with circumcision, they have the same thing done to their own sons. Helpless newborns have to go through an unnecessary, painful and life-altering surgery because society tells their dads that having an uncircumcised son is an admission that they (the fathers) have had something taken from them.

    I hope that your story gets to the people who are making this decision for their own infant sons (a decision that shouldn't be theirs to begin with, but that's another argument...)

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  19. This cycle has been stopped in my family as well; my son has been spared this fate, but I was not. To this day, my parents still don't think what they did was wrong.

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  20. After watching videos of the procedure and actually doing research into the FUNCTION of the prepuce (since, contrary to what many people think, it does have very important functions), my child's father and I could not come to any conclusion but to leave our baby intact. It made no sense whatsoever to mutilate him after doing even a tiny bit of research. His father is not circumcised, either.

    My own father told me that I should have had him circumcised, because there was "no doubt in his mind that it's better." Based on...absolutely nothing except for the fact that he was circumcised. I'm glad I was a girl, that's for sure.

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  21. Dear Karl, your story is much like my husband's. You are most definitely not alone. My husband has very little penile sensitivity (if anything, it's usually pain), painful erections (due to lack of sufficient skin), and he also gets scabs and painful open wounds on his incision scar. Needless to say, this has hampered our sex lives.

    We've tried foreskin restoration for several months, but that seemed too time consuming (it takes YEARS of daily tension). I don't know what the future holds for my dear husband, but if he's already this desensitized (he's only 32), I can only imagine what it'll be like when he approaches and passes middle-age.

    This insanity must STOP! Why hack off the BEST part of the penis??? We need to make this practice illegal (with the exception of immediate medical necessity, of course).

    God bless you, Karl. We need more good, honest, humble men like you to speak out on this issue, even though it may be the hardest thing they ever do. Thank you.

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  22. Wow.. I mean i'd love to say that I find your story touching and honest- but I really find it more delusional and ridiculous.
    Sexual abuse?? Seriously? Are you kidding me?

    I can fully accept that there are circumcisions go wrong, but i've known more UN-cut men to have problems in adulthood than those who have been snipped. More men who are thankful to have it gone than to have it there. And you can throw that whole "do you REALLY think your friends would tell you?" yes, I do, because that is how the people I know are.

    I'm sorry you can't handle something that happened to you before your recollective consciousness kicked in, but if you want to blame it 100% on circumcision and not some other kind of deep seeded issues, than I think you're seriously delusional and deflecting. Sorry.

    Go ahead and attack this comment, my eyes have now rolled SO hard I don't think I can come back and handle any more of this fantasy land you all live in. You probably all think the MMR shot causes autism too.

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  23. Anonymous, if you do come back, do you have the guts to post the same thing to the woman who was circumcised?

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  24. I find the blog a bit ridiculous and I actually think there is something wrong with your penis if you cant get hard with a condom on.

    Here's a view from someone who is and loves it.

    I'm circumsised, everyone I know is, my friends and I are very open about our sex life and everything is eh-ok. In fact the studies show that being circumcised takes away nerves that increase the pleasure? Well if that's the case I dont want them because if I felt any more pleasure, then the sex wouldnt only last 5 mins.

    This is one persons blog! one, i know it may be hard (no pun intended) but ask around, friends and family to see what they think. I wouldnt trade mine for anything!

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  25. Bob,

    That's a good point you make. You can read about a woman's similar sexual experience on her post, "Confessions of a Circumcised Woman." She also mentions that she orgasms quickly and is overstimulated.

    Since part of your genitalia were amputated, it exposed your internal glans.

    It's nice that you have made peace with it. I hope that doesn't lead you to dismiss the loss others feel. Just because you feel happy about your surgery does not mean it should be forced on others.

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  26. A woman being circumcised is completely different from a male. While both are cultural a female circ is done at puberty mostly without any anesthesia often with whatever sharp object can be found be it a knife or glass shard. Then their legs are bound for days while it heals. Also the clitoris and most of the labia is removed in the process. It is extremely painful and has long term mental and physical health issues.
    A male circ is done in a sterile environment under a local anesthetic. Many infants don't even cry when it is done. Take a look at recent literature and you will see some evidence that males with circs have a decreased risk of contracting HPV, HSV, and HIV.

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  27. Actually a very small percentage of female circumcisions are performed in that way, most are a simple prick or slice removing part of the clitoral hood about the size of a fingernail clipping.

    Not all doctors use anesthetic and when it is used it is not entirely effective due to age and location. The babies who do not cry... Are in shock, same as you would be if someone was hacking a part of your body off.

    The STI allegation is ridiculous.... What effectively prevents STIs Is condom use.... If they came up with a birth control that 'may' have a 50 percent protection rate... It would be laughed out of the store. So why is that even applicable?

    Www.drmomma.org has a fantastic article from a medicine man in Africa where they are mass circumcising, he has many many many more patients than before... They come in with STIs saying that they did not need to wear a condom, they were circumcised.

    No medical associations in the world recommend routine infant circ, stating that it is a cosmetic procedure... So why on earth am I not allowed to get my daughter a nose job, if I can get my son's penis adjusted for esthetics.

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  28. Many female circumcisions take place at birth, by physicians...especially where the reason is the Muslim faith. And having your foreskin removed, with or without local anesthetic is also incredibly painful. Some infants don't cry because they are in shock, the same way infants will go into shock when they have any other excruciatingly painful procedure (seen it happen with lumbar punctures). Take a REAL look at the recent literature, and you will see the studies in regards to STD's are nowhere near definitive, and there are also studies which contradict them. Plus, no one with half a brain will tell you that circumcision prevents STD's. That is done with condoms or with abstinence, so a theoretical decrease in risk is irrelevant when you are talking about life or death, no?
    The foreskin is a functional part of the male anatomy. The only person who should be making the decision about having it lopped off is the owner of the penis. End of story. Genital mutilation is genital mutilation, however you want to try and pretty it up, in the end it's still the same thing.

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  29. Anonymous,
    Actually, many girls are done as young girls or infants, and some only involve a slight prick of the clitoris, enough for a drop of blood, but this is illegal too. Many are done in the 'sterile' environments you mentioned about the male circumcision.
    Most of the time, they do not use anesthetic for an infant circumcision. It's too dangerous to use in most babies. They do cry, and if they don't it's because they're in shock. It DOES end in long term mental and physical health issues, such as PTSD, and desensitization of the glans, or head, of the penis. No medical association in the world recommends routine infant circumcision because there is no solid proof that it prevents any of the diseases you mentioned.
    On top of that, as many or more babies die in the US every year that succumb to SIDS. It's a dangerous procedure that kills babies and takes the basic human right to genital autonomy away from the ones who survive. It is one and the same.

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  30. Yes, female circumcision is wrong. But, male circumcision is also wrong. Both are human rights violations. And if you think that MGM doesn't cause mental and physical harm then talk to my husband.
    As for the 'benefits' of MGM that you stated, I would much rather teach my son about safe sex than amputate his healthy, useful organ.

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  31. Anonymous, you are, once again, ill informed. In many places, including Indonesia (which banned the practice in 2006), female circumcision is often done in hospitals and clinics. It is done under a local anesthetic. Does that make it any better? No. It's still wrong to alter a baby girl's body without her consent. And it's wrong to alter a baby boy's body without consent too. FYI, any time you cut someone, it causes pain. Sure, there are some babies who do not cry, but did you ever stop to consider that it might be because they are in shock? That's a lot more likely than "it didn't hurt."

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  32. My brother is not circumcised. He is 30 years old.
    I remember as children my poor brother had a few penile infections because he was not circumcised. This was very hard on him. These infections were not due to improper cleaning, he was taught how to do it, yet he still got infections. These infections caused him a lot of pain, embarrassment, grief, long term trauma and horrible memories.
    My brother ALWAYS has wished my parents had circumcised him as a baby, and was angry at them for years for choosing not to. He begged them to let him get circumcised when we were growing up. I do not know why they didn't grant him his wishes.
    I talked to my uncircumcised brother recently about it because I'm pregnant, don't know what the sex is, and need to decide which way to go in case it is a boy and wanted his opinion.
    My brother still maintains his life would be easier and better if he'd been circumcised. He doesn't do it now because he doesn't want to have surgery and can't take time off work. My brother says that he's gotten used to it, but still doesn't like it.
    He explained that he can't go camping because of the care and cleaning that has to be involved with his uncircumcised penis. He says he can't enjoy things like other men can who are circumcised, he says things are just easier for circumcised men.
    My uncircumcised brother doesn't believe that he feels "more" than men who are circumcised. He finds this entire issue, especially the child abuse and mutilation part, absolutely stupid and ridiculous and is shocked it's even an issue- he didn't know it was an issue of huge debate and mudslinging until I told him.
    He told me that I would have a lot more care to do for my child well into older childhood years if I chose not to circumcise.
    He told me that I should do what I feel is best for my baby and that he won't tell me which way to decide because it's up to me (and my husband).
    Again, this is coming from an uncircumcised 30 year old man.

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  33. Anonymous, I'm not sure where it's coming from, but I'm sure it's not from a 30 year old intact male. :D

    Can't go camping if you have a whole penis. Oh lol! Your comment brightened my whole day. Next time research your subject matter before writing about it.

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  34. And to the other anonymous:

    FGM is illegal in this country. We all know it's terrible and speak out against it as well as MGM.

    Take a look at the studies that show female circumcision protects against STDs. By your own argument, you have to support FGM. How dare you support FGM! You're sick!

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  35. What an idiot this woman is! Neither of my sons is circumcised and both go camping quite happily. There ARE showers at campgrounds, aren't there? Or is he rubbing sand under his foreskin or something? Can't take time off work and doesn't want surgery indeed? Well he can't be too motivated to be 'chopped' then, can he? Bunch of bull.

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  36. I have 4 intact brothers and they go camping all the time, LMAO! If your brother is so bothered by his intact penis, he can choose to get cut. Since he is old enough to make that decision for himself and hasn't, well, that speaks volumes!

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  37. I will not circumcise my boys. That is my and my partner's decision as parents. I sympathize with your pain, Kirk. But, where I come from (Israel) every single man is circumcised. The men in my family,everyone I know, including my past sexual partners and my husband are circumcised. Each one of them is sexually different. Your experience is very real. I will not discredit that, but I am not sure that the circumcision is responsible for your situation.
    Thanks for sharing. Naama

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  38. Anon, as the mother of an intact son, I can assure you that it is not any work at all. I live in England, so very few males are circ'd here, but there certainly aren't restrictions on their activities.

    I wish you the best with your pregnancy.

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  39. Anonymous, this adult male who had trouble with infections all his life and has to spend so much time caring for his intact penis probably doesn't know that either his foreskin was forcibly retracted (possibly numerous times), causing injury to his penis (as the foreskin is adhered to the glans in childhood and as late as 18 years of age in some men, similar to a fingernail to the finger) This practise causes infections, adhesions and several other problems that may have contributed to his experience. Another thing that may have contributed (on its own or in combination) is the continued retraction and washing with soap. For young boys, the foreskin should never, ever be retracted for any reason by anyone other than its owner. Proper care is to wash with water only, wiping from base to tip, like a finger, not retracting at all. As the boy grows and can retract, he can rinse his glans with water only. That is PROPER care of the intact penis. The same way many women experience vulval and vaginal irritations from harsh soaps, bath bombs, bubble bath, etc. men can experience irritations on their glans and penis, too.

    With a little research and adaptation to his care of his penis, your brother could find it much more enjoyable.

    Oh, and there's no way to know he wouldn't lose any sensitivity unless he goes ahead and gets circumcised.

    If you have a son, I truly hope you leave him intact and leave the decision up to him. As a teen or adult he can choose to have the surgery and will be able to be put under general anesthesia for it as well as ask for more pain relief afterward if necessary. Things a newborn cannot do.

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  40. This is a simple case of Erectile Dysfunction Denial. Don't worry, a lot of guys get it, even the uncircumcised men.

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  41. Erectile dysfunction is a plague in the United States (with adult circumcision rates as high as 90% in some areas) but virtually non-existent in countries where circumcision rates are less than 10%. What's up with that, then?

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  42. because circ has been so popular for so many decades the medical establishment does not know how to take care of an intact penis now... I was talking to some friends of mine who did not circ their sons, and I went on to say how it effects men/boys who were never even circ'd due to force-able retraction by doctors or parents(on doctors orders)... one of my friends started saying how u have to retract the penis even on a 2 month old to clean it and how her son had so many problems with his foreskin because when she would repeatedly force it back on him it would often get infected or even re-attach itself to the glans... I tried to tell her the doctors don't know how to care for intact ones now and she got so mad about it all and said no the doctors know, I think she was in denial because she just realized her sons problems could have been avoided if she had just left it alone:(
    Intact:Dont Retract, Only clean what is seen!

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  43. When I was about 40 I realised that there was something wrong. Orgasm was taking longer and longer, and quite often I gave up as my arms and back were killing me, not to mention that my wife asked me to stop as she was getting dry and sore. So, this is why couples stopped having intercourse, not because they were tired of doing it. It was years later that a doctor told me of the probable reason for my erectile dysfunction, not that I didn't get hard enough, but nothing happened when I did. Then the Internet arrived, and a whole new world of information opened up. I discovered the reason for my deficiency, and that it was more common than I thought, but no man likes to admit that he's a failiure in bed. Now I'm doing what I can can to restore something of what a misguided doctor took away from me. My son is 26 and intact, so the mutilation cycle in this family is over.

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  44. I have to admit this is a topic close to my heart at the moment. We have 2 sons and they are both not circumcised but our oldest (4years old) has a large and tight foreskin and even though it can be retracted he says it hurts to do so. We have see 2 doctors in regard to this. One says to circumcise and the other says it is fine and to retract it morning and night to stretch the skin but this causes pain and tears in our son and we are wondering if it is best for him to circumise but emotionally I am torn about it.

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  45. Hi Anon,

    The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends against forceful retraction because it can cause tearing, infection and pain.

    Retraction is a natural, individual process. The average age is actually 10.6 years. It ties into adolescence and the change in hormones, similar to the way girls begin to menstruate in their tween/teen years.

    Yes, some kids DO experience this earlier, but it should not be forced.

    If you stop now and allow his body to heal, you will not need medical intervention/surgery.

    I'm sure others will come on here with more links about the danger of forced retraction and how to find a foreskin-educated doctor.

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  46. There is no reason for anyone to be retracting a four year old's foreskin! That's why it hurts! Leave it alone, forced retraction causes adhesions. Nobody should be messing with his penis except him. It will retract eventually, when it's time, & he should be the one to get it there. Do not let anyone touch your son's penis.

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  47. Anonymous...But does your son have discomfort from this "large and tight foreskin"?? you say his pain is coming from retracting it, well stop it. Leave it alone, it will grow as it needs to. I just don't understand how it can be "large and tight" at the same time. But if it is not bothering him as is then just leave it alone, every foreskin and penis will grow differently, just like our eyes and ears and teeth.

    Also you have seen 2 doctors? what type? Have you seen a urologist, specifically one who has experience with children?

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  48. And Anon, please follow up on the doctors who mistreated your son and passed out wrongful medical advice. You can get the contact info for a pro-bono lawyer who will help educate them here:

    http://guggiedaly.blogspot.com/2011/01/if-someone-retracted-your-sons-foreskin.html

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  49. Anon- Get yourself over to CIRP.org and read some medical articles about the phony phimosis diagnosis...specifically- the paper by Jacob Oster. There is no reason for a 4 year old to have to have a retractable foreskin- and this meddling at this age could cause him harm. He's totally in the "normal" range of development.

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  50. I am really really torn on this subject to the point that I really hope I don't have boys and I am woman enough to admit most of how I feel is from society's influence on me. Don't think bad of me, but I prefer a circ penis. One that is not seems unclean to me, though I know the facts I always think well what if he doesn't clean good enough. I don't think I could bring myself to circ my son if I had one. I have seen pics and it is so heartbreaking, and knowing what trauma as a baby can do to you as an adult makes me question the practice. At the same time I feel like my son if I had one would be frowned upon if he wasn't and that is equally hard. I know how I feel and I know a lot of woman who won't touch an uncirc penis with a 10 foot pole, and I don't want that for my son. It is shallow and shouldn't be that way....but it is : (

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  51. I don't look poorly on you at all. Thank you for sharing honestly on how you grappled with this subject.

    We are led to believe in this society that sexual preferences or aesthetic preferences are superficial. But as long as we are upfront about our preferences when choosing a partner, there is no reason to feel shameful about it.

    I suppose this would be synonymous to a man wanting to date a woman with larger breasts. And if a woman feels up to it, she might choose surgery to enlarge her breasts for this reason. But of course, we as parents will not make the decision for our children. It is a journey of self-discovery that only they can walk. You mention that you won't circumcise him so I think you also understand this. :)

    I also would encourage those who have not seen a whole penis in real life to review photos and videos of them online. When erect and ready for sexual activity, the foreskin for most men retracts upon itself and resembles a circumcised penis.

    Here are some links that are confirmed safe sites for educational purposes:

    This page with illustrations demonstrates the functions of the male prepuce:
    http://www.circumcision.org/foreskin.htm

    Here is another page on the function of the foreskin:
    http://www.norm-uk.org/function.html

    This is the real stuff...take a look at images and videos of real, intact penises and how they function:
    http://www.noharmm.org/anatomy.htm

    Video showing a computer generated model of the function of the foreskin during sexual activity.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wj6UjduMTiU

    Contrast and compare pictures of cut and intact penises: http://www.circumstitions.com/Restric/comparison.html

    What is lost due to circumcision? http://www.norm.org/lost.html

    Observe for yourself the mobility of a real foreskin with these moving gifs: http://tinyurl.com/38wvfp

    The three zones of penile skin: http://www.foreskin.org/3zones-c.htm

    The functions of the foreskin: http://research.cirp.org/func1.html

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  52. Kirk your story is so important and thanks for your bravery in telling it. The comment here from someone who's being pushed to retract the foreskin of a 4 year old shows how badly parents are being informed by the medical profession. The foreskin retracts when the boy nears the age of sexual debut. For heavens sake, why would doctors want a four year old to have the sexual parts of a man? He's a LITTLE BOY and he's not meant to be fully sexually developed yet! The foreskin generally retracts after ten years old, sometimes as old as 15. Just like a girl starting her periods varies but almost never occurs at 4. It makes me want to tear my hair out to read these stories. Step away from the child's penis folks. Just leave him alone to grow up...

    I'd like also to reiterate what others have said about your bravery Kirk, and to point out that while ED isn't necessarily related to circumcision, it can be - it was recorded as happening as one of the complications of circumcision in adult men in Africa for HIV. What is absolutely certain is that a harsh circ as you've had losing the frenulum has a huge impact on sensitivity - and if you can't feel much that inevitably is going to have a psychological impact which may then lead to lack of erection. I had a conversation with a gay man about circumcision recently - he said 'cut men are such hard work'. This is my experience also - trying to give a cut man (especially with no frenulum) a blow job can just give you mouth ache. Sex goes on so long it makes you dry and sore - and this is shown in Australian research - women have more problems with lack of lubrication with cut men (which may cause abrasion which puts them at more risk of catching things if there's no condom).

    I'm so saddened by the woman who says she's disgusted by the idea of the dirtiness of the intact man. The reality is that intact men are lovely and delicate and delicious! I've barely ever observed any smegma on a man - and yet I observe it in myself every day in the shower. I wash it off - and if in the evening I think I'm going to get lucky I contrive to have another wash/shower.

    How hard can washing be America? You're supposed to lead the free world and yet you believe your men are the dirties and stupidest mammals on the planet?

    I mean, seriously, ladies ... have you ever known a cowboy who circumcised his horse or his dog?

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  53. thank you for the brave post. i shared it with my son who is 23 and not circumcised. it was not a difficult decision to make alongside a homebirth. my husband, upon learning about the procedure ( and yes, he IS circumcised) has often wondered about how he might 'feel' different had his been left intact. we never had any trouble keeping our son clean, teaching him healthy habits. he camps, he uses locker rooms, dorms in college, etc. etc. i say to all parents of boy children to really stop and think about the act that is being performed and that there is no medical reason for doing so. it is barbaric and causes a newborn a great deal of pain. keep the skin!

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  54. I love my circumcised dick

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  55. Anonymous said: “These infections were not due to improper cleaning, he was taught how to do it, yet he still got infections…. he can't go camping because of the care and cleaning that has to be involved with his uncircumcised penis.”

    Oh my goodness, your brother was not taught proper care of his intact penis at ALL! I am a mom to two intact boys. Neither has ever had an infection or any sort of problem with their foreskin or penis. I’m guessing that your brother was taught to OVERclean in and around his foreskin. But just as we teach our little girls to avoid getting soap inside their labia, little boys need to be taught to avoid getting soap inside the foreskin. Water is all it ever needs, and it takes less care than keeping fingers clean, believe me. I left my boys alone for the most part – they played with it in the bath, stretching it and allowing water to circulate as needed. That’s IT for care of the intact penis. We knew one little boy who had an infection in his intact penis because his mother forcibly retracted it to lather it up with soap. Bad idea. Think about it, the "equipment" of girls is much more hidden and has many more folds and pockets, and yet we don't worry about cleaning and scrubbing out every square millimeter. We leave it alone and trust the natural bodily secretions to keep it clean, and the intact foreskin should be treated pretty much the same way.

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  56. Thank you for writing this post and helping to end this brutal practice. I have three boys, the first of which I circ'd. I regret that now, it weighs heavily on my heart! I am aware that I have done or agreed to have done, something that cannot be undone. My younger two boys are intact! I had been 'informed' by the time they came. Then it just seemed like common sense. Why cut healthy tissue off a healthy baby. Sounds stupid and absurd now. Don't know why I did it with my first. My hubby insisted.....

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  57. I'm sick of all these conspiracy theories against the medical profession. Most people go into the medical profession to make a difference, to help people, to save lives, to educate, and for the love of science and people. There are no benefits to circumcision? Mycobacterium smegmatis - acid fast organism that is found in secretions in the area around the urethras of women and uncircumcised males. This can change the shaft or the head and can lead to squamous cell carcinomas. You will not find carcinoma in a circumcised penis. Women being circumcised is a whole different ball game, so don't even try to compare that. Don't even get me started on the vaccine issue. Get educated people. Do you really think you know more about the human body than a doctor? Educate yourself so you can make educated decisions rather than just spreading lies to people who might not know better. I think that everyone should go to medical or dental school because if everyone could make informed decisions, the world would be a better and safer place.

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  58. Yes, please educate yourself and stop spreading lies.

    Carcinoma developed in circumcision scars on the penile shaft: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=3944860

    The tumors involved the prepuce (n = 1), prepuce and distal shaft (n = 1), circumcision scar line (n = 2), circumcision scar line and distal shaft: http://journals.lww.com/ajsp/pages/articleviewer.aspx?year=2004&issue=01000&article=00014&type=abstract

    Doctors oppose routine circumcision:
    http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision.org/

    Nurses oppose routine circumcision:
    http://nurses.cirp.org/

    Don't even get me started on the vaccine issue. *giggle*

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  59. "I'm sick of all these conspiracy theories against the medical profession. Most people go into the medical profession to make a difference, to help people, to save lives, to educate, and for the love of science and people."

    I'm sure they do. I'm sure they don't do it because they know it brings in the big bucks. I'm sure doctors don't start circumcising to assure themselves that what has happened to themselves, what has happened to their husbands, what they've allowed to happen to their children is "normal." I'm sure they don't do it to clothe their religious beliefs in "science."

    "There are no benefits to circumcision? Mycobacterium smegmatis - acid fast organism that is found in secretions in the area around the urethras of women and uncircumcised males. This can change the shaft or the head and can lead to squamous cell carcinomas. You will not find carcinoma in a circumcised penis."

    Excuse me? Are you ready to provide any sort of medical literature for this? Or are we supposed to take your attempt at science at face value?

    "Women being circumcised is a whole different ball game, so don't even try to compare that."

    No, let's. If "they can't be compared," then you should have no trouble making your case. What exactly are your basing your statement on? What is your basis of comparison? Do you have any medical literature that supports your claim?

    "Don't even get me started on the vaccine issue."

    Is it because you don't have a leg to stand on? Go ahead, start.

    "Get educated people. Do you really think you know more about the human body than a doctor?"

    In this case, yes.

    Intactivists know more about the penis than the American doctor. While American medical curriculum regarding the male penis is at least a century old, updated curriculum can be found in almost any other English-speaking country. Intactivists go out of their way to learn what is common knowledge most anywhere else.

    "Educate yourself so you can make educated decisions rather than just spreading lies to people who might not know better."

    Circumcision advocates often have a terrible problem with projection.

    Please, before pretending to dispense advice, lead by example.

    "I think that everyone should go to medical or dental school because if everyone could make informed decisions, the world would be a better and safer place."

    As long as it's not an American medical school, this is very good advice.

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  60. "The myth that circumcision rendered males immune to penile cancer was invented in 1932 by a man named Abraham L. Wolbarst, M.D.[19] Wolbarst wrote an article that was published in the Lancet in 1932, implicating human male smegma as carcinogenic.[20] His hypothesis had absolutely no basis in valid scientific and epidemiological research.[21] Wolbarst was directly responsible for proliferation of this myth, and all subsequent repetions of it can be traced to his opinion article, although Wolbarst himself advocated universal neonatal circumcision principally as a preventive for epilepsy, paralysis, and masturbation.[22]

    Wolbarst's opinion piece led to the perpetuation of the myth that penile cancer could not happen to males that were circumcised in infancy. This myth was completely disproven when Boczko et al. reported the 9th documented case of penile cancer in a man who had been circumcised in infancy from the time of Wolbarst's opinion piece to the time of the report in 1968 (though they would maintain that "performing [circumcision] in infancy continues to be the most effective prophylactic measure against penile carcinoma").[23] Boczko et al. wrote: "The diagnosis in our patient was made late, as in the other cases reported, perhaps because the disease was presumed not to occur in those circumcised in infancy. This is clearly not so. Although rare, the diagnosis must be considered when evaluating a penile lesion even in a circumcised individual."

    In 1993, Christopher Maden, Ph.D., et al. reported a study in which 110 men with penile cancer, diagnosed from January 1979, to July, 1990, were interviewed. Of these 110 men, 22 had been circumcised at birth, 19 later in life, and 69 never.[24] As cases of penile cancer in circumcised men begin to accumulate[25][26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33], it becomes clear that the assertion that circumcision eliminates the risk of penile cancer is categorically false, although some circumcision advocates continue to make this assertion.

    19.↑ Wolbarst, AL. Circumcision and penile cancer. Lancet 1932; 150-3.
    20.↑ Wolbarst A. Circumcision and Penile Cancer. The Lancet, vol. 1 no. 5655 (January 16, 1932): pp. 150-153.
    21.↑ Fleiss PM, Hodges F. Neonatal circumcision does not protect against cancer. BMJ 1996;312(7033):779-80.
    22.↑ Fleiss PM, Hodges F. Neonatal circumcision does not protect against cancer. BMJ 1996;312(7033):779-80.
    23.↑ Boczko S, Freed S. Penile carcinoma in circumcised males. N Y State J Med 1979; 79(12):1903-4.
    24.↑ Poland R. The question of routine neonatal circumcision. New Engl J Med 1990; 322(18):1312-1314.
    25.↑ Pec J Jr, Pec J Sr, Plank L, Plank J, Lazarova Z, Kliment J. Squamous cell carcinoma of the penis. Analysis of 24 cases. Int Urol Nephrol 1992; 24: 193-200.
    26.↑ Aynaud O, Ionesco M; Barrasso R. Penile intraepithelial neoplasia. Specific clinical features correlate with histologic and virologic findings. Cancer 1994; 74: 1762-7.
    27.↑ Bissada NK, Morcos RR, el-Senoussi M. Post-circumcision carcinoma of the penis. I. Clinical aspects. J Urol 1986; 135: 283-5.
    28.↑ Rogus BJ. Squamous cell carcinoma in a young circumcised man. J Urol 1987; 138: 861-2.
    29.↑ Windahl T, Hellsten S. Laser treatment of localized squamous cell carcinoma of the penis. J Urol 1995; 154: 1020-3.
    30.↑ Leiter E, Lefkovitis AM. Circumcision and penile carcinoma. N Y State J Med 1975; 75: 1520-2.
    31.↑ Onuigbo WI. Carcinoma of skin of penis. Br J Urol 1985; 57: 465-6.
    32.↑ Korczak D, Siegel Y, Lindner A. [Verrucous carcinoma of the penis.] Harefuah 1989; 117: 436-7.
    33.↑ Girgis AS, Bergman H, Rosenthal H, Solomon L. Unusual penile malignancies in circumcised Jewish men. J Urol 1973; 110: 696-702.

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  61. How old are you, and precisely WHERE did you go to medical school? I'm afraid they have you snowed.

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  62. You're right in the fact that doctors recommend parents should make their own decision. And I believe that. I think that parents should see both sides. On the circumcision debate, I don't think there's enough to really formally decide which way is better. So if all you're going to say is that circumcision only has risks and no benefits...little bit unfair and an uneducated statement. As for your articles, they are only the abstracts unless you're subscribed. And do you actually know about squamous cell carcinomas or did you just Google them? Good sources, I could do the same but clearly my efforts are going to go unnoticed here. I'm not firmly against or for circumcision. I'm firmly for people making educated decisions.

    You're going to giggle about the vaccine issue? There are diseases that could be eradicated completely if everyone was vaccinated. The chicken pox one is definitely not necessary and it's not a requirement anyway. If there's a chance that my child could die a horrible and painful death, I'm going to do all that I can to prevent that. Research Salk vs. Sabin vaccines to further educate yourself. Salk is inactive and has no real risk. Sabin vaccines are a weakened form and very rarely will cause problems. At least be against the right kind and be sure to fully educate the people which vaccines you are against so that people at least get the vaccines that have no risk. What about the poor countries? Should they not get vaccinated? I haven't even heard your stance, so maybe we're already on the same page.

    Good talk, but I'm afraid you're still on-board the medical conspiracy train and I'm just going to get more and more passionate about wanting to educate you, so excuse me while I play cards with my child.

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  63. Don't be a sore learner. :) You made an assertion and you were shown, with scientific, authoritative links, that your assertion is wrong. The honest thing to do would be to admit your mistake and take your own advice: educate yourself.

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  64. The only advanced societies where circumcision is common for nonreligious reasons are South Korea and the USA. More countries would be on board if circumcision were a valid prophylactic measure.

    Last century, about 100 million American and Canadian baby boys were routinely circumcised. Almost none of them were done under any kind of anesthesia. This was blatantly unethical. Because 50-70% of American obgyns still decline to inject lidocaine before cutting, unanesthetised circ should be made illegal immediately. If a doctor is of the opinion that anesthesia is dangerous, then his action should not be to cut without anesthesia, but to forego cutting entirely.

    Finally, medicine has a fundamental obligation to do follow-up studies of medical procedures, to count efficacy and complications. I know of no study of the American adult penis, with a view to assessing the extent of penis damage resulting form routine infant circ. Until such studies are carried out, and until such studies confirm that circ is harmless, routine circumcision should be deemed unethical.

    Until what I write above becomes a reality, I will continue to blame American medical schools for the sexual tragedy that is North American routine infant circumcision.

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  65. Naama, thank you for being the first Israeli mother I have ever seen taking part in the North American intactivist conversation. And hugs to you for having the immense courage, as a Jew and an Israeli, to not circumcise your future sons.

    "I will not circumcise my boys. That is my and my partner's decision as parents. I sympathize with your pain, Kirk. But, where I come from (Israel) every single man is circumcised. The men in my family,everyone I know, including my past sexual partners and my husband are circumcised. Each one of them is sexually different. Your experience is very real. I will not discredit that, but I am not sure that the circumcision is responsible for your situation.
    Thanks for sharing. Naama "

    1. American hospital circumcision may be carried out in a way that is more sexually damaging than brit milah.

    2. Until 20-30 years ago, men were too embarrassed to admit to circumcision damage.

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  66. "You're right in the fact that doctors recommend parents should make their own decision. And I believe that. I think that parents should see both sides."

    Not all doctors.

    Some doctors push circumcision down your throat, even though the AAP says that parents are not to be coerced.

    There's a problem with this "parents should see both sides" tripe.

    First off, without medical or clinical indication, how is it that a doctor can even be performing surgery on a healthy, non-consenting child, let alone elicit any kind of "decision" from parents?

    What other healthy body part can doctors ask parents to "compare the pros and cons" in order to decide whether or not the child gets to keep it?

    The fact of the matter is that no medical organization in the world endorses male infant circumcision. They all say that circumcision might have "benefits," but that these benefits are not enough to recommend circumcision.

    It's true, they weasel out and say "but it should be a parent's decision."

    But let's analyze this for a second:

    Entire medical organizations around the world are not able to come to any reasonable conclusion regarding circumcision.

    And yet, naive parents, most of whom have never even picked up a textbook on basic human anatomy are expected to take the exact same "evidence" and somehow do better?

    Seriously?

    What a half-assed attempt at an apology for charlatanism!

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  67. "On the circumcision debate, I don't think there's enough to really formally decide which way is better. So if all you're going to say is that circumcision only has risks and no benefits...little bit unfair and an uneducated statement."

    Circumcision is the only surgery where doctors "debate" about the "risks and benefits" of a non-therapeutic, purely cosmetic surgery.

    What intellectual dishonesty.

    Write out a list of surgical procedures that function this way aside from circumcision.

    There are benefits to cutting off your toes. There are benefits to cutting out the prostate. Diabetics are at risk for hammertoe, and one in 6 men will develop prostate cancer. These surgeries *could* "save a person's life" one day.

    Of course, at this point you will start talking about function.

    You can't talk about "risks and benefits" without talking about the function of a body part.

    So tell us, oh educated one, oh product of the American medical system, what are the functions of the human prepuce? Are you going to tell us what it does first before suggesting parents should "decide" to cut this normal, healthy piece of tissue off?

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  68. "I'm not firmly against or for circumcision. I'm firmly for people making educated decisions."

    Without any medical or clinical indication, what "decision" is there to make?

    I challenge you to create a list of other non-medical, non-therapeutic surgeries that are performed on children upon a parent's "decision."

    There will only be one item on that list:

    Circumcision.

    The standard of care for therapeutic surgery requires the medical benefits of the surgery to far outweigh the medical risks and harms, or for the surgery to correct a congenital abnormality. Unnecessarily invasive procedures should not be used where alternative, less invasive techniques, are equally efficient and available. It is unethical and inappropriate to perform surgery for therapeutic reasons where medical research has shown there to be other techniques to be at least as effective and less invasive.

    "You're going to giggle about the vaccine issue? There are diseases that could be eradicated completely if everyone was vaccinated. The chicken pox one is definitely not necessary and it's not a requirement anyway."

    I don't understand; you have given a perfect example of a worthless vaccine, and yet you're trying to paint anti-vaccers in a certain way?

    "If there's a chance that my child could die a horrible and painful death, I'm going to do all that I can to prevent that."

    If there is a chance that my child's "horrible and painful death" can be prevented WITHOUT surgery, I'm going to do all I can to find it. I'm not sure about you, but the less surgery, the less chemicals and live viruses that go into my child, the better.

    Replacing the old with the new and better; THAT is the characteristic of "progress." Science is supposed to be seeking to outdate itself; make itself obsolete, not keep us in the stone age.

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  69. "Research Salk vs. Sabin vaccines to further educate yourself. Salk is inactive and has no real risk. Sabin vaccines are a weakened form and very rarely will cause problems. At least be against the right kind and be sure to fully educate the people which vaccines you are against so that people at least get the vaccines that have no risk."

    This is probably why Guggie giggles; you'd like to assume people on here haven't done their research. Again, follow your own advice.

    "What about the poor countries? Should they not get vaccinated? I haven't even heard your stance, so maybe we're already on the same page."

    More red herrings;

    Helping the poor is a noble cause. However, worthless, or even harmful vaccines are worthless and harmful vaccines. There is no virtue in delivering potentially harmful vaccines that haven't been fully tested to the poor. That is unless that testing the vaccines was the whole point of "helping the poor" in the first place.

    What ABOUT poor countries? Yes, let's talk about how vaccines have "benefited" them. Let's talk about how we're not causing more damage than good in Africa, South America etc.

    "Good talk, but I'm afraid you're still on-board the medical conspiracy train and I'm just going to get more and more passionate about wanting to educate you, so excuse me while I play cards with my child."

    We'll be here all week.

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  70. Kirk, You have put into words what many of us have experienced but few are able to express. Thanks for writing this and giving others the chance for full sexual feelings and response that we will never know.

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  71. all babies should be circumcised lol

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  72. all baby boys should be routinely circumcised lol

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    Replies
    1. Your ugly face should be circumcised lol

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  73. Thank you for this:
    "But, I have learned that I can forgive my parents for letting strangers hurt me so badly. I have learned that I can love them still, in spite of my pain and anger. And that gives me hope. I have hope because I know that I can love and forgive. I can love and forgive because my parents were misled and they didn’t know any better. They had no easy access to research through the Internet. They heard no voices of child advocacy pleading on my behalf. They had no reassurance from a large and growing group of parents who were challenging and rejecting the horrifying violation of routine infant genital mutilation.

    My parents weren’t unwilling to learn – unwilling to protect me. They were deceived. And I forgive them."

    As a mom of two boys who were cared for, loved, and circumcised-we did what, at the time, was in, what we could find, the best medical interest for their health. One is not happy with that decision, the other is. This situation is tearing the family relationship apart since they don't agree on how to raise their children on this subject, and I hate that.

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  74. unbelievable!!
    This is the most ridiculous thing i have ever read.
    http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa0802556
    http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMra1007755
    and other millions of articles and researches are done in order to show the benefits of circumcision.
    i am totally shocked after reading the story and the comments.
    you simple minded , foolish people!

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    1. You are so intelligent and SO right! Oh my gosh. I'm going to go to you, Anonymous genius on the internet with links to ONE "medical publication", for all of my research needs. Thank you for existing! I don't know what I'd do without your wisdom!

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    2. I think that doctors who do this genital mutilation should be put in jail for child abuse. The parents too.

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  75. I was nanny to a toddler a few years ago. When I started working for this family, the boy had just been circumcised. But he was having the additional issue of adhesion onto the glans. The doctor told the parents to treat this by pulling the skin back off of where it had stuck, and applying cream while this boy screamed bloody murder (while they held him down). They were instructed to do this until it healed "properly" which took days. That was enough to convince me this practice of mutilating our boys is straight-up barbaric and there is no good reason whatsoever to subject a child to such torment. I wonder how deeply that repeated trauma will affect him later in life...

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