SEARCH THIS SITE
TRANSLATOR
F4F BLOG POSTS INDEX
Absentee Fathers activities Adopt-a-School Campaign attachment issues attachment issues babies babies baby blues Baby care baby clothing Baby firsts baby food baby girls Baby health Baby names baby products baby products baby proofing Baby registry Baby Shoes Baby’s first steps Bad Dads Bad Dads Bathing beach Being a Role Model Birth birthday party ideas books bottle feeding Breastfeeding Breastfeeding in public breastfeeding support Bullying buying gifts for moms Car Safety Caregivers charity child abuse child birth child care child development Child Protection Laws child rearing Child Safety childcare expenses Childhood Children Children's Entertainment Chuck the Chunk circumcision colds Commentary Commentary competitive mothers competitive parents crafts crawling Dad Dad Blogs dads dads dads and babies dads and babies dads and babies dads and birth dads and daughters dads and daughters dads in the delivery room dads to be daughters delivery and labor developmental milestones diapers diapers discipline Disney Disney Junior Divorce domestic duties Double Strollers Doulas equal parenting equal prenting Expectant fathers expecting a second child Family Car Family Fire Safety Family Get Togethers family reunion Father and Son Father of the week father pregnancy Father Studies Father’s Day Father’s Day Gifts fatherhood Fatherhood involvement Fatherhood involvement fatherhood studies Fatherhood Websites fathers Fathers and sons Father's Day Father's Day fathers to be Fears and Phobias feeding feeding an infant Feminists First steps first words Firsts first-time fatherhood first-time fatherhood first-time fathers Gender stereotypes gifts for dads gifts for new moms granddads grandma Grocery shopping Halloween Heatstroke help for fathers Hiring a Nappy Imaginary friends Imagination Movers Infant car seats infants infants Internet Censorship Interview Introducing solids introducing solids Involved Fatherhood KIPP labor and delivery language laundry Life and Death Loss of a child Love Lullabies marital relations marriage marriage advice Massago Massago app maternity clothing Maternity Leave Meal Planning memories men’s health men’s health Men's Grooming Men's Health Miscarriage Modern Dads Modern Family Mom Mommyitis moms Moms mother Mother’s day Mother’s day gift ideas Mother’s Day gifts music for baby new baby new dad New Dad D.I.Y New Dad D.I.Y New Dad D.I.Y. New Dad D.I.Y. new dads new dads new father new father to be new fathers new mothers new parents newborn babies Newborns parenthood parenting parenting parenting 101 parenting 101 parenting advice Parenting Blogs parenting differences parenting differences parenting father parenting for fathers parenting tips parents parents pets planned parenthood Play places post-natal sex Postpartum depression Potty Training pparenting for fathers Pregnancy pregnancy and birth pregnancy for dads prenatal classes Pre-natal classes preschools pros and cons; ritual circumcision protecting your kids push gifts raising a child raising a child Registered Massage Therapists relationships Reviews RMT rraising a child sahms School School Programs Schoola Sex after pregnancy Sexuality shopping with a baby Siblings sick baby Single Dads Sleep Training Sleep Trasitioning Social Media Sonogram sons spanking special needs children Special Occasions Special Occassions Stay-at-home-dads Step Dads styles of parenting SUVs taking kids to the park Teenagers Teething Relief Terrible Twos Testing Time-outs toddlers toddlers and language Top Tens Toronto Toys Tweens Uber Unsolicited advice vaginal birth Valentine’s Day Vasectomy w Websites for dads working dads Working moms
F4F MEMBERS ONLY
« PUSH IT! PUSH IT REAL GOOD: FIVE GREAT GIFT IDEAS FOR THE MOTHER OF YOUR FIRST BORN CHILD | Main | Universal Circumcision: Be A Good Father: Circumcise Your Son »
Saturday
Apr162011

THE CIRCUMCISION DECISION: PROS AND CONS OF PUTTING YOUR INFANT SON'S 'HEAD' ON THE CHOPPING BLOCK

Marie Antoinette-guillotined in 1793 for questionable decision-making abilities-said: "Let them eat cake!" And that's exactly what I do every time one of my Jewish friends invites me to a briss; a religious rite of passage; the celebration of the circumcision. Now, I don't know if the spectacle of lopping off the foreskin of a helpless infant should be followed by a buffet (with the tears, the screaming, and the blood) but somehow it doesn't seem to affect any body's appetite- except mine. So while everyone else watches with bated breath as some old Jewish guy (or woman, in some cases) with shaky hands and a few sips of Manischewitz on his lips carves some hapless newborns willy like it was Filet Mignon, I hang out by the sweet table.

What can I say, I'm not squeamish but certain things don't need to be witnessed to be supported. And by supported I mean a parent's individual (or collective) choice to risk their child's future happiness (sexual enjoyment) and ability to shower in front of others without being ridiculed for the sake of tradition, or continuity, or health, or whatever else helps them to sleep through the night. It's a choice, plain and simple. But God knows it shouldn't be an easy one.

As someone who worked for many years in the pet industry, I'm amazed by how many people would never crop a dog's tail, or pin back a puppies ears because they believe it to be barbaric, but these same people have no problem subjecting their infant sons to a similar kind of barbarism in the name of religion, or personal hygiene. It's hypocritical to be against this kind of cruelty towards animals but be accepting of it on the other hand, for 'personal reasons,' to please a need to conform with one's family or peers, or a fear of going against conventional medical practices. Why don't we just take Shirley Jackson's classic short story, The Lottery, to heart and start stoning people... for 'health' reasons? Why don't we just lop off the tip of your pinkie finger and see how it feels? No? But its okay if we do it to kittens when we declaw them, and the equivalent when we emasculate our first born sons, and all our sons thereafter, by shaving a few millimeters off their schmeckles.

Look, I'm not judging anyone here. We all do what we have to do.  We all make our own beds, and usually have no problem sleeping in them. And, maybe we should? If God made Adam and Eve in his own image, why does the Almighty get to keep his foreskin while all the sons of Israel do not? That hardly seems fair. I know God asks for some strange stuff, but sometimes he strikes me as some weird hoarder that has some odd peculiarities. Again, not judging, I'm just questioning an age-old practice that should probably come under review, possibly over a Bacon Cheeseburger or some Back Bacon and Eggs (that's an inside joke). I'm trying to relate here, but it's hard. I'm just the father of a daughter. I've never had to make such a difficult decision, on the fly, that would affect my child for the rest of her life. The hardest decision I've had to make so far is whether to put her in the black dress or the pink one (I like her to look nice when one of her friends is going under the knife, but I'm not sure if she should be dressed to party or dressed to mourn the loss of innocence). Can't decide.

Am I mocking tried and true religious practices? No. And I'm not mocking your resolve to do right by your kids either. I'm just a sounding board; the guy who put to paper the internal monologue every father has when the question of circumcision comes into play. It's a tough one to be sure. But I know you'll make the right decision for you and your family. I support your decision, either way. I just wanted you to mull it over, and educate yourself as best you can before the proverbial Sword of Damocles falls. And, hey, if the Mohel misses the mark, and your son becomes a unic, not to worry... there's always gender re-assignment surgery. And, how much could that hurt?

If you need some dresses, let me know? My daughter has a closet full of them. Until then, here are some links about the pros and cons of circumcision- unless, of course, you've already made up your mind?

Related Links:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Circumcised-Fathers-Intact-Sons/168941726491846

 

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

Reader Comments (7)

Oh my gosh, I was rolling at some of your comments! I am completely supportive of any person wishing to practice their own religion on themselves. I draw the line, however, when that practice bleeds over into chopping off parts of children who have no say in the matter!

June 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNaji Wench

I saw what you did with the word "bleeds" there... Thanks for checking us out. It's a tough debate to be sure... and not any easy choice for dads especially.

June 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Dolgin

I am 100% against circumcision, both male and female. Its genital mutilation and I fail to see how it should be allowed to be practiced under the heading of "religion" or "tradition." Genuine health reasons, maybe. If an older child decides to follow his parent's religious or traditional practices and with an informed mind opts to be circumcised fine, but not babies! I don't understand how it is still a tolerated practice when her in Aus at least you can't even smack a child on the bottom as discipline without some government agency jumping on your back and screaming "abuse!" in your ear (and there's another can of worms in itself, to smack or not to!).

September 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I know you're just trying to be balanced in your references at the end of the post, but the last site you link to is a blog by and for people with a circumcision fetish. Not exactly accurate (or even sane). Or maybe that was the point?

The Psychology Today article, on the other hand, is very informative. Thanks!

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTD

It was put in there to show all points of view. If there is a webiste on circumcision fetishists, don't you think they would have something to say on the subject? I just thought it was an interesting addition - it caught your attention?

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFodder 4 Fathers

Circumcision is a ridiculous, horrifying practice, that has no medical benefits whatsoever! If an adult decides to alter his penis, so be it. No one owns another's body, or has the right to decide for that person what to do with his or her body. Please, please, leave your children intact...please.

November 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDoulalee

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>