Saturday, September 20, 2008

The First Cut is the Deepest

Well I guess I was wrong about Perry Farrell. That's a good thing. Not that he has put out anything worth mentioning since maybe about 1996, but still a good thing.

Baby News: Jack was sleeping the whole time we saw him today. He needed a lot of suctioning for a while. This kind of sucks since yesterday he didn't need it at all. I guess he took down about 10 cc from the bottle. Hopefully tonight we will get some face time. Riley tied her world record today and took 30 cc. She followed this up with a decent performance of 20 cc. When we get her to about 40 cc, she is at her full feed on an every 4 hour schedule. Keep it coming sister.

Our babies are currently in the back corner of the NICU. This is right where male babies go sometimes to get clipped. If anyone tells you that it doesn't hurt them, they are lying. You should hear the little babies scream. And there is this creepy looking device they use to strap them in before the operation. It is called a Cicrumstraint. What a name. It got me thinking about the whole circumcision thing, and wondering how important it is to get it done. We were told by one of the nurses that her sons were snipped when they were 12 years old because they were getting laughed at in school. I would like to see their circumstraint... That is crazy. I don't know, I know there has been a recent swing away from circumcision, but ultimately I think it will likely be another trauma that the little man has to endure in his young life. Now step up to the pencil sharpener!

So, not that this is really up for a vote or anything, but I wanted to get your opinion on it. Make sure to vote in the new poll.

The Circumstraint

Rachael's Latest Art Project

Jack (Don't do it!)


The First Cut is the Deepest (Cat Stevens)


Ruby said...

Hi momma your son is gorgeous. I am also a premie mommy. He was born at 32 weeks.
I was just ready your post about circumcision, and wanted to let you know, the nurse was just using scare tactics, please ignore her. The rate of circ in the USA is and 50/50 now! Canada it is at 10.2 %. So the truth is that there are more boys that are uncircumsized (intact) then there are cut. 80% of the worlds population is intact. No medical out fit in the world condones circumcision. They have all taken the side of it is a human rights issue, and have realized through lots of research there really are no medical benifits to do it, yet a very high risk of some sort of complication for doing it.
If I can help you, or you want some info, anything, I have been where you are and would love to help, please email me at

Take care Ruby

Amanda said...

The Prior comment is 100% correct, Nationwide the circumcision rate is at 50/50 but very's by range so your son will NOT be "the only one" and you know any guy that would admit to looking at another guys penis long enough to realize he is intact? Don't you think HE would be the one getting made fun of?? Its a non-issue, believe me, kids will tease eachother for EVERYTHING, what if you son needs glasses?? you gonna get him lasic surgery so he won't have to wear glasses? how about if he is over weight? Lipo? or red hair? you gonna die it? Circumcision is completely unnessacary and as you have witnessed VERY Painful!! Please don't put your son through this for no good reason!! educate yourself!!!

Best of luck.

Mandie said...

Hi there. You don't know me, but I found your blog. I really wanted to share my story with you. I hope that it helps.

Before my husband and I had our son, I didn't research circumcision at all. My husband is circumsized and we just agreed to do it. At the time, I thought it was "just what you did". After the birth, I was having second thoughts (you seem to be having these as well). I just had this feeling at the pit of my belly telling me "don't do it." My mama instincts were trying to tell me something and I didn't listen. So they did it and I felt awful. Crying hyserically about it day after day. My husband thought it was just having some baby blues. Then I found Started reading about circumcision and what happened to my son. I found a circumcision video and threw up. My husband and I talked about it and I told him I was never doing that to another child. He said "ok" and we left it at that. My husband started doing his own research and we found the site about how circumcision hurts women (mostly related to sexual issues). And my husband came to me crying. Saying how could we have done this...etc. After much research, my husband decided to restore his foreskin. He has been doing that for around 6 months now. It is a long road but he is gaining a lot. We plan to tell our son how sorry we are. How we shouldn't have made that choice for him. How daddy is different because he has been restored. We will teach him about restoration and he can make the choice for himself.

Why do I feel so strongly about it? Because I put my son through that torture FOR NO REASON. And why did I share this with you? Because if I can help save one baby boy from feeling that pain and save one mother from feeling the intense sadness that I feel, then it will be worth it. I can't sleep at night, I am depressed during the day. Because of THIS.

Best wishes on your son. He is lucky to have you as parents because you are doing the research ahead of time. I am sure that you will find that circumcision is a cosmetic procedure and that it isn't really needed. The American Academy of Pediatrics even agrees.

Enjoy this special time.


Anonymous said...

I have had two babies in the NICU at different times, so I know the pain those babies go through, and my question is this -- with all the trauma your baby has been through already, why would you sign him up for more?

It won't "make a man" out of him, it will just traumatize him. He's just a tiny little baby! It's not going to toughen him up. Quite the opposite -- studies show that babies who get circumcised react MORE strongly to pain later, not less.

Go watch a circ if you can -- it's brutal. You've already heard the screams, so you know it's not just a "snip" or a "pencil being sharpened."

First they strap the baby down spread-eagled on the circumstraint that you have seen.

I'm sure you've changed Jack's dipes and seen his intact penis. See his foreskin? That's attached to the head of his penis exactly how his fingernails are attached to his nailbeds.

So the next thing the doctor does is stick a blunt probe between the foreskin and the head (cutting into the foreskin first if necessary to widen the opening) and run that probe all around to break the adhesions. Which feels exactly like fingernails being ripped off, except on his penis.

Then the doctor puts a metal clamp down on the penis to clamp the foreskin and stop the bleeding (otherwise he could bleed to death as happens to a few babies every year).

Then the doctor slices off the foreskin, leaving the baby with a bloody, painful wound on his penis that he will pee and poop on until it's all healed.

And for what? So that some jackass doesn't tease him in the locker room 15 years from now? Why not teach your son to stand up to bullies instead? Why not raise him to be proud of the body that God/nature gave him?

He can just ask anyone who is dumb enough to make fun of him a) "dude, why are you checking out my junk" and/or b) "dude, your parents had the best part of your penis cut off at birth and you're making fun of ME?"

No medical organization in the world recommends circumcision for babies. So why would you listen to a NICU nurse who's obviously behind the times?

Do your own research because this is a decision you don't get to take back. You should especially research the functions of the foreskin, because if you sign Jack up for circ his penis will end up shorter, thinner, and less sensitive. Maybe he wouldn't want to lose 50% of the nerve endings of his penis!

It's your son's body. What would his vote be? It's his penis. Let him make the choice.

Raelynn said...

Your babies are so beautiful!!

I agree with the other comments, circumcision is a very painful surgery that has more cons than pros. Many call it "cosmetic" but cosmetic means to improve the appearance (by who's standard of attractiveness though?), but circumcision has several damaging impacts to the male. He loses 50% of the skin on his penis, thousands of nerve endings, ends up losing the "gliding action" that the foreskin is supposed to provide during intercourse (replacing it instead with friction, which can be damaging to the man and his partner). You don't want to think of your son having sex, but the reality is that circumcision affects the way the penis looks and functions (see the site - graphic pictures but it explains it well).

The bottom line is, it's your son's penis. Give him the choice. If he hates it, he can always get a circumcision later in life, where they will use proper anaesthetic (most babies are not given any - sugar pacifiers and numbing creams are not adequate for the pain involved in a circumcision). If he chooses to get cut later on, he can also choose how much skin to have removed, whether he wants more inner or outer foreskin left - it is very difficult to judge how big a baby's penis will be as an adult.

The trend these days is for doctors to do "loose" circumcisions, leaving much extra skin for the boy to "grow into." The problem with loose circumcisions, is that they accumulate smegma and lint etc under the remaining skin, and because the foreskin is no longer sealed on the glans, it often results in redness and pain for the child, especially if/when the parent tries to retract the remaining foreskin to clean under it. Taking off too much skin has even more damaging results, resulting in painful erections for the man the child will become later on, as well as skin from the groin/scrotum being pulled up onto the shaft to accommodate for the lack of skin for an erection (this results in hairy shaft - this doesn't happen in intact men).

Complications of circumcision are great. 10% will develop meatal stenosis (narrowing of the urethral opening - my DH had this and needed painful surgery at age 14 to make the opening bigger). 70% will develop adhesions where the remaining foreskin attempts to reattach to the glans. The list goes on and on.

Intact care is easy - wipe like a finger. The foreskin will retract on it's own, anytime between toddlerhood and the teenage years (median age is about 11yrs old). The only person to retract the foreskin should be the owner of the penis. Girls are much harder to keep clean, as I am sure you have found out (or will find out! lol).

I apologize for the novel, but if it saves your son from this painful, genital-reduction surgery, then I am happy to have typed this all out for you. Please take your WHOLE son home from the hospital, you won't regret it!

Nicabar said...

Your beautiful son does need to endure a circumcision. Listen to your insticts telling you it's the wrong and painful thing to do. There are good reasons why it's fading fast. There is no medical need for it. It was just a cultural fad. We now know that most sensitive parts are cut off by circumcision, the inner mucosal area and transition region. If you don't know any intact men you are comfortable asking to confirm this, then read this study which quantified it.

Don't let anybody scare you into thinking it'll need to be done later, especially for such an absurd reason as "teasing." Aside from the fact that the intactness rate will be much higher among Jack's peers than it was whenever this nurse's 12-year old was born, there are non-surgical alternatives to playground or locker room teasing. However I've heard numerous times that this phenomenon is largely a myth, and that if boy's are looking around that way, they certainly don't talk about it.

Besides, Jack will one day assume full custody of his own body. Isn't it your responsibility to preserve it, intact, until that time? In the very unlikely event that there are parts of it he doesn't want, he will always have that choice. If parts are discarded before that time, then he will not have any choice.

Tori said...

I have to say, I had felt this hollow bad feeling in the pit of my stomach when I was approached about circ. I said no, my husband said yes, it turned into the fact I knew nothing about it, and he won.

Now we both regret it. I feel horrible that I didn't stop it, and my husban actually cried when he really took the time to read about the side effects of Circ. What bad things can come from it? Guess what, without him even knowing, he says he feels some of his prob. are from circ.... He hopes our son will forgive him later on, and we don't plan on ever circumcising a little boy ever again.

I suppose I just feel like I have a forskin, and I don't think I would be very happy if my parents cut the forskin around my clitoris because it might make me less sensitive, and could prevent yeast infections... What? Exactly!

My vote is NO!!!