The first intensive exploration of the unrecognized psychological and social aspects of this increasingly controversial American cultural practice. Endorsed by dozens of professionals in psychology, psychiatry, child development, pediatrics, obstetrics, childbirth education, sociology and anthropology.
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"What's done to children, they will do to society."
"Parents do not know what they are choosing, and physicians do not feel what they are doing."
"In response to circumcision, the baby cries a helpless, panicky, breathless, high-pitched cry!...[or] lapses into a semi-coma. Both of these states...are abnormal states in the newborn."
"Doctors who circumcise are the most resistant to change. They will not admit that they made a critical mistake by amputating an important part of the penis."
"In this case, the old dictum 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it' seems to make good sense."
"A whole life can be shaped by an old trauma, remembered or not."
"If we are to have real peace, we must begin with the children."
"We are interconnected. When a baby boy's sexuality is not safe, no one's sexuality is safe."
Psychological Impact of Circumcision on Men
"I feel violated and abused."
FEELINGS OF DISSATISFACTION AND HAVING BEEN HARMED
The dissatisfaction of some circumcised men can be described in detail. It has been expressed in an increasing number of letters from men all around the country to the Circumcision Resource Center and to several other organizations that educate the public about circumcision. Moreover, in an issue of a major medical journal, twenty men signed a letter saying, ďWe are all adult men who believe that we have been harmed by circumcision.Ē We do not know how widespread the discontent is, but that these feelings exist at all is a noteworthy development and reason for concern.
Following are some statements about circumcision excerpted from letters written by dissatisfied circumcised men and received at the Circumcision Resource Center:
I have felt a deep rage for a long time about this.
My penis feels incomplete, deformed, maimed.
Circumcision has given my life a much diminished and shameful flavor.
The single most traumatic event of my life with the greatest psychological damage was my circumcision as an infant.
Circumcision: itís taught me how to hate.
Being circumcised has ruined my sex life.
I feel violated and abused.
I have felt unhappy about it all my life.
I am very angry and resentful about this. Iíve had many physical, psychological, and emotional problems all my life.
No one had the right to cut my foreskin off!
I feel cheated at having been robbed of what is my natural birthright.
I never mentioned it to my parents.
Iíve always felt Iím missing normal male experience, and Iím embarrassed when in public dressing rooms.
I wish I could circumcise every uncircumcised man in the world so they'd be like me. I don't have a foreskin, and no one else should have one either.
I feel like the best part of me was severed from my body, and I have ugly scars to remind me. I am so ANGRY!!
The responses of men dissatisfied with their circumcision tend to include at least one of the following feelings:
anger, resentment, revenge, rage, hate
sense of loss, deficiency, diminished body image
disbelief, lack of understanding, confusion
sense of having been victimized, cheated, robbed, raped,
violated, abused, mutilated, deformed
fear, distrust, withdrawal
grief, sadness, pain
envy, jealousy of intact men
Similar feelings were reported in a preliminary survey in which over 300 self-selected circumcised men responded to a request to document the harmful effects of their circumcision. Over 80 percent of respondents cited emotional harm.
References are available upon request.
© Circumcision Resource Center