A single mom has no male influences and is unsure if she should circumcise her unborn son, so she turns to ‘Dear Dad’ for advice.
I am a single mother of a 2 year old girl, and am 8 months pregnant with my son. My boyfriend left when he found out I was pregnant and I grew up without a father, so there is no man in the picture.
My question is, should I circumcise my son? I have been reading things about it, but it seems there are as many people for it as there are against it. I don’t know what to do. Please help, I need a man’s input, and I feel like I’m cutting it too close to my due date!
When I first started this column and tackled a circumcision question, I had to literally walk away from my computer over the unbelievable debate the topic sparked (I actually sat under my kitchen table petting my dog and rocking back and forth, I admit – it was that bad). I used to run the column “live” on a Facebook page, so I watched in horror as the subject was debated on one of my first columns in front of an audience where I did not know what to expect. I contemplated throwing in the towel on ‘Dear Dad’ because the aftermath was that bad.
After the dust settled on the post, I decided not to answer any more questions on the subject, but carry on with my column. I have since become educated about and weighed in on this subject (and my experience of the first column) in many capacities. I am willing to make an exception here on The Good Men Project and in light of your situation, ‘Cutting’, and hope I can offer some helpful advice from a more seasoned perspective.
The truth is you are going to hear a lot of impassioned opinions on the subject and in my experience all of that is just noise, be it the pro or con position. You can’t believe half of what you read on the internet because (in my experience) many times when you click on a meme, a chart, or a fact-providing article they all lead back to somebody’s blog. I have a blog. I would not trust me for medical advice (and certainly hope no one else would). Please be wary of the sources you rely on as you come to this decision.
My advice is to contact your pediatrician and your OB/GYN and advise them of your question and ask for their input on the subject. I would also research legitimate scientific publications (The New England Journal of Medicine is a great one – google it) and decide as his mother what you think the best option is for your son.
There are, in fact, pros and cons to this procedure. It is your job as his mother to decide what outweighs what and which situation you want for him now when he is incapable of making that choice for himself (and from what I’ve researched – now is the time to make that choice – it is much more difficult a procedure to take away or add later in life). As parents, we make decisions for our children’s health all the time because they are too young to make those decisions for themselves. Whatever you decide is the best choice for your son is the best choice for YOUR son.
I am glad fate brought me three daughters as my wife and I do not see eye to eye on this subject. I don’t know what would have happened had we had a son. I think in that regards, ‘Cutting’, you are in a better position because once you have made this choice for your son, you can rest easy that you made an educated, informed, and correct choice.
I wish you luck in making your decision and hope my advice helps you find the tools to make the right choice for your son. I realize you may have hoped I would say “do it” or “don’t do it,” but that is not my call to make – it is yours as his mother and you need to empower yourself and trust your instincts regardless of what anyone else says or thinks.
As parents, we make choices for our children on a daily basis – be it their diets, their education, what they are exposed to, and so on. When our role as parents demands we make medical choices for our kids – to vaccinate, to circumcise, et cetera – how do you trust that you are making the right choice for your child?
Photo: Flickr/Lisa Rosario Photography
Originally appeared on The Cook At Home Dad. Updated and reprinted with permission.
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