Monday, November 11, 2013

Becoming an Intactivist

I had my son in 1998. After I learned he was a boy, I thought pretty hard on this decision because I knew it was going to end up coming up when he was born. No escaping that part. But, being there was not really much or any internet back then (what there was was not good like it is now) I didn't really know where to go for information. I didn't think (stupidly) of looking in the library. To be honest, I don't think I thought there would be any books on it, or at least about why not to do it. Should have looked regardless. I remember asking about it with my Mom who said I should do it because if not, he's more prone to infections but most of all he should look like his dad (gross) to feel the same and not different and he might be bullied in school if he stays 'uncircumcised'. At that time, that really bothered me. I was bullied, severely, in school. Beat up because I grew breasts before other girls. Bullied by family members, called fat by adults. The idea of bullying meant a lot to me in that I didn't want to have any reason possible for MY child to be bullied. To add, his dad (my ex) wanted him done. It's really the only thing he was 'involved' in during my pregnancy and his birth. He was insistent that he got circumcised and at that time I was too scared to stand up to him. I was too scared to stand up to anyone back then. I was easily walked on and easy to have my mind changed. But, deep down, I didn't want it done. I really didn't. It didn't seem right.

Tyler was circumcised at day 7 in his pediatricians office. We took him in and I remember being very upset. I didn't want this at all. They took us back to the room. If I remember right, I think the Circumstraint might have been in there already (not 100% sure since it was 15 years ago) I remember asking his doctor about this. Why I should have it done and if i'm making the right decision. She assured me that i was. That all boys get it done. It's normal. He'll be better off. He'll have less infections but most of all he will NOT feel different. She also told me that it's just a small snip and that injecting him with pain meds would be more painful than the small snip so she doesn't use pain meds (really???). I believed her. Why not? I believed her that it's a small little snip. I didn't know anything about this or the foreskin. What was done was the Plastibell method. They took us out to the waiting room. I sat at the far end so I wouldn't hear crying (ugh) and I started to shake all over and sob. BUT, at the same time, with that reaction, I didn't go stop it. About 10 mins later they came out with him. He wasn't crying, but he was making a sound that was like a hiccup. He couldn't catch his breath. They took us back to the same room so I could breastfeed him. The Circumstraint was there (I remember that!) and even worse, the tools they used left in the sink and bloody. I was FURIOUS!!!! And sick. I felt sick. I knew right then and there that I made a very very very bad parenting decision. He nursed but couldn't really suckle properly. He kept losing his breath. He was so upset! Thankfully he didn't have any life threatening complications. He did bleed. 

I remember the next day changing his diaper and there was blood in it and on his penis, but the doctor said it was normal. Ugh. 

I had another son 2 1/2 years later. His dad was still insistent that we circumcise him. Came to his very first pediatrician appointment (new doctor) and he asked about it (even though I was putting my foot down). Thankfully the new doctor said 1. we'd have to pay out of pocket 2. it's unnecessary, purely cosmetic and then the doctor thanked me for wanting to keep him intact. He's 12 now and no issues! 

I didn't actually realize how bad my decision was 15 years ago, until recently when I became an Intactivist. I've read articles, watched documentaries and the procedure, what really happens. Seen photos of it. It upsets me so much. My regret is very deep. I can no longer look at baby photos of Tyler, especially the ones before I allowed it to happen. I accidentally found a photo the other day of him when he was 5 maybe. He was naked. I almost burst into tears, because now I know, he's not 'normal'. He's been mutilated, altered, for no good reason.


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