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Response to Sgent (Original post)

Tue Aug 21, 2012, 10:08 AM

107. Neonatal nurse writing on circumcision

Karen Nurse (08:46:11) :


I am looking for someone to do an expose’ on a custom. I am a nurse in newborn nursery. The pain that sweet tiny baby boys go through during a circumcision horrifies me. It is surgery without anesthesia. It is 10 minutes of pure hell. The pain is so horrendous that many babies go into shock immediately. They just stare and make gurgly noises. They are the lucky ones. The others remain perfectly aware of the pain that goes on and on. Their piercing screams haunt me.

In history, the earliest surgery was done without anesthesia. Just tie them down and do it quick. Some people were willing to have surgery once. But I’ve read that people refused to endure surgery a second time – even if it meant death. They knew how severe the pain was, and decided they would rather die than endure that pain a second time.

How can intelligent, educated people not realize that a scalpel causes a horrendous, sharp, excruciating pain that no human being should ever have to endure. Tell me how a custom can be so strong that it overpowers intelligence and common sense.

For example, the Chinese custom of “binding” young girls’ feet. The toes were forced down under the foot [ breaking bones, I believe ] and tightly bound forever. So the feet couldn’t grow. Forever small. Big feet were considered UGLY. No one would marry a girl with big feet. Can you imagine the pain? Americans are not under the influence of Chinese customs and from a distance, we are apalled! But in China, even after a law was passed against foot-binding, some parents would still do it – knowing that they were going to prison. That is how strong a custom can be. It can cloud judgement.

The pain of circumcision wouldn’t be quite as bad if the foreskin was fully developed at birth. But it is still adhered to the glans [ head of the penis ] and does not separate naturally for several years. Mother Nature may be slow, but it produces an exquisitely sensitive sexual organ.

The first step of a circumcision is to rip the adhered foreskin off the glans using a metal probe. But the two skins are still fused as one. And patches of skin are ripped off the glans in the process. I see the glans of these tiny penises with skin missing and the tissue exposed every day. The pain is supposed to be comparable to having a metal probe forced under your fingernail and ripping it back and forth until the fingernail comes off. Imagine the pain! It is now recommended that a pain block be used. But it is not a law. So only a few babies get it.

So why do we do it? Because it is what we are used to. A custom. Explain that to a baby that is enduring a pain that no human being should ever have to endure!

There are many other reasons not to circumcise. It is removing the best skin of the penis. The foreskin contains approx. 20,000 specialized nerves that enhance sexual pleasure. The skin remaining is crude and has only a fraction of the sensation. The foreskin is NOT extra skin. It is there so that the penis can get longer during an erection. It is designed to unfold and stretch out, allowing the penis to grow. In the process, the foreskin is pulled off the glans. The glans is then uncovered and now the intact penis looks the same as a circumcised penis. They end up looking the same during an erection. But the intact penis is larger and has more sensation.

Over the years, doctors have invented excuses for circumcision and the public latches onto them. These excuses are false and misleading. There is no reason good enough to inflict such sharp, excruciating pain on someone you love. To forever decrease his sexual pleasure. To amputate the best, most sensitive part of his penis. To violate his human rights.

As I watch parents hug and kiss their new babies. Then insist that their babies endure a pain that is comparable to a fingernail being ripped off with a metal probe. And then a scalpel cuts – with no anesthesia. I want to scream, “Do you love your baby, or hate him?”

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