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TOPIC: Stop child circumcission stop child abuse.

The emotional and behavioral effects of circumcisi 7 years 5 months ago #105

  • Denisb
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high incidence of PTSD in these boys. Sixty-nine percent of boys who had been circumcised by the traditional “tuli” Philippine ritual circumcision and 51 percent of boys who had been medically circumcised satisfied the DSM-IV criteria for PTSD.27

Behavior in later life

There is increasing evidence that male circumcision influences the behavior of adult males. Menage reports PTSD after genital surgery.28_ More specific to male circumcision, Rhinehart reports finding PTSD in adult males in his clinical practice in which the stressor was neonatal circumcision. 29_Rhinehart lists symptoms of:

a sense of personal powerlessness

fears of being overpowered and victimized by others

lack of trust in others and life

a sense of vulnerability to violent attack by others

guardedness in relationships

reluctance to be in relationships with women


diminished sense of maleness

feeling damaged, especially in the presence of surgical complications such as skin tags, penile curvature due to uneven foreskin removal, partial ablation of edges of the glans and so on

sense of reduced penile size, a part cut off or amputated

low self-esteem

shame about not “measuring up”

anger and violence toward women

irrational rage reactions

addictions and dependencies

difficulties in establishing intimate relationships

emotional numbing

need for more intensity in sexual experience

sexual callousness

decreased tenderness in intimacy

decreased ability to communicate

feelings of not being understood29

Van der Kolk (1989) reports that persons who have been traumatized have a compulsion to repeat the trauma and to find new victims on which to re-enact the trauma they suffered.30_This may apply with full force to victims of circumcision. The circumcision of an infant is a way to reenact the trauma of circumcision.31_The compulsion to circumcise isvery strong and has resulted in unlawful batteries and abductions to circumcise an unwilling victim.32-36

There is some evidence that adverse experiences in the perinatal period (from the 28th week of gestation through the first seven days of extra-uterine life) cause self-destructive behavior in adult life.37-40_Circumcised males may tend to be more self-destructive, but more research is needed to verify the effect traumatic non-therapeutic circumcision has on self-destructive behavior.

The condition of the male phallus impacts a male’s feeling of well-being. A phallus diminished by the loss of the erogenous foreskin to circumcision necessarily adversely affects one’s feelings about one’s self, resulting in uncomfortable feelings of low self-esteem. There is, therefore,a strong tendency to deny that any loss occurred. Minimization of the loss is a common defense mechanism; ridicule of the subjectis another. Persons who have lost body parts must grieve their loss.41_Failure to grieve and accept the loss puts one in permanent denial of loss.42_Many men who have been circumcised do not want non-circumcised males, including their own sons,around to remind them of their irreversible loss. For these emotional reasons, as Foley (1966) observed, there tends to be a strong irrational bias in favor of universal circumcision among circumcised males.7_Many fathers who were victims of neonatal circumcision, for the reasons described above,adamantly insist that any male offspring be circumcised.24_This phenomenon has come to be called “the adamant father syndrome.” Circumcision, therefore is a repeating cycle of trauma in which circumcised infant males grow up to be adult circumcisers.31

Behavior of circumcised medical doctors

Medical doctors in Australia, Canada, and the United States practiced circumcision in the twentieth century, so these nations have a heavy proportion of circumcised men, some of whom become medical doctors. These circumcised male doctors share the same bias in favor of male circumcision as do other circumcised males.7,31,43_Male doctors who were circumcised as infants are more likely to recommend circumcision of infants to parents.44

The Australian Paediatric Association recommended non-circumcision—genital integrity—in 1971;45_thereafter, the incidence of circumcision among Australia’s newborn plummeted.46_At the present time, in regard to genital integrity status, Australia is, in effect, two nations, one of which has mostly circumcised men and the other that has mostly intact men. The dividing point is the year 1978, because the incidence of genital integrity among newborn boys rose above 50 percent in that year.46_The ever-increasing percentage of genitally intact younger men in the population is causing increasing anxiety and distress among some older circumcised males. There now is a peculiar phenomenon happening in Australia, where one sees middle-aged men desperately trying to restore Australia’s medical practice back to that which prevailed before 1971. This is, of course, an attempt to defend their culture-of-origin and is carried out for the emotional reasons described here, although, as Goldman reports, pseudo-scientific reasons are advanced.31

Behavior of circumcised medical authors

The high proportion of circumcised males in the medical community create a distorted, biased medical literature.47 _Goldman (1999) writes:

“One reason that flawed studies arepublished is that science is affected by cultural values. A principal method of preserving cultural values is to disguise them as truths that are based on scientific research. This ‘research’ can then be used to support questionable and harmful cultural values such as circumcision. This explains the claimed medical ‘benefits’ of circumcision.”31

Hill (2007) writes:

“The medical literature on circumcision is voluminous and contentious. Circumcised doctors create papers that overstate benefits and minimize harms and risks. When these doctors publish such claims, other doctors come forward to refute them….The result is an unending debate driven by the emotional compulsion of circumcised men.”43

Female doctors from a circumcising culture of origin have been known to contribute pro-circumcision pieces.

Boyle & Hill (2012) said:

“MC changes human and sexual behaviour. Most doctors favouring MC are circumcised themselves . Circumcision status ‘plays a huge role in whether doctors are in support of circumcisions or not’. Circumcised doctors often defend circumcision by producing flawed papers that minimise or dismiss the harm and exaggerate alleged benefits .487

“Invariably, when biased opinions promoting MC are published by doctors trying to justify their own psychosexual wounding, uncircumcised doctors (who mostly see no need for amputating anatomically normal healthy erogenous tissue) are quick to refute such overstated claims. We fully expect that this distortion of the medical literature will continue until non-therapeutic male circumcision is prohibited by law and most circumcised male doctors have passed from the scene.”47

Most American medical editors are circumcised men. They share the pro-circumcision bias of other circumcised men. They tend to select papers for publication that conform to their bias.48 The literature, therefore, is filled with pro-circumcision papers written by circumcised doctors.48 The behavior of these circumcised doctors has served for a century to prolong the practice of a nineteenth century surgical operation that has no medical indication and is injurious to infants and children.

Behavior of medical societies

Medical societies in the English-speaking nations have a high proportion of male members (fellows) who are circumcised.The societies that represent medical specialities that practice circumcision have found themselves unable to adequately address the problem of circumcision and to repudiate this harmful, outmoded practice.

Goldman (2004) writes:

“Although medical committee members highly value rationality, a rational and objective evaluation of an emotional and controversial topic like circumcision can be difficult. It is suggested that the potential psychological and social factors surrounding the practice of circumcision could affect the values and attitudes of circumcision policy committee members, the attitude toward evaluating the circumcision literature, and the publishing of circumcision literature itself. If the members are polarized, the process of negotiating to arrive at a consensus statement could introduce additional psychosocial factors that could affect the final policy.”49

Dr. Goldman published the two articles cited here in the United Kingdom and Canada, not the United States. This may be a testimony to the bias and censorship present in the medical literature of the United States.


All of the behavioral changes described in this paper are negative, unfavorable, or maleficial in nature. No positive, favorable, or beneficial behavioral changes have been found.

The English-speaking nations have a high proportion of circumcised males and, therefore, a high proportion of psychically-wounded males. A society containing so many psychically-wounded males cannot be as healthy as it should be. The United States has clung to circumcision even after Australia and Canada have rejected circumcision of infants. Consequently, the United States has the highest proportion of circumcised males to intact males and the greatest injury to society.

The best way to stop the cycle of trauma is to stop circumcising infants.31,42_ Non-traumatized intact infants usually do not grow up to become circumcisers, so the cycle of trauma would end.
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  • Rhynchevy
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