On Circumcision 05People don’t want to hear it and want to stay in denial.Theme:circumcisionSummaryDiscussionTranscriptRelated Insights
When I started the circumcision rate was somewhere between 85% and 95%. Nobody knows for sure. There are no accurate statistics. But we get the trends and we’re watching trends. So I’ve been doing this work for 26 years, it was 1979, May of 1979. So now 20 years later the circumcision rate has, in 1993 the last that we have from the National Center for Health Statistics which was just released was 55% of boys are being circumcised in the United States. So 30% to 40% drop in the circumcision in just 26 years. In terms of social movements that’s quite incredible.Coming
M: What I hear you saying is that, again this Michael Odent speaks about disturbing the physiology and really there’s some serious consequences. The joy and the bond, the implicit bond of sexuality, that’s a big part of what we were talking about
Mi: We do these manipulative things to our children, I mean a really amputative disturbing procedure to a crucial part of the male anatomy. Again we’re talking about the organ of procreation. In most cultures we honor the phallus symbol. The Japanese fertility rights and these big beautiful flags with an intact penis retracted, you can see the frenulum and the ridge band and all it is. And old men in their big tall caps and robes carrying these things. So male sexuality is honored, which it should be. Here we can’t talk about that, talk about the normal penis. Instead you take the baby behind closed doors and do this horrible traumatic thing to that baby. And then because we don’t talk about how we’ve disturbed sexuality, for the woman whose body is contacted by the male and then as he withdraws his body is away and then he’s back again. She’s not riding the wave to orgasm. He has never ridden the wave to orgasm and there’s this deep tension, and then he says honey, did you have an orgasm? And she says yes honey. There’s a joke that goes, why do women fake orgasm? With a punch line that says because men fake foreplay. But that’s not the right answer. The right answer is because men are circumcised and when he says honey did you have an orgasm, she doesn’t want to appear frigid. She doesn’t want to hurt his feelings. Oh yes honey. But you know, I mean we all know, when you have an orgasm with somebody else at the same time you know you’ve both gotten off and the energy shifts. Couples know this but nobody is talking about it. So there is a deep tension in relationships that isn’t talked about. And our generation needs to know what to do to compensate for the mechanics. In other words, the clitoris needs to be stimulated. Everybody makes it work. And if we know that, to me in a way is sort of good news for the male because it’s not that you’re a bad lover. It’s not that you didn’t practice right or haven’t read enough books about it or had enough women in your life to do it right or whatever. Somebody did this to you. Somebody altered your anatomy and that’s what’s created this problem.
M: Now I’m thinking of the whole Viagra deal, all that stuff. When you talk about the desensitization and the erector dysfunction. If this numbing is going on and this callusing is going on that you’re talking about, well sure it’s harder to get an erection.
Mi: And when I ask impacted men, 80 year olds, 90 year olds, how is sex for you? “Well the urge ain’t what it used to be, but it feels just as good”. I don’t hear that from 80 and 90 year old circumcised males. From them I hear “I had to stop having sex when I was about 50, 55, 60, 70". I mean you know the ages vary. “I can’t get it up”, or “it takes too long, I’m hurting my wife. I couldn’t do that anymore”.
I’ve organized this International Suposia and a Sexologist, a French Sexotologist spoke at one of them, Dr. Gerards Fong who talked about the orgasmic pathways and he said they are potential pathways. Like the field of brass. And you have to walk across it and you have to walk back and forth. And the more you do that, the more, the wider the path gets and the more entrenched it becomes. So what are we doing then when we encode the brain with violence in the first few hours of life to a part of the body that’s meant to experience pleasure? This is no small thing because the minute you’ve got that baby strapped, and that’s bad enough because they’regoing like this, but when you start cutting, again, the most sensitive part of the masculine body you are encoding the brain. And the adrenails are going nuts so all those stress hormones are in fact doing something to the brain. And I’m sure it’s not something good.
M: I want to jump to our cultural bias, this inability for the cultures, information that’s countered to what it’s belief systems. Even if they hear it they don’t hear it.
Mi: When you tell somebody this information, yes, a lot of people just don’t want to hear it and want to stay in denial. No, no. That can’t possibly be true. But there is a lot more information coming out and a whole lot more men willing to speak up for themselves. Initially the man who spoke up and said you know, that was mine. Or, something’s wrong with my penis. I’ve got big scars. Or my penis curves to the right or to the left. I have tight erections. Painful erections. Tearing at the scar site. With the gay community, these men who were looking at each other’s penis’s and not afraid to talk about them. Much of my early education on this came from gay men would could tell me this stuff.
When I started the circumcism rate was somewhere between 85% and 95%. Nobody knows for sure. There are no accurate statistics. But we get the trends and we’re watching trends. So I’ve been doing this work for 26 years, it was 1979, May of 1979. So now 20 years later the circumcism rate has, in 1993 the last that we have from the National Center for Health Statistics which was just released was 55% of boys are being circumcised in the United States. So 30% to 40% drop in the circumcism in just 26 years. In terms of social movements that’s quite incredible. See I’ve been talking this fast for that long and it grows. One person hears you, then another hears you, then another. And for those people who are in denial and say no I don’t want to hear this, they may not want it hear it the first time or the second time. In fact I talked about the book, “The Joy of Uncircumcising” that was published. The man who published that said he listened to Dr. Dean Nadel for six years talk about not circumcising day after day after day on his radio show and finally, and he kept thinking well he’s just crazy about that. One day he heard.
Mi: For those people who are in denial, they might be in denial this time we talk about it or the next time, or it may be six years. Some have taken that long. Or it may take longer but you keep knocking on the door because one by one people begin to get it. One of the things that helps a lot in the early days was while I was still working at the hospital before I was fired there, telling parents what I wished I’d been told. When they shut me up I made a video tape of a circumcism to show that to parents because now it’s out from behind closed doors and when parents see that and see what happens to the baby. In fact at the hospital I played that for a number, actually the patients of one doctor, the doctor who did the circumcism for us and he’s the only one that would let his patients it. None of them circumcised. Basically they didn’t want to them anyway. Because I was already in trouble he used to write me orders, parents are deceived, circumcism video. That was cute.Coming