Lessons of Circumcision & Effective Communication

Circumcision is offered as an option to virtually every mother of a male child born in an American hospital. This parental decision can have unrecognized immediate and long-term consequences on the health of the child and parent.  The lessons of circumcision are many; they remind us of our core values and are applicable to other areas of life. These lessons involve the powerful impact of early infant experience, cultural values, the limitations of science, intellect vs. instinct, and how to make important childcare decisions.

It is essential that health care providers have accurate, current circumcision information and communicate it appropriately and effectively.  It is also important for prospective parents to be able to communicate with their partners effectively.  Because circumcision is an emotional topic, health care providers and parents need not only the facts but also the skills to talk about it in a sensitive way.  The second presentation in Part II of our Intact Boy series.
This session is 90 minutes in length.Cost: $7.50

Certificate of Completion: $7.50 (completion of post-session questionnaire required).

Continuing Education Units are available for some professional groups. To view a listing of CEU opportunities, click here.

Infant Response, Long-Term Psychological Effects, and Why Circumcision Continues

Cultural and medical views of newborn infants have changed drastically over the years.   This session, the first lecture in Part II of our Intact Boy series, is led by Ronald Goldman, Ph.D.  Dr. Goldman provides an introductory overview of the research on newborn infant sensory response, movement, expression, learning, and pain response and infant response to circumcision.  The lecture addresses the following questions:
  • How does being circumcised feel to the newborn infant? Does the newborn infant feel “discomfort” or extreme pain?
  • Does it matter how circumcision feels to the newborn infant? Can newborn infants remember their experience?
  • Is an infant too young to experience trauma?
  • Are there any examples of events around birth that have a long-term effect on adult
    behavior?
  • Can memory of birth be documented?

Dr. Goldman applied the clinical definition of trauma to circumcision to find symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in circumcised men. This new perspective offers clues that could explain certain male feelings, attitudes, and behaviors.  This session concludes with an exploration of the psychosocial factors that perpetuate circumcision.  In an examination of individual and institutional resistance to change, learn how cultural, emotional, behavioral, and psychological factors affect attitudes and behaviors about circumcision and related matters.  Various anxieties, beliefs, and values impede change – see how we can ignore or deny what is literally in front of our eyes.

Marilyn Fayre Milos, RN

Marilyn Fayre Milos, RN, is the co-founder and Executive Director of the National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers (NOCIRC) and the coordinator of the International Symposia on Circumcision, Sexual Mutilations, and Genital Integrity. She is editor of the NOCIRC Annual Newsletter and the co-editor of five symposia books, including Sexual Mutilations: A Human Tragedy, Male and Female Circumcision: Medical Legal and Ethical Considerations in Pediatric Practice, and Understanding Circumcision: A Multidisciplinary Approach to a Multidimensional Problem. She is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sexology.  Since 1979, Marilyn has spoken about circumcision, genital integrity, and human rights to radio, television, and conference audiences worldwide. She is the recipient of the California Nurses Association’s 1989 Maureen Ricke Award for having “raised public consciousness about America’s most unnecessary surgery” and her “dedicated and unwavering commitment to ‘righting a wrong.’” She also received NurseWeek magazine’s “Nursing Excellence 2001″ Patient Advocacy Award “For outstanding advocacy for the past 22 years on behalf of those among us who are the most vulnerable and unable to protect themselves–infants and children.”

NOCIRC Website

Marilyn’s Presentation:

How Circumcision Affects Sexuality
Part of the Intact Boy Series

Circumcision is a primal wound that causes pain and trauma to an infant’s penis–his organ of pleasure and procreation. Initially, circumcision interferes with the maternal infant bond, disrupts breastfeeding and normal sleep patterns, and undermines the successful completion of the baby’s first developmental task of establishing trust. Even when analgesia is used, circumcision causes pain to the penis, and every experience of that organ, from then on, is overlaid on a neuronal background of pain.

Circumcision removes the foreskin, with its 20,000 – 70,000 specialized, erogenous nerve endings, replacing the penile accelerator that allows a man to ride the wave to orgasm with an on/off switch that offers sensitivity and immediate relief without the ride to orgasm and the full symphony of sensation.  This is why the most common complaint of circumcised men in the USA is premature ejaculation.  At the other end of life, circumcised males complain about sexual dysfunction, including loss of sensitivity and impotence. Many women wonder why sex with a circumcised man is not fulfilling for them. They do not understand the role the foreskin plays in female sexual pleasure, including the gliding mechanism and lubrication.

This workshop, led by Marilyn Milos, RN, Executive Director of NOCIRC, explores the effects of circumcision on an infant and on the man he becomes.  The dynamics of circumcision, sex, and compensation for the trauma and loss are discussed.

Ronald Goldman, Ph.D.

Ronald Goldman, Ph.D. (psychology), is a researcher, educator, writer, and Executive Director of the Circumcision Resource Center in Boston, a nonprofit educational organization. His work includes the first intensive exploration of the unacknowledged psychological and social aspects of this uniquely American cultural practice. Dr. Goldman is internationally known for his work on circumcision and is the author of various publications including two books, Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma and Questioning Circumcision: A Jewish Perspective. The first book, with a foreword by renowned anthropologist Ashley Montagu, is endorsed by dozens of professionals in mental health, medicine, and social science. His book addressing Jewish concerns is endorsed by five rabbis among others. Other writing has appeared in newspapers, parenting publications, Jewish periodicals, and medical journals. Dr. Goldman has participated in over 200 media interviews with radio and television shows, newspapers, wire services, and periodicals, and has been consulted by Time and Newsweek. His presentations on circumcision and its effects are offered independently to professionals, universities, expectant parents, men, and the Jewish community. He also provides counseling for those making the circumcision decision and men who have issues connected with their circumcision. He is a member of the Advisory Council to the International Symposia on Circumcision and participates in exhibits at professional conferences and public expositions.

Ron’s Websites:
Circumcision Resource Center
Jewish Circumcision Resource Center

Ronald’s Presentations:
The Intact Boy
Part II: the Psychology of Circumcision

Infant Response, Long-Term Psychological Effects, and Why Circumcision Continues
Cultural and medical views of newborn infants have changed drastically over the years.   This session, led by Ronald Goldman, Ph.D., will provide an overview of the research on newborn infant sensory response, movement, expression, learning, and pain response and a review of infant response to circumcision.  We will address the following questions:
  • How does being circumcised feel to the newborn infant? Does the newborn infant feel “discomfort” or extreme pain?
  • Does it matter how circumcision feels to the newborn infant? Can newborn infants remember their experience?
  • Is an infant too young to experience trauma?
  • Are there any examples of events around birth that have a long-term effect on adult
    behavior?
  • Can memory of birth be documented?

Dr. Goldman applied the clinical definition of trauma to circumcision to find symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in circumcised men. This new perspective offers clues that could explain certain male feelings, attitudes, and behaviors.  This session will conclude with an exploration of the psychosocial factors that perpetuate circumcision.  In an examination of individual and institutional resistance to change, learn how cultural, emotional, behavioral, and psychological factors affect attitudes and behaviors about circumcision and related matters.  Various anxieties, beliefs, and values impede change – see how we can ignore or deny what is literally in front of our eyes.

This session is 90 minutes in length.

Cost: $7.50

Certificate of Completion: $7.50 (completion of post-session questionnaire required).

Continuing Education Units are available for some professional groups. To view a listing of CEU opportunities, click here.

 

Lessons of Circumcision & Effective Communication
Circumcision is offered as an option to virtually every mother of a male child born in an American hospital. This parental decision can have unrecognized immediate and long-term consequences on the health of the child and parent.  The lessons of circumcision are many; they remind us of our core values and are applicable to other areas of life. These lessons involve the powerful impact of early infant experience, cultural values, the limitations of science, intellect vs. instinct, and how to make important childcare decisions.

It is essential that health care providers have accurate, current circumcision information and communicate it appropriately and effectively.  It is also important for prospective parents to be able to communicate with their partners effectively.  Because circumcision is an emotional topic, health care providers and parents need not only the facts but also the skills to talk about it in a sensitive way.
This session is 90 minutes in length. 

Cost: $7.50

Certificate of Completion: $7.50 (completion of post-session questionnaire required).

Continuing Education Units are available for some professional groups. To view a listing of CEU opportunities, click here.