You can’t lie to a man with a penis

My son was circumcised yesterday. I was not at the hospital at the time (appropriately enough, I was playing golf), but the doctor told my wife that Charlie didn’t cry a bit.

As a human being equipped with my own penis, I assured my wife that this was not true. Perhaps he did not wail as much as one might if an arm or a leg were completely severed, but there were cries of pain. That, I said, was a certainty.

It turns out that I was correct. The nurse who was present at the circumcision popped into my wife’s hospital room minutes before we were to leave to say goodbye, and she reiterated this fairy tale about the painless circumcision to me.

“He didn’t cry at all?” I asked.

“Not at all. But he was numbed before the doctor began the procedure, so he didn’t feel a thing.”

“How did he feel about the needle you injected into his penis? Did he cry then?’”

“Well, yeah,” she admitted. “He cried then.”

I was going to point pout that differentiating between the pain associated with the anesthesia and the pain associated with the actual procedure doesn’t mean much to the person who is dealing with the pain, but I decided to remain silent. I was trilled to be bringing our son home, and I did not want to spoil the moment with unnecessary oration. 

But I wasn’t surprised by this fairy tale circumcision. I have enormous respect for doctors and nurses, but when it comes to describing pain, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:

They cannot be trusted.

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14 Responses to You can’t lie to a man with a penis

  1. Hugh7 says:

    Leaving his penis alone is guaranteed absolutely painless.

  2. Simon Harris says:

    I initally thought you’d got this spot on when I mis-read one of your sentences as “..and I did not want to spoil the moment with (an) unnecessary operation

  3. joe says:

    If you knew that he would go through such pain, why put him through it at all? Why not just leave him alone?

  4. Consuella says:

    I can not imagine being such a detached parents from your your own son. Circumcision is the most painful and unjustified procedure newborns are put through in the U.S. No medical or health organization in the world recommends doing it routinely to newborns, be it boys or girls. And yet here you are bragging about being such an understanding father, with a dick too, who knows that that little prick hurt him. No amount of anesthesia is sufficient enough to numb the pain from circumcision, you should have done your research instead of playing golf while your son was undergoing the most painful thing in his short life, alone, without anyone protecting him from the pain. :(

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  5. His Body His Choice says:

    Maybe he didn’t cry. Sometimes the pain is so incredibly overwhelming that the babies go into shock and their bodies shut down.

    Best case scenario to keep him from crying is to LEAVE HIS FREAKING PENIS ALONE.

    It wasn’t your penis to be mutilating…

  6. Why didn’t you just leave him Intact like the way he was born. What did he ever do to you that you felt you needed to have him mutilated? Are you circed?

  7. matthew says:

    I had no idea that people had such strong feelings about circumcision. Thank you for sharing your opinions and insight.

  8. Hugh7 says:

    And the pain of the operation is only the beginning. Until it heals, there is pain whenever urine gets in the wound. Until he grows up, nobody will know how it turned out. Even if it is not visibly botched (skin tags, skin bridges, uneven scarring, too tight, etc.) his sexuality may have been harmed (as well as the inevitable loss of sensation from every circumcision), and even if not, he may just hate it, like the 150+ men here.

  9. Susan B says:

    What a bunch of rude people! You’re not attracting a high calibre of reader, Matthew.

    I was advised by a very capable (Chinese) ob/gyn that while there are differing opinions on circumcision it is yet a fact that the wives of circumcised men have a lower incidence of cervical cancer. Further, males – particularly young males – are not very reliable in the cleanliness department. Occasionally this lack of cleanliness leads to a later circumcision and that is much more difficult.

  10. James Freshman says:

    Susan B. Your ob/gyn may be capable, but that doesn’t mean he or she is not grossly misinformed and hence passing the misinformation on to others. Did you know that no medical association in the world recommends routine infant circuncision? As far as cleanliness and using your logic….then I met a few females in school that needed some parts cut off instead of I don’t know A SHOWER! By the way Men do not give women cancer either and females can have issues too. Maybe we should cut out breast tissue on baby girls to prevent breast cancer. Or better yet give them a
    hysterectomy to prevent cervical cancer all together.

  11. James says:

    Susan you may want to check out http://www.questioncircumcision.weebly. com
    And as far as insulting us who don’t share you views only shows how low caliber you are.

  12. matthew says:

    Thanks all for participating in the conversation. While I do not regret having my son circumcised (and do not regret my own circumcision), I always appreciate listening to differing viewpoints and try to maintain an open mind.

    I also suspect that some of the participants in this discussion were not originally readers of this blog but found the post via a Google search, a Google Alert or similar online tracking system, which is great. Always happy when new people join the conversation. I hope you will continue to read and share opinions on this and other issues as well.

  13. Hugh7 says:

    The question is not whether you regret having had your son circumcised, but whether he will.

    Susan, your ob/gyn is misinformed and there is no good science showing a connection between circumcision and cervical cancer. (He is recycling a faulty observation from the mid-1950s.) Lack of cleanliness does not “lead to” circumcision, any more than it leads to girls having any of their parts cut off, and it is is not “much more difficult” just much more difficult to impose on someone who doesn’t want it.


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