I dont know how many parents these days are considering circumcising their baby boys…. For me and my family, this is a decision we made as soon as i found out I was pregnant with a boy. Before Kody was even born we had discussed circumcision with my OBGYN and was told that it would not be an easy matter given the current backlash by many doctors to the procedure in our home state NSW.

I come from a background where circumcising baby boys is not uncommon and my husband is Ni-Vanuatu, and in his culture boys get circumcised at age 7-8 years with a bamboo knife in a coming-of-age ceremony. Thus, we decided that our baby should be circumcised as soon after his birth as we could organise it to minimise the psychological and physical trauma my husband faced as a young boy after his circumcision. I was told by my doctor before his birth that they could not perform the procedure in the hospital until he was at least 12 months old to minimise any risk from the need for general anaesthetic. This was backed up by my GP before and shortly after our boy, Kody was born in May 2011.

In the mean time my step-sister gave birth to a baby boy and had found a doctor who performed a circumcision at 3 weeks of age. By this time Kody was 8 months old and keenly discovering his penis every time he was nappy free. I called the doctor my sister had seen to see if he would perform a circumcision on our boy, alas, i was told that he and most other doctors would only perform the procedure on boys up to 5 weeks. I was a bit taken a back given the information I had been given months earlier. I must have made contact with at least a dozen practices in search of a doctor who could help us out. Each time i was given one of two answers:

1) We only circumcise boys up to the age of 5-6 weeks; or,

2) Pay an extraordinary amount of money (ranging from $800 to $2500) have to procedure performed in a hospital under general anaesthetic

I researched the internet extensively and found that if we lived in QLD or VIC, we could have the procedure done at any time up to the age of 2 years with minimal fuss and for a fraction of the cost here in NSW.

I know that not everyone agrees with the practice of circumcision, but it is our choice. I just wish that I would have been give accurate information in the first place about the matter. Now Kody is 20 months old and still uncircumcised while we try to save the money to have the procedure. In the meantime he continues to play with him self, and as he is getting older i am worried about the possibility of him getting infections from dirty hands as he has a habit of taking off his nappies just to get to his penis and as an active toddler i cannot keep his hands clean all the time. I have already had to take him to the doctor to check the tip as it has been getting red. Even given this, there is still a reluctance to have him referred to a paediatric urologist to see if in his case a circumcision would be medically warranted, and not just our preference.

The whole experience has been bewildering to my family and me. At this point in time I feel very disappointed by the medical community when it comes to respecting our wishes in regard to this matter. I wonder how many other parents of boys have faced the same issues.

Posted by karina.nowak, 1st March 2013

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  • The trauma is still there for the boy whether it’s done at 6-8 weeks of age or 6-8 years of age, they just can’t communicate their hell so well when they’re babies. This is a barbaric practice and I’m happy to read most Drs won’t circumcise except for a medical reason. I don’t know why people insist on continuing barbaric practices just because it’s their religious to racial beliefs and we’ve done it for centuries. Look at the practice, what its for, the pain it inflicts, the possibility of infection and maybe even death. Do you really want to inflict this on your child just because dads family have done it for years???


  • Thank you for sharing this. Very interesting reading!


  • I would never get my children circumsized without a medical reason behind it.
    As I see it, they are born with it, they live with it.
    My oldest was close to getting his removed, but the doctor wouldn’t do it, which I’m grateful of!

    When my boys are older and want it done, they can do it. But while they’re minors without a medical problem, it’s not happening.


  • Perhaps it is fate? Does it have to b done?


  • I have a 15 year old and a 4 year old son and neither are circumcised. There Father is not. I think it is up to them to decided if it’s something they want done – not my decision.


  • great to read


  • I am surprised that you would want this procedure for your child as you say that your husband suffered trauma; both physical and psychological. Regardless of age; trauma is trauma. I am also surprised that you say it is your choice; surely your child has rights? The medical community seems to agree. If there is no medical reason I just find it very difficult to understand. I am opposed to boys and girls undergoing this painful and traumatic procedure. However; that is another issue.


  • No I don’t agree either if it wasn’t meant to be there it wouldn’t be there, but im sorry you got told the wrong information not good enough really.


  • i dont agree with this i think its a horrible painful thing little kids have to go through for no reason . Sorry if i sound horrible bt i feel so sorry for these little babies. :(


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