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Do you ever wish you had been circumcised?
May 27, 2012 6:20 PM   Subscribe

Adult uncircumcised males - do you ever wish you had been circumcised?

What problems, if any, did you encounter, especially as a child? Were the other men in your family uncirumcised? Or the other kids where you grew up? I have a 5 year old son from Guatemala that we decided not to circumcise. I felt very strongly that was the way to go, but I've recently talked to a uncircumcised friend, from Australia, who said he hated not being circumcised and he, in fact, has had his sons circumcised. Hopefully, this will be taken as a simple request for information and not an invitation for a shitstorm. Thanks!
posted by cherrybounce to Health & Fitness (62 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
Never. I don't think it was ever an issue as a kid, though I think most of my friends were cut. My dad (English) was also uncut. And that's more than I ever thought I'd talk about my wiener on mefi.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 6:25 PM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nope.
posted by haltingproblemsolved at 6:29 PM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


Never, ever, ever.
posted by Jairus at 6:30 PM on May 27, 2012


My SO is uncircumsized. He's very happy with it. And so am I!
posted by OsoMeaty at 6:33 PM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nope, never. Am glad I wasn't.

Sigh, I guess this is out there on the internet now... seemed important, though.
posted by losvedir at 6:33 PM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


Slight anxiety in college days because of the worry that some women expected/were used to seeing cut. (Never actual issue.) But glad that I don't have to worry about whether or not I lost sensation, regardless of whether or not that's a thing.
posted by mendel at 6:34 PM on May 27, 2012


I wish I didn't know this, but my three uncircumcised brothers are very glad that they aren't.

Guh, wish I could kill that part of my brain.
posted by punchtothehead at 6:34 PM on May 27, 2012 [4 favorites]


Nope.
posted by scruss at 6:34 PM on May 27, 2012


Never. The only "problem" (more of a childhood misconception) is that nobody ever really told me I wasn't circumcised or how to take care of it. I think it wasn't until I was 13 or so that I was aware my foreskin was supposed to come back, and in fact I had NO IDEA about circumcision being a thing until about that time. I grew up looking at depictions of penises (which are usually circumcised) and wondering when exactly in my development mine would look like that, and wondering in locker rooms why my friend's penises were so different from mine. It wasn't a bad thing, (It's not like I was ashamed by my penis) but it would have been nice if someone had given me the rundown on my equipment.
posted by Gymnopedist at 6:35 PM on May 27, 2012 [3 favorites]


Born in Europe, not circumcised, nor was my Dad, and we didn't have my son circumcised. There are few particulars about cleaning that uncircumcised kids should learn from parents or pediatricians to avoid urinary tract infections and whatnot. Just make sure he gets that. And, what Gymnopedist said.
posted by beagle at 6:38 PM on May 27, 2012


No.

Very glad not. Requires a slight bit more maintenance, but is worth it, or so I've been told. Will not with my kids either.
posted by disillusioned at 6:40 PM on May 27, 2012


I'm not circumcised either. I don't have any plans to do so (unless I convert to a religion that requires it). The only problem I ever remember having because of it was once mid-coitus my foreskin pulled back suddenly, and that killed the mood pretty quickly.
posted by AMSBoethius at 6:40 PM on May 27, 2012


The only problem I ever remember having because of it was once mid-coitus my foreskin pulled back suddenly, and that killed the mood pretty quickly.
Ditto but only once. That time, a teeny piece of connective tissue on the underside actually ripped and bled like the dickens, which was might embarrassing. I've heard of that happening to other guys. But hey, it's just another experience the circumcised guys miss out on.
posted by beagle at 6:46 PM on May 27, 2012


[Hi folks, please do not turn this question into a question or a conversation that it is not. Thank you.]
posted by jessamyn at 6:49 PM on May 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


Not in a million years.
posted by ivanveen at 6:51 PM on May 27, 2012


do you ever wish you had been circumcised?

No way, man. It's convenient!, and has never given me any trouble. Example: As a young teen discovering the illicit thrill of self-pleasure, I never understood US movies and books where young men were so desperate for lube. Now I understand it's cause they were circumcised.

What problems, if any, did you encounter, especially as a child?

None. I remember the doctor once telling me and parentals to be sure to clean around the sides as smegma can get infected, that was it, it never was for me. I probably would have been your son's age at the time.

Were the other men in your family uncirumcised? My brother is. I haven't seen my father's penis for a long time; I can't remember. I *think* maybe he was? Obviously not a huge deal to me.

Or the other kids where you grew up?

Some were, some weren't (Australian). Majority probably not, I was born in '81.
posted by smoke at 6:53 PM on May 27, 2012


Problems as a child? Not really, aside from getting it caught in my fly once, but that certainly wasn't enough to make me wish I had been circumcised. The idea that being uncircumcised was weird / bad / less attractive did cause me some anxiety in my early 20s but I got over it.
posted by Lorin at 6:56 PM on May 27, 2012


You might find some answers to my previous question, and particularly cocoagirls 'previously', useful in terms of hygiene, retraction, etc.
posted by malibustacey9999 at 6:56 PM on May 27, 2012


Very happy not to be. Seconding Gymnopedist on the fact that it would have been nice to have been given a bit more comprehensive info on the anatomical particulars. I was taught to retract the foreskin while washing up, but didn't realize that it went all the way back until puberty.
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 6:59 PM on May 27, 2012


I am natural and cannot imagine any reasons for cutting it off. If it fits your religion then so be it but otherwise the unit will work just as well with or without.
posted by JJ86 at 6:59 PM on May 27, 2012


Welp, can't believe this is the second post I'll ever write here. No, not at all. Just joining the chorus of folks saying that understanding the hygenics of it all is pretty important. Outside that and the typical (at least for me) and temporary anxiety about attractiveness, it's all good.
posted by Ephelump Jockey at 7:14 PM on May 27, 2012


No.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:39 PM on May 27, 2012


no.
posted by small house at 7:42 PM on May 27, 2012


I didn't have my son circumcised, and according to him, it hasn't bothered him at all.
posted by patheral at 7:42 PM on May 27, 2012


Asked my boyfriend this and he says no, absolutely not, and can't imagine why anyone would ever want to except for religious reasons.
posted by peacheater at 7:53 PM on May 27, 2012


Same answer as everybody else.
posted by anildash at 7:59 PM on May 27, 2012


Well, to provide an anecdote (not my own) to balance out the conversation a little bit, I know a guy who was not circumcised as an infant. As a teenager, he developed chronic persistent infections under the foreskin; nothing he did could stop them from recurring. Eventually, he needed to be circumcised. It was awful. In addition to the pain and bleeding (awful, from what he's told me), he'd developed his sexual sensitivities with a foreskin, which made it much harder for him without one. He wished he'd been circumcised as an infant, before the foreskin attached. Your inch-age may vary.
posted by Dasein at 8:00 PM on May 27, 2012


The only problem I experienced was having to learn proper hygiene when I was four or so. No regrets.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:04 PM on May 27, 2012


No.
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 8:05 PM on May 27, 2012


Hell no.
posted by dontjumplarry at 8:07 PM on May 27, 2012


My boyfriend wasn't, and he's so glad he wasn't, and I'm so glad too.
posted by stoneandstar at 8:08 PM on May 27, 2012


Not really, aside from getting it caught in my fly once,

That's something one does once, but definitely not twice. I can still vividly remember how much that hurt, and I can't have been older than 8 or 9 when it happened.

To answer the questions:

What problems, if any, did you encounter, especially as a child?

No problems. A minor irritation once or twice when I was small but remembering to wash solved that. Honestly it was a bonus, because it was a built-in toy in the bathtub, good for hours of fun.

Were the other men in your family uncirumcised? Or the other kids where you grew up?

Nope. All my older relatives who I have seen naked are/were circumcised, and pretty much all through school I was the only or one of maybe two or three guys with foreskins. I can't remember anyone ever asking or commenting on it, even in middle school when I was getting picked on in the locker room. Either no one noticed, or no one cared. It seriously just wasn't an issue at all.

And to answer a question that you aren't asking (but will probably wonder about in a decade or so), I've never had a woman react negatively to it at all, even though mine was the first uncircumcised penis most had encountered. A few didn't care at all, and the others thought it was a neat thing to play with and loved it.

As with all things genital, your mileage is guaranteed to vary, but in my life it hasn't been an issue in any way.
posted by Forktine at 8:23 PM on May 27, 2012


Nope.
posted by Jimbob at 8:30 PM on May 27, 2012


I asked my husband and he said no, never.
posted by keep it under cover at 8:52 PM on May 27, 2012


Never wished it. Never had any issues as a result of it.
posted by asnider at 9:08 PM on May 27, 2012


No, never.
posted by moss at 9:43 PM on May 27, 2012


Can't even imagine wishing for that. Like, I literally can't think of an actual benefit.
posted by DoctorFedora at 9:44 PM on May 27, 2012 [2 favorites]


Nope. Only issue I know of is that as the head remains unexposed for many, many years before the foreskin can be slid back, it becomes very sensitive, almost painful for some. But it eventually gets numbed and normal, so yeah.
posted by Senza Volto at 10:22 PM on May 27, 2012


I love my foreskin. I've had it for as long as I can remember.
posted by sarastro at 11:06 PM on May 27, 2012


I'm not sure where you live, but, here in British Columbia, circumcision was only at about 50% in the 70s. Nowadays, it is no longer covered by our universal healthcare and you have to pay for it. As a result, only only about 5% of boys are circumcised. I don't regret not circumcising my children.

From a personal perspective, I must say I've always preferred to be with intact men - it feels better. None of these men has ever expressed regret.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 11:09 PM on May 27, 2012


What is proper hygiene?

I have a cut partner and uncut preschooler.
posted by k8t at 11:27 PM on May 27, 2012


No. Never (like every single person who has replied in this thread).

I find the idea of circumcision backwards. It's there for a purpose. If having to clean out a crevice is such a horrible thing, I'm surprised we don't have our belly buttons sown shut.
posted by flippant at 12:07 AM on May 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


No. But I can't emphasize enough the importance of hygiene education. I grew up without a dad, and with elder brothers very, very much older than me who didn't realise that it was maybe their responsibility to teach their late-arrival kid brother some of the Facts of Life, so I wasn't aware of the need for careful washing until ... ugh, I can't go on! It's so simple and obvious to an adult, but kids may not think of it unless prompted.
posted by aqsakal at 12:34 AM on May 28, 2012


Nope, not at all sad about it and very happy that I'm not. I don't think I'd like the idea that a piece of me was missing.
posted by Effigy2000 at 12:55 AM on May 28, 2012


My foreskin is a bit tight around the end. Sometimes gets irritated when beginning a relationship (in the Biblical sense), but it always settles down after a few days and starts playing nice again. This is the first place I've ever told anyone about that. The truth shall set you free!
posted by omnigut at 1:19 AM on May 28, 2012


How old is your Australian friend?
The trend to trend to circumcise has dropped dramatically in Australia over the last 30 years. If he felt he was in a minority at school not having a foreskin, I believe circumcised boys would be the minority now.
posted by goshling at 1:29 AM on May 28, 2012


No and never thought of it either.
posted by viramamunivar at 1:44 AM on May 28, 2012


Some anxiety as a kid in Australia (late 70s early 80s). Very, very glad I'm not now. Two boys, not cut, easy decision.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 1:44 AM on May 28, 2012


Absolutely not, especially considering the years of hell a relative went through after having it done as an adult. Yes, it was medically necessary but I'm not sure he'll ever get over the trauma, lack of support and long-term pain and discomfort.

Omnigut, have you tried cortisone cream? Might be worth asking your Doctor.
posted by Quantum's Deadly Fist at 3:31 AM on May 28, 2012


Example: As a young teen discovering the illicit thrill of self-pleasure, I never understood US movies and books where young men were so desperate for lube.

Yes, in the UK, it's generally only Muslims and Jews who get cut as a matter of course. I once knew someone who had to get it done in childhood for medical reasons, possibly similar to Daesin's example. Either we're very lax about hygeine as a country or it's just not seen as necessary if you take care of yourself.
posted by mippy at 4:00 AM on May 28, 2012


In a country where circumcision has never been prevalent (UK) I've never heard an adult male wanting to be circumcized outside of medical or religious reasons. There is no popular or social pressure to do so, nor any discussion about whether it's hygienic or not. The idea of getting circumcized is simply not a thing.
posted by Jehan at 4:29 AM on May 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


No.

No real problems. Slight yeast thing once when a negligent teenager, not a big deal: better hygiene would have prevented it in the first place.

Hardly anyone appeared to be circumcised when I was at school (UK).
posted by Segundus at 4:50 AM on May 28, 2012


Nope! I'm pretty satisfied with my foreskin.

If your son decides he wants to be circumcised when he's older, he has that option available (his body, his choice?), but I can't see being uncircumcised as something that is going to cause him many problems.
posted by t-rex at 6:16 AM on May 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


No, until I developed a severe phimosis in my mid twenties; then yes, after receiving medical advice about treatment options.

But those were the days before Google and Wikipedia, and all of the options I was offered were surgical. Had I known that there were effective non-surgical options available, I would certainly not have chosen the circ before trying them.

In the twenty years since circumcision, I have often wish I hadn't had it done. I miss my foreskin.
posted by flabdablet at 6:25 AM on May 28, 2012


What is proper hygiene?

Just making sure to wash there in the bath or shower, same as you wash your armpits or whatever. Don't go scrubbing with a brush, just pull back the foreskin and rinse, maybe use some gentle soap, no big deal. I assume that circumcised guys also wash their dicks in the shower; the only added step is pulling back the foreskin during the washing.

The thing that no one told me (and how could they, since everyone I was around was circumcised?) was that when peeing, your aim is a lot better if you slightly pull back your foreskin. Yes, that's probably a total "duh" thing, or maybe it just depends on your personal anatomy, but I spent years with poor aim before figuring this out.
posted by Forktine at 7:02 AM on May 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


UK here too. I have literally no idea how cutting it off could possibly make anything better or easier.

For (weird!) religious or cultural reasons, sure, whatever floats your boat. Otherwise, no.
posted by dickasso at 9:15 AM on May 28, 2012


Billionthing no, but I do wish I'd had my frenulum (the connective skin flap thing) cut by a doctor or body modder or some purposeful person rather than tearing it during teenage rough sex. I do prefer not having it, though, because it eliminates the sudden-pullback pain at least one person has mentioned, plus it's distinctive!
posted by cmoj at 10:13 AM on May 28, 2012


No.
posted by outlandishmarxist at 11:37 AM on May 28, 2012


Ok, thanks a lot. My Australian friend is mid 40's. I doubt seriously I would subject my child to what amounts to elective surgery, without a really good reason, but I wanted to get some reassurance.

We live in the Southern US, my hubby's not circumcised and we're not the most modest family so although my son hasn't yet realized he looks different than his dad, I'm sure sooner or later he will. Yeah, I understand hygiene is the big issue, so we'll have to look into learning to do that correctly. At this point, his foreskin doesn't really retract very far. My first hubby was not circumcised (Latino) so I'm famiiar in general about it, but you'd be surprised (or maybe not) by the reaction of some of the women in my family - "You HAVE to have him circumcised, he'll never find a girlfriend." WTH? So far the biggest issue is the extra skin seems to mess up his aim so he's quite the messy little pisser :). THANKS!
posted by cherrybounce at 11:39 AM on May 28, 2012


Here's a little info on cleaning. Uncircumcised is becoming way more common in the US. Among my friends, all the adult males are cut and their boys, age 6 and younger, are uncut. Your friends should mind their own business!
posted by amanda at 3:37 PM on May 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


The mister: doesn't care that he wasn't circumcised; no issues as a kid; has no idea if his brothers were/are circumcised and would like to keep it that way.
posted by deborah at 5:35 PM on May 28, 2012


Not knowing what the alternative is like, I'll just add my 2 cents that I have no complaints with my circumsized member. So its the same on this side of the boat too (never really wished I'd NOT been circumsized)
posted by el_yucateco at 1:28 PM on May 31, 2012


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