Does it disgust you, yeah?
March 25, 2010 9:15 PM   Subscribe

Is lack of circumcision considered a big deal, particularly in sexual situations?

Would an uncircumcised penis best be characterized as unusual, strange, gross, or just a variant, subject to differences in opinion? Bonus points for information relevant to oral sex, double bonus points for information relevant to gay oral sex.

posted by anonymous to Society & Culture (43 answers total)

No. <eom>
posted by Nothing... and like it at 9:24 PM on March 25, 2010 [2 favorites]

Disgust me? Of course not. There are many positives (more penis!) and only one negative. If it's not clean it can harbour harmful and/or smelly stuff.
posted by Kerasia at 9:26 PM on March 25, 2010

Variant. It makes oral sex different, in my experience, you have to do stuff with your hand that you might not necessarily have to do otherwise, but it's not a big deal. I'm actually a fan.

I don't think that gay or straight makes a difference in the actual act, but the culture might be different. Of course there is variance there, too.

If you're worried about yourself, I would say--most of my body worries have never been justified and never been a problem once we're both naked. I have primarily been sexual with men. Hope you figure this out.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 9:28 PM on March 25, 2010

I don't know that I can say yes or no, but I will say that in 43 years of what I will admit was a lot of -- but still pretty vanilla -- sex, I have never seen an uncircumcised penis.
posted by hapax_legomenon at 9:30 PM on March 25, 2010

No. It turns a small portion of people off, but fuck them, because the benefits for you outweigh the cons (more sensitivity). This is basically an irrational fear.
posted by beingresourceful at 9:33 PM on March 25, 2010

I much prefer uncircumcised penises. I find them more aesthetically pleasing than circumcised penises and I find the foreskin makes it easier to jerk off an uncircumcised penis -- "easier" as in smoother and less problematic, not as in faster or more efficient or anything.

The best answer to your specific question, however, is "subject to differences in opinion." Circumcised penises are slightly toward the anti-arousing side of the spectrum for me personally, but many people feel the opposite. Basically, there's no sense worrying about whether you're circumcised or not.
posted by Nattie at 9:35 PM on March 25, 2010

posted by unknowncommand at 9:44 PM on March 25, 2010

Depends on where you are. Many countries have very low rates of circumcision, and seeing a circumcized penis is relatively rare. Having an intact penis is totally the norm, and a circumcized penis is more likely to evoke feelings of "unusual, strange, gross". "Lack of circumcision" is not just the world default, it's the majority position.

I don't know about gay cultures in the USA, but the standard rules apply: if somebody makes you feel your body is less desirable or worthy, they're not the kind of person you want to be having sex with.
posted by Sova at 9:48 PM on March 25, 2010 [2 favorites]

It depends on the location.

Short answer: Maybe in America, almost definitely not in the rest of the developed world.
posted by ripley_ at 9:49 PM on March 25, 2010

I'm a huge fan and two of my boyfriends have been uncircumcised. It's not a dealbreaker, I don't bring it up before a sexual situation, and I have been with uncircumcised men, but it's always an extra little "yay!" when I see an uncut cock. Seconding Nattie that itmakes things a little easier. Keep yourself clean and I don't think anyone worth their salt will express any more than a mild curiosity or uncertainty of what to do when presented with your lovely bits.

I can't speak to the gay angle, but I can say the basic mechanism for oral/manual stimulation is pretty much the same. I switched from going down on a circumcised boyfriend to an uncircumcised one without any problems at all. Things will glide a little easier with the hand and you can do some fun tricks with stimulation by drawing the foreskin up while the penis is erect and then pushing it down with your mouth and stuff like that. I would say the most important thing is, if they go too rough, say something! It can just be casual like an, "Can you go a little lighter, I'm really sensitive-- oh God, that feels fantastic!" You'll probably need to get comfortable with saying this, since uncircumcised penises aren't the norm in our society and people don't realize you have extra nerve clusters that others don't!

tl;dr version-- you're in great shape and have no problem, just be sure to give feedback if your partners are unsure of themselves.
posted by WidgetAlley at 9:52 PM on March 25, 2010

Gay guy here. I've sucked a lot of cocks -- truly lots -- and most have been circumcised. The occasional uncut ones were generally a welcome change.
posted by yesster at 9:55 PM on March 25, 2010

As a (mostly) straight girl, I like cock. Cock is great. Cock is fantastic! Uncut cock is like a bonus, because hey, there's all this extra skin to play with! But cut cock is awesome too, and as an American, it's what the majority of my sexual partners have had.

Just make sure you wash your junk. Uncut junk-funk after a long day is pretty foul.
posted by mollymayhem at 9:58 PM on March 25, 2010

I'm not some sort of cock-crazed chick, despite what the above post might sound like.
posted by mollymayhem at 10:00 PM on March 25, 2010 [14 favorites]

I'm uncut, never had it be a problem with gals who were otherwise inclined to give me head. Had one girl stare for a few moments first.

For the most part, the "rain sleeve" knows when to pull itself out of the way once the attention gets firm and moist. And I personally like having the built-in protection over the most sensitive, nerve-laden part of my body. A basic It moves and slides and that's good, but please don't yank it all the way down to snare-drum tautness seems to suffice and the rest has always worked itself out pleasantly.

And yeah, I do kinda make a point of keeping the unit clean. I was 13 when I intellectually understood the idea of a "blowjob", and that night in the shower I resolved to make sure that if I ever got one, I presented a clean unit.

I'm always astounded by people coming up with stories about uncut cocks being irretrievably filthy.

Either they have little first-hand experience with homme ua natural, or they hang out with filthy guys whom I suspect have more hygiene issues than their cocks alone.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 10:29 PM on March 25, 2010 [4 favorites]

As long as you keep the area under the foreskin very clean & tasty, it's not a big deal.
posted by Jacqueline at 10:31 PM on March 25, 2010

Strange? more like Fun!
posted by Throw away your common sense and get an afro! at 10:34 PM on March 25, 2010 [2 favorites]

No, uncircumcised is fine.
posted by fifilaru at 10:37 PM on March 25, 2010

for every dude (or chick) you find who isn't really into it, you're quite likely to find one that's really really really into it. enjoy!
posted by sexyrobot at 10:42 PM on March 25, 2010

From personal experience, especially when I was younger dating american girls, it was definitely a big (no pun intended) bonus.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 10:43 PM on March 25, 2010

Circumcision is extremely unusual where I am from (the UK), outside the usual religious groups that practice it.

So no.

To counter your evident perception that uncircumcised is peculiar, I personally find the idea of circumcision to be an act of barbarous mutilation (probably because the concept is so alien to my culture).
posted by idiomatika at 10:48 PM on March 25, 2010 [6 favorites]

I think it's just a matter of tradition/culture, and neither is gross or strange in any way, as long as proper hygiene is observed. That said, I have never actually encountered an uncircumcised penis, and would probably want a little direction to make sure I was, um, making the most of the situation. I would think men in particular would have a fairly easy going attitude towards cut vs. uncut, since they actually have penises and are more familiar. I wouldn't worry about it since anyone worth being intimate with will not care either.
posted by katemcd at 10:50 PM on March 25, 2010

Seconding idiomatka. Good to remind people.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 10:51 PM on March 25, 2010

As a straight guy I can't speak to this directly— but when the subject has come up talking to girls, I've not heard someone say they thought uncut cocks were weird or gross (as long as, as mollymayhem says, they were clean). Unusual, in my culture, but not icky. But I think there's more variation among penes in general than between a cut and uncut one. Human sex parts have a lot of variability.
posted by hattifattener at 10:52 PM on March 25, 2010

I've certainly heard a number of women friends in my life express a strong distaste for an uncircumcised penis, and never heard one claim to prefer it (obviously this has just been my experience, and the product of the culture I share with these people so YMMV). On the other hand I've never heard a gay male friend express a distaste for them but I have heard it mentioned as a plus.
posted by Jezztek at 11:14 PM on March 25, 2010

In my experience with gay friends, they seem to either dig it or they don't care. Mostly it seems that men that like other men tend to like penises enough that they're in to it regardless.

As a straight, American woman however, I am not in to it at all. I often make jokes with my friends that when sleeping with men from other parts of the world, one has to stick to Jews and Muslims. I did date a man that was uncircumcised quite a few years ago and I used to get a lot of yeast infections after having relations with him. Perhaps there was a hygiene issue- I'm not sure (I mean with him, of course). It does taste different too, and not in a good way.

In general it's not a deal breaker as long as one isn't a marginal catch anyway.
posted by Brachiosaurus at 11:29 PM on March 25, 2010

I've been with girls (US Americans) who have never encountered an uncut penis before mine. Most were, "Hey! This is FUN!" It goes up, it goes down. Oops, you're too big for it to go where it used to =D

Since being back in Canada, there's never been a comment about my (presences of a) foreskin, aside from one instance where it was, "oooh, oh, good. You still have it" - and she brought up about not using a condom.

If anyone has a problem with an uncircumsized penis - in regards to giving oral stimulation - just roll it down, and hold it at the base. Easy skill to learn. It's easier to simulate circumsized versus simulating UN-circumsized. As to whether which one is more stimulating, I'll bow out of the debate.
posted by porpoise at 11:30 PM on March 25, 2010

... who the heck doesn't wash themselves well, foreskin or not? If they're not washing their glans, they're probably not washing their pits, either.

Sheesh. I was taught how to wash my penis when was 6 or 7.

But, I guess... if you're into cowboys or steelworkers and if they went to bars/clubs right after work without washing up, but, crap, wouldn't the rest of them smell/taste bad (bacteria*), too?

*sweat does not necessarily smell bad; it can actually be an attractant smell - it's the bacteria/bacterial metabolic waste that smells bad
posted by porpoise at 11:34 PM on March 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

Wait, what? Are you American? I am not, but I have been living in America for close to a decade. I find it odd that a term such as "uncircumcised" even exists in this country. I mostly feel sorry for circumcised men, but it certainly doesn't make much of a difference as far as anything else in concerned.
posted by halogen at 11:41 PM on March 25, 2010

Would an uncircumcised penis best be characterized as unusual

An estimated 70% of the world's men are uncircumcised. (World Health Organization, 2007)

Consideration of the universal sample size; it always helps to put things in perspective.
posted by polymodus at 12:49 AM on March 26, 2010

Here's a good website regarding circumcision.
posted by sanskrtam at 1:00 AM on March 26, 2010

What a weird assumption in this question. I really wouldn't know what to do without my foreskin. And my foreskin was never subject to differences in opinion, in all these years of heavy usage.
posted by ouke at 2:10 AM on March 26, 2010

I don't know whether americans are disgusted by an uncircumcised penis, but keep in mind that in many countries (eg. as far as I know in the whole of continental Europe), it's exactly the other way round - circumcision is the exception, and often considered "strange". I (German, female) have been warned in advance by circumcized men so that I wouldn't be squicked out by their "strange" penis! I don't know about gay men though.

Oral sex: more fun on the natural variant, IMHO. Also less work, because the uncut penis is more sensitive.
posted by The Toad at 2:24 AM on March 26, 2010 [1 favorite]

I've interacted with both varieties. Basically, whatever equipment is attached to the man I'm smitten with is the equipment I like best.
posted by idest at 3:07 AM on March 26, 2010 [1 favorite]

I have never had a woman run out of the room screaming in terror, for what that's worth, though a couple kind of giggled for a moment at first. Even in places where it's unusual, the main reaction seems to be limited to a shrug. My impression is that most men, cut or otherwise, prefer rougher stimulation than I do, so if that's the case for you, too, just be ready to say "hey, a little gentler, ok?" and everything is cool. Otherwise, as far as I can tell, everything pretty much works the same, both for oral and penetration.

I've seen a ton of (or more accurately, seen a ton of links to and descriptions of) gay porn that mentions "uncut" right up front, so it's clearly an interest of at least some gay men. (See: docking, for example.) Just as you can see with people answering above, reactions are going to vary from "cool" to "ick" to "meh"; there's no universal gay perspective on foreskins any more than there is a universal female or hetero perspective on the subject.

And on the cleaning front, sure, clean in the shower. But don't rub yourself raw down there trying to get overly clean. Basic, everyday clean is good, just like for your pits and ass and feet.
posted by Forktine at 3:38 AM on March 26, 2010

I've never been with an uncircumcised guy. It wouldn't disturb me to encounter an uncut dick unexpectedly, but I'm sure I'd have a few dumb questions about how things work, and I'd probably spend a good amount of time looking at it and playing with it to see what-all the foreskin does.

Not weirded out or disgusted at all... if I seemed a little hesitant to dive right in to business on it it would only be because it's new and different to me. I'm sure I'd get comfortable with it soon enough.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 4:40 AM on March 26, 2010

Anecdotally, I noticed that in New Zealand, when I encountered penises of men younger than me, they tended to not be circumcised, whereas my age or older (I was born in 1975) were. So I figured that, sample size notwithstanding, there may have been a trend in NZ in the mid-70s away from routine circumcision. (Friends agree with me on that.) Circumcision rates in the USA are declining, so younger men now may be more likely to be uncircumcised, so gradually that may become the norm.
posted by gaspode at 6:21 AM on March 26, 2010

As someone from the German speaking world, I would say circumcision is extremely rare for anyone who is not Jewish. It's just not the done thing.
I've also found squeals of horror from US-internet peoples (not here, in other forums) slightly offensive in the past, and somewhat freaky. Water and soap is perfectly fine, people! Our men aren't unhygenic because they don't mod their equipment!
posted by Omnomnom at 6:36 AM on March 26, 2010 [1 favorite]

Would an uncircumcised penis best be characterized as unusual, strange, gross, or just a variant...

You were made that way! Unlike myself, for example -- my genitals were mutilated at birth, with my parents' approval, and they didn't even have any religious reasons to back up that decision.

So in my book anyway, you are a lucky duck.
posted by hermitosis at 7:08 AM on March 26, 2010

British person, and my cultural background I find the US desire to circumcise willy-nilly (heheh) utterly bizarre. As said above, if he isn't washing his cock he isn't washing the rest of himself and you probably don't want to shag him anyway.

I'd find a circumcised cock strange and unusual, but probably only for about thirty seconds. Then you're onto more basic functionality. If someone has more than a thirty second reaction to your uncircumcised cock, they're not worth it. There will be others who either prefer it, are up for something different, or come from outside the US and find it normal.
posted by Coobeastie at 7:34 AM on March 26, 2010

For me, it's different but it's not gross. I think with the mixing of heritages, race, religion, it's going to be very common to see all sorts of intact or not intact. We did circumsize our son and I left that 100% up to my husband. After hearing from the masses (women) he didn't want him to be an "outcast" since all of those women said it was gross. But as his mother, it didn't bother me nor did I think it would bother women as he becomes of age to use it accordingly. Oh well. It's done.
posted by stormpooper at 9:12 AM on March 26, 2010

No need to snip in an environment with clean, running water, and the velvet texture of a foreskin is nice.
posted by Phalene at 1:09 PM on March 26, 2010

I think cut is much better. Even with good regular washing, an uncut man has some sort of sweatiness that makes him taste bad unless he just got out of the shower. From my personal "observations" uncut ones seem to be generally smaller, or at least look it. They also can be annoyingly sensitive.
posted by meepmeow at 5:02 PM on March 26, 2010

Uncircumcised gay dude here.

Since circumcision demographics vary among social groups, your answer is going to depend on which social group(s) you are sleeping with, and in which country. But people have provided you all sorts of stats upthread to peruse.

In my exploits, I've only ever slept with one other guy who was uncircumcised. (And he had a Prince Albert, which was way too intimidating for me to get really acquainted with his junk.) The overwhelming response that I've gotten is, "Ok cool, but what the hell do I do with it?" Other responses have included, "OMG you are uncut? We need to go back to my place RIGHT NOW." and "It's... like... a... toy!" In my experience, among gays foreskin tends to be fetishized much more often than it is made a dealbreaker.

I've only had one Big Talk about my foreskin. I am pretty fastidious about keeping my glans clean, but sometimes a penis just smells like a penis - especially if you've been at work all day and then gone out to dinner and dessert and are just finally getting home to get it on sometime around 10 or 11pm. My boyfriend was worried that he might offend me by bringing it up, but when he did we just laughed about it. It was on par with "Honey, I think you're wonderful but you have smelly breath. Can you go brush your teeth before we kiss?" So hardly a Big Freaking Deal, especially if you can be lighthearted about bodily functions, have good communication, and tend toward fastidiousness.
posted by greekphilosophy at 9:18 AM on April 5, 2010

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