What made you become an intactivist?

Basically it was a no-brainer for me. I didn't even know what circumcision was until after my daughter was born 9 years ago. I started researching the subject because I knew the next one would be a boy. As soon as I found out there is actually a part of the penis *removed*... amputated... that was it for me, I was dead set against it. I wasn't even aware of doctors not using anesthesia until only a few months ago. That knowledge made me feel even stronger about being against it. I became an intactivist because I do not believe in altering or removing body parts from a non-consenting individual.

Ask me anything about circumcision or intactivism!


Joseph said...

It was a pretty long, dragged out process. I started out wanting to get circumcised to match my American peers. Then I started being grateful I wasn't circumcised as a child. Then I started trying to bargain; "maybe this isn't so bad after all..." I kept trying to "reason it out," but every time I thought I had it, something else came up. Something eventually pushed me over the edge and I went all out against it. You can read a more detailed version of this story at my blog here:


kurt_t said...

Forgive me if you meant that as a rhetorical question. My two best friends growing up were intact. I found out from a sex ed' film in the sixth grade that part of my penis had been cut off, and that was the beginning of my negative feelings about circumcision.

The relevant blog post is here...

Intactivist.net said...

I welcome all comments on this! I love to read others' stories of how they came to call themselves "intactivist". This post was actually a question posed to the blog on Formspring and apparently when I answer a question from there it shows up here as a blog post. :-)

Anonymous said...

The urinals in the boys' room in grade school were a zero privacy zone. Thus I discovered that I had a Weird Dick. I had no clue why I was different, neither did the boys who smirked superciliously at me as I peed. By 4th grade, I had learned to pull back my foreskin before exposing my penis; nobody remarked that I was odd after that.

Only in 8th grade did I learn that all boys were born with foreskin, and that the reason I looked odd in real life, but normal when compared to male nudes in fine art, was that I retained a tender bit that had been cut off from them: the foreskin.

As soon as I learned what circ was, I resolved to get myself trimmed in college. But when I got to college, inertia set in. One day near the end of my sophomore year, I read the health adviser in the local newspaper write that good health did not require circumcision. This was 1972. Some years later in graduate school, I read an account of the AAP's 1975 ruling that routine circumcision was unnecessary. But I did not become a full blown intactivist until I read the 1980 book by Edward Wallerstein, and the 1985 book by Rosemary Romberg.

The most charitable thing I can say about my intactivism prior to joining several internet forums a few years back, is that it was "ineffectual." FaceBook and related social media have done a lot to make intactivists more aware of each other.

I may have encountered the term "intactivist" before 1990, but I was very slow to apply the term to myself. For many years, I thought of myself as someone who had learned something that few Americans knew, namely that the foreskin was harmless and removing it did not accomplish anything. Over the course of the 1990s, I came to accept the label "intactivist" as I learned the sexual advantages of having the penis one was born with. I now view intactivism as a social movement that seeks to complete the sexual education of North Americans of childbearing age.

Nathan said...

I guess it started in 2000, when I first started to realize that I was already losing sensitivity in the glans at age 18. How scary, I thought, to realize it was only going to get worse with age.

At that point, I started researching circumcision and, being naive at the time, truly didn't understand what circumcision does to a man. In fact, I hadn't thought much about it either way.

Somewhere around 2007, I really started to become curious about restoration and regaining sensitivity. I've been an avid supporter of the movement to educate others and inspire change ever since.

Thanks for asking. :)