Tiffany's Story: Circumcision and its Impact on My Son

By Tiffany Becker © 2015

I am a regret mom.

I allowed my doctor to torture my son so that he could make a profit, and I will never forgive myself.

I 'researched' circumcision when I was pregnant. I saw the claims that it was cleaner, prevented urinary tract infections (UTIs) and cancer, and I believed them. I thought, "I don't know any men who are intact. I don't know any men that get UTIs or have penile cancer, so this must work. And doctors take an oath to do no harm so if my doctor is this adamant that it's necessary, it must be..."

My mom has been a nurse for 40 years and has assisted on dozens of circumcision surgeries. She says it's necessary and isn't so bad. My husband wants to prevent cancer/UTIs and doesn't want our son teased in the locker room. My babysitter wouldn't watch him if he was intact because she's heard it's 'dirty,' and there are zero other daycare openings for newborns in our area.

My gut said no but everyone and everything else said yes.

My son was born and we had to stay more than 24 hours because he was born at 10 pm. When he was almost 24 hours old my husband asked when they would circumcise him, and they said not until right before we were discharged. I asked why. No one gave me an answer and my stomach churned.

The next day as they were preparing our discharge paperwork, my doctor came to get my son. I felt panic and looked around the room to tell my husband I couldn't do it, but he was gone to eat lunch.

My doctor told me again how necessary it was to do, and I reluctantly let him take my son away.

When he was brought back he was an entirely different baby. The light in his eyes was gone. 15 minutes later they came in to say that they forgot to weigh him while he was naked so I needed to undress him and remove his diaper so they could weigh him now. I did and the gauze came off, too. It was a horrific sight. His penis was purple, swollen, raw and bleeding. It was bleeding so much. I was already crying and at that point it turned into sobbing. I was devastated at what I had allowed them to do to my baby.

He was screaming an awful, distressed scream. In fact, the word 'scream' doesn't even describe the noise coming out of my son's mouth. It was a sound of pure agony.

The nurse said all the blood was normal. I asked what I could do to help him and she said nothing. NOTHING! This was insanity. Horror. Surely I was just having a nightmare. I am a good mom. I am a crunchy, gentle attachment parent. I breastfeed, I don't allow my children to cry unnecessarily. I protect my children. I spend every moment possible with my children. I put them before my needs. Always. Surely I couldn't have signed papers and let them do this to my baby.

He stopped breastfeeding.

He was agitated.

His sleep was restless and broken.

They sent us home with my son in shock and distress and told us we could do nothing to help him. 18 hours later he still wasn't breastfeeding. He hadn't peed or pooped, and he was now so jaundiced. We ended up in the emergency room. The nurse looked at me like I was crazy, said he was fine and asked, "Do you really want me to call the doctor in for this?"

My newborn baby hadn't eaten, peed or pooped in 18 hours and she acted like I was crazy for being so concerned. I was shocked and disgusted. I knew we had made the wrong decision and nobody would help my child.

A few weeks later the daycare lady who had told me she wouldn't watch an intact baby boy called me to say she was closing her daycare.

A year later I found out that nursing school had not taught my mom, a practicing nurse for 40 years, anything about the intact penis and its care. She had no idea that the foreskin was fused to the head of the penis at birth. I had to find reputable resources just for her to believe me.

Then I found Saving Our Sons and my world came crashing down.

I found that the reasons my doctor and husband said I needed to circumcise my son were all lies.

How had I let this happen? How was I bullied into not protecting my brand new son? Everything I knew, except my gut, said this was the right thing to do -- and I found out that every last shred of that information was wrong.

Fast forwarding to a few days ago:  I ripped a TINY piece of my nail off the nail bed. It is raw, swollen and so, so excruciating every time the tiniest thing touches it. The foreskin is fused to the glans (head) of the penis the same way my fingernail was fused to my finger. This pain is a tiny fraction of what my son experienced. I bumped my finger on the corner of the counter and nearly blacked out. Yet I was instructed to pull the remaining skin back from my son's circumcised penis and scrub poop and urine off his raw wound. Oh. My. God. I nearly can't handle this pain and it doesn't begin to compare to what my brand new baby experienced.


I signed the papers and handed him over. I  know I can't take this back. I will feel guilty for the rest of my life. Hands down, this was the worst mistake I have made as a parent. This will never happen to another of my children, and I hope I can help prevent it from happening to other children.

I wish someone had told me the truth. I wish someone had educated me beyond the lies that I found and was fed. I wish someone had done more to help me save my son.

Read more from parents who circumcised their son and will be keeping future sons intact:

Know an expecting family? Always speak up. Here is one good resource list to share: 

If you'd like to get materials into the hands of your friends/family, but don't feel comfortable doing so yourself, we will mail a small anonymous Expecting Pack filled with information directly to them, and connect them with local leaders who can further answer questions or dialog. You may also include a personalized note if you wish. Find details at: There are also breastfeeding packs with intact information for mothers who plan to nurse their babies; and full info packs to use as lending resources with clients (or those who'd watch videos and read full articles).



  1. I am a regret mom as well. Both of my boys are circumcised. Deep down, I think I knew it didn't seem quite right, but I too allowed myself to be lied to and talked into consenting. I thought it was for their own good, a necessary evil. When I learned the truth of what had really happened to them, it literally took my breath away...I felt as if a ton of bricks had just been dropped on my chest. I struggle every day with this intense regret and guilt, this shame for not being strong enough to dig deep into myself and to listen to those thoughts in the back of my mind telling me that this was wrong. It is too late for my boys, but I have found it very healing to advocate for other boys the way I wish somebody, anybody, had spoken up.for my boys. If just one person has said something to me to make me question what everybody else was telling me, to listen to my gut, then I never would have allowed them to be circumcised. It is too late for my boys, but in their names I will advocate on. And one day, they may have sons of their own and they will know better than I did. They will do better than I did.

  2. Recently observed plastic surgery to repair a botched circumcision. Required 11 stitches to bring scrotal skin up on a denuded penis. This poor baby will grow up with a scarred, deformed (hairy) penis. You never know the skill level of the person who performs a circ. Why would you trust someone who has "seen one-done one" ...

  3. I could have written this nearly word for word. Same...researched, same results...everyone we knew circ'd...every input was YES - when I voiced my hesitant "But is it really NECESSARY?" people looked at me like I was delusional. Same, same, forward 5 years and my developed Mama gut and voice screamed NO WAY, NO WAY, NO way for my second son. When we brought up our decision after my second son's birth, it was met with "Oh yes, there's really no reason to do that." TIME changed so much. The biggest thing I learned right away after the horrible, heart hurting first mistake is to *always*, always, always TRUST and DO what that still, small voice is saying. ALWAYS. It IS as you say, the most hurtful, horrible mistake this attached, devoted, extended breastfeeding, homeschooling Mom has ever was so normalized, it is appalling. I try to put a small push out there when I know a pregnant Mom I suspect will "just do it"...I often don't think it is making the difference, but maybe for someone, our regret will save them theirs. I am sorry you carry the weight that I know is so very heavy in your heart.

  4. Oh Mama, I'm so sorry you have to carry this burden of guilt. I'll fight with you to make sure this barbaric torturous surgery on baby boys is outlawed in our nation.

  5. I, too, share the regret, remorse, and sorrow of now questioning circumcision. I learned what it was as a student nurse in may of 1979, and that day, as witness to the torture and mutilation of a baby boy, I learned what had happened to my own precious babies behind closed doors and that I had been lied to. When I began to cry, the doctor looked at me and said, "There is no medical reason for doing this!" That moment in May literally changed the course of my life, which I've dedicated to bringing an end to this atrocity. Thank you, ladies for speaking out. Together our articulate voices will express what, up until now, the baby has tried to express with his screams. "Do not cut off a normal part of my perfect body. It is mine!" We are making a difference and I thank you!

  6. This is a heartbreaking story. Every mom of a boy should read it. I kept my son intact because of stories like this--and my husband also is adamantly against cutting, as a cut man who never had a choice himself. This makes me wonder how much of the "newborns cry inconsolably and it's normal" comes from circumcision. How much of the US' abysmal breastfeeding success rates is because of cutting?! It has a ripple effect, and I am hopeful that this horrific practice will end in the next generation because of important, urgent, painful stories like those from regret moms.


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