Tag Archives: Circumcision

Infant Circumcision: Why I say NO

8 Jan

There are two things I want you to know before choosing to read this. First, it contains links to graphic material, I chose not to put the pictures on the page so that you would have the option to see them or not. Secondly, my goal is not to condemn or make you feel bad about a choice you have already made. My goal is to advocate for those who cannot advocate for themselves and to share information.  If you decide to read on please do so with an open mind and be willing to hear what I have to say.

“When we know better, we do better.”

-Maya Angelou

You may already know that I am against circumcision, specifically when it is performed on infants where there is no medical reason. If there is a medical need or if it is in the case of an adult who is capable of giving INFORMED CONSENT than what I have to say here does not apply.

To begin I will explain my journey to this belief, if you want to know when I first decided not to have my son circumcised read this. You will see that what I went on was not very much information but a very instinctual desire not to put my unborn child though that. More recently I have delved into the information and have found myself taking up the cause. There are a lot of very valid causes out there and I agree with many of them. For one reason or another though, this one really hits me. I get pretty riled up about it at times.  I get that hitting my head against a wall feeling when thinking about the arguments people make. The reasons they give. I’m not mad at them, just the thought process. On some level it angers me because I once felt the same way, not strongly, but I agreed with them. I hadn’t put a lot of thought into it but I just assumed it was what you did if you had a boy and that was all there was to it. If my doctor hadn’t asked me about it that one day I may very well have done it to Logan.  Unfortunately unless you go looking for pros and cons you just don’t know, unless someone says, “Hey! Why are you doing that?” The general belief in our society currently is that when you have baby boy you cut off the end of his penis. Think about that phrase for a moment. Are there any other parts of your child you would have removed? If you had a girl would you have her circumcised? My thought is HELL NO! Yet somehow this one exception exists, this one part that we are fine with slicing off as soon as we can. There are some hints floating about now that might make you think first. It’s no longer performed immediately following the birth while you and baby are still in hospital (in Canada).  You have to find a doctor who will do it and then book it, then you have to PAY, at least a couple hundred dollars. It’s not covered by health insurance because it is considered COSMETIC.

Before I dive into the information that brings me to the decision not to circumcise babies let me address a common statement that comes up around this discussion. “It’s the parents choice” I have been saying something similar to this for some time, “Everyone has to do what’s best for them” when people have confronted me about my son. Recently I realized that I was taking the wrong approach, I was saying the wrong thing. It’s not really about the adult, it’s about the baby. Tiny and new as they are, they are still people and they have rights. Deciding for them to have an elective procedure performed feels to me like a violation of those rights, some courts agree. It is the choice of the parent, and right now in the eyes of the law they have the right to make it. If just there you said, “HA you said it Sarah I have the right so back off” then you should probably leave, you’re not going to change your mind and neither am I. Reading further will probably just aggravate you, and I’m not here to upset anyone.

Let’s start off with all those wonderful reasons people have to cut their babies. First I have a list for you, a list of various possible reasons for why circumcision came into practice. You will find the full article here.

“It has been variously proposed that it began as a religious sacrifice, as a rite of passage marking a boy’s entrance into adulthood, as a form of sympathetic magic to ensure virility or fertility, as a means of enhancing sexual pleasure, as an aid to hygiene where regular bathing was impractical, as a means of marking those of higher social status, as a means of humiliating enemies and slaves by symbolic castration, as a means of differentiating a circumcising group from their non-circumcising neighbors, as a means of discouraging masturbation or other socially proscribed sexual behaviors, as a means of removing “excess” pleasure, as a means of increasing a man’s attractiveness to women, as a demonstration of one’s ability to endure pain, or as a male counterpart to menstruation or the breaking of the hymen, or to copy the rare natural occurrence of a missing foreskin of an important leader, and as a display of disgust of the smegma produced by the foreskin.”

You will note that there are contradicting items on this list. Take into account that all of these are reasons various people have used around the world at differing points in time.  Really they are opinions.

Here are some common reasons people choose to have their baby circumcised, and the facts that debunk the myths. Find the full article here.

Circumcision is recommended by doctors and medical organizations

Fact: Circumcision is not recommended by any national medical association in the world.  Fifteen national and international medical associations have extensively studied infant circumcision and its effects and found no significant evidence to support this practice.  In March 1999, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) concluded that infant circumcision is not recommended as a routine procedure.1  The circumcision policy statements of the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Academy of Family Physicians have concurred with this position.2-3  The AMA calls infant circumcision “non-therapeutic.”

It’s just a little piece of skin, he won’t miss it.

Fact: The prepuce (foreskin) makes up as much as half of the skin system of the penis.4  It is an extension of the shaft skin that folds over onto itself, completely covering and protecting the glans (an internal organ) and provides the mobility of the shaft skin necessary for frictionless intercourse and masturbation.  The foreskin has three known functions: protective, immunological, and sexual.  It contains about 10,000 highly specialized nerve endings and several feet of blood vessels.  An adult male foreskin, if unfolded and spread out, would be about the size of index card (3 x 5 inches), much more than a “little piece of skin.”  Many sexually active men circumcised in adulthood report a significant decrease in sexual pleasure and comfort because of the loss of sensitive nerve endings, skin mobility and natural lubrication.

The care of a circumcised penis is easier than an intact penis.

Fact: For the care of an intact penis, the AAP recommends, “Leave it alone.” 5  No special care is required – an intact child should have the external surface of his penis (and the rest of his body) washed regularly to keep clean.  When a male is older and can retract his foreskin (which typically occurs by puberty), a simple rinsing is all that is necessary. 6  Other cultural myths about special cleaning procedures are just that – myth.

Almost everyone is circumcised…I don’t want my son to be teased in the locker room.

Fact:  The circumcision rate for males worldwide is about 15%.  Even in the US, the only country that circumcises a majority of its male newborns for non-religious reasons, the circumcision rate is decreasing.  According the National Center for Health Statistics, the US circumcision rate is approximately 60% (varies widely by region) and slowly decreasing.  According to many intact males, the “teasing” concern is vastly overstated.  For many boys, genital status is neither an important issue nor one that is discussed.  In the unlikely event of concerns later in life, at least the person can make his own decision about an irreversible body alteration that has no medical justification.

Circumcision is a simple and painless procedure… it only takes a few minutes.

Fact:  While circumcision is a relatively quick procedure, it is extremely painful for the infant.  The initial part of the process involves a forced separation of the foreskin, which is fused to the glans (head) in much the same way as a fingernail is joined to the finger.  The AAP says the following about EMLA cream, one of the most common pain relief methods, “The analgesic effect is limited during the phases associated with extensive tissue trauma…” 1    Although they cannot remember the pain as adults, circumcised male infants have increased pain response in vaccinations 4 to 6 months later.11  Circumcision appears to lower the pain threshold.

Circumcision makes the penis cleaner and more hygienic.

Fact:  Circumcision removes the protective portion of mobile shaft skin, which is intended to cover the glans (head) of the penis.  The glans is the internal portion of genitalia (for both genders).  Circumcision artificially exposes and denudes this highly sensitive tissue, resulting in a buildup of keratin and a dry, desensitized part of the penis.  And contrary to popular myth, more sensation does not lead tp control problems.  Based on reports from men circumcised as adults, just the opposite is true.  With more sensation, a man has better feedback and can better determine his proximity to the “orgasmic threshold.”   

I went here and found this in regards to the circumcision rate in Canada, “A 2006 article placed the (2003) rate at 13.9%.”  That was the rate in 2003, and the rates have been on the decline. To those of you who really believe that kids are going to tease your son about what his penis looks like. Even if kids were comparing and teasing it would appear that those who have been snipped will be the minority.

I have heard accounts from people who know someone who knew someone who had a problem with their uncut penis later in life. Yes it happens. Our bodies don’t always perform exactly as they should. Our tonsils and appendix sometimes cause problems later on too, are we removing those from our newborns? No because the remotely possible benefit does not outweigh the risk of the surgery to remove them. What are the risks to circumcising your son? This article shows this:

“Out of 100 Circumcised boys:

75 will not readily breastfeed post-op

55 will have adverse reactions from the surgery

35 will have post-op hemorrhaging to one degree or another

31 will develop meatal ulcers

10 will need to have the circumcision surgery repeated to fix prior surgical problems/error
8 will suffer infection at the surgical site

3 will develop post-operative phimosis

2 will have a more serious complication (seizure, heart attack, stroke, loss of penis, death)

1 will require additional immediate surgery and sutures to stop hemorrhage

1 will develop fibrosis

1 will develop phimosis

1 will be treated with antibiotics for a UTI (urinary tract infection)

1 will be treated with antibiotics for surgical site infection

Of those who do receive pain medication for the surgery (about 4% of those boys undergoing circumcision in the U.S.) some will have adverse reactions to the pain medication injected”

Sound scary? Yeah I think so too. But wait, there are risks to leaving him intact too:

Out of 100 Intact boys: 

2 will be treated with antibiotics for a UTI (fewer if the foreskin is never forcibly retracted)

1 will be told to get cut later in life for one reason or another (fewer if the foreskin is never forcibly retracted)”

The list is shorter, and it’s rates lower than most on the first list. The rates have the potential to be lower of more people are properly educated on how to care for their intact sons.  Leave it alone! For more information on how to leave it alone,  go here.

I am always amused by the concept that the child should look like his father. He is a different person, he has half of his mothers DNA. Fathers, if your son is born with different hair or eye colour than you have do you take measures to alter it to match yours? No you say? That’s foolish? What do you mean? Shouldn’t he look just like you? Right down the end of his penis? OOhh that is foolish.

Yeah they look different. Do you know how different? Feel free to check it out here. Don’t be weird go ahead and look. You should know if you want all the information.

Let’s address the future now. Someday that baby will grow into a sexual being. And as much as we can say I don’t want to think about my kid that way, or why are you using your child’s future sex life as part of your argument, it is still a point to consider. First I would like to remind you that one “benefit” circumcision  is supposed to provide is a reduction if not complete halting of masturbation. If you think your child should not be exploring himself sexually at some point in his life to begin with then you have something else to deal with all together. For those of you that recognize it is a natural part of human development and sexuality, do you want to take that away from them? I know I know it doesn’t actually stop it, but people thought it would and that’s why they cut their kids. Studies have proven that an intact penis is more sensitive, want the stats? Go here.  Don’t want to read and try to make sense of all that? Their conclusion is this, “Circumcision ablates the most sensitive parts of the penis”.  Ablation basically means remove, “In medicine, ablation is the same as removal of a part of biological tissue, usually by surgery

There are a lot of products and marketing out there which suggest that men are seeking to increase the size of their penises, I’m thinking we’re not doing our boys any favours cutting some off.

Religion. There are several religions whose practices and rituals include circumcision. The one we tend to associate it with the most is the Jewish faith. I am obviously not telling people who to practice their faith. I Do offer this article though. There are options, and things can be done differently. A large number of the other religions and cultures who ritualistically perform circumcision do it later in life, often as a coming of age practice.

Circumcision is permanent. It cannot be undone. It can be done later in life though. And a man who wants or needs it can choose to do it. They can be sufficiently numbed or put under completely. They can be given meds to manage the pain following the procedure. They know what is happening to them. Studies have shown that neonates cannot be safely numbed to the point where they will not feel the pain of the crushing, tearing and slicing of the surgery. There is no NOW OR NEVER with circumcision. You don’t have to rush to it. The option will remain available in the future. Isn’t this best left as a “better safe than sorry” situation? Don’t take the risk and what is there to regret?

I have met, talked to, and read the stories of many mothers and fathers who regret their choice to have their son circumcised. I have heard stories of the procedure and complications which resulted in them having to bring their baby back to have it done again. Heard about how little information was offered by the pediatrician performing the surgery, and how they had to pay cash for it. One story that had a large impact on me was this one. It breaks my heart when I read, “To see a part of this baby’s penis being cut off – without an anesthetic – was devastating. But even more shocking was the doctor’s comment, barely audible several octaves below the piercing screams of the baby, “There’s no medical reason for doing this.” I couldn’t believe my ears, my knees became weak, and I felt sick to my stomach. I couldn’t believe that medical professionals, dedicated to helping and healing, could inflict such pain and anguish on innocent babies unnecessarily.”

You may have read this whole thing and clicked and read every link I sent you to and still feel that circumcision is the way to go. Perhaps from the perspective of a man you will hear what I am trying to say. Maybe knowing there are lots of people out there who feel and think the same way would help you to understand. Here are just a few of the Facebook groups who speak out against routine infant male circumcision.

Fathers Choosing Not To Circumcise 

Keeping Future Sons Intact

Boys Deserve Better

Intactivist Rex 

End  Routine Infant Circumcision

Please, even if you do no accept what I have shared with you as reality. Even if babies will in no way recall the pain of the procedure. Does that make it OK to put them through such agony? Would you cause your child any other harm feeling OK with it because they would forget?

If I have changed your mind. If you already feel the same way. If you disagree but think someone you know might benefit from the information. Share a piece of this post, a link to it, click Share or Like.

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              – George Bernard Shaw


I Don`t Know What Is

12 May

It is overwhelming and in my opinion a touch unfair how many books, shows, magazines, websites and who knows what else out there telling us how to parent our children. And the people? It seems everyone person I come across can tell me what I am doing wrong. What I am doing right almost never comes up. Granted, some advice is obviously needed. And there has been many occasions where I have gone looking for help on websites, in books and in my monthly subscription to Today`s Parent. When I was feeling uncertain about what to do regarding feeding schedules, when to expect teeth to break through, basically things that are more medical and often related to milestones.

So what is all this `help`accomplishing? Well, in my experience it has thrown so much guilt and shame at me I wanted to curl up in a corner. Parenting is tough, and scary. And the aim of all of the advice is supposed to be to make this a bit easier. But it is simply too much. Have you read Today`s Parent? There are contradicting articles in the same issue. They are displaying different opinions and options but to a parent who is just trying to find the `right`answer it is confusing and frustrating. So here is the big secret that I have learned so far and I want everyone to know and I would love to scream up from some elevated position. You have to do what is best for you and your family! There are a million ways to approach the many situations you will come across in your journey as a parent, people will try to tell you the `right`way. But what it comes down to is what is going to work out best for your family. There have been a few situations so far in my parenting life where I made an against the common thread decision and got a considerable amount of negative feedback from people in my life and read that I was doing the wrong thing in those books and magazines. It still upsets me, and I have spent so much time defending my position that any time these things come up I get my back up and go immediately into defensive and often argumentative mode.

The first came before I even gave birth and my almost due over sized pregnant self was quick to anger and not impressed when no one in my life wanted to agree with me.

The following, and everything I write, is obviously my opinion. And as such is not intended to tell anyone how to do anything. I do not really care and certainly do not judge the choices anyone else makes. What I say is in regards to the choices I have made and nothing more. See above advice if you don`t believe me. You have to do what is best for you and your family!

So, this first situation. It might be slightly awkward to discuss and it doesn`t come up much in mainstream conversation. But that`s silly it`s a real decision that people are faced with. Circumcision. There I said it. In both of my pregnancies to did not choose to discover what the sex of my baby was. I didn`t care. And so the the topic of circumcision was not a decision that was always on my mind. In fact I had not even considered it. It seemed to me that everyone I knew was circumcised and I was under the impression that it is just something you do. A part of having a boy was having that procedure done. So Scott and I have have said to each other yeah if we have a boy we will have it done, and that would have been the extent of the talking on the matter. Until one of my appointments with Dr. Bos. I don’t even know how or why it came up but he asked me, “If you have a boy will you have him circumcised?“ Yeah, with a bit of a shrug, as in isn`t that obvious? was my response. Why? His next question. I suddenly felt stupid because I didn`t have a real answer. Well, doesn`t everyone? I thought it was just something you did. Would you have a girl circumcised? NO! Of course not that`s horrific (my opinion). Then why do it to a boy? Unless I had religious reasons Dr. Bos informed me, there was no medical reason to have the procedure done. He then informed me of the risk, like with any procedure, of infection or error. And did I know that it was a procedure you have to make an appointment for at a later date? They no longer do it while you`re still in the hospital after the baby is born. And you have to pay. A few hundred dollars is what I have heard. The information I have gathered is that there is only one doctor locally who will perform this procedure and I have yet to hear good feedback from parents who have taken their boys to him. So now I had new information and I felt silly for making the assumption that I would just do that to my little boy. If as a grown man he really hated his foreskin he could opt to go through the (yes I know very painful, but it would be his choice) procedure to have it removed. If however, I had it chopped off for him and later in life he wished I hadn`t he`s S.O.L. I came home so Scott with this new choice, he was not impressed. It came up at family gatherings. Nobody was on my side. Everyone had a horror story of someone who knew someone who didn`t have it done and experienced complications requiring they have it done later on. And oh I did not know how much it would hurt my little boy if he had to have it done when he was older and more aware. HELLO people!!! It hurts when they are babies too. Have you seen those baby shaped molds they strap an infant into in order to perform the circumcision? Jeez. If you haven`t I invite you to find the episode of Penn & Teller`s Bullshit on this topic. When I heard the baby cry on that episode I almost threw up. And it wasn`t even my baby! I don`t know the kid. But I do have babies and the thought of them crying that way was physically painful for me. Despite the fighting and the disagreements we did not have it done. And I often come across someone who has had a bad experience having it done, or read a new article on why you shouldn`t I feel very relieved that I stood my ground and protected my little boy. From something I almost just did because everyone does.

If anyone is offended or put off I am sorry you feel that way. This is a place where I intend to express my thoughts and feelings. They are in no way meant to hurt anyones feelings I am just trying to be honest.

My second parenthood battle was brought up in a small way before Logan was born but was not a full out fight until I held him in my arms. At one of our prenatal classes we were learning about where baby should sleep. You know there is advice out there from every angle. The main opinion though is that baby’s crib should be in Mom and Dads room and baby should sleep there for at least the first six months. If for some reason Mom and Dad do not have a giant bedroom many experts suggest putting a mattress on the floor for Mom or Dad to sleep on in baby’s room so that baby can sleep in their crib but have a parent close at hand. Yes I think this is ridiculous. One mom to be in my class said there was no way she was going to have baby sleep in the same room because every little noise that baby made would keep her up all night, a monitor was all she needed. I was horrified but each to their own. My plan involved one of those side car style bassinets that attach to the parent bed and keep baby at the same level but in their own space, I was afraid of crushing him or her. Logan was born, and on our first night in the hospital he laid beside me on the bed. My fear of squishing my baby in my sleep had disappeared and the thought of him being anywhere other than at my side was not acceptable. By my side is where he stayed. A family bed, co-sleeping, whatever you want o call it Logan slept with us. He nursed until almost 18 months and when he woke in the night all I had to do was make sure there was easy access to boob. And we both barely even woke up. More sleep equals happier Mommy and baby. I heard though, oh boy did I hear it. It`s not normal. He is going to be a big baby. He needs to learn to be independent. He`s going to have to sleep on his own eventually. One little tidbit even implied that inappropriate feelings may occur since Logan and I are the opposite sex. Wow, did people ever hate that I had my baby in my bed with me. And after months of me bearing my teeth every time someone told me it was wrong they started asking, in what they thought was a nonchalant way, if he was still in our bed. I stopped talking about it. I didn`t bring it or anything that could imply that he was in our bed up. I felt ashamed. The way people had been treating me in this choice had caused me to pull back and not even try to deal with it anymore. Logan had croup around 17 months of age and was admitted to the hospital. They were going to put him in a crib so I had to request a full sized bed that I could sleep with him in. The nurse that took of us overnight was young and very sweet. She repeatedly brought me reports of all the other nurses who disapproved of me laying in bed with my son. She said she didn’t care but they were saying it was dangerous. It had been my experience that when he was sick I could respond much quicker if he needed me because I was right there and so especially while he was sick I would stay with him. The nurse came in at one point and said she had done some research and found that co-sleeping was only dangerous under certain circumstances. If the parent was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, especially tired or was a smoker. Some other things as well, but you get the idea. If a parent was going to be less responsive than it wasn’t safe. Obvious right? And yet people, even many nurses hear or read a portion of research which says it may not be safe and jump on anyone who sleeps with their kids without looking at the full picture. During my pregnancy with Bella my emotions intensified and this was when I was able to come to terms with it and be at peace with the choice I had made. All along I knew I was right, doing the right thing for my family and I finally fully felt that way. I had sought out and enjoyed some articles that supported my view. I loved one which talked about people in less developed countries who always had shared beds. It was a normal way of life, and those little boys were hunting wild boar at four years of age. And that article brought me to the conclusion that before we in developed countries were in these multi room houses that we also slept with our kids. It was normal even for us at one point but then it became cool to have several bedrooms in our homes and so we kicked our kids out of our warm beds and left them in the dark of their own. And you know what else I realized? That someday my child was not going to want to snuggle with me. Some day he would be too big and way too cool to lay down beside his Mom and fall asleep. So damn everyone else I was going to enjoy every moment that I could. When Bella was born and we spent our first night in the hospital she snuggled up on me nursing regularly. Around ten o’clock that night or night nurse came in and offered to take her from me. No thank you. “Well I’m not comfortable with you falling asleep while she is on you like that”. I really wanted to throw something at her or at least scream in her face but I had to deal with her ALL night so I smiled and said no I’m good thanks. Every 45 minutes she came back in and offered to take her, and every time I made Bella was at least laying on my boob if not actually nursing so that I could say she was feeding. Did I sleep that night? Hell no! I should have thought, that was the point of me being there, recovering from surgery and rest is a big part of that. Guess who my night nurse was on night two? Yup the same one. She even tried to tell me Bella shouldn’t have been nursing as much as she was. Actually we are supposed to have as much skin to skin contact as possible and she can nurse every second if she wants she is brand new you stupid b*tch. I’m still a touch angry at this woman. We survived, Bella now sleeps every night beside me, stretched out and taking up more bed than her little body should allow. And Logan like his own bed in his room these days. He often wakes around 3 AM (which is new for us, in our bed both kids sleep on average a solid ten hours at least) and Scott goes to see him and ends up spending the rest of the night in Logan’s room. We have found a sleeping arrangement that works well for us and we enjoy it. I hope that everyone is able to find something that works for them and they can stick with it without flack from anyone.

The last point I am going to touch on is not really a fight. Most people would actually agree with me on this one and the medical advice supports me as well. Breastfeeding. Logan did it until he was 18 months and would have longer but my milk dried up because of my pregnancy with Bella. It was tough and he and I cried together at night when he would try and try to nurse and get nothing from me. And now Bella nurses, not as enthusiastically as her brother but a very regular part of her day. I`m not going to go on and on like my other two points. You pretty much know why nursing is important and if you are a parent I am sure you have heard the `breast is best“quote that is thrown in your face constantly. And it`s not easy. I will never say it is. It is a battle full of pain and self doubt. Before I left the hospital I was bleeding, Logan spit up blood once and when I freaked the nurse reassured me that it was my blood coming out of his mouth and there was nothing to worry about, it happens. My irritation on this topic involves lots of nameless people who scowl and glare at me when I nurse my baby in public. Those can`t you go into the bathroom or something comments that send me flying off the handle. No, I cannot go into the bathroom or something, are you going into the bathroom to eat? Not even two months ago we were at the wellness center in the family change room after our weekly swim and Bella was nursing. We were sitting on a bench amongst the lockers and we were both fully clothed. There was barely any boob exposure. A little boy came up and asked me what she was doing. Eating was my answer. What is she eating? A fair question but before I could come up with an answer that might make sense to him his mother grabbed his wrist, glared at me and yanked him away. They need privacy she barked at him. Are you mother effing kidding me? Oh right I forgot nursing my child was basically porn and I was evil for doing it in public. Jeez people. Let`s be serious. Was she not just swimming with him? Did she make him close his eyes while she got changed so he wouldn`t see anything inappropriate? The kid might have been four. Re-freaking-diculous. He saw some side boob, oh my god call a therapist he is damaged for life!

Breathe…I have to remind myself. I get so annoyed sometimes….

So the point of all of this rambling is this. I don’t know what is a … a perfect parent. I don’t know what it is to do everything `right`.

When I became pregnant did I know what I was getting my self into? H-E double hockey stick NO! Did I know I was going to be a part of a two parent team who had to pin a 16 month old down and pry his eye lid open just to squeeze some gunk into it that was going to make it hurt even more than it already did? (damn you pink eye) No! There are some things about this whole having kids thing that SUCK! When I know that I have to put them through something unpleasant that is going to be good for them, and I have to hold them down as they cry it makes me sick to my stomach. But there is so much good stuff it doesn`t even matter. Am I perfect? Heck no! Have I made all the right choices? Not likely. Am I really good at being a parent? I think so. Why? Because I love it, and I love my kids. When Logan was new and I was crying in my doctors office because I was exhausted and overwhelmed he told me, “ All he needs is love and those dumb things (pointing at my boobs)“ and that made me feel better. It gets more complex than that as time goes on and they grow but the basics remain in place. Love your children and let your experience and knowledge of them and what works for your family guide you though all the tough decisions you have to make. You are going to make mistakes. That`s OK. Do what you can to come back from them. The fact that you worry about weather or not you are doing the right thing says to me that you are a good parent. If you are walking around thinking you have all the answers and you are infallible I fear what the future holds for you.

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