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Grief Realizing you've lost a perfectly evolved healthy normal body part (or even a diseased one) can hit you pretty hard. We're here to help.

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Old August 13th, 2011
MelancholyLogic MelancholyLogic is offline
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Default Ending The Relationship With My Parents

I am going to start this post with a disclaimer: This is the grief section. I am going to write about my grief and how I am dealing with it. I am sharing intimate details of my life here in the hope that perhaps it will help someone else to deal with his or her grief. I am not interested in criticism of my healing process. If you disagree with my approach and want to make excuses for my parents, save it. That kind of feedback is NOT welcome in this thread.

I have read and heard countless times of men who forgive their parents for having allowed their genitals to be mutilated. If that approach works for others, I support it. But that approach does not work for me. I am not going to excuse my parents for the horrific abuse to which they subjected me. My circumcision was not done without their consent and it was performed in 1981. There were plenty of resources in 1981 that made it clear how unnecessary the procedure is. I hold my parents fully accountable for their role in my mutilation.

For about fifteen years I have been dealing with the heavy emotions that come with realizing how my parents failed to protect and indeed harmed me. My relationship with them has been strained for other reasons as well. Up until now, I have never had the strength to be direct with them regarding my feelings of my genital mutilation. Recently, I have decided that it is not healthy for me to keep them in my life. I do not have a positive relationship with my parents and keeping contact with them is not conducive for my emotional well-being. To that end, I have decided to send them this letter:

Quote:
As a child I was subjected to many experiences that caused me a great deal of harm. For years, I was forcefully exposed to religious propaganda in an attempt to stifle my mind and control my way of thinking about the world. My sexuality was attacked and rejected. In fact, my sexuality was compared to an illness that needed to be cured. I was sexually abused on multiple occasions. But nothing I have endured has caused me as much physical and emotional suffering as the mutilation of my penis.

I was about 14 years old when I discovered that part of my penis had been amputated. It seems like this might be something that somebody would notice earlier in life and yet I never did. No one ever sat down with me and explained that I had undergone genital surgery as an infant. I grew up thinking that I was whole. I grew up assuming my penis looked and worked the way that every other man's penis looked and worked. I grew up believing that the scar tissue on my penis was just a natural part of my body and that all men had it. I grew up figuring that the soreness from clothing and masturbation were normal aspects of being a guy. I never considered why so many types of underwear were painful, I only found it strange that anyone could manage to wear them. Then I learned the disgusting truth.

It wasn't easy for me to accept reality. Even though I understood that part of my body had been cut off, I was in denial about the implications of this fact. I battled with depression, particularly whenever I had to see my penis. Each time that I got undressed to take a shower, I would see the scar and I would be reminded of what was stolen from me. I would be reminded that I would never know how my body was meant to look and how my body was meant to feel. I would stand in the shower and sob. I felt victimized and helpless. I felt embarrassed and angry. I felt robbed and betrayed. I felt incomplete and damaged. And yet, I was incapable of verbalizing any of this. I felt paralyzed by embarrassment of my condition and by fear that others would neither understand nor sympathize.

It took over a decade of my trying to make sense of it all before I could look into the issue at great depth. I read about the functions of the intact penis. I studied the numerous physical, physiological and psychological problems that result from male genital mutilation and I began to recognize many of them in my own life. I learned about the horrific ways that babies are strapped down and the various devices that are used to permanently disfigure their bodies. I came to understand all of the greed, arrogance and ignorance that perpetuates the sexual mutilation and oppression of men.

My body does not look like a man. My body does not smell like a man. My body does not function like a man. My body does not feel like a man. My penis is a scarred remnant of what it was intended to be. And each time I urinate, each time I shower, each time I masturbate and each time I have sex, I am reminded that I was strapped down as an infant while my foreskin was ripped away from my glans, clamped, crushed, and amputated. Without injury, without illness, without a diagnosis, I was subjected to genital surgery that amputated nearly half of my penile skin.

I don't want to talk to you. I don't want to hear from you. And I most definitely don't want to hear whatever bullshit excuses you may have for why my body was surgically violated and why I have been forced to live with the result of your terrible decision.
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Old August 13th, 2011
intact intact is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

There are lots of reasons to understand why genital cutting is wrong. Every person on earth should be able to understand that. Those who do not should be kept in check by laws.
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Old August 13th, 2011
cwehden cwehden is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

I feel for you, I felt the same once, in time I felt better, I hope the same process happens for you.
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  #4  
Old August 13th, 2011
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peterpink peterpink is online now
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

I felt that your letter was well thought out and I could not find anything I would want to change if I was in your position. Thanks for allowing us to read it. A period of time away from your parents may well be beneficial. It will give them time to grow up and think about the consequences of their actions. It will allow you to get on with your life. Best wishes.

P.S. For those that think that Melancholy Logic's letter was too harsh, re-read it and this time imagine it was written by a daughter to her parents about her FGM. Strange how the sentiments expressed then become quite moderate. This demonstrates that even we, although survivors of MGM, can be biased.
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Old August 13th, 2011
Dasher Dasher is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

Great letter. The key word is betrayal, and you put it right in there.
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Old August 14th, 2011
vicousg42 vicousg42 is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

the past cant be undone, and some of us, cant be forgiven. people have to live with their mistakes. its our duty to let people know what mistakes they've made. i dont disagree with you, ive been revising my letter for months now. its mostly like this one, but it offers them a two way dialogue option. im not gonna tell you how to deal with your parents, im just explaining what mine is like. good job letting them know. this helps me feel less alone.
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Old August 14th, 2011
admin admin is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

I just wonder what could be the result of giving them this.

What if they jointly drop everything and jump through major hoops to let you know how sorry they are, making no excuses? Is there ANY outcome which could leave you with a relationship with them?
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Old August 14th, 2011
MelancholyLogic MelancholyLogic is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

Quote:
Originally Posted by admin View Post
I just wonder what could be the result of giving them this.

What if they jointly drop everything and jump through major hoops to let you know how sorry they are, making no excuses? Is there ANY outcome which could leave you with a relationship with them?
Should a victim of rape try to work on a relationship with his or her rapist if the rapist is very, very sorry?

I just don't see the point in putting any effort into a relationship with them. Why should I invest any energy in repairing the trust that they've shattered? It's not my problem, it's theirs. I don't feel good about being around my parents. I don't feel better for opening my life to them. Having them around me makes me feel like there is an intruder in my personal space and it makes me very uncomfortable. Why should I be forced to endure any more discomfort?
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Old August 14th, 2011
kevin1992 kevin1992 is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

Hey,

Good letter! I regegnise your story you discribe on myself to. I hope I can say my perents some day for the last time goodbye. I hate them to for what they did, and indeed, nothing can make it right what they have done.
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Old August 14th, 2011
chrish555 chrish555 is offline
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Default Re: Ending The Relationship With My Parents

This is what happens when you get so obsessed with feeling sorry for yourself and your penis. Sounds like they did what they thought was right and out of love and all you see is hatred and reject their love, you interpret their love as something else. Yeah, I feel sorry for you too, but even more for your parents, they deserve better. You think you deserve better but have been a jerk about what they tried to give with love.
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