PUBLICLY AVAILABLE LITERATURE
The taboos about male circumcision are more successful than a censorship law. There is hardly any public information over phimosis, frenulum breve and adhesions.
Questioning the first four men I met who had personal experience of a foreskin problem, was (in 1996) more informative than over a hundred publicly available books in Birmingham and Hamburg, (on male sexuality, child care, psychology, medicine, urology and surgery, even anatomy books).
Very often literature on
male sexuality and parent care either ignore the subject or simply
condemn circumcision - The big question about routine circumcision or not,
dominates all thinking about foreskin conditions.
The explanations of the conditions are fully inadequate for parents
or any individual who has them. I have never come across a method
for parents to check for these conditions. Any man or child today
with a similar condition to mine, may end up in the same ridiculous
position that I was in. - This is all very appropriate for taboos.
The Difficulty and Pain Check
Occasionally the medical definition is given, that circumcision is
indicated when the foreskin cannot be retracted, or when it can only
be retracted with pain or difficulty; Whether this examination is performed
when erect or non-erect (flaccid) is unspecified. Very rarely mentioned
are pain or difficulty by intercourse or masturbation, but there is never an indication about what these difficulties may be.
The only extremely rare descriptions of the frenulum breve are
that it pulls the glans downward, or that it causes a feeling of
tension. These only occur when the foreskin is retracted, an action
which is unatural to a man with this condition, thus they avoid
doing it, thus from this information they will simply not recognise any problem.
The following examples speak for themselves.
The Kinsey report, "Sexual Behavior in the Human Male", makes no
mention of circumcision. The Kinsey Institute New Report on Sex,
says that phimosis and paraphimosis are infections (17).
They fail to recognise "the generous foreskin covers the vagina like
a turtle neck" as a common symptom of some degrees of phimosis and
even give incorrect advice.
Desmond Morris tells us in the best seller Bodywatching: "In fact
circumcision has no medical advantages" (18).
His best sellers
Bodywatching and Babywatching offer a personal opnion on routine infant circumcision devoid of anthropological research and with no mention of phimosis or foreskin conditions.
Dr. Miriam Stoppard's best selling (in 1995)"The Baby Care Book"
describes the dangers of a young boy's penis getting stuck in the
zipper, but otherwise follows many of her colleagues and makes no
mention of circumcision. (19). Dr.
Spock's long term best seller updated "For The Nineties" says without references "It
may take... some boys... until adolescence, to have a fully retractable
foreskin, but this is no cause for concern." (20).
Alex Comfort in The New Joy of Sex, is vague, but at least he appears
to have heard something : "if you aren't circumcised, you need to
retract the foreskin fully for cleaning purposes, and if it wont
retract beyond the corona all round the glans except at the front,
get it seen to... If it... is over-tight and gets stuck, get that
seen to also. These are about the only things that are commonly wrong
with a penis" (21).
In the books which were reviewed none (excepting Dr. Porst and the Kinsey New Report), mentioned the frenulum ripping.