Is circumcision the ‘Voldemort’ in a conversation about early breastfeeding difficulties? Though it’s a studied certainty that infant circumcision can have ruinous effects upon breastfeeding, it seems only the rare or high-profile breastfeeding expert dares to mention this risk by name, much less maintain an official protocol for assistance if challenges arise.
The lovely Pat Jones of the Whole Mother Show (90.1 KPFT) asked if I’d like to be interviewed for a live episode about routine infant circumcision. It was to be with local doula Debbie Hull, along with my Intact Houston co-director Abbie who’d offered to join me. I was so excited to be there (a little nervous, but mostly excited and actually feeling well-prepared!).
Handing out penis balloons, wilting in the heat, remembering the victims in the recent Orlando tragedy, spreading positive messages about foreskin… this was my experience of Houston’s PRIDE Festival this weekend.
This weekend, I joined with advocates from across the nation to Chalk The Walk with our favorite peaceful parenting messages.
As always, this is a family-friendly event and all ages are welcome to participate. Perfect for us — especially this time with a 1.5-day-old baby and a 3.5-year-old kiddo in tow!
A variety of peaceful parenting topics were on display: Informed birth choice, breastfeeding, nighttime parenting (no CIO), cloth diapering, babywearing, gentle ‘discipline’, genital autonomy…
Here are twelve questions we don’t often think to ask about circumcision.
We were all proud. We have been proud, actually. So we showed up ready to nurse.
We did it modestly, though not one of us bothered to “cover up.” We did it with discretion, being that we nursed exclusively among supporters — though we wanted to be seen and heard. So we shared our experiences on every format far and wide with a movement of hashtags and brelfies and nurse-ins to prove that breastfeeding can work (more on that in a bit).
We wanted to count; in fact, we made sure we were being counted.
And we broke the standing world record: 14,889 children (simultaneously!) latched on to nurse for at least one full minute on Friday and Saturday all over the world for the Global Big Latch On. I attended one of the Houston events as a local representative for peaceful parenting/Dr. Momma. There, 73 moms and 82 children were officially latched on!
This event kicked off World Breastfeeding Week, for which the year’s theme is “Breastfeeding and Work: Let’s Make it Work!” The idea is to draw attention to issues faced by working mothers who want to breastfeed.
It also reminds of all the things that hope so badly for breastfeeding to not work.
Chase Nebus-Hironimus, the Florida child caught in the center of a parental battle over the state of his foreskin, now stands at great risk of being circumcised against his will at any time. But there is still hope and we must do what we can to continue to support him with our best efforts.
You can help at the convenient, comfortable location of your home or during your lunch break at work. An easy action for you, a potentially life-changing one for Chase.