This little book I dedicate to my dear friend Jonathan Conte. Jonathan was a tireless fighter for the genital integrity of children . He educated and warned of the harmful effects of male and female circumcision.
Jonathan died by his own hand. He died estranged from his family whom he felt were unable to empathize with the impact being circumcised, and it’s meaning in his life and his connection to himself as a man.
My hope is that Jonathan has found peace and. That now he is able to have a deep understanding of his goodness and how deeply he was loved by his devoted partner and his family of choice in the Bay Area Intactivist community.
Parents have so many choices to make. From the second they become aware of a pregnancy, until their young one steps out into the world as an adult. It’s a daunting and often lonely task, for which many of us feel unprepared and sure are unsupported.
If I may offer a word of advice here, do your very best . Don’t give up or in to “authority” figures and do your own in depth research ; pro or con no matter the issue. Follow your gut – not your fear. At the end of the day, this is the best that any of us can do. Your decisions will have primary impact upon your child’s ability to be a happy, healthy, self-assured human being: a friend, a lover, a co-worker, a mate, a parent to children of their own..
I believe that this is one of the deepest obligations we have as parents to do our best and then more than our best.
And at the same time know that even when we do proceed with caution and education, not all of our decisions will impact our child as we wished.
Should that happen, I wish you the courage to hear your child’s experience and reality. The courage to Listen and offer love and an apology. Listen and Refrain from defensiveness and have the courage to maintain an open door, through which your child can always find you waiting , full of love for them, on the other side.
May there be Peace in our hearts, homes, and our communities,
Samsarah Morgan, DD Cht. CD (ICTC) LC
If you would like to know more about intactivism please visit: www.bayareaintactivists.org and watch : The Elephant in the Hospital a discussion of circumcision.