I've Never Heard Such Screams

by "Super Pickle" (May 28, 2003)

I had to hear babies being circ'ed So last week, my newborn son was in the hospital under the phototherapy lights for some serious jaundice (he's fine now). I was in the nursery most of the time, nursing him or just waiting around for him to get hungry. Anyway, one day I was nursing him and they started doing circs in the next room-with the door open to the nursery, so I had to hear it. I have never heard such screams come from a baby--not from hunger, or from getting their heels pricked, or anything. I broke out in a sweat and started crying and holding my baby, so glad I knew--THIS TIME--not to hand him over for it. I felt awful about hearing it but I just started praying for them like crazy.

What really struck me was that there was a group of residents or interns or something watching it being done and I could hear them moaning, swooning, gasping, saying, "It's so barbaric!" and such. These soon-to-be-doctors were clearly upset by what they were seeing, but I suppose they will soon become desensitized and calloused. And what I want to know is why don't they tell the parents what it's like? We had our first son circ'ed and I truthfully had no idea how traumatic it would be for him-- until they brought him back to me practically comatose and he wouldn't nurse for 24 hours. I thought it was just a piece of skin and it only hurt for a second.... I thought you "had" to have it done.... Why don't they make parents witness it before consenting? After just hearing it I was absolutely hysterical. This should be banned in hospitals, and parents should be told why. If you want to have your rabbi or your muslim cleric do it, that is a different story in my opinion and should be respected, but it just boils my blood to think about this happening in the hospital day after day for no good reason. Oh, the clincher was the jackass doctor giving the nurses a hard time about not having the babies ready on time: he whines, "I'm trying to provide a service here..."

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