This post isn't really appropraite

So I warned you upfront -- and I expect everyone to act like an adult. Well, at least, as much as I do.

Today, a (Hispanic) pregnant patient was asking the doctor about circumcision for her baby boy. On her way out, of course, because our patients can NEVER STOP TALKING TO THE DOCTOR. No, really, nothing stays in the exam rooms around here. They leave, get in their cars, and call and ask more questions and have more they want to talk about. I think HIPPA would fine them, and not us, for their blabber-ish nature.

Anyway, she was like, "So, I guess we are doing this circumcision thing?"
And the doctor was like, "Well, do you want to? Because if you want to, then yes. But you do not have to do it."
So she says, "I mean, I guess. I don't really get it, though."
He says, "Yes, it's a very American thing. Most of them do it."
She says, "Really? I don't believe you. Really?"
He says, "Yes. A lot them do it, and a lot of my patients do it so that their sons will 'fit-in'."
She says, "I don't know anyone who has done it or anything."
He says, "It's not customary in most of Latin America. But it's a simple enough procedure."
She says, "I do think I want it. I just didn't know much about it."

That's right. They all think we are weird. Here are all these families, in which none of the males get circumcised, and everyone is just fine. Now they are having babies in another country, and they are all, "Um... they really... do that?" This patient was on the verge of being scandalized by the thought that the majority of Americans circumcise their boys. It was just a funny perspective moment for me.

I am usually very aware (or made aware of daily) of how much of what I think or assume about my life is just a cultural norm. But this was one of those moments that I went, "Hm. You guys probably think we are all totally bonkers, huh?"

And it gave me a little bit of humor and perspective for my day.

Now, I realize circumcision can be a heated topic in the medical world. I have no intention of discussing the pro's / con's here and would wish you to do the same. BECAUSE THAT IS SO NOT WHAT THIS POST IS ABOUT. I am also aware that there are many Americans that do not circumcise their boys, so please don't bombard me with how ignorant I am about diversity. Because I am not ignorant -- but, generally, it is the majority, and it is something we think is more "normal" than "abnormal". Also, this post has nothing to do with the Biblical significance of circumcision. Thank you.


  1. Chrissy, your disclaimer made me laugh as much as your post! ;)


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