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To have zero sympathy with this mother who lost her baby

(193 Posts)
ReallyTired Tue 27-Nov-12 23:42:34

Allowing someone to circumcise a baby with a pair of sissors at home is child abuse.

Surely the mother could have taken the child to A and E if it was bleeding so much.

I think that both women deserve to go to jail for child cruety and manslaughter.

It needs to be made a criminal offence for someone to carry out a circumcism who isn't a doctor. I also feel that circumcisms need to be carried out in a hospital enviromnent with proper pain relief and emergency facilties. Anything else is child abuse.

It is a point less waste of life what happened to this little baby.

ClaireMarathonFeeder Wed 28-Nov-12 08:49:52

I wonder though, is circumvision considered a medical procedure? Is a nurse authorised to perform it? Does anyone know the legalities?

I also have sympathy for the parents, they probably feel devastated now if they have realised that this could have easily been prevented. And while I am totally against circumncision (sp?) like mrsdevere said it's not easy to go against thousands of years of conditioning if that is the "norm" for you.

HecatePropylaea Wed 28-Nov-12 08:56:41

In my husband's culture it is done ritually. Without anaesthetic. To symbolise their transition into manhood.

He was done at 14.

His idea of a 'compromise' was to suggest we have our sons mutilated at birth. hmm Apparently they won't be accepted as men with their foreskin. hmm

I said that hell will freeze over first. (and many other things!) Nobody is touching my children. When they're old enough to understand and assuming they have the capacity to understand, if it is their choice to go through this, that will be up to them. But apart from that and assuming no medical need - over my dead body!

They remain intact to this day.

As far as I can understand it, the religious reason is that it's some sort of test. Apparently god sends your sons to earth with a bit of skin that you have to cut off them. and this shows your commitment or something. Apparently it makes you 'perfect'

Which begs the question - why would a god create you imperfect and require you to have a bit of you removed in order to make you perfect?

It's baffling.

Whatever the reason, I remain of the opinion that if you believe that something needs cutting off a person in order to make them acceptable to god - go mad with a knife on yourself. Not someone else.

waltermittymistletoe Wed 28-Nov-12 08:57:46

Ok thinking they deserve to have their child die is U. But you must know this?

However, I don't think it being a cultural thing makes it ok. There are certain cultural practises in the world that are just horrendous. They MUST be stopped.

This, using a scissors to hack away at a baby? That is horrendous. That MUST stop.

I don't mean to be insensitive to people's beliefs. But I think a lot of it comes down to being uneducated and possibly oppressed in your home country.

I don't, for a second, believe these parents wanted their child to die but...

why not take him to the hospital when the bleeding continued. If he bled to death it didn't happen in 5 minutes did it?

*I'm not reading it. I can't. I had a massive argument with my sister recently about this so it would just upset me.

mercibucket Wed 28-Nov-12 09:04:36

V v v sad. I would like to see it outlawed as a 'home op', and only carried out in clinics by certified nurses/doctors. I don't know if that would have saved this little boy though. So sad and such a waste of a little life.

ReallyTired Wed 28-Nov-12 09:22:56

I feel the parents had a responsiblity to get medical help. They let their baby down.

We live in a developed country with excellent medical facilites. Most immigrants know this otherwise they would not have come here.

Being black or a muslim does not make someone stupid.

FeckOffCup Wed 28-Nov-12 09:31:45

YABVU to have zero sympathy for parents whose baby has died, that sounds very cruel.

YANBU to feel angry that this was allowed to happen, poor baby having to go through that agony, if it's not already illegal to do circumcisions without anaesthetic then it should be.

ReallyTired Wed 28-Nov-12 09:35:08

Do you have sympathy for baby P's mother? Or the parents of other children who died as a result of physical child abuse?

"YANBU to feel angry that this was allowed to happen, poor baby having to go through that agony, if it's not already illegal to do circumcisions without anaesthetic then it should be. "

The parents allowed the nurse to carry out the circumcision and did not seek medical help when it went wrong. Surely they are partly responisble.

Fairylea Wed 28-Nov-12 09:37:17

I truly believe that circumcision for anything but solid medical reasons should be illegal. It is child abuse unless the child already has a medical problem that would be made better by removal of the foreskin.Sorry but I feel very strongly about it.

I don't care if it's cultural or religious or whatever else. Religion and culture moves on all the time. It's a completely outdated and barbaric practice and it seems everyone in the media etc is too scared too say so for fear of upsetting people. We should stand up for children. They can't do it for themselves.

Tryharder Wed 28-Nov-12 09:38:00

My DH is West African and he is circumcised as are all his family including the women although attitudes are changing there regarding female circumcision and it's no longer the case that all girls are circumcised particularly in the towns or amongst "educated" people. My boys are not "done" though and my DH isn't massively into religion or culture so isn't bothered.

All my DH's family I know in the UK who have had their boys circumcised have had it done on the NHS in hospital.

My DH was circumcised ritually so to speak. All the young boys from his local area were taken into the bush over a period of about a week and given instructions about how to be a man amongst other things and then were circumcised en masse by a bloke with a razor blade. No pain relief. My DH remembers the horrific pain but is positive about the overall experience.

I feel sorry for the parents of this baby. They thought they were doing the right thing and it went horrifically wrong. Poor little baby though. sad


Dh told me that any sons born to us would need to be circumcised. Hell froze over on that day. What I find surprising is that his mum (who claims to hate religion of any kind) let him (my dh) have this procedure. When I briefly considered a christening for ds she acted as if I was preparing him for a satanic ritual and told me that she wouldn't be attending. Yet for 6 months she tried convincing me to "get him done". hmm She always claimed it was for cultural and hygiene reasons. Apparently cervical cancer is practically nonexistent in countries where males are routinely circumcised. Nothing to do with girls not as likely to have sex at younger ages or have less sexual partners then?

ClutchingPearls Wed 28-Nov-12 09:48:30

Zero sympathy, really, wow.

A baby has died, her mother did what was the norm for her and misguidedly trusted a nurse, a medical professional.

On another article it says 1/3 pint of blood loss is fatal in a newborn, in a absorbent nappy, I can understand someone may not pick up on that being a dangerous amount after a procedure performed by a medical professional.

FeckOffCup Wed 28-Nov-12 09:49:18

I do think that the parents were partially responsible but I think they will also realise this and regret their actions for the rest of their lives.

I don't think comparisons to systematic and horrific abuse like in the case of baby P is entirely fair, circumcision isn't carried out specifically to cause pain to the baby, more for cultural/religious reasons and in the vast majority of cases it is achieved without further complications. I'd like to see it made illegal to be done anywhere than in a medical setting with anaesthetic and doctors present in case of unexpected high blood loss though, if that's not the case already, I don't really know what the legalities are around circumcisions carried out for religious reasons.

FreudiansSlipper Wed 28-Nov-12 09:51:38

being black or being muslim does not make someone stupid oh right thanks for that info very informative

what about a white jewish person

it is a tragic story. information and education and an understanding of other cultures is the way forward not telling people that they are cruel or evil child abusers they do not see it that way if they are not doing something to deliberately harm their child how can it be considered abuse by them

SoupDragon Wed 28-Nov-12 09:53:50

Since when does ignorance and naiveté mean you deserve to have a child die?

Spero Wed 28-Nov-12 09:55:59

Of course you are unreasonable to have 'zero' sympathy and I hope you will eventually accept this or I would worry about what kind of person you are.

You can criticise a person quite rightly for their stupidity, their failure to do the right thing. But to say you have 'zero' sympathy for a woman who has lost her baby marks you out as an individual lacking any compassion - which to me is much more worrying than parents who did a misguided and stupid thing because they wanted to do right by their child, according to their perception of the world.

MrsDeVere Wed 28-Nov-12 09:57:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

strumpetpumpkin Wed 28-Nov-12 10:00:17

i dont have any sympathy for the parents either, and every sympathy for the poor child to have his penis butchered without consent for whatever fantasy fairyland reason and then bled to death. have they been prosecuted? I bloody hope so

Spero Wed 28-Nov-12 10:02:44

O yes let's call for them to be prosecuted, because that will of course miraculously bring the baby back to life and in no way drive this kind of practice further underground.

guccigirl666 Wed 28-Nov-12 10:10:26

Mumsnet is allowing me to actually really begin to understand things from a much wider perspective. Since having my ds, I'd have felt enraged at this, hated the mother because I simply let my own emotions get in the way of understanding this on a deeper level.

But I am beginning to see how irrational that is. Op I understand what your saying is because you are upset at reading this story and focusing on how awful it was for the poor baby and a few months ago I'd have felt the same. But this poor mother I'm sure never dreamt of this happening to her child. And so whilst part of me is angry, it would be misplaced to focus the anger on the mother.

blisterpack Wed 28-Nov-12 10:11:48

Oh yes they should be prosecuted. After all they are a danger to all of us, and any future children they may have. Because of course they know how great this turned out and would love any future children to have the same experience. hmm

FFS some people should engage their brains before talking.

Thisisaeuphemism Wed 28-Nov-12 10:12:25

Little sympathy maybe, but zero sympathy? I am surprised at your lack of compassion.

It sounds like they were stupid, frightened and culturally oppressed but they did not set out to kill.

Spero Wed 28-Nov-12 10:16:20

I wouldn't fuss if the person who mutilated the baby was prosecuted because it seems she was holding herself out to have an expertise she plainly did not have and a child died because of this. So a manslaughter charge looks appropriate.

But I struggle to see what criminal offence the parents committed. They paid money for a service, this procedure is not itself an offence. I imagine the death of their baby is punishment enough without spending hundreds of thousands of pounds on trying them and locking them up.

ReshapeWhileDamp Wed 28-Nov-12 10:18:06

You CAN'T compare this tragedy with Baby P. hmm The people 'looking after' Baby P, and countless other abused children, were deliberately inflicting violence on their children, and they knew it. This poor, ignorant woman did something that I think she believed was 'best' for her son, and he died. She was ignorant, probably fearful of getting the authorities involved after it went wrong, and coming from a very different cultural background where genital mutilation is thought to be the right thing for children. sad To say you have no sympathy for her is inhumane, in my opinion. That bloody 'nurse' should be hauled over the coals though.

It does make you wonder how many times this sort of tragic death has almost happened, if circumscisions are done underground as this one was.

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Wed 28-Nov-12 10:25:41

Awful, I have every sympathy for a parent whose lost a child.

Blu Wed 28-Nov-12 10:26:29

As I understand it, and I apologise if I am wrong, many mohels, rabbis who specialise in ritual circumcision, are not actually doctors?

In fact I have just looked at the website of one who is not, and who has been cirumcising babies in people's homes for 13 years.

I am horrified that any baby should be cut with scissors, and with no anaesthetic, horrified that a nurse would do such a thing and not provide the aftercare which would reveal that the child was suffereing and bleeding to death, and horrified that a mother would not realise that the level of bleeding was dangerous.

Do I feel sorry for that mother? Desperately.

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