Dear Abby: I am a young man who is currently in college. When I was an infant, I was circumcised, and I feel violated that my parents decided to circumcise me without my consent. When the doctor performed the surgery, he took too much off, which causes me pain. When I was in grade school, I was sexually assaulted by an older classmate, but I feel much more violated from the circumcision because it took a part of me that I can never get back. I am filled with hate and anger toward my parents, even though I know it is unfair to them because they believed they were making the right choice at the time.
My parents know how I feel and are sorry, but I still have negative feelings toward them because I can’t get the procedure undone. How I can fix my feelings and have a better relationship with my parents?
Cut Short in California
Dear C.S.: Yes, I have several. All of them involve talking to doctors. The place to start would be your student health center to determine exactly what is causing your pain and if there is help for it. A doctor there may refer you to a urologist, who may be able to get the problem corrected.
In addition, I urge you to talk to a licensed mental health professional to help you work through your anger because it may be misdirected and a result of the sexual assault you experienced in grade school.
Dear Abby: When my boyfriend, “Alec,” proposed, I happily accepted. But a few months later he came up with the idea to bring his 9-year-old brother, “Shane,” to live with him, so Alec can look after him. Alec thinks the boy will get a better education and improve his behavior if he lives in the city.
Currently, Shane lives with their mom, and she agreed to send her son to live here. The problem is, we plan to get married in two years, and I do not see myself living with an adolescent boy. I want to start out fresh only with Alec. His family can visit, but the prospect of his brother living with us does not appeal to me, especially because he has a mom who can look after him. I am unsure now whether to proceed with the wedding, knowing what this will mean.
Plans Derailed in
Dear Plans Derailed: Does your fiance intend to bring Shane to stay immediately? At the beginning of the next school year? Is Shane having social problems at his school? Academic difficulties? Has he become difficult for their mother to control? Who will be expected to supervise the boy when he is not in school?
You and Alec need to have a lot more conversation about what the realities of this situation will be once the boy arrives. If Alec plans to have responsibility for his brother fall on you, you need to be honest and let him know you are neither willing nor able to do that, so he can make other arrangements.
Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.