Throughout the course of my studies I kept running into the debate over male circumcision. This is mostly a polarized discussion, with both sides either attacking or defending the practice. I have little interest to engage in conversations at this level. However, my curiosity was piqued when I discovered that some men decided to take matters into their own hands (literally) by making attempts at restoring their foreskin. I was impressed by their stories of patient and courageous restoration. Wanting to see how prevalent this practice was, particularly among Christians, I included a question on restoration in my doctoral dissertation. In response to this survey, a gentleman contacted me and offered to share his experience. It was a powerful story and I felt I had a responsibility to share it somehow. The following case study is the result of our conversation and was recently published in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity (see citation below). Many thanks to the participant for his willingness to share his journey.
While there is much debate over male circumcision, little is known about the lived experiences of men who have decided to undergo non-surgical foreskin restoration. This case study explores such an experience of an adult Christian man. The participant moved from skepticism, to curiosity, to commitment regarding foreskin restoration. In the end, he reported an “overwhelming sense of wholeness, completeness, maturity, manliness, contentment, sufficiency, and rest” as a result of his restoring efforts. This study helps men and parents to thoughtfully consider the presence or absence of the male foreskin, and clinicians and spiritual directors to better serve the individuals wrestling with these concerns.
Editor’s Note: This abstract was not included in the final published draft.
Carlisle, G. C. (2016). The experience of foreskin restoration: A case study. Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 35(1), 83-88