Children have a right to be free from harmful cultural practices that can negatively influence their life. We may placate ourselves by claiming that a child won’t remember, however, modern science has confirmed that early life trauma leaves permanent life altering damage and that the earlier in life trauma is experienced, the more damaging the influence.
Children forced to undergo genital cutting will suffer lifelong physical damage, sexual damage as well as mental and emotional damage even if they do not acknowledge the harm.
While there are many forms of FGM, with different levels of harm it is important to acknowledge that all forms of genital cutting are harmful and unacceptable forms of child abuse. The moment a healthy child’s genitals are pierced with a sharp object by adults who should know better, for whatever reason, a grave crime against that child, and against all humanity, has been committed regardless of cultural, religious or pseudo-medical beliefs.
Physical Harms of the Procedure
* Extreme Pain and Torture of the Procedure
* Children Strapped Down or Restrained Creating Additional Trauma
* Severe Bleeding Leading to Hemorrhagic Shock
* Infections Septicemia and Even Death are Possible and Common
Long Term Physical Harm
* Reduced Sexual Pleasure and Fulfillment
* Painful Scars
* Repeated Tears
* Pain During Intercourse
* Scars Ripping from Child Birth That Maybe Resewn
Mental Harms of FGM
* PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
* Altered Stress Response (Hyper reactive Sympathetic Nervous System)
* Feelings of Lack of Ownership of One’s Body
* Difficulty with Relationships
* Feelings of Betrayal by Parents and Society
The cutting of a child’s genitals is tremendously painful. These are the most sensitive areas of our bodies and no adult in their right mind would volunteer to have this done to them, which is why it is children who are forced to suffer this crime. Victims have described excruciating torture that they have never experienced before or sense.
When she was eleven years old Farima (name changed) was told by her stepmother to get dressed up for an event. In these cultures it is common to lie to the girls about where they are going. Rather then attend an exciting event, she was force to endure the worst experience of her life. After taking her into the forest her stepmother handed her over to a group of woman who overpowered her, stripped her naked, forced her legs apart and proceeded to mercilessly cut into her private areas with a razor-blade.
“Two or four of the women held me down. They spread my legs open and pinned me down, and then the woman who was the cutter, she sat on my chest,” Farima recounts. “As she began to cut my clitoris, I began to fight and scream and wriggle under her, just looking for somebody to help me, somebody to come to my rescue.”1
Children should be protected by their parents not handed over to psychos with knives who cut apart their private parts while sexually assaulting them and torturing them. We call them private for a reason.
Parents do not have special rights over their child, they have responsibilities to them. One of those basic and fundamental responsibilities is to raise our children to have all the body parts they were born with.
Not only is this a grave human rights violation, this creates life long psychological and emotional harm.
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)
New research at Harvard shows how the effects of early life trauma, better known as Adverse Childhood Experiences or ACEs affect the child for life even altering how a child’s genetics are expressed. This makes sense evolutionary as a child born into a stressful and traumatic environment will develop defense mechanisms to deal with repeated trauma throughout life.
Children who experience ACE’s will have a more exaggerated stress responses later in life. They are more likely to be overweight, depressed or unhealthy as well as suffer family and relationship stress.
Science is just now starting to unpack how early life trauma creates alterations in brain structure itself. ACEs has been associated with reduced hippocampal volume in adolescence, altered function of the Dorsal Anterior Cingulate, the Adult Anterior Cingulate Cortex and Caudate Nuclei. Each of these areas are important in memory formation and emotional processing.
“These findings tell us that there may be a ‘sensitive period’ in which stress is more likely to affect the development of the hippocampus, which is connected to learning, memory and mood,” said lead author Kathryn L. Humphreys, assistant professor of psychology at Vanderbilt. “Given that the hippocampus undergoes rapid changes in the first years of life, the effects of stressful experiences during this period, even those the child doesn’t remember, may be particularly important in understanding the development of this region of the brain.”
It goes without saying that all children should have a right to grow up happy and loved with all their body parts they were born with. It is estimated that as FGM cutting cultures migrate into the world, unless we educate these cultures about the harm of FGM, it is likely that FGM will start to increase all over the world. As the Michigan case showed, FGM is happening on American soil at an every increasing rate. Currently it is estimated that over 500,000 American girls are in danger of FGM. As humans we must not justify and excuse harmful cultural practices that harm children especially if we want to continue to claim to love and care about our children.
Stop Abuse Campaign
Epigenetics and Child Development: How Children’s Experiences Affect Their Genes
Childhood Trauma Permanently Scars Brain, And Boosts Likelihood Of Depression
Stress and trauma in earliest years linked to reduced hippocampal volume in adolescence
Dorsal Anterior Cingulate Thickness Is Related to Alexithymia in Childhood Trauma-Related PTSD
Early Life Stress and Morphometry of the Adult Anterior Cingulate Cortex and Caudate Nuclei
Childhood Trauma Exposure Disrupts the Automatic Regulation of Emotional Processing
Harms of FGM
- America’s Cultural Biases Are Fueling A Female Genital Mutilation Crisis in America, RIGHT NOW! April 17, 2021
- The Epidemic of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is Already Here, America (3rd of a 6 Part Series) March 23, 2021
- New Research at Harvard Shows Psychological Harms of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Last a Lifetime March 15, 2021
- Doctor Mutilates Close to One Hundred Little Girl’s Genitals in the USA Gets Off Scot-Free, Feminists Quiet January 30, 2021
- GUARANTEED SYSTEM TO END AMERICAN MEDICALIZED CHILD GENITAL CUTTING December 2, 2020
- CockFight.org Shares the Good News! November 20, 2020