Mom Presses Charges After Grandparents Circumcise Baby Without Her Permission


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Grandparents are known for occasionally overstepping their bounds, but usually these infractions have to do with something along the lines of ice cream before dinner. What a grandmother and grandfather in the UK are being accused of, however, is much worse: A mom says her son's paternal grandparents circumcised him without her knowledge or permission when he was just 3 months old -- and now three people, including a family doctor, have been arrested in connection with the case.

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According to the Nottingham mom, her then-infant son was circumcised while staying with his paternal grandparents, who are Muslim, for a visit in July of 2013. She had no idea the procedure had taken place until after he came home, when she went to change his diaper.

"I opened the nappy and I ended up having to leave the room because I felt hysterical," she said in an interview with the BBC. "It was just awful, really, it wasn't very nice, there was all blood there and stuff."

More from CafeMom: Circumcision Is Not Child Abuse -- but That Doesn't Make It Right

What an absolutely horrifying discovery! I'm not surprised she had to leave the room -- I probably would've fainted in her place. As one might expect, the mom complained to social services, and then to police. Unfortunately, the police originally did not find enough evidence to prosecute. But after the mother enlisted the aid of a human rights lawyer and the anti-circumcision group Men Do Complain, law enforcement reopened the investigation, leading to the arrest of three individuals: a 44-year-old man and a 47-year-old woman who are believed to be the child's paternal grandparents (held on suspicion of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm) and Dr. Belvinder Menhat, arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm with intent. 

For now, all three suspects have been released pending further investigation. But that poor little boy is still dealing with his unwanted surgery years later, reportedly suffering from recurring infections and pain:

"It looks like he's been half circumcised is the only way to describe it," said the mom. "There's half the skin, it's not all the way over. It swells up, it gets red and a little bit sore in places."

Poor kid! How heartbreaking it must be for this mom to watch her child in pain from something that was done to him against her will -- by people in his family who are supposed to love and protect him, no less. No matter what your position is on circumcision, there's definitely nothing okay about circumcising a child without his parents' knowledge. And, in fact, in the UK, it's technically illegal to circumcise a boy without the consent of both parents. That's why she believes what happens to her son was a crime in the same vein as female genital mutilation.

More from CafeMom: The Circumcision Decision: 24 Parents on How They Made the Choice

"It's even illegal to dock dogs' tails. I've come home crying my eyes out thinking a dog has got more rights than my child," she said. "There's something seriously not right with it all. You can protect a dog, you can protect a girl, but not a boy."

It does seem seriously not right that someone could do something like this to a child and not get arrested for years, but at least this mom finally has the help she needs and there's a chance justice will be served. Sadly, nothing will ever take away the trauma the little boy has already endured. We can only hope that whatever the outcome of this case, it helps to prevent this kind of thing from happening to more innocent kids.

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