By Lisa - Homeschooling Mom
I find this article fascinating. The International Journal of Men’s Health has done a study that suggests that men who have been circumcised seem to have a higher alexithymia score than “intact” men. No shock to me. I refuse to believe that intimate pain in the first days of life does not affect development.
Alexithymia is a term coined by psychotherapist Peter Sifneos to describe a state of deficiency in understanding, processing, or describing emotions.
Researchers find circumcised men have higher alexithymia scores than intact men. Alexithymia is the inability to process emotions.
The International Journal of Men’s Health has published the first study of its kind to look at the link between the early trauma of circumcision and the personality trait disorder alexithymia. The study, by Dan Bollinger and Robert S. Van Howe, M.D., M.S., FAAP, found that circumcised men are 60% more likely to suffer from alexithymia, the inability to process emotions.
People suffering from alexithymia have difficulty identifying and expressing their emotions. This translates into not being able to empathize with others. Sufferers of severe alexithymia are so removed from their feelings that they view themselves as being robots. If acquired at an early age, such as from infant circumcision, it might limit access to language and impede the socialization process that begins early in life. Moderate to high alexithymia can interfere with personal relationships and hinder psychotherapy. Impulsive behavior is a key symptom of alexithymia, and impulsivity is a precursor to violence.
The idea for the investigation came when the authors noticed that American men (for whom circumcision is likely) had higher alexithymia scores than European men (for whom circumcision is unlikely), and that European men had about the same scores as European and American women.
The study surveyed 300 circumcised and intact men using the standardized Toronto Twenty-Item Alexithymia Scale checklist. Circumcised men had higher scores across the board and a greater proportion of circumcised men had higher scores than intact men.
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More info on Alexithymia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexithymia