THADDEUS P __________
April 24, 1992 – October 7, 2019 (Age:27)
Thaddeus (Right) with shipmates from California Maritime College
Editor’s note: Intaction is sensitive to the family’s grief over this heartbreaking situation, and we do not wish to add to it. However we are publishing this information, which was gathered from public sources and social media, to help others achieve greater understanding of the psychological harm of circumcision. While circumcision can have a tragic impact on some individuals, oftentimes the public cannot possibly understand how bad it can be until they read stories such as Thaddeus’s. Our hope is that mental health specialists will gain greater awareness of the effect of forced genital cutting on some men when treating depression. His surname has been withheld for their privacy. The family has our deepest condolences.
“I [too] was raped and mutilated as a baby. Taken away to a dark corner of a hospital strapped down while knives and clamps were put to my most precious sacred body part. A good lesson taught to us at birth with sugar stuffed into our mouths [common infant pain relief] as we suffer the worst pain of our whole lives. With no coping mechanisms and no support from family or society we are left to stoop ourselves into drugs and alcohol with no understanding or escape from a sense of violation in the deepest parts of our psyche.
I love you brother. Until we meet again ….
~A friend’s thoughts about Thaddeus
Thad’s Story As Told By A Friend
This is going to be my personal interpretation of one of my best friends, Thaddeus. We were childhood friends from a very early age. My mom and his mom were friends and were pregnant at the same time.
When Thad was young he was a very hyperactive child. Early on in his school life, certain teachers pushed to put him on medications. Luckily, his parents never did that. Thad was a very intelligent and athletic person.
I would say for most of his life he struggled emotionally and he always confided in me to give him support. You could say I am an empathic type of person. I often soak up other’s emotional problems and give them support. At the same time though, sometimes I would take on too much responsibilities for others and reap consequences for being too involved (you empaths know what I’m talking about).
Anyways, as kids we were always hanging out at each other’s homes. We would play video games and ping pong. As we got older, we went to high school and got separated for a while. Thad was slowly growing up and pursued academic and athletic endeavors. I got heavily into drugs in high school and had my own problems. Thad was popular in high school, had girlfriends, and was a star tennis player and water polo player. Things seemed to be going all too well for him. His dad was a doctor and his mom was a good saleswoman making good money. It was the family that seemingly had it all.
Thad had aced high school as a straight A student and went to a top tier university to study biochemistry so he could eventually get into medicine. During this time, Thad got into fishing and became a highly skilled fishermen who could compete with the best.
In contrast to his school years, more and more issues started coming up for him. He began to have more trouble with women and would notice problems with his sexuality coming up. There were days Thad would call me crying because of social issues he was having. One day in particular, after he was partying, he broke his arm and was really struggling. It brought out all the social group issues and concerns he had to the surface. The pressures of higher education, the social, and sexual problems were starting to really weigh on him.
He began to date a woman and fell in love with her. I knew that he wanted to be with her, but as they were graduating and moving on, Thad was having trouble truly expressing his feelings for her.
I always wanted to spend more time with him, but his school was not close to where I lived. Eventually, he graduated with his degree in biochemistry and he came back home to live with his parents. During this time, I spent a lot of days with him. This was the worst state I ever saw him in. He was clearly very depressed and not in tip top physical shape as he once was in high school. I could tell he wasn’t taking care of himself physically or mentally.
During the next year or two, we didn’t talk much but kept in contact during holidays. Thad and I started talking every day. He messaged me educational material about circumcision.
He watched Eric Clopper’s Harvard performance “Sex and Circumcision” and saw the movie “American Circumcision.” I knew about circumcision from past research but didn’t think too much of it. This was obviously a big issue for Thad. As I started to research more, it became increasingly more of a problem for me as well. At this point, Thad was calling me almost every night. We started playing some old video games again and that seemed to brighten our moods. Thad was clearly struggling more than ever, and I encouraged him to start taking care of himself. His education was almost over and I thought it was important he prioritized himself.
I invited him to come live with us for a while out in nature to try to deal with some things. He was dealing with sexual issues of erectile dysfunction and felt a big loss of confidence with women. Thad was in love with the woman from college that he met in his years in biochemistry. He still thought about her and missed her over the years. Thad still had feelings for her.
Unfortunately, they went their own ways and never rekindled their relationship. Thad had a very hard time expressing himself to her and allowing vulnerabilities. He was insecure and did not feel worthy of her and the relationship.
His pride was pushing him on to succeed, but inside he was feeling a deep sense of hurt and inability to express himself. To this day, I know that he was meant to be with her if things would have been different.
I encouraged him to start [foreskin] restoration and get out of the U.S. for a while to meet some new people.
Thad was only five months away from finishing his second degree. The pressures of life, the growing awareness of his sexual problems and circumcision were growing too much for him too bear. He harbored a deep depression for years with no relief, only getting worse, and he couldn’t cope with it any longer.
On October 7th 2019, Thad decided to take his own life.
He sent me one last email time stamped to the day after his death. A loving message of a deeply hurt individual. He never wanted to cause harm to others and wanted the best for his friends and family.
This event forever changed me and made me realize the importance of dealing with trauma. Childhood trauma between the ages of birth and age 5 are the most deep to deal with. Every year after that becomes less and less impactful on ones mind. Sexual abuse and rape as a new born baby causes a deep psychological and physical trauma that needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later.
With circumcision rates as high as they are in the U.S., this problem has become a plague on our society, with people left with a deep feeling of loss and no one to turn to. Drugs are often the only escape for many having lost the most natural sense of well being as a man.
We need to be compassionate towards people and they need more comprehensive support in dealing with trauma as it is not a minor issue. We need to come to terms with what has happened to us. If a women was raped and tortured as an adult we would understand why she is behaving erratically and depressed.
Many men are struggling with similar issues with no understanding or help in sight, only ever increasing pressures of society put on their shoulders. How can we begin to fix a problem without first accepting that the problem is there to begin with. Denial is the emotion that only allows the cycle to continue.
We MUST do the self work of ACCEPTING our own trauma in order to stop the next generation from suffering the same trauma again.