Once the biggest surprise of our life, it is becoming increasingly common for parents to find out their baby’s gender before birth.
The days of dangling rings over bellies and assessing whether your bump is sitting high or low are long gone, with many of these gender old wives’ tales being seen simply as a bit of fun for the baby shower rather than an accurate or reliable prediction. Alternatively, these days, many modern parents decide to opt for a gender scan. From around 20 weeks of pregnancy, a scan can determine whether a Mom to be is expecting a boy or girl, leaving many parents to be waiting with bated breath as their baby appears in front of their eyes on the screen.
Whilst there has always been lots of debate around the pros and cons of finding out your baby’s gender, it begs the question, is having a gender preference ok? Is it natural to have a preferred choice of boy or girl, or should you simply count your blessings that you are lucky enough to be expecting a baby in the first place?
Here are some things to think about when discussing any gender preferences:
- Does anyone actually need to know?
Whilst it may be natural to have a gut preference for whether you want a boy or a girl, do you actually need to express it or share your opinions in public? Many parents choose not to share their views (even with their partner) for fear of upsetting the other, particularly if your baby then goes on to be the opposite gender. Ultimately, you will love your child regardless of their gender, so you may want to consider whether it’s a topic that even needs an active discussion or something you can consider in private.
- Will it offend?
Following on from the above; is talking about any gender preferences likely to cause any offence or upset your audience? It may be one thing admitting to a trusted friend that you’re desperate to have a daughter, but telling everyone in the office may come with a greater risk. You never truly know what is going on in someone’s personal life. Someone could be struggling to conceive, going through IVF or even recovering from traumatic baby loss – so hearing comments such as ‘it better not be a boy’ can be really upsetting. Whilst you would never intentionally hurt someone’s feelings, you may wish to tread carefully.
- Gender is no longer a label
Remember, the days of traditional gender roles are long gone – so what does having a ‘boy’ or ‘girl’ even mean to you and why is it important?
Just because you have a girl doesn’t mean you won’t be cheering on the sidelines at their Saturday morning soccer match, and just because you have a boy doesn’t mean you can’t have tea parties and play with dolls. Gender isn’t a label and each child will have their own unique personality and preferences should you enable them to. Don’t let gender define your child even before they’ve arrived.
- Gender Disappointment isn’t uncommon
Finally, gender disappointment actually is more common than you may think, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you find yourself feeling a little disappointed when you hear ‘pink’ or ‘blue’. If you have strong preferences about gender, an early scan may be the safest route to help you adjust before your baby’s arrival.
Did you have a preference of gender for your baby?