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Gender disappointment - please, no flaming

(79 Posts)

You can't possibly make me feel worse than I already do, trust me.

I am finally pregnant (34+4) after years of being told by docs that my endometriosis was too severe to successfully carry a child. I have had three miscarriages, two early mcs and one during second trimester. I suffered with PTSD and became fixated with the idea of having a baby. My DH has two children from a previous marriage, a boy (9) and a girl (14), both of whom are lovely and spend lots of time with us. He never really wanted any more children, seeing them as a big factor in the break up of his previous marriage, but he knew it was important to me and came around to the idea when he saw how much it meant to me and how different our relationship dynamic is to that of him and his ex wife.

All my life, I have pictured having a girl. I can't pin down why exactly. It was just me and my sister growing up, maybe that's why. Every time I dreamed I was pregnant, it was a girl. Every time I imagined being a mum (which was a LOT) it was to a little girl. All my cousins were girls, bar one. I found out that the baby I lost was a girl... I imagine what she would have looked like in my head all the time.

Now I am pregnant, everything is looking fine and dandy, we don't know the sex... but I'm convinced it's a boy. And I genuinely thought I was fine with this! All along I've called the baby "he" and told people I suspected it was a little boy, and not once did it upset me. But we went for our 32 week scan and I am POSITIVE I saw a little willy on the screen... My heart sank, absolutely plummeted, and all I wanted to do was cry. Hubby and I have not discussed it, as far as he knows I'm still convinced it's a boy and delighted with that fact.

I've had two weeks to think this over... part of me still knows and feels like it doesn't matter, I'm one of the lucky ones who has a baby after so many years of heartache... but I've had to take a good, hard look at my deepest thoughts and fears to try and work out why I am so upset.

I am upset because I know this is the only baby I will ever have. My husband is already talking seriously about getting his tubes tied (and who can blame him after three children) - and even if he were open to it, the chances of my body being able to do this successfully again are slim to none. This baby really is a miracle baby. So, there's no talk of "next time" for us. I am upset because I built up my idea of motherhood from such a young age around the idea of a mother-daughter bond... I have no idea what a bond with a son will be like, having never seen it around me as a child. I am upset because I look at parents and the relationship they have with their sons and daughters as they grow up and get on with their lives, and see that mothers are so much closer to their daughters than their sons. My hubby would easily go a month without speaking to his mother without thinking anything of it, whereas barely three days go by where I don't text or phone mine. We are so close, and I wanted that, so desperately!

I just feel so very suddenly overwhelmed and heartbroken, and feel even guiltier for feeling that way in the first place considering how long we've fought for our little miracle. It's not MY baby I don't want - I already love my little one more than life itself - what I am mourning is the idea of what I thought I would have, letting that go and being able to picture a new kind of relationship.

I am not looking to be judged, I just needed to put these feelings somewhere because I am afraid to tell the people I know, especially my husband. Does anyone have any lovely stories about boys as babies/children, or even stories about men and their mothers still being close? Any help would be very, very gratefully recieved, as I am still in shock that I feel this way after all this time.

ginabelle Sat 30-Mar-13 13:00:08

Just wondered if you got your little girl ?

Poonli Mon 04-Feb-13 13:47:05

I'm pregnant with my first and have no idea of the gender yet. However, I'm not really close to either of my parents. I've always kind of done my own thing. My husband on the other hand is definately a 'mummy's boy'. he speaks to his mum pretty much every day.

I have a niece and nephew whom I am very close to and its actually my nephew who I am closer to. He gives the best cuddles!

I think when you have your baby in your arms, the gender wont matter. You'll just have love for each other.

jellybeans Mon 04-Feb-13 13:26:44

I wasn't bothered at all with my 1st one. But after having DD1 I really wanted another girls with DC2. Mainly as I had enjoyed my DD so much and also have no brothers and not good relationships with boys growing up. My friends all had boys and were so negative about them they said they were 'desperate for a girl' and I was so lucky etc etc. My mother and grandmother continually went on and on about how much nicer girls were and how boys cleared off as adults. I am ashamed to say i 'felt sorry' for those with just boys at one point blush. But this was just ignorance on my part.

Many years later I have 2 DDs and 3DSs. I went through 2 stillbirths and other early losses which also taught me that it was lucky to have a baby of any gender. Well it was only when I had my own boys (twin DSs first) that I realised how fab they were and they were every bit as fab as having a DD. I enjoyed everything just as much, even the toys and clothes people seem so negative about! I was over the moon when DC5 was a DS! And would happily have more of them!

IrnBruTheNoo Mon 04-Feb-13 10:14:41

"and see that mothers are so much closer to their daughters than their sons"

This is not always the case, sadly. I am not close to my own mother. I do phone her but more out of obligation, rather than because I've a close relationship with her. We have very little in common.

I have two boys. And I won't lie that during both of those pregnancies I didn't have the odd pang about whether or not one of them was going to be a girl. But in between both of them, I had a MMC and that was enough for me to realise that life is precious and the gender is so irrelevant. It's just a fantasy in your head, that's all. Once your baby (boy or girl) is in your arms, the gender will mean nothing to you both.

Lots of supportive posts here, much better than others having a go at you, OP. What a lovely thread to read. Good luck with everything, we're all here for you to talk any time x

DanniiH Mon 04-Feb-13 09:29:09

My oh has 3 sisters and he is as close to his mum as they are. He goes for lunch most days too as he works near her house.

We have a little boy and he is as affectionate if not more so than little girls we know. It's more about the life you create for your children than what gender they are. If you make it so they want to be around you then they will. x

DanniiH Mon 04-Feb-13 09:28:38

My oh has 3 sisters and he is as close to his mum as they are. He goes for lunch most days too as he works near her house.

We have a little boy and he is as affectionate if not more so than little girls we know. It's more about the life you create for your children than what gender they are. If you make it so they want to be around you then they will. x

2monkeybums Mon 04-Feb-13 09:00:31

As a Mum of two beautiful boys, I wouldn't change it for the world. When I was pregnant with Ds1 my DH wanted a girl and so at the 20 week scan I was slightly disappointed for him but once Ds came along we were both thrilled with him. By the time Ds2 came along we didn't care either way. This time I was slightly disappointed for the other family members who really wanted a girl, my Mum and sister sounded rather deflated when I called after my 20 week scan! Once Ds2 was born he was gorgeous and a really delightful baby and everyone fell in love with him straight away as they had with Ds1. I now cant believe I spent any of my pregnancies being disappointed for other people!!! With every day that passes I am more sure I am meant to be a Mum of boys. They are wonderful. You will love him so very much op.

EugenesAxe Mon 04-Feb-13 06:07:57

I am very like you OP in terms of my relationship with my mother so can empathise. I will just say there are some girls that completely do not gel with their mothers and some boys that do. My DH feels the need to call home at least once a week.

My son is lovely and funny; very affectionate as a young child. I think you will love yours to bits if your suspicions prove correct.

When the time comes for him to get more independent, don't mollycoddle; when he gets married, give him and his wife space to find their way as a family. I think sons (and daughters, but the former especially) are more likely to be cool to their mothers if they don't allow them to grow up.

Good luck with the birth and everything!

AllOverIt Mon 04-Feb-13 05:46:51

My DH is way closer to his mum than I am to mine and rings her 3-4 times a week. She lives 10 mins away. I can go 3-4 weeks between contacting mine, she lives 1.5 hrs drive away.

My DS is amazing! Clever, kind, quiet, but determined. He's fascinated by the world every day. He's got a lot more in common with me than my DD, though I love them both equally, obviously.

Boys are easier, on the whole, and I speak as a teacher of 15 years and as a mother of both. They tend to be less complicated, especially as teenagers.

Good luck smile

Thank you all for sharing such wonderful stories! Your DSs all sound like amazing little (or not-so-little) people!! I already feel better just for having openly admitted feeling the way I did. I spent a good hour yesterday on Amazon looking up boys clothes and actually got quite excited about some of them - seems small and silly but it's progress for me.

I am going to find out about getting a private scan to find out the gender and keep you updated. Thanks again to all x

trustissues75 Mon 04-Feb-13 03:20:09

I think you are being too hard on yourself. I'm on number 2. I've always wanted a girl - I was disappointed when DC1 was a boy but I soon got over it and wouldn't change him for the world. I'm desperate for DC2 to be a girl (I have no idea yet) This one is my last and I know it will hit me harder this time if it's a boy - I also know I'll get over it, love him, and never whish him to be anyone but him.

You are allowed your feelings. Let them have their way for a little while. You're allowed hopes and dreams and wishes...it's your right to have them. You'll be just fine no matter what the sex of the baby is.

Stop beating yourself up.

emmyloo2 Mon 04-Feb-13 03:18:14

I can understand this. With my first, I desperately wanted a girl. I just have always wanted a girl. I am also one of two girls and my sister is my best friend and we are very very close to my Mum. My Mum was one of five girls. However, I had a boy. I was disappointed but then it just felt right. And once we was born, I adored having a boy. I just loved it. And he is now 2.3 and he is just gorgeous and I wouldn't want it any other way. There are lots of great things about having a boy and I think you will get over the disappointment once the baby is born. I am sure you will. You can still have a lovely close relationship with a son. My little boy is so affectionate - he is always hugging and kissing me - it melts my heart. I love it. Perhaps it's even nice coming from a little gorgeous boy. I am now pregnant again with a girl, but I actually thought having two boys would be sweet.

Try and put it out of your mind and focus on having a little boy - he will bring you so much joy!

exoticfruits Sun 03-Feb-13 22:26:24

I think that you will be fine dealing with your actual baby- it is very different from thinking about a hypothetical baby.

FeeFoo Sun 03-Feb-13 22:15:46

I'm have to DS's and assure you, all will be fine. I think you answered your own concerns succinctly when you wrote about letting go! No one can prepare you for the adventures of parenthood, though one thing that I am sure of, you will love your little miracle unconditionally - boy or girl!!! Best of luck with the rest of your pregnancy. grin

TheGrandPooBah Sun 03-Feb-13 22:01:07

I couldn't agree more with pretty much all the posters - you will so love your baby, you'll be astounded in 6 months that it was an issue at all.
Wishing you a safe and happy birth, and hoping to hear back later just how happy you are with your little one.

Fishandjam Sun 03-Feb-13 21:02:35

phoenix, I just wanted to say that I have a DS (now 3) and he is the best, funniest little darling I could ever wish for. I had a ton of fun shopping for stuff to decorate his room with - it doesn't all have to be diggers and tractors! I loved finding nice clothes for him - cute bright ones, rather than unpleasant sludge-coloured small versions of adult male clothes. He likes baking, bead threading and walks in the woods (as well as "boy" activities like playing with cars and Lego and charging around yelling fit to bust ). And he is a cuddle monster. When I became pregnant for the second time I almost hoped it would be another boy - it wasn't, or rather she wasn't, but that's fine too.

You will adore your little chap, trust me.

gillian88 Sun 03-Feb-13 20:43:33

I have a little boy and a girl, don't get me wrong i love them both equally and unconditionally however I feel I have a very special relationship with my little boy. Little girls are very independent however boys are very much 'mummy's boys' and love cuddling up to mummy!

I have two "boys", well they are young men now. Like you OP I originally wanted a girl and was shocked when I had a boy the first time. But let me say that I have the loveliest, cuddly, thoughtful lads you could ever hope to have. Yes, at times we have issues and difficulties, but on the whole they are wonderful. Both DH and I are very ill these days, but DS1 can be so helpful and kind despite his own disabilities and DS2 who is at Uni chats to me most days via FB. I have tons of Mothers Day mugs in our cupboard. During holidays I often sit in bed reading with my lads snuggled up either side and they are in their twenties now!

beginnings Sun 03-Feb-13 20:05:33

I completely agree with what Sleepyhead said.

i was convinced DD was a boy. I was easy either way as it happens (also ivf) but I was sure I'd seen something at 20 weeks and therefore convinced myself it was as boy. So much so that it took but a while to get my head around having a girl once she was here. In fact 9 months in, I'm not sure I really see her as a girl. I just see her as herself! Nine month olds don't seem to have massive gender tendencies.....she's developmentally similar to all her pals, regardless of gender!

When she was born, my Mum said "are you really pleased she's a girl" quietly and privately as if it was something that was ok to admit. I have to say that all I could think was "this is my child, the gender doesn't matter" and OP, that's from someone who spent day 3 crying over the Moses basket promising her I'd do my best to learn to love her. The reality of having a baby after trying for so long took a while to come to terms with. I certainly didn't get the initial rush of love. In fact, the first time I remember really feeling that very consciously, she was three weeks old.

Now I wouldn't change a bit of her (although I'd be marginally happier if she hadn't burped an entire feed over my duvet at 6.30 this morning for the first time in her life!). She's a great person.

Being aware is the first step OP. Don't be scared of your feelings, just work with them. And congratulations and the very very best of luck.

DontEvenThinkAboutIt Sun 03-Feb-13 20:04:42

I think it is ok to feel dissapointed (for a bit) but I can assure you that whoever you get you will be delighted. There is no need to try and rationalise your feelings. You always wanted a girl and you are a little worried that you will be dissapointed if you don't have a girl...it is hardly crime of the century....

It is fantastic that you are having a baby, congratulations. smile. Hope you enjoy every moment.

marriedinwhite Sun 03-Feb-13 20:00:02

My dd was my 5th pg. I had two late first trimester mcs and our second son was born at 27 weeks with severe congenital heart diseases. He lived for a few hours. All those lost pgs, incl ds1 were boys. I only wanted a boy during that last pg; we didn't know the sex of the baby and I dreaded having a girl. The moment dd was handed to me I couldn't believe the miracle of her birth (quick and easy and full term), her 9.5 apgar score of pink healthiness, the very essence of her being and her survival. Take it as it comes OP.

And looking at dd (14.5) who I convinced myself was a boy to replace all my boys, wrapped in three feet of blonde hair and still in her jamas with two bits of homework to do all will be well. Honest. Just wait till the scrap or bouncing bundle is in your arms.

Not sure this clear scanning lark is all that helpful really although we could have known with both ours (14 and 18) but chose not to - it makes for a very special moment at the birth. Remembers midwife saying is exasperation "well what do you think it is; can you see anything dangling, because I can't".

exoticfruits Sun 03-Feb-13 19:47:31

As a mother of boys I would say that they are very loving and cuddly!

Seenenoughtoknow Sun 03-Feb-13 19:26:09

The lovely thing about babies is that they are cuddly little bundles of love for such a long time and gender doesn't really play a part until much later. I thought my first was going to be a boy (just a feeling) but she was a lovely little girl, and I thought my second would be a girl (just a feeling again - so wrong!) and he is a gorgeous little boy. He is cuddled up asleep on me now and is such a loving, playful little thing. Whatever you have, you will just be so surprised by how much love you feel that you will forget what you wanted, and be more than happy with what you have been given. smile

nametakenagain Sun 03-Feb-13 19:24:10

Don't worry about it, either way I'm sure you'll be delighted. If it helps at all, I thought I woudn't know what to do with a boy, but he's been the joy of my life.

exoticfruits Sun 03-Feb-13 19:12:51

It is probably time for my favourite poem

On Children
Kahlil Gibran

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

Far too many people think they can have free rein to plan lives. If it isn't gender they have planned a brilliant academic career when the DC may want to be a potter or a landscape gardener. Or they think that because they are an atheist/Christian/Buddhist etc their DC will follow or they only have to give them a vegetarian diet from birth to produce a vegetarian for life or because they like sport they will produce a DC who is interested in sport and actually wants to play!
One of the most enlightening threads on MN was a woman whose husband loved sailing, and weekends revolved around going to stay in a caravan by the sea when the DCs wanted to be at home. I thought it sounded lovely but the thread was full of resentful posters who had been made to follow their parent's interests.
You have to respond to the DC that you have and not the one of your imagination. Maybe some counselling to overcome it would be a good idea. You may only have one chance, but I have had 3 chances and all boys- and if I were to have another I still have only a 50% chance of a girl. If I were to bet on it then it would be 4 boys.

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