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AIBU to think the reason some NHS trusts dont let you know the sex...

(136 Posts)
SloanyPony Mon 20-Sep-10 18:59:29 nothing to do with that old chestnut that "some cultures will act on the information" (i.e have a termination if its the "wrong" sex)

And that this explanation was something designed by someone not very nice to incite racial hatred, or at best a cultural generalisation gone wrong that has somehow become "fact".

Regardless of culture/religion, surely if a person has a preference for a baby of a particular sex, they would find out earlier - or in any event, would pay privately? Seriously if its that important to you that you would terminate a pregnancy over it, surely you can find £70 for a gender scan?

Does anyone actually know? Anyone worked for a hospital and seen it in writing in a policy? Anyone got anything concrete other than anecdotal whispers that this is the reason?

Because it seems more likely to me that the reson some trusts do not tell is because they dont have time to prat about if the baby is in the wrong position, trying to find a willy or lack of one. Its an anomaly scan, nothing else, and that's what you get.

There must be someone on Mumsnet who has a really good retort for people who spout this as the reason they are not "allowed" to find out the sex - "its all their fault" bollix. Help me out, as I'm sick of hearing it. (Unless I am really wrong, I stand corrected if so)

And if I'm wrong and that is actually the reason, feel free to tell me AIBU but preferably give me more than some anecdotal evidence.

I'm not starting this thread to cause a ruck by the way, this is something that's always made my teeth itch but I've never had anything "official" enough to put a stop to the notion and I'd like to.


prozacfairy Mon 20-Sep-10 19:05:32

My local hospital had a sign up stating that the scan was for monitoring baby and it's health and development, not for finding out the sex. The sonographers refused to tell us the sex, not that I was bothered I love surprises like that!

They never mentioned whether it was for religous/cultural reasons but it widely assumed round here that that is the case due to the large Asian Muslim community. Most Muslims I know don't give a toss either way and the ones that would prefer a boy I doubt would terminate a baby for being a girl.

moogster1a Mon 20-Sep-10 19:06:26

There's not much'pratting about" to find a willy or not. It's there or it isn't. Probably adds 3 seconds to the scan to find it, so there is a reason they won't say other than time.

luciemule Mon 20-Sep-10 19:06:58

I've always wondered this too. The first hospital where I had dd wouldn't tell and everyone said it was because of the above yet, the area where that hospital was is not in an area with a very high % of non-white brits (think I'm being pc saying it like that?).

The hospital where I had DS did tell us and the opposite is true for ethnic minority % there.

I wonder if it has more to do with them not wanting to be sued if they say it's one sex and it turns out to be the other?

lal123 Mon 20-Sep-10 19:07:47

It's also to stop the situation where hospitals could get sued if they get it wrong and the parents have spent a fortune on blue/pink stuff

MumInBeds Mon 20-Sep-10 19:07:55

If they don't tell you the sex then it is one less thing they could (potentially) sued for if it was incorrect. I've always thought that to be a major reason.

juneybean Mon 20-Sep-10 19:08:30

Our trust had to stop telling people because they were often wrong.

I think they do tell you now though.

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 20-Sep-10 19:08:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

worldgonemad72 Mon 20-Sep-10 19:09:06

Ive always thought it was because of people sueing them if they got it wrong? they do tell at my local hospital but dont guarantee it.

Rockbird Mon 20-Sep-10 19:10:30

I've always assumed it was the suing thing. We were told but she kept repeating that we weren't to make any big purchases or do anything drastic based on the information.

BellaBearisWideAwake Mon 20-Sep-10 19:10:40

The anecdotal gossip round here was that someone responsible in the NHS trust was married to the person who ran the private clinic where people would go to when they couldn't find out on the NHS! grin

taintedpaint Mon 20-Sep-10 19:10:56

In my PCT it's a bit hit and miss. A friend had a DD nine months before my niece was born, said friend was told to pay because the NHS tech was not allowed to tell her the gender (she needed to know, but the reason wasn't cultural), my niece's mum was told right away it was a girl when she asked. They are under the same PCT, had scans at the same hospital and gave birth at the same hospital.

I've always heard the cultural reason given, but I've never seen it officially written. Don't know the reason otherwise, though I'm not sure I buy the idea of it being time contraints.

5Foot5 Mon 20-Sep-10 19:11:48

Actually the reason we were given was that if they tell parents that it is one sex or another then most likely the parents will start to preapre themselves, both mentally and materially, for a child of that sex. E.g. thinking of names, imaginging themselves with a child of that sex and maybe buying clothes etc. in a specific colour.

But then if it turns out that the sonographer got it wrong the parents might feel a bit let down and aggrieved.

LaRochelle Mon 20-Sep-10 19:13:15

I have heard variously:
- cultural
- can make appointments take longer
- suing

Haven't heard BellaBear's one!

LittleMissHissyFit Mon 20-Sep-10 19:13:25

My Orthodontist's assistant couldn't find out the sex of her baby, without spending £50 at the time. They were directly told that it was because too many terminations were taking place for female children in the area she was living in.

MrsThisIsTheCadillacOfNailguns Mon 20-Sep-10 19:13:51

When I went for my 20 week scan I was the only non muslim in the waiting room,yet was asked if I wanted to know the sex.The city in question will have an ethnic majority in the next few years,and I doubt that they pick and choose whom they offer to inform of the babies sex.So if my experience is anything to go by it is indeed,'bollix'.
Not official,but HTH.

DetectivePotato Mon 20-Sep-10 19:14:32

Its to do with being sued if they get it wrong. My hospital tell you (in fact they have told me today), they give a percentage so you know it isn't definate. DS was 100% though as there was no mistaking it. Girls are harder to spot. They don't "prat about" but if you ask at the beginning and say you would like to know, they will try and have a look for you.

I have never heard of the reasons that you are giving. hmm

Ilythia Mon 20-Sep-10 19:18:09

They won't do it in case they get it wrong.
They won't tell you this because they don't want to seem incapable of telling a sex, but sometimes mistakes are made.

Marjee Mon 20-Sep-10 19:18:38

Our local hospital will tell if you want to know, we wanted to wait and have a surprise but ds wasn't being shy and it was obvious that it wasn't the umbilical cord we could see!

My friend was told she'd have to pay £50 to find out the sex of her dc at the 20 week scan at another hospital, I've never heard of that happening before. I thought the reason some hospitals won't tell the sex is because they can get it wrong and then people complain or try to sue.

gingerkirsty Mon 20-Sep-10 19:19:33

I have never ever heard of that reason, the only reason I have heard of is that people try to sue the hospital if they have been told the wrong sex, and subsequently gone out and decorated nursery/bought entire set of tasteful pink/blue baby paraphernalia etc

ivykaty44 Mon 20-Sep-10 19:20:53

Under freedom of inforamtion and data protection - you have a right to right to the trust and get them to tell you, they woudl then have to give you a wtiten reason why they coudln't tell you the sex of your unborn baby - and I doubt they would have one tbh

Rosedee Mon 20-Sep-10 19:21:06

I don't know why they don't tell you but we asked the sex and after zooming in and pointing out ds willy and balls she still said we can't 100% guarantee it so I am guessing it's in case you sue.

Anenome Mon 20-Sep-10 19:24:31

Some people can't find a tenner for school shoes...never mind 70 for a private scan...that doesn't mean they don't have a preference for which sex they have. Not condning it btw...just a reality check.

BertieBotts Mon 20-Sep-10 19:24:44

How could anybody sue when they so clearly state it is an estimate and they can only be fairly sure at best?

Firawla Mon 20-Sep-10 19:30:28

Its nothing to do with Muslims, we do not terminate babies based on sex, we are not even allowed abortions in islam at all (unless the mothers life is going to be in danger), I have heard its due to cultural reasons some boroughs dont tell you but its not about Muslims its more a south asian cultural thing not anything to do with the religion. When ive heard it people say due to hindus, so maybe it really is just made up everyone is saying it about different people, cos it definitely is not true about Muslims
Our area tells us but if it didnt i may just pay for the private scan, just cos I am curious and have less patience to wait and find out nothing to do with a gender preference

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