How best to support my Sister at 20 week scan - gender worries(15 Posts)
I have posted previously about my Sister, but the short story is she found out she was pregnant very unexpectedly, very early into a very new relationship. They aren't together now. She had her 12 week scan 2/3 weeks ago, the babies Father didn't go, he sent his Mum instead. Which i'm grateful she had someone with her but a bit angry with him because he didn't go (was scared apparently).
She has asked me to go with her to her 20 week scan (Middle of January). She's done some googling about what they will be looking for, it's not that side I'll need to support her with, she's as prepared as anyone can be for what could be found.
The part I'm worried about is finding out the gender. I know sometimes they can't always see what it is so the decision may be out of her hands. But she has said that she really wants a boy. She's terrified of having a Girl. Her Mum and Step Dad were both abusive to her growing up in many different ways (She's my adopted Sister). But she's said that she's scared of messing up a girl like her Mum did to her, at least with a boy history cant repeat itself .
What do I do if the scan shows she's having a Girl. I know she's going to be a fantastic Mum. She's an incredibly strong person, she's done so much with her life so far and I know she'll love her baby whether it's a boy or a girl. She wants to find out now because (in her words) she's got another 20 weeks to get over herself if she finds out she's having a girl. Finding out at the birth for her would take the shine and excitement away from having a new baby if she was also trying to deal with her disapointment.
Do you think this is the best way?
Were any of you dissapointed when you found out the gender of your baby?
To be harsh if the scan shows something is wrong the sex will be the least of her worries. Sometimes it helps to be a little brutal.
You can't change her view point but you can control your reaction. If it is a girl, be happy and excited about it. If you are worried and sympathetic you make her over think it. Girls are amazing and wonderful. I wanted a boy, but when I found out it was a girl I wasn't disappointed. Surprised (I'd just assumed the baby was a boy), but grateful she was healthy, normal and mine.
I think it would be after the scan (and finding out the gender) that she will need the support, when she's left alone to think about it. Perhaps you could take her window shopping and coo over all the pretty baby girl clothes?
I also think you may need to be a bit firm and tell her that she is not her mother, and history does not
need to repeat itself. You say you know she is going to be a fantastic mum, you need to tell her this, and that she will be fantastic whether the baby is a boy or a girl.
She will probably be relieved the baby is OK (touch wood) rather than the scan and finding out if she can at 20 weeks will give her time to come round to a girl if it is a girl and get support and counselling if she needs it.
I wanted a girl first baby and cried when I found out it was a boy but after a few weeks of wiggles and talking to my 'boy' and I soon came round and wouldn't change him for the world.
Support her after the scan if she needs it and if she has issues with her parents maybe she should look at support as these issues sometimes comes up when you have children or are pregnant. I am dealing with things myself after getting post natal depression she may be fine but be prepared.
Goodluck x x
Thanks for your comments. I didn't mean to sound so flippant about the whole gender thing vs problems they can detect on 20 week scans. What I meant was she's done her research and has mentally prepared herself for what 'could' be found. Not that it necessarily will I know. But I dont think there is a way for her to prepare herself for a Girl, is there? Just support when/if she needs it.
We are off for lunch after the scan and probably a bit of shopping. So excitement about girls is the way to go! Frustrated - I have told her those things. She has a lot of self confidence and self belief issues, which isn't surprising. I think just reminding her every now and again will do no harm.
She is lucky to have you looking out for her hope she gets her boy but I'm sure she will be ok with a girl and you will support her as much or as little as she needs. She seems pretty strong just a shame baby's Dad seems a bit useless!
The fact your sister is in touch with her feelings might bode well for history not repeating itself, in my very inexpert opinion. Might be something to talk over in counselling, if that's her thing. And she's got you, you sound like a lovely sister. Girls' clothes are much more fun anyway, I've got a DD and I wouldn't change a hair on her head.
And her P is scared?!?!
She is strong. Her and the Babies Father met in the summer. It was just a summer relationship, not necessarily going anywhere. One contraception failure later and they're going to be parents. Thye're both young, 20 and 21. Neither of them wanted this and they are both scared. My Sister couldn't go through with a termination and is now really excited. It's not the way she wanted it but is getting on with it. He is terrified. He cares about her, he calls and texts her. She's had horrendous hyperemesis (sp) which he's done what he can for her. But if she hadn't found out she was pregnant they wouldn't be in contact I dont think.
History wont repeat itself. We know that. She is loving and thoughtful. Her parents were cold and spiteful. Complete opposites.
Can anyone reccomend any counselling services that would be a good start?
She could ask her MW / GP about counselling. It might be worth explaining that she has general anxieties about becoming a parent due to her history, rather than focussing on the gender specifically.
I had counselling on the NHS (for depression) during a previous pregnancy, I was referred by my MW and it was very helpful indeed.
It sounds like you are a great sister. I would really recommend your sister has some counselling to address her fears - given her adoption and very traumatic experiences I would personally suggest some specialist counselling (obviously only if she wants it). Her fear over gender sounds like it could be really deep seated and shopping is unlikely to take her mind off it for long.
I would approach Norcap or similar as a counsellor would need to understand the adoption issues.
Hope she is ok.
Hi you have said she is not like her parents and that means history won't repeat itself and I think bloody determination also has a hand in this. I didn't have a great family life or close relationship with my mum and swore I would never treat my kids in the same way and guess what I don't because I know what it feels like to be treated that way. I did worry in my pregnancy that I would lose my temper and shout and lash out or get depressed and not care for the baby. Guess what, it never happened, My son is 4 and is not smacked, shouted at or made to feel stupid in any way and he is the most fantastic happy boy that I promised myself I would have. I think you may find out if she's having a girl it will actually come as a shock initially but then that determination to be the best mum will kick in and it could be a new time of healing for your sister. Don't worry until you know but probably plant these ideas in her head before the actual scan. As for the relationship issue it's tough but not a problem as when she sees her newborn baby and the joy you get it wipes out everything else. Good luck Hun, keep us posted.
I would persuade her not to find out the gender. That way she doesn't have to spend 4 months worrying about what kind of mother she will be to a girl (if indeed it is a girl). As most of us know, once we meet our babies, all those anxieties tend to disappear.
I personally think she should find out if she can I was so upset last time after finding he was a boy having a few months to come round really helped me but if I had found out after my 4 days of exhausting labour I don't know how I would have coped. This was just me though everyone is different.
I couldn't be happier with my boy and hoped the next one would be a boy again although we are having a girl I am sure your sister will be great whatever she has but do think counselling could be a good option becoming a parent raises a lot if issues about your own childhood x x
I think she'll be fine. I was in a similar situation with my first, 20, accidental pregnancy, useless father. I found out the sex at 20 week scan because I too felt I would be devastated if it was a girl and would need time to adjust. She was a girl, and I was really surprised that as soon as the sonographer announced it I grinned. I thought I'd embarrass myself by crying but I didn't care half as much as I thought I would. Ask your sister if she feels like she's bonded with the baby already (some don't til they are born) if she is excited she probably has. If she's already fallen in love with it she won't care a bit.
Now I'm older and pg with my second, and although again in desperate for a boy, I won't be finding out the sex this tube because I know I won't be disappointed with a girl at the birth.
I asked to find out the sex, as I also didn't really want a girl as my first, my thinking is that the sooner I could find out the more time i could come to terms with it.
As it turned out the sonographer was only 70% sure so its a wait and see event now , but having had the time to get my head round it i feel a lot better than if I hadn't asked at all and worried myself sick.
I think having you with her, supporting her and giving her a sounding board for all her concerns is the best thing you can be doing for her.
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