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Very upset at girl instead of boy.. please help me see sense

94 replies

Dad2be111 · 07/10/2015 15:53

First pregnancy and we just found today it's going to be a girl. I'm so blessed that she's going to be healthy and that is amazing news. We're also so lucky to be having a child. I'm sensitive to the fact that so many people want healthy children but can't have them. For this I'm truly humbled and thankful and embarrassed to be making this post. BUT for some reason (and TOTALLY a surprise to me) I was (and still am) hit very hard emotionally that it's going to be a girl.

It breaks my heart that I feel like this - I really don't want to! - and that it's upsetting my poor lovely wife (understandable the stupid way I'm reacting) but I really can't help it; it's like a torrent of utter sadness that is drowning me. The exciting spark of the pregnancy for me has gone. I've zero interest in the scan pics, in getting the room ready, in anything at all> so different to what I've been like so far :(

Trying to unpick why it is I feel like this I can only think that it's because as a boy I suppose I just imagine a little me or any child related to me to be a boy. Rationally of course I always knew it'd be 49:51 but deep down I think this didn't register. I was hoping he'd play rugby for my country or football for my town (silly I know). Perhaps as I was several years older than my brother and really miss playing with him as a baby/child and teaching him the ropes of growing up I thought I could do the same. Or perhaps as I went to a boys' school and then at uni dated girls who inevitably broke my heart sequentially so I can't relate to girls (don't have a sister). I relate very well to males indeed but not women (although I love my wife and mum - no other women though). I just don't know what it is but I always imagined having a boy and NOT having a boy is a kick in the teeth. But furthermore having a little female human who I just don't understand is so disappointing. Plus the fear that a boy's life will be easy but if a girl isn't good looking in this society life is so much harder. (I'm not a looker myself so can't guarantee she will be). But I may of course be wrong with this.

My wife tells me I can still play footy with her but it's not the same - that just makes it so much worse for me. The last thing I'd want is to force boyhood on the poor girl just because I wanted a boy. Of course I won't restrict what she does but I don't want to be forcing things onto the poor little cutie.

It's really crushing me and I hope I'll change but I'm hoping someone can say something to make me feel better please :( I hate that this is upsetting my lovely wife and she can see it no matter how hard I try to hide it :(

OP posts:
Florriesma · 07/10/2015 16:02

I have 3 ds. 3 of them are shit at footy. Not even getting in the school team!
The thing is while we all have daydreams of how our dc will be they are little independent people from day 1, try to let go of the daydreams (that's all they are) and just let your dc be. You will find the similarities of either see come out in surprising ways. Especially when you see your own annoying traits reflected back at you! Congratulations and good luck.

KittyandTeal · 07/10/2015 16:05

Gender disappointment is a real thing.

Once the baby arrives it's not really a 'boy' or a 'girl' it's just a baby and you being it up best you can.

My dh was a little disappointed when we found out dd2 was a girl. We then lost her at 22 weeks. He now doesn't care what sex our next one is if we managed to have dc3.

Things are quite removed for dads. I'm absolutely sure you will feel different when your little girl arrives. Try not to be too hard on yourself though, it's a case of reimagining your future

SoupDragon · 07/10/2015 16:06

Honestly, you will fall in love with her once she is here. :)

In your head you had a picture of what fatherhood would be. You imagined your child. The scan has ruined that particular picture but opened up a whole new one and you have plenty of time to get used to that new picture of fatherhood before she is here.

I've been through the whole gender disappointment thing - once when I was disappointed DS2 was another DS and then when DD wasn't a DS and ruined my boy gang". Confused needless to say I over them all the same (although not necessarily all at the same time...)

SoupDragon · 07/10/2015 16:06

Love them all the same. Not over.

Whatevva · 07/10/2015 16:09

She will be a baby.

When she is born, cuddle her, kiss her, sing to her, change her nappy and make her laugh. She will love you and her eyes will light up when she sees you.

itmustbeglove · 07/10/2015 16:09

I imagined two little girls; Boden velvet pinafores, fairy wings, Enid Blyton & glitter.
I got two boisterous, strapping lads who spend much of their early years scrapping with each other and trashing the house.
But I wouldn't change them for the world and when your DD arrives you'll forget any disappointment and be bowled over. She won't be a boy or a girl, she'll be herself and you'll adore her.

HerRoyalNotness · 07/10/2015 16:09

Treat your precious DD as you would a DS. Your input with the things your wife suggests will help your DD grow up to be a well rounded, interesting, educated, open minded, outgoing person. ALL far more important than looks.

FattyNinjaOwl · 07/10/2015 16:10

"(I'm not a looker myself so can't guarantee she will be)."

Hmm are you really saying you would look at your own daughter and not think she is beautiful? Every child is beautiful. And if you was to say something like that in ear shot of her when she's older you would crush her self esteem.

Apart from that you have to accept that even had you had a bit, he may have been feminine. And why can't your daughter play football or rugby? My DD loves dinosaurs and sharks and rugby. She plays "kick ball" at the park, and rough and tumbles with her brother who is 5 years older than her. They aren't all sparkly little princesses you know.

mudandmayhem01 · 07/10/2015 16:13

Fun stuff I have done with my ds and DD recently; baked cakes, taken to athletics competions, helped learn some German vocab, gone for a head torch run in the dark, played tag rugby. I am not going to tell you which I did with the boy or girl or with both because guess what it doesn't matter. I do agree it is easier to imagine a child as a miniature version of yourself but my sons personality is much more similar to mine than my daughters. Also being cute does not have any relevance to how much you might love or loathe football.

Preminstreltension · 07/10/2015 16:14

My BIL felt like this and once his little girl arrived he got it. His words were "Now she's here, she couldn't be anyone else". I love that. They are now devoted to each other (she's 7).

You sound a bit afraid of women and you should probably work on that (!) but this won't be any woman - this will be your little girl. That's a whole different thing.

I get where you are coming from. My family is full of women - only sisters, only female cousins, only girls' schools, grew up without a dad. I'm a single parent.... And I had a boy. I wondered how on earth I would relate to him - after all I knew nothing about boys. How ridiculous I was - this one is my little boy and that's a whole different thing. I don't need to understand the whole male species - I just need to know and love this one and I do.

It may take you time but you will get there.

keely79 · 07/10/2015 16:14

I think if you'd asked by DH before DD was born, he would have secretly much preferred a boy (we didn't find out pre-birth) - he is very much a "man's man" - rugby, went to all boys school, no close female friends (apart from me) etc. However, when she arrived he fell head over heels/crazy in love with her, to the extent that when DS turned up 2 years later, he was actually surprised that a baby could be a boy as he could only imagine girl babies! And now, DD and her father have an amazing relationship where he has a discovered a world of pink and princesses, and in turn has been enjoying introducing her to lego, and star wars and to astronomy. She's a complete Daddy's girl, and I barely get a look in some days (but have my gorgeous squishy DS to keep me distracted).

In short - you will find a way to relate to your DD and once she's here, you'll look back and wonder how on earth you could have thought having a boy would be better......

gamerchick · 07/10/2015 16:20

You will find your way OP. The picture you had in your head wouldn't have been the reality anyway, it rarely is. You may not believe me but it's true.

You have (I assume) a healthy, uneventful pregnancy going on, just concentrate on that and let the rest take care of itself.. There's few men who will still care once they clap eyes on their newborn. Good luck.

Radegund · 07/10/2015 16:22

I'm sorry that things are so hard at the moment. It sounds good that you are acknowledging these feelings now, it must have been really tempting to try and ignore them. Previous posters have already made excellent points. As they've said, our children are always going to be their own people, whatever their gender. If your child had been a boy, he might have hated sport...And you might feel you don't relate to 'women' (other than your wife and mum) but that doesn't mean you won't have a brilliant opportunity to love and understand your individual daughter. I'm sure you're not alone in feeling like this-are there any friends in real life you could talk to?

BikeRunSki · 07/10/2015 16:26

I have 2 children, a boy and a girl, 7 and 4 (next week anyway). I rarely think of them as a boy and a girl. I think of them as who they are; people with their own interests, personalities, strengths and weaknesses. They each have elements of me, elements of DH and elements of themselves that make us wonder where that came from! They have both challenged traditional gender stereotypes in their own ways. That is them. We try to expose them to all sorts of experiences and help them pursue their own interests. I am a female civil engineer in a very male dominated field - maybe this means I don't hold with gender stereotypes anyway.

Please try to work through your gender dissapointment and don't let it influence your relationships with your wife and baby when she arrives. They are your family and love you for being you. You need to love your daughter for being her - she will achieve great things. You do rightly recognise that you are fortunate to be expecting a healthy baby. It was only after my first child was born that I realise how common miscarriage, stillbirth, infertility and infant illness is; embrace what you have!

NameChange30 · 07/10/2015 16:27

If you did have a son I'd feel sorry for him with you expecting him to be in the England rugby team!!

In all seriousness, though, you need to challenge those assumptions about things being "for boys" or "for girls" before your child is born. Children are people with a whole range of characteristics and interests. Your daughter might be a tomboy or "girly" girl or a million things in between.

"Plus the fear that a boy's life will be easy but if a girl isn't good looking in this society life is so much harder."
Actually, life can be harder for girls and women whether they're good looking or not. Read up on sexism and feminism if you'd like to educate yourself. And don't forget - life can be hard for boys too. What about boys who don't fit into the mould their fathers (and/or society) create for them? The gentle boys who don't like sport? The gay boys who get bullied?

charlh929 · 07/10/2015 16:28

Lots of people feel like this. There are several forums/websites online dedicated to gender disappointment. I experienced similar feelings when I found out my baby was a boy (I longed for a girl & my partner did too), I felt awful for feeling his way but I couldn't help it, there was a part of me that was a little disappointed. I never told anyone else my feelings and kept all the negative thoughts to myself (in hindsight, this was probably the worst thing to do). I sort of drifted through the rest of the pregnancy, until the day my DS was born, it was then I overcame all my feelings when I held him in my arms, he was mine, he was perfect and he still is. He's 5 months now and I couldn't wish for a better baby, I adore him. I was worried I wouldn't bond with him at first but I have had no issues whatsoever. Yes part of me deep down would still love a little girl, but my DS is my world and I wouldn't change a single thing about him. Trust me when you meet your baby, you become so overwhelmed with emotion that the fact she's a girl will be insignificant Smile

dementedma · 07/10/2015 16:28

I wanted a son. I saw him as wiry, dark haired, into rugby and sport, full of energy. Had two DDS. Then an 11 year gap later, a very unexpected son came along. He is blondish, built like a tank, hates sport and has about as much energy as a sloth on sedatives. Wouldn't swap him. It does take adjusting to expectations but you will love your daughter just as much as you would have loved a son.

SuburbanRhonda · 07/10/2015 16:29

What a lovely lot you all are! I'm afraid the OP lost me at "poor little cutie" Hmm

Hoplikeabunny · 07/10/2015 16:38

I totally sympathise, I was embarrassingly upset when I found out I was having a boy. I am very girly, I have no idea about sport and 'boy stuff!' I pictured smocked dresses, ballet and baking.

However, my DS is not far off 3yo now, and I cannot imagine wanting anything else. I can't even identify with the feelings that I know that I had when we found out he was a boy. He's so unbelievably perfect that I have almost convinced myself that I can never have another child, because I think I can never love another child as much as I love this one! (I have been told this is rubbish, but it's just how I feel at the moment!)

My DS is a typical boy in that he is mad, full of energy, climbs on everything and eats for England- a proper little boy which is what I feared the most! But I wouldn't change him for anything, he's absolutely perfect. That said, he has lots of girl friends who are exactly the same, so your DD may play football for England, you never know!

My point is, when you meet her, you will fall in love with her and you wont want anything else. You made her! She'll be perfect! I absolutely promise you that Smile

derxa · 07/10/2015 16:39

I imagined two little girls; Boden velvet pinafores, fairy wings, Enid Blyton & glitter.
I got two boisterous, strapping lads who spend much of their early years scrapping with each other and trashing the house.
Grin What a lovely post and I'm not being sarcastic.
Seriously never let your daughter know how you feel. My parents did and it hurt a lot. I spent my whole childhood trying to make up for their disappointment at not being a boy who would inherit the farm. My brother appeared later. I have now inherited the farm because my brother died young.

Thebirdsneedseeds · 07/10/2015 16:44

OP lost me at the thread title. It's his first child - not his third and final chance for a son FFS. I commented on another gender disappointment thread recently and I'll say the same here.

A baby is a baby. You're bloody lucky. And she looks healthy... You are very bloody lucky.

I know you can't help your feelings and I'm not bashing but you do have a rational part of your brain so start using it. Every time you want to cry over the fact that your daughter won't have the chance to go on a boys-only rugby tour, tell yourself to get a bloody grip. She could easily play for your country in any sport she wants. She will be amazing. You know it so start telling yourself this and hopefully it will stick.

And get yourself into that nursery and start putting up decorations. Doesn't have to be pink flowery fairies. It could be jungle animals, owls, space rockets, whatever.

Thurlow · 07/10/2015 16:53

I think most people have an idea in their head of what their future life will be like, and that often includes their children. It's an irrational daydream because you know you have no say over what children you will have and who they will become - but it's still easy to have that idea.

I was going to have three strapping rugby playing lads who all towered over me Grin

When we found out we were having a girl, I was disappointed. I'd just never imagined having a daughter. But now we have her, she's amazing, and next time around I can't imagine ever having a son.

Gender disappointment is surprisingly common, so don't feel bad for feeling it. However, what matters now is how you try to manage these feelings.

One thing I would say, like other posters, is that your personal interpretation of what a girl is like and what life will be like for a girl is... can I say disappointing? Because it is.

Your child will be their own person, regardless of whether they are a girl or a boy, and regardless of your hopes and aspirations for them.

What you need to do is move from picturing what your idealised child will be like, and move to wondering what this new, exciting, unique person might be like.

roundaboutthetown · 07/10/2015 16:56

Why would you not understand your dd? She won't be like any of your failed girlfriends, she'll be half your genes, all primed to love you, look up to you and think all men should be like you. She will want to share things with you and do things with you, not be made to feel that little girls are an alien species who have nothing in common with boys and men. I think you're in shock. When confronted by your tiny baby who needs your love and care, you will probably feel differently. You won't be turning your little girl into a boy if you share your interests with her, just broadening her horizons. Football is fun to play. Lego is fun. Playing with your dad is fun.

roundaboutthetown · 07/10/2015 17:08

What's more, having a fixed idea of how you would relate to a son could be problematic if you had a son who was nothing like the son you were planning for! It isn't uncommon for fathers to have strained relationships with sons who don't enjoy doing the things "boys are supposed to do." Maybe you are lucky that your first baby is a girl, because it will teach you to take your cues from your child, rather than have fixed expectations of what a boy or a girl should be like.

MissMarpleCat · 07/10/2015 17:25

My eldest dd is brilliant at sports, especially football and boxing. My ds hates sports, doesn't support a foitball team but is a brilliant artist and loves literature. Stop having such fixed ideas about gender.

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