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Parents Get Real About Disappointment Over Their Child's Gender

Any parent will tell you that they love their kids unreservedly.

But that doesn't mean that there can't be a few disappointments amid the good feelings that surround a new baby.

Lots of parents want a girl and get a boy, or vice versa. It doesn't mean they won't love their kid when they arrive, but it is a reality for many parents. It's also one that's hard to talk about.

A Reddit thread went in-depth on this.

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A post on r/BabyBumps (a subreddit devoted to pregnancy) had a pointed request: Give me your stories of gender disappointment!.

OP kicked things off with a story of having their second kid. They already had a boy, and were disappointed when a test revealed that their second would also be a boy.

"I so, so wish I could be shopping for girl clothes."

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Lots of parents want to have a boy and a girl, for symmetry's sake if nothing else.

"I don't know what this means for me ever having a daughter," wrote OP. I'm unsure if I want to try for a girl with a third baby, given the chance of me having a THIRD boy is over half."

Others did indeed chime in to share their own stories of gender disappointment.

"Soooo of course we're having a girl."

"I'm not going to lie, the gender disappointment hit HARD," wrote another commenter. "The common 'baby girl' aesthetic isn't to my taste at all. But what helped me was doing things to make the baby feel more 'real'. While I might prefer Theoretical Boy Baby A over Theoretical Girl Baby B, deep down I know that I'll prefer my baby over any theoretical infants."

"Are you me? I went through (am going through still somewhat) the exact same thing."

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Other posters empathized: "I definitely felt more comfortable having a boy. I'll love her just the same, but I still catch myself being envious of others who are having boys from time to time."

"I already have a girl so I feel EXTREMELY uncomfortable confessing that I might be disappointed if this one is a boy."

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This Redditor is on the edge of their seat because they don't know their baby's gender yet.

"We find out in another six weeks or so and I'm going to go crazy waiting," they wrote. "I just want to be able to imagine my family. And if I'm honest, I'm already imagining it with two girls and I'm desperately afraid that vision is going to have to disappear."

'I have ALWAYS wanted a girl."

Another commenter related their history of growing up with women, with no men in the picture.

"I'm so scared of having a boy because I know NOTHING about boys," they wrote. "But I know that if I'm going to raise a boy, at least I have the best partner in the world to do it."

"I have one boy and really wanted #2 to be a boy, too."

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This commenter wanted a pair of boys and is still dealing with the disappointment.

"So, basically, I'm still not over it," they explained. "But I know it's not normal, and I know there is a chance my girl could be just as much a tomboy as I was. Or maybe parenting hormones will make me super psyched at having a future cheerleader. Who knows."

"We found out at our 12 week scan that we're having a girl."

This sounds pretty normal, but hubby's reaction might have been a bit much, even if he did come around eventually:

"Husband was so upset - he did not say a word for 2 hours. He's come around, and is always talking to his 'little princess' in my tummy."

"Before I got pregnant I dreamed of having a little girl first."

This commenter has a different story: they wanted a girl, then when she got pregnant, assumed it would be a boy.

"Anyway, I'm having a girl," she wrote. "When we found out at 24 weeks, we were SHOCKED. We haven't come up with a name yet because all the names are boys' names, but I know I'm going to love this baby so much that I'll laugh at myself for caring at all."

"I wanted a girl, thought I was having a girl, but am having a boy."

This Redditor struggled with the news a bit, then got over it.

"After talking with my husband and going over why I wanted a girl over a boy, I was able to work it out emotionally to feel better, and am now completely excited for our boy and I feel better able to accept any gender for future siblings."

"With my first pregnancy I REALLY wanted a boy."

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"When I found out I was having a girl, I was gutted," they wrote. "I actually cried about it for a few days. [But] every day knowing about my daughter and fantasizing about who she could be made it hurt a little less. By the time she was born, the sting of disappointment was long gone."

"We're having a boy."

"I'll be honest, I'm afraid I won't know how to parent a boy," this commenter admits. "The thing I keep telling myself is, these children aren't ... mine. They will be different and distinct from me all their lives."

What if doctors get things wrong?

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Another poster linked to a thread detailing how DNA testing can get the gender wrong. This is a different kind of gender dilemma.

"I was upset when I found out we were having a girl."

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Another commenter slowly worked through their disappointment and was able to get excited again.

"At 28 weeks those disappointment feelings are further away," they wrote. "I also hear people tell me they wish they were having girls instead of boys, and it puts it in perspective."

A parent's love is unconditional.

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All of these stories are unique, but one common thread is that the anxiety and worry about a baby's gender largely melts away when the baby is born.

Just don't be like this guy and you'll be good.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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