finding out the gender vs. waiting till the end - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 25 Old 06-26-2012, 03:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I found out what I was having with both previous pregnancies and am now trying to decide what to do this time around. I'm actually very stressed about this lately and need some opinions. mecry.gif

 

I have 2 girls and desperately want a boy this time. I have a stepson who is a wonderful little boy, but of course no matter what I think or do, he is not mine and displays many characteristics of his mother and her environment. This has really added to my longing for my own son. I actually wanted a boy so badly the 2nd go around that I cried the whole way home from the ultrasound. I did come around eventually, and by the time of the birth of my beautiful daughter I was fully prepared and delighted to meet her.

 

But this time I feel even more sensitive and stressed (I get emotional just thinking about it) and I've insisted to my husband that I do NOT want to find out this time. My reasoning: when I go through labor and hold my baby for the first time, my mama instincts are going to be so kicked in that any disappointment I might have will vanish pretty quickly. I love my children fiercely, and there's no possible way I'm going to dislike my child. Yes, I might be disappointed, and I might even cry a little, but it's not gonna last long at all. On the other hand, iIf I find out and am disappointed now, I'm going to be so distraught and depressed for the next few months, I don't know how I'm going to bear it! He, along with several of my friends, disagrees and thinks I should find out now and prepare myself for the fact months in advance.

 

I'm currently 18 weeks, so I'm nearing my 20 week ultrasound frighteningly fast. I nearly caved into the idea of finding out, but my best friend just birthed her first girl (after two boys) and for some reason this just threw me upside down again and I've been a sobbing mess again.

 

What do you think, should I find out now and start preparing myself, or wait for the surprise at the end?

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#2 of 25 Old 06-26-2012, 05:35 PM
 
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I can't offer you any advice because this is a really personal decision and depends on a lot of factors, but one reason I decided not to find out the sex was because I really wanted a boy and I didn't want to spend my entire pregnancy disappointed and upset.  I have a feeling, like you, that once the baby is placed in my arms after birth, I'll love him or her regardless of sex.  Other women I know who have strong preferences on sex have gone the other direction however, because they were concerned about post-partum depression and how difficult bonding might be.  It really depends on the person.  For me, at least, I have no regrets.  Not knowing this whole time has allowed me to come to terms with some uncertainty and I think no matter what I find out next month, I'll be ecstatic to hold my new little one.  But my preferences may not be quite as strong as yours.  I think if you feel strongly about not finding out and are pretty sure you'll be able to bond (having gone through it before), I would trust your gut.


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#3 of 25 Old 06-26-2012, 05:47 PM
 
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I wanted a boy and did find out so I would know. I was a little down at first when I found out at 20 weeks(girl) but it's so hard to feel a little kick and wish her someone she isn't. It was like wishing it wasn't her! 


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#4 of 25 Old 06-26-2012, 05:53 PM
 
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I agree with LilyTiger, it's such an individual thing. I was planning to fInd out anyway but I particularly wanted to find out this time because I also had a strong gender preference and, for me, I felt it would be better to have time to prepare. I didn't have that instant overwhelming feeling when my LO was born so I wanted time to prepare. I also thought that I could potentially spend the whole pregnancy worrying and then end up having the gender I wanted in the first place which seemed like a waste.

So we found out and it looks like we are having a girl, which is what I was hoping for, and I can just relax and enjoy now (apart from the tiny part of me that worries the sonographer got it wrong but that's just me :-). )

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#5 of 25 Old 06-26-2012, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am a little worried I'm going to regret not finding out. I've thought of having the sonographer put the results in a little envelope, and if I change my mind later I can open it. But then I'm afraid I'll cave into pressure to open it. :( I'm already under a lot of pressure to find out, because that's what most of the people in my circles have done and they can't seem to imagine anything else.

 

ugh, decisions!

 

katelove, I wondered if the sonographer was wrong, too! I even stared at the ultrasound picture and was able to convince myself how she might have been mistaken... even though she was 100% sure it was a girl!

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#6 of 25 Old 06-27-2012, 04:25 AM
 
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I always find out with mine, and while I've never had a *strong* gender preference, if I did have one I think I would be even more inclined to want to know.  However, that is my personality.  I don't like surprises, and I like to be prepared.   If I did have a strong preference, my thinking would be that i would want to know so that if it was the gender I wanted, I could relax and rejoyce in that and if it wasn't I could adjust, think about names and start bonding anyway.

 

With the way my personality is, for me *not knowing* is *worse* than knowing "bad news" (not that a healthy baby is ever bad news, but ykwim).  I would be more stressed out by not knowing than I would be by knowing it wasn't the gender I wanted.  That is just the way my personality works .  If it was the gender I didn't want, I would probably be upset for a little bit, but then I would get over it quickly.   If I didn't know...I would just be stressed and upset that whole rest of the pregnancy.
 


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#7 of 25 Old 06-27-2012, 06:09 AM
 
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I really wanted a girl, so I'm glad I found out the sex of my baby. He was a boy, and I had a few months to get used to the idea before he was before me, wanting to nurse all the time! But I'm definitely the kind of person who would rather have "bad" news early and some time to get over it. So... I'd recommend that approach if you feel like that's how you roll.

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#8 of 25 Old 06-27-2012, 11:21 AM
 
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You know yourself best, if you think it will be easier to get over the potential disappointment when you have the baby in the delivery room, then go that route!

For me, I would want to know in advance because I would want a bit of time to work through the disappointment before birth, but I know I wouldn't agonize over it for the rest of the pregnancy. I do better with a little space and time to let it go, but I would be able to let it go after not too long. But I know others would have different reactions. I think my DH would react more like you anticipate you would, agonizing over it until the baby arrived, second guessing the U/S, etc. and then would be over it almost immediately once the baby was in his arms. Maybe have a talk with your DH and explain how you anticipate reacting, even better if you can give him some examples he's witnessed that are similar. and explain what was going on in your head I've had to do this with my DH since we react very differently to things. If you can get him to understand, fending off others (as well-meaning as they might be) will be much easier.

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#9 of 25 Old 06-28-2012, 03:02 PM
 
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I didn't find out with DS1, wanted a surpirse.  This time I wanted to try finding out, do something different.  I really really wanted a girl but alas it is a boy.  Yes I was disappointed.  Nothing wrong with being disappointed.  I do find this time around easier to bond though.  Dont know if its due to being a seasoned mom or that I found out his gender.  He is a spunky LO.  Loads more wriggly then DS1 ever was.   


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#10 of 25 Old 06-28-2012, 04:51 PM
 
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I really wanted another boy the second time around and I am so grateful I didn't know the gender until the birth. I think I would have had a hard time if I'd found out when pregnant. Instead I held my baby and fell madly in love with her instantly before I had any idea that she was a girl. By the time I looked, I couldn't have cared less.


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#11 of 25 Old 06-28-2012, 08:53 PM
 
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I really really really want a boy. I know we're probably only having one, so I wanted my son so we could continue naming him after his father (DH is IV, son would be V) and also, boys rock! Then I had this revelation that it didn't matter what it was, because once I knew, it would no longer have the possibility to be the other person. That male or female entity in my mind would be forever gone. I got depressed thinking about it.  Later then I had a dream it would be female, and that I was so excited to have another girl in the house! All our pets are male and I'm alone. By the time I went in and found out Monday, I was perfectly happy with either one. So, while I can't mention it here just yet due to family/friend stalking (we're not revealing until later), let's just say that in the end, it's healthy, and I'm very pleased with it no matter what. It's all a very personal choice! We simply had to know what to expect so we would be prepared emotionally for this new person.


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#12 of 25 Old 06-29-2012, 10:49 AM
 
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I think that you are at real risk for gender dissapointment and it might be emotional easier to find out now. My sister said that her DH really needed the time to grieve and come to peace before the birth of their last. He dearly wanted another boy.

 

We aren't finding out this time and our really happy with either gender. But we already have a boy and a girl and to quote DH, "it doesn't really matter."

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#13 of 25 Old 07-05-2012, 09:52 PM
 
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I can't tell you what you should do, but for me, I had an intensely strong gender preference for a girl the first time around and we found out because I knew that I would need the time to adjust before baby was here.  As it turned out, it was a girl so I got to be really happy all pregnancy long.  Had it been a boy, I would have been ready when he came, but if I found out when the baby was born, I think I might have had some real disappointment and I didn't want that to affect bonding at all.

 

For my second, I didn't really have a strong preference, but we couldn't resist so we found out.  It's another girl and I couldn't be happier.  I'm pretty sure I would have felt the same if it were a boy though. 


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#14 of 25 Old 07-07-2012, 06:43 AM
 
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I've never found out beforehand because I'm an ultrasound refuser. I've become fond of the mystery, even as I'm pregnant with an unknown # of babies, measuring 12 weeks ahead. So I guess it's become as much a philosophy of anticipation as well as a health concern. God put the perfect baby(s) in there and I only have 14+ weeks to find out!

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#15 of 25 Old 07-07-2012, 07:42 AM
 
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i have never found out the sex before hand. ive never wanted to know, i love the surprise.  and ive known waaaaaay too many people IRL and online that were told one gender and got the other.  
 


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#16 of 25 Old 07-08-2012, 08:43 PM
 
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I'm one of those people who would rather be disappointed and have time to get excited about it again rather than be disappointed in the delivery, so we find out. I didnt care with DD, so we didnt find out. I really wanted a boy with Charlie, so we found out. This time DH didnt want to know but I did so I decided I would find out and not tell. Now we are have twins, and he wants to find out too. We both really want a boy but Im thinking its two girls in there.

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#17 of 25 Old 07-09-2012, 12:04 PM
 
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I have dealt with really rough gender disappointment and so my advice is colored by that.  I struggled with it throughout my entire pregnancy after finding out at 15 weeks and having confirmation again at 19 weeks.  I felt a lot of guilt on top of that, too.  However, when I held my baby in my arms after a great birth experience, all the disappointment was washed away.  Now I did see a baby of the gender I'd hoped for from time to time and feel a longing (and I'm hoping to get that gender with this pregnancy).  But I was totally in love with my newborn and didn't even struggle with the baby blues.  I wish now that I had not found out - I think that feeling of love at birth would have kept me from a lot of what I felt.  So that's my perspective.

 

I'm pregnant now and I really want to stay on Team Green but my DH is adamant about finding out.  I've seriously considered letting him find out (via envelope w/ gender pic) and me just not knowing, but I think it would drive me crazy.  However, I really think this would be best.

 

Some moms can feel a little disappointed and quickly get over it.  It's true that you'll love your baby and your baby will be wonderful, boy or girl.  Like I said, I fell head over heels in love with my baby the minute we touched ;)  But I still wish I could go back and erase those months of being disappointed and the stress and emotion it brought my precious babe in the womb. 

 

So that's my very frank, honest opinion on it. 

 

The one thing that did help was that we found out, but told nobody else.  It helped not to deal with others' comments.  We won't tell anybody with this baby either, regardless of gender, if I find out.


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#18 of 25 Old 07-15-2012, 09:22 AM
 
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I worried a lot during my first pregnancy because i wanted a girl very badly.  We chose not to find out and I'm glad because when my BOY came into the world, I was just in bliss at this person, this human being who needed me and who I loved.  I know that for me, had I found out while pregnant, I would have been focusing on the disappointment of having a boy.  Wheras, finding out when we met, it really didn't matter.  Now if I have another boy I know I will feel the same.  It doesn't mean I won't grieve, but the grief won't be connected to my sons directly, i won't be disappointed in THEM, just in the loss of an opportunity, an experience, and a relationship I won't be able to have.


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#19 of 25 Old 07-15-2012, 09:49 AM
 
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Tough call.  On the one hand, I really wish I could have had the moment at the birth with at least one of mine finding out if it was a boy or girl (I found out with both at the 20 week ult)

 

On the other hand, I was hoping for another girl the 2nd time around, found out he was a boy, and had plenty of time to totally fall in love with the idea of having a boy by the time he was born.  Really it only took a few days :) I never wanted to have boys, and now I would love another!  I have to assume, though, that I would have fallen madly in love with him as soon as he was born anyway, KWIM? 

 

Could you maybe have the doctor make a note on your chart as to the gender so that you could find out later if you change your mind, but it is not as tempting as having a little piece of paper in your actual hands?

 

Good luck! In retrospect, I kind of wish I hadn't found out with either of them, but it is not something that I feel all that strongly about really.  Now that I have one of each, I would let it be a surprise if we had more (though we are not planning on it!)


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#20 of 25 Old 07-15-2012, 10:43 AM
 
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I'm in the camp of finding out so that you have time to cope with the results. I want to be one of those mamas who doesn't find out the sex but I'm just too curious. This time we are hoping for a girl but I'm trying not to focus on that. It would make a lot of sense to me if I was having another boy (I've always thought I've had 3 boys) but a girl would be a welcome surprise.

 

Let's also not forget that the sex of our children when they are born isn't the be all and end all of gender. Some of us might end up with a boy who wants to be a girl, a girl who wants to be a boy, or either who chooses to live somewhere in between thumb.gif.


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#21 of 25 Old 07-15-2012, 11:34 AM
 
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This is a difficult choice- both sides have a point.  I have a friend that was in your situation- two boys and dying for a girl- who chose not to find out because she thought she would be disappointed for the remainder of the pregnancy is she found out it was another boy, but knew she would be immediately in love with whatever gender baby they put into her arms.  She had her girl, so it was the surprise she wanted, but it tend to think that if you have no history of having a hard time connecting to your newborns, this might be a safe way to go for you.  It is easier for me to imagine disappointment with the abstract than with the actual little person placed into your arms.


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#22 of 25 Old 07-15-2012, 09:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loveandgarbage View Post

 

Let's also not forget that the sex of our children when they are born isn't the be all and end all of gender. Some of us might end up with a boy who wants to be a girl, a girl who wants to be a boy, or either who chooses to live somewhere in between thumb.gif.

 

This is so very true! And we will love them all the same.


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#23 of 25 Old 07-17-2012, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, thought I would update this thread to let you all know the results of my decision. I ultimately decided to find out what I was having, because I figured if I was having a boy, I'd hate to agonize for months of not knowing that.

 

But... what do you know. It's girl number 3 in there, and I'm really regretting my decision now. I'm positive I wouldn't be this disappointed if I was holding her in my arms right now. I know I will love her just like I adore my 2 girls, but now I'm just dealing with disappointment and guilt for being disappointed.

 

But there is nothing I can do now, so I'm just struggling to come to terms with this, while looking around for ways to help me. I think a name and wardrobe will help me bond. Names is a real challenge right now! I am so picky about girl names, and on top of that my husband is very picky too -- and he has different tastes from me! but I've decided to start new with baby clothes to help me get excited. I don't want to just reuse what I've used that last two times.
 

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#24 of 25 Old 07-18-2012, 12:54 PM
 
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((hugs)) mama, I am in the same boat, but the other way around. I have 2 wonderful boys, but am longing for a daughter. I am 11 weeks pregnant, and we've decided not to find out, because like you and others mentioned- I think once baby is here and in my arms I won't care whether they are a boy or a girl. Hopefully I will be able to hold out and not find out what we are having!


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#25 of 25 Old 07-20-2012, 09:51 AM
 
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Forum crashing, sorry! I have been really concerned about gender disappointment. We have 2 boys and are TTC for a girl (and of course, would equally love a boy but you know how it is).

 

As awful as you feel now, I think you made the right choice. You can work through these feelings now, rather than when newborn is in your arms. While it is probable that you would bond right away, there is always the chance that you could have extreme gender disappointment and be more prone to PPD. I know it is not the same, but I remember when we found out for DC2 that it was a boy (I was pregnant), I thought to myself, "most definitely I will not find out during the pregnancy next time, if there is one, because I can't deal with this disappointment. If I had a newborn in my arms, I would not be able to feel this disappointed." I would imagine the disappointment at third pregnancy would be even stronger.

 

But, after I worked through it, I feel that I was better off knowing in advance. I knew he was another little boy and was able to bond from the start (rather than working through disappointment in the first hours/days weeks). Again, I'm sure your case is a little stronger, as it is the third one, but my point is that you probably did the right thing. You will be able to work through it now and except your little princess for who she is instantly when she comes. Even though it's the pits right now, you still have time to adjust. Don't beat yourself up about your feelings, they are what they are, and you will feel better soon.

 

hugs!!
 


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