A little boy hugging his mother's pregnant belly


Why I’m Tired Of You Asking If We’re ‘Trying For A Girl’ With Our Third Pregnancy

Feb 15, 2019

“I hope there’s a girl in there,” the shopkeeper says as I walk in with my protruding belly, flanked on either side by my two sons. I smile and nod, but really I’m hiding my annoyance at getting yet another comment like this.

Because the reason we wanted more kids has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with adding even more love to our family.

I get comments like that all the time with this third pregnancy — from friends, neighbours and mostly from complete strangers. It’s like people assume that if you have two kids of the same gender, the ONLY reason you want to have a third is because you’re hoping for the opposite gender. This, to me, makes absolutely zero sense.

Putting aside the fact that you can’t control the gender of your baby, comments like “Were you trying for a girl?” and even “I hope that’s not a boy! Poor you!” are insulting and hurtful — especially when said in front of my two sons. A big FYI to people who make these comments: the kids can hear you. And when we get home and my kids ask me why it’s “bad” to have boys, it breaks my heart into a million tiny pieces.

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The implication of these comments is that our family is somehow missing something if we don’t have kids of both genders. Our family isn’t missing ANYTHING. Whether you have all girls, all boys, an only child, a bunch of kids of both genders, a kid that identifies as a different gender than the sex they were born with or no kids at all — what you really have is your own unique, beautiful family.

And when we get home and my kids ask me why it’s 'bad' to have boys, it breaks my heart into a million tiny pieces.

When I asked my husband if he gets comments like this when people find out his third child is on the way, he said, “No. I think it’s because you’re a woman, so people assume you want a mother-daughter relationship.”

I honestly hadn’t thought of it that way, but I think it’s because I don’t think of gender that way. People tend to picture the mother-daughter and father-son relationships as the ultimate bonds. But I believe that if you raise your kids, regardless of gender, to be comfortable with intimacy and in touch with their emotions, then you’ll have open communication and therefore a strong bond.

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I’m not worried my sons will grow up and not want a relationship with me just because they happen to have penises. We are raising them to be open and to talk about their feelings, and we would never put limits on them based on gender. In short, they feel comfortable to be themselves. They have a close relationship with me and with their dad.

Just like our daughter will with both her parents.

Yes, as it turns out, we actually are having a girl.

When I found out, my main reaction was surprise. I thought for sure we would be having another boy. And I’m excited — just like I would have been to have another boy. Because the reason we wanted more kids has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with adding even more love to our family.

The kids we have are kind, sweet and beautiful. They bring so much love, joy and wonder to our days. Watching them play, create, learn and grow is the biggest privilege. I’m grateful every day for exactly the family I have and I wouldn’t change a thing.

Article Author Katharine Reid
Katharine Reid

Katharine is a freelance writer and editor who loves bookshops, nature and chocolate. The former editor of a health website, she now spends her days with her two adorable, energetic boys. She can usually be found either going on outdoor adventures with them, or attempting to get them outside so they stop destroying the house.

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