Overcoming Gender Disappointment: My Story of Having ANOTHER Boy

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gender disappointment

gender disappointmentWhen I was pregnant with my first baby, I truly didn’t care whether I was having a boy or girl. I knew I wanted one boy and one girl, and I wouldn’t have any disappointment with either gender with my first baby. When I found out it was a boy at my 20-week ultrasound, I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to call everyone and tell them the good news! I loved being a mom to this little boy.

Not much later, people started asking when we were going to start “trying for a girl.” When I announced my second pregnancy, people asked if we were hoping for a girl. It seems that in our society, a perfect family needs to have at least one boy and one girl. It’s hard for me to admit that I completely bought in to that thinking, too.

Overcoming Gender Disappointment: My Story of Having ANOTHER Boy | Des Moines Moms Blog

Baby Number Two

Three years after my first baby’s birth, I went to my 20 week ultrasound pregnancy with my second baby. I had lots of dreams and feelings that this baby would be a girl. I just knew the ultrasound technician would tell me that I was having a girl. We went in to the dark room, and I loved seeing all the little parts on the monitor. The time came for us to find out if this baby was a boy or girl. With a big smile, I said, “YES! We really want to know!”

Then she said the words I wasn’t expecting to hear: “You’re having a BOY!!”

My reaction wasn’t quite what I had expected. I started crying–like really sobbing crying. When the technician asked if I was okay, I just lied and said, “Yes! I am just so happy!”

I mean, what kind of mother cries tears of disappointment at her baby’s ultrasound??

My Disappointment and Meltdown

My husband and I returned to our car in the parking lot, and I totally lost it. I was crying for many reasons. First, I knew we’d likely only have two children, and finality of not having a daughter overwhelmed me. I wouldn’t have anyone to dress up in cute clothes, to do crafts with, or to take to softball practice. No hair bows, glitter, or dance shoes.

What made me even more emotional was the fact that I was actually disappointed. I was angry at myself for being ungrateful. The technician just told me that the baby looked really healthy and everything was perfect. Shouldn’t I be thankful and happy? Why wasn’t I enjoying this blessing of a healthy baby boy? I truly felt like the world’s worst mother. I thought of those women who were sad because they learned their baby wasn’t healthy, or even worse. I had no reason to be sad.

Finding Comfort

Later that night as I was telling my family that it was another boy (and still an emotional wreck), my father reminded me that I was indeed just like my grandmother. She was a mother of two boys, and I’ve always associated myself with her as I’ve grown into a mother and adult myself. Once I learned that I really was following in her footsteps, I found some peace with being a boymom. I talked to other boymoms and learned that there was a sort or secret society that I was earning a place in. They told me stories of their mama’s boys, being queen of the house, and how to overcome fart jokes. I quickly found my love for being a boymom and can’t imagine my life without my youngest son.

Here’s my disclaimer: Please know that even though I have two boys, they still do crafts with me on occasion, and I definitely do some “girly” things with them. And, I found a way to get my girl fix whenever I need it: loving on my nieces and goddaughters!

I’d love to know if you had any feelings of disappointment at your ultrasound! Leave me your comments and experiences below!

gender disappointment

25 COMMENTS

  1. I’m devastated to find out my second and last is a boy. I took a gamble and it failed. I should have stuck with one beautiful son. Now I grieve for a daughter. There seems to very little support out there. I feel alone, my husband doesn’t understand.

    • Hey i am currently 6 months pregnant with my 3rd boy and i still cant seem to accept it and i always wanted a girl since my first pregnancy and im scared to try a 4th time since i feel it will just crush me how did u get over this awful feeling?

  2. Honestly, I don’t feel like this is an uncommon thing for women to experience. I clearly remember the day my friend called me in an absolute meltdown because she had just received the news that she was having another boy. She was convinced her baby was a girl and was completely beside herself. She’s now a proud boymom of 3!
    So when the time came for my first pregnancy, my husband and I chose not to know the gender before birth. He already had a boy from a previous marriage and was excited for whatever came along….we had a boy!! Second pregnancy came around and I had successfully convinced my husband (quite reluctantly) to let us find out the gender. When the ultrasound tech announced, “it’s a BOY!!” I turned and looked at my husband and said, “well I could have waited 9 months to hear that.” I love my boys more than anything in this world and wouldn’t trade them.

  3. I am a mother of 2 sons and grandmother to 1 grandson. My next grandchild is due in Sept. and I just found out its another boy. I acted thrilled at the gender reveal. But once home I cried. Don’t get me wrong, I will love this baby as much as I love the first one. But I always wanted a girl in addition to my boys and when I didn’t have one of my own, I always just assumed that I would have a granddaughter and that would be even better because I wouldn’t have to go through the terrible teens as her parent! 🙂 I didn’t even realize how much I still wanted one until after I got home from the revealing. I realize that I SO badly want a female connection within my family. I have one sister who is many years older and lives across the country from me and with whom I am not close . I have one niece from that sister so obviously I am also not close with her. My son and his wife have chosen to have only 2 children. I come from a small family so I didn’t have lots of cousins, aunts, etc. I didn’t think that this baby if a girl, would fill all that void, but it was just something I needed that my friends and family have gotten to experience. My daughter in law is also disappointed and I feel for her because she doesn’t have a sister and I know she was longing for a girl too. We will love this baby, but my heart has a piece missing and now I know that it will never be filled. It’s hard to process and I know that there are MUCH worse things to be dealing with, but it doesn’t take away my sadness and the fact that I have to give up a dream that I have had for soooo many years but didn’t even realize that until now. Thanks for listening.

  4. I have an almost 2 year old boy and we just found out yesterday that our second and last child is a boy. This pregnancy was sort of a susprise (kind of the “if it happens, it happens, but still trying to be careful” situation). However, because of this, the opportunity to truly TRY for a girl was taken away from me. So for my entire pregnancy I have had EXTREMELY negative reactions to having a boy. Any time I had a dream of having a boy, the dream became very dark and depressed and full of negative feelings. Has freaked me out and made me fear for PPD if I had another boy. Extremely recently I started to be “okay” with the idea of a boy – about a week before the ultrasound – and we had a gender reveal. Boy. Everyone was aware of my past issues and were very supportive and sensitive to it. But I’m still down. I’ve always felt my soul needed a girl. And I know we need more good men in the world and that we can raise our boys as such, but I feel so alone in my own house. We even have two male dogs. And the thought of never having a daughter to help get ready for homecomings, proms, get nails done with, shopping, wedding dress shopping with – all of that absolutely devastates me and I really truly worry I will never get over it.

    • That is so tough. I would really recommend reaching out to a counselor to talk to. I know it gets easier over time for most people and I’m so sorry you are going through this now.

    • I feel all of this sooo much. My husband and I have two boys from his first marriage and I’m pregnant for the first time with twins and him and his boys all wanted at least one girl to spoil and dote on and we just found out today that we’re having two boys. I’m a wreck and I feel like a failure (I know full well that I have no part in choosing gender) and a disappointment I don’t even want to do a gender reveal and tell the kids because I know they’re going to be disappointed to. I also hate myself for feeling this way. I never even wanted a girl when I was younger I always wanted two boys but I got those two boys when I married my husband so I wanted him to get what he wanted this time. No I’m going to be the only female in the household of 5 boys and we have two male dogs and 3 male horses. I really hope this feeling gets better because I don’t want to miss out on the rest of my pregnancy because I feel like this 😭

  5. 11 years on and I am still disappointed my 1st was a girl. Everyone was excited but me. I wanted to leave her at the hospital, but she as the first girl and I knew everyone would be angry. Talked with a nurse and she said I’d be fine, probably just the pain meds talking because she was a c-section birth. I honestly have never bonded with her. I have since had 2 other girls. I bonded more with them, I enjoy them. When my third daughter was born, the day I was set to go home, I couldn’t stop crying. They asked what was wrong and I said I just wanted to go home and be with my girls. Truth is, reality set in, this was our third, it was a girl, I would never have a son. It still hurts 4 years later. I love my kids, but I feel detached, I feel cheated, I don’t have the family I wanted. My husband on the other hand wanted all girls, I hate him for that, believe me his reasons are selfish. I have never been a girly girl, I hate the pink, hate the hairbows, its driving me insane at this point. I was an only child, so I knew I wanted to have several children, we agreed on 3.I wanted at least 1 boy to balance things out. But that is never gonna happen, so I have resigned myself to a lifetime of pretending. And no, it really never does get better. I have a box of baby boy things. I go through it sometimes and just cry. I buy things and add to it occasionally as well. One day I plan on burning it, just one more dream to go up in smoke. My girls are beautiful, crazy, smart, everything you could want in a girl. But I still desire a son, probably always will. Therapists solution, just try to have forth, you’ll probably get a boy this time.

    • Hi, I def know how you feel. I had three boys and I was so sad with my 3rd that it wasn’t a girl. I never wanted a 4th child but I felt like something was missing without having my girl. I am totally a girlie girl and I’m so sad I’ll never have a daughter. I am currently pregnant with baby number 4 and it’s a another boy. I can’t come to terms that I will never have a daughter.

  6. My husband and I have been trying to get pregnant since we got married 4.5 years ago. I have suffered several miscarriages over the years and we are finally 14 weeks pregnant with a healthy baby. Over all of this time I’ve had to envision our family I felt that, because of what we’ve gone through to get this child, that we should get the gender we want. Turns out this baby is a boy. I’ve known for two weeks but my husband is choosing to wait until the birth to find out. Makes it so difficult for me because I can’t talk with him about it or even “nest” and set up a boy nursery and try to get excited that way. We both wanted a girl and I’m devastated.

    A lot of people will tell you that the sex of baby is one thing and gender is another but in my family, and especially my husband’s, the two genders are very much their own and fall into traditional patterns. So, it would never be okay for our boy to dance or be in ballet. It would be frowned upon for our son to go shopping with mom and grandma (past the age of 5 or so) or to come home from school and have long chats. My life is now all laid out for me with sporting events consuming my life for the next 18 years.

    I’ve told a few people about my gender disappointment situation and theres a lot of pressure for me to just be happy I have a baby at all since it seemed unlikely I ever would. I feel that’s not fair. Just because I’ve suffered losses does not mean I don’t deserve to have emotions or opinions about my baby. Furthermore, theres no guarantee we will ever be able to conceive again so I may not ever get a girl. I have two brothers only and my husband only has one brother, no girls on either side except me. I feel so heartbroken and am struggling to bond with this baby.

  7. I had my second boy last year. Cried after the ultrasound with both of them. Never wanted a boy, much less two. But they’re precious and funny and I was getting over it. Unfortunately for me, my best friend is having a girl and the shower is coming up. She’s decorating her nursery exactly the way I wanted, having an easy happy pregnancy and being showered with love and attention for her precious girl. I’m faking my joy for her which isn’t fair and I feel bad about it. Went shopping for her shower gift today and it took my breath away; I cried in the car. If feels so foolish and yet so valid at the same time. I hate it. But I know this will pass.

  8. I have been dealing with gender disappointment as well. Honestly I did not imagine feeling this way. I am having a boy and it’s my first child. I am older though so this might be my last child. I had no idea how much I wanted a girl. I thought I would be fine either way, but now I am grieving for a girl. It’s getting easier as the weeks pass, and I am still so in love with him. This is still the best thing that has ever happened to me. I try to think of all the great men I’ve known, some of them my closest friends and my husband is the most gentle and intelligent person I have ever met. My father was the person in my family I was closest to and he was an amazing person. I am trying to focus on what an amazing person my son will be! Knowing there are more people who feel like me is actually quite comforting

  9. I just had my fifth boy. We kept trying and trying for a girl, I never even wanted one boy. I love my boys but I’d always wanted a daughter. There is no way we can afford a sixth baby so I am stuck with five boys. I know my husband can’t help it any more than I can but I feel so resentful towards him. This is just my life now.

  10. Im a 6 months pregnant with another boy. My dream had always been to have 3-4 kids(1 of whom would be adopted) of those kids i yearned for twin girls and a boy (for compliance because in th3 black community not having a son is just regarded as not goodenough. I have 2 full brothers and a full sister amongst half siblings. Ive never been close with my brothers as i have been with my sister. My sister had twins(though boys) & girl my husband comes from a family of boys but his (unmarried) brothers have girls. Im resentful, jealous and angry all at once and as i’m reading your comments i realize im still not ok despite thinking I was getting over it and accepting the precious healthy gift growing inside me. I doubt ill try again and now i dont know if ill adopt a girl and love her the same even though adoption has been part of my plans since i was child. Im heartbroken. Most of my friends have either both sexes or 2 girls and i feel like I’ve also disappointed my neice whom i love dearly with a 2nd boy and my husband although he’d never say i see how close he is to my niece & so I failed to give him that gift. Did i forget to mention my dad passed when I was 1 so I wanted that father daughter bond for Hubby and my girl child whilst also having a relationship with her i have with mom. I’m not ok at all.

  11. I felt sicker this time, so I knew that this was a girl. I didn’t ever feel sick with my boy. I really feel pregnant. The nausea. All the bad stuff I didn’t feel with him. Even the ultrasound looked like a girl. My girl…until the test results came back. The doctor asked if we wanted the sex emailed or if we wanted to pick it up in an envelope. My husband wanted the email. I said that he could find out and then go to the bakery and have them make a cake with pink or blue inside. Nothing like cutting into that cake, on camera and the knife turning blue. No tutus. No princesses. No having a girls day. My great-grandparents had a boy and a girl. My grandparents had a boy and a girl. My parents have a boy and girl. I blame my husband. He’s one of two boys, but his brother had a girl. His father is one of three boys. I’m processing. My whole life I wanted a boy and a girl. I have a perfect boy. Now I’ll have another one. Too many guys in my house. Sad. Maybe the blood test is wrong. Denial. Great.

  12. I feel guilty because I have a girl who is 13 and a son who is nearly 7, but I’ve always dreamed of another girl even though I accepted we were done. I mean we thought we were done but after a surprise that ended in a miscarriage I realized I wanted one more. With my son, I truly felt like I was having another girl and so excited. I was heartbroken to find out it was a boy. I eventually got over it because just like with his sister and I, we have an amazing bond. It took us 8 months to get pregnant this time and I’ve dreamed of a girl. I was so young with my daughter I didn’t get to do all the frilly girly stuff. I did some but I want to do even more. All the bows and dresses and cutesy shoes. We just found out this one is a boy. My husband is over the moon and my daughter has been hoping it’s a boy because she wants to be the only girl. My son wanted a little brother. So I am trying to pretend I’m so so happy! Inside I am so upset. My husband said we can try for another but as awful as it sounds I don’t want to risk 3 boys. I’ve had my other girl name picked out for 10 years. I’ve had patterns saved of dresses I was going to sew. All my friends and family have young girls and I’m just so jealous. My dad is happy it’s a boy for my daughters sake. My mom keeps saying if it’s a boy she’s shoving him back and not accepting him. Both are making me awful. I really just wanted another girl. We did the DNA test so it’s a very rare but possible chance it’s wrong. But I know when they confirm it’s a boy I’ll cry at the ultrasound. I prayed for this baby and now I feel like a terrible mom for feeling like this. So glad I’m not alone.

  13. feel guilty because I have a girl who is 13 and a son who is nearly 7, but I’ve always dreamed of another girl even though I accepted we were done. I mean we thought we were done but after a surprise that ended in a miscarriage I realized I wanted one more. With my son, I truly felt like I was having another girl and so excited. I was heartbroken to find out it was a boy. I eventually got over it because just like with his sister and I, we have an amazing bond. It took us 8 months to get pregnant this time and I’ve dreamed of a girl. I was so young with my daughter I didn’t get to do all the frilly girly stuff. I did some but I want to do even more. All the bows and dresses and cutesy shoes. We just found out this one is a boy. My husband is over the moon and my daughter has been hoping it’s a boy because she wants to be the only girl. My son wanted a little brother. So I am trying to pretend I’m so so happy! Inside I am so upset. My husband said we can try for another but as awful as it sounds I don’t want to risk 3 boys. I’ve had my other girl name picked out for 10 years. I’ve had patterns saved of dresses I was going to sew. All my friends and family have young girls and I’m just so jealous. My dad is happy it’s a boy for my daughters sake. My mom keeps saying if it’s a boy she’s shoving him back and not accepting him. Both are making me awful. I really just wanted another girl. We did the DNA test so it’s a very rare but possible chance it’s wrong. But I know when they confirm it’s a boy I’ll cry at the ultrasound. I prayed for this baby and now I feel like a terrible mom for feeling like this. So glad I’m not alone.

  14. 3 boys. One not biological, trouble getting pregnant with my biological 2. Decided not to do medicine the second time. Prayed to God, believe the word that what we ask we shall receive, well 2 boys later. I am still struggling, my last is 4 took almost 3 1/2 years, lots of tear and anxiety. I feel like God forgot me. I don’t know how to ever get over it!!

  15. Thank you for this article. I had the exact same reaction when I came to know I was having a second baby boy! Reading this helped me a LOT!!! I felt so bad reacting the way I did because all a mother wants is a healthy baby. 🥰

  16. This was a great article. I also just found out I’m having my second boy. I wanted a boy and a girl and was so convinced this time it was a girl. I have cried for 6 hours and have so much resentment. I’m one of 2 girls and hated having 2 of the same sex, there was so much competition, and I convinced myself I would have one of each. We tried every method to get a girl. Didn’t work. And we can’t afford more than 2 so this is it. How do you ever get over this lifelong consequence?

  17. Thank you for this article. It’s really nice knowing that my feelings, while extreme, are valid. The comment section helped even more. My husband and I always wanted a big family. We have a 13 year old son, 6yo son, 4 yo son, and a beautiful, perfect 3 year old daughter. Raising them has been such a whirlwind of difference. We decided to add to our family just ooooonnnnee more time and we both just KNEW we were going to have another perfect little girl. After all, we’d gone through it with the boys. We dealt with broken appliances, WWE wrestling matches, damaged furniture, stained/ripped/torn clothing—- and loved all of it (mostly). After our daughter was born, we realized that parenting isn’t always a full contact sport. She was, and is, just so easy to love. So easy to be around and just full of joy and happiness. Well, fast forward: we found our new addition is a boy.

    We have both cried. Been angry. Gone fullspeed through all the stages of grief. Our marriage has suffered. All the grandparents have been upset. I feel like I’m carrying someone else’s baby. Why is this happening? I just got out of this tunnel. I’m a good person. I do so much for the moms in my community. I’m charitable. I’m patient. It just feels like the worst type of punishment handed down directly from God. I don’t know why this nightmare is happening. I’m 37 weeks and no closer to accepting it than I was at 16 weeks. I still cry daily. I dread every minute of having another boy.

    • Hello! Thank you for your comment. I would really suggest reaching out to a licensed mental health therapist in your area that specializes in EMDR. I think that might help your process through this pregnancy. As a doula, many of my clients are having really good results with this type of therapy. Best wishes for a healthy birth and positive postpartum! –Katie (author of this blog post)

  18. I just found out that I’m having a boy. This is my second pregnancy. I have a wonderful little boy who just turned 1. I am so upset. All I ever wanted is a girl. I feel so guilty, but I am so sad about it. I never wanted more than two kids either, but now I feel like I’ll have to try for a third and just hope and pray that it will be a girl. I really don’t know. My husband doesn’t know yet and I’m curious how he’ll react because he was really hoping it was a girl mostly because of how much I want one. I feel like I’m grieving… and I feel so ungrateful because I know how many women struggle to get pregnant. The tests have come back showing that he is healthy and I am so happy about that, but the struggle of being upset over the fact that I am having a boy is just there and I know I’ll be fine over time because I was disappointed with pregnancy 1 when I found it was a boy in front of my whole family and cried in front of a whole restaurant. He is literally the sweetest little man and I am so grateful for him now, but… you know… pregnancy 2 I was really really hoping. Welp.

  19. I’m so glad I found this article, it really helped me with processing my emotions. I have a two year old boy and we just found out our last is another boy. Like all of you, I was definitely hoping for a girl. I am trying my best to be grateful, but it’s a weird mix of emotions. The entire time I’ve been married to my husband I was convinced we would have two boys because boys overrun his family. I sort of feel like I spoke it into existence, even though I know God has hand picked this special baby just for us. I think it’s just hard because almost all my friends have girls and boys, and even all of my siblings have girls, so I feel left out. I doubt we will have three so I am definitely trying to wrap my head around being the only women in the house. Thank y’all for validating my emotions. It feels silly and Ungrateful but I know eventually I will move on and start to love this baby.

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