Dealing With Gender Disappointment: Postpartum Update
Have you ever found out the sex of your unborn baby and got disappointed? Not just, “well shoot” but to the point of tears and depression?
After finding out the sex of baby #2, I wrote a very popular article on my struggle and journey with gender disappointment which can be viewed here. I actually suggest you read it first prior to continuing with the rest of this blog post.
To sum up the past, I wanted another boy desperately. I had no clue how to be a girl mom and to be quite frank, little girls scared the hell out of me. Growing up, my relationship was very torn with my mother as I suffered a good bit of abuse from her. I never got to have that mother/daughter friendship/bond/love that most have the luxury of knowing. Because of this, I tended to stay away from the females in my life and gravitate towards male figures only. Also, I was scared of having the same torn relationship with my little girl if I ever were to have one.
I have never been a girly girl. I hate pink, I hate bows, and I don’t like the thought of going to do nails and sleepovers. This is another reason why having a girl was so frightening, as petty as it may seem. I loved being a boy mom. Boys were all I knew. I loved my son so much because he was my only kid that I naturally wanted another boy so that I could have “another him” if that makes sense. But I had to realize that there would never be “another him” and that my son was one of a kind.
When the sonographer told me the sex of our second baby, I cried and cried on the way home. I actually struggled with this disappointment on and off until the day she was born. I remember the turning point, though, in my pregnancy where I started feeling better about her gender was when I got to see her smile on her 4D ultrasound. I cried tears of happiness, but the rollercoaster still continued in the remaining weeks before she was born. I remember praying to God to allow her to come early because I NEEDED to meet my daughter. I NEEDED that peace. I NEEDED to know her. She arrived ten days early and I got my wish.
During my pregnancy, I had numerous responses to my original gender disappointment article. Many were so supportive! They told me as soon as she was born, it would all make sense and I would feel happiness. Some thanked me for my post because they, too, had secretly been dealing with gender disappointment but was too afraid to speak up, and then some cursed me out and told me to be thankful that I could even conceive a child. So there was a ton of mixed response, but I am so glad I spoke up and blogged it. I like to keep it real and part of my job is sharing my entire life with you all… every great.. and terrible moment.
Rememeber how I was told that when my daughter was born, it would all make sense and I wouldn’t be able to imagine my life without her? As soon as she was placed in my arms, I cried. And I cried some more. And I smiled. And I felt RELIEF for the first time in months.
I can honestly say that those ladies were correct. I cannot imagine my life without my baby girl. I do NOT want anyone else in her place. She is so damn perfect and I am so thankful for her tiny life. I put bows in her hair everytime we go out. I think about taking her for pedicures someday and shopping. I still do not dress her in pink, but I have discovered that her color is TOTALLY lavender/purple. I cannot wait to have a strong friendship and bond with my girl. I am now using my broken past with my mom as fuel to be the best damn girl mom that I can be for my baby girl. And now I see the blessing of having one of each gender children. WOW! I am so blessed.
If you are going through gender disappointment, I feel you. Please talk to someone because the long months ahead until you have your baby can be very isolating and lonely. I cry sometimes thinking of how I barely bonded with her in the womb because I spent all of my time wishing she was a boy and being scared of her. I feel so guilty to not have seen her for what she was-a blessing. But there’s no need to dwell on guilt-our feelings are legit and they need to be validated. Talk to your partner, a best friend, or family member. Please know that when you meet you baby, there’s no other option for you but to LOVE THEM. You will not be able to imagine the other gender you had once wanted-I swear!
If you have any questions or would like to speak in private, please comment below or shoot me an email. Know that your feelings are very important and this too shall pass.
Your trainer and friend,