A Baby’s Gender is ALWAYS a PR Issue!
- March 7, 2013
- by Melissa Lawrence
We might be learning a little more about the royal baby for William and Kate! British newspapers have been claiming that Kate Middleton slipped up the other day during an official visit and revealed the gender of the royal baby.
At the National Fishing Heritage Center in England on Tuesday, the Duchess of Cambridge apparently thanked a local by saying “Thank you, I’ll take that for my d–” … She then insisted that she and Will are not telling! But then also that they don’t know. As I like to say to my girls, OOPS!
Here’s what I love about this moment: it shows how gender is such a tricky issue for all pregnant moms and dads. Why? Because even when you’re not a royal, whether you find out the gender of your baby or not, you’ve got some delicate PR work going on and it’s hard to pull it all off.
Telling the Gender of a Baby
When it comes to your baby’s gender, from the moment you get pregnant, you have some big decisions to make about whether you are finding out and who you are telling! Then, you have your own feelings to reckon with.
I found out with all my babies, but now I wish I hadn’t. Like co-sleeping, an experience I’m starting to wish I had had, the mystery of not knowing my baby’s gender is something I regret not having experienced. I remember my oldest brother Chris not finding out the gender of either of his two kids because “it’s the only true surprise in life.” How true that is. Although I wouldn’t know because I didn’t experience it!
Whether you keep the mystery of your baby’s gender alive or not, you then have your own feelings to reckon with. It’s almost taboo to admit that you want your baby to be a certain gender, but come on, let’s be honest, at first many of us really do hope our baby is a boy or a girl. This has nothing to do with loving every single last bit of your child once HE or SHE has arrived. It’s a totally different thing, I think. It’s part of our parental fantasies. Like wishing that all our kids will love us at every minute of every day. And wishing we had a home cooked meal on the table every night. It has to do with our dreams and visions of what our lives as parents will be like, rather than the reality of what the love for that baby will be once HE or SHE has come.
I’ll never forget my shock when the doctor told me my first baby was a boy. I had around three girl names picked out: Sophia, Isabella, Fleur (my mother). I wasn’t disappointed when they told me he was a boy, I was totally and completely SHOCKED.
On the way home from the hospital my husband digested the news, and then there was the PR phrase, because even when you’re not a royal, you have to figure out what your position is when it comes to your baby’s gender. Do you tell? If so, do you show your true feelings about it? It’s completely taboo to say “yes, the baby is a boy, and we know we will love him, but we are shocked right now that he is not a girl.” Even writing that sounds so dreadful because of course each baby is a complete blessing and we do love them so completely once they arrive.
And then of course everyone is different. Some parents are genuinely happy with whatever comes. Some are rooting for one sex or another. Some find out and don’t tell. Some find out and cry on the phone with their best girlfriends. But no matter how you play it, you’ve got a PR campaign of your own to wage, even if you’re not a royal. So Kate, we feel your pain!
Did you find out your baby’s gender or keep the mystery alive? And what did you tell others? Comment below and share your story!