Do you find out your baby’s gender?


Being pregnant, one of the first questions people tend to ask is ‘Do you know what you’re having?’ It’s such a natural conversation starter. I know it’s one of the first questions I tend to ask pregnant women I meet as well.

The thing I’ve noticed lately is that more often than not, people tend to find out their baby’s gender. I guess it’s become increasingly easy (and tempting!) to find out, especially now that you can do an easy blood test from just 10 weeks that reveals your baby’s gender.

While I can see all the reasons for finding out – to help connect with your baby, to help your other children connect and adjust, to help with choosing a name, to help you prepare, etc. – I always surprise people when I tell them I really don’t want to know! I love the surprise at birth so much, I just can’t imagine finding out what we’re having during pregnancy. In fact, in our last three pregnancies, Michael and I have gone in to the scans with our eyes closed and our ears plugged. We don’t even want to risk seeing something that might give it away! : )

I was speaking to a friend of mine recently (who also prefers not to find out) and she compared it to x-raying your Christmas presents before you open them. Haha! I loved that! Isn’t it funny how some people really want to know, while others can feel so passionately about not finding out?!

Which type are you? Did (do) you find out your baby’s gender?

Courtney x


Comments (52)

October 13, 2016

Oh, yes, I most definitely wanted to know if our Baby Gypsy was a she or a he! Hubby tried to convince me to wait, but I just couldn’t. 🙂

October 13, 2016

My husband and I are with you and Michael, Courtney. We’re pregnant with our first — I think I’m about six weeks behind you. We’ve felt absolutely sure from the beginning that we’ll be covering our eyes and ears, too! I love that image of an x-ray over Christmas presents, since it reminds me of how important it was to me as a child not to disrupt the magic of the holiday or the joy in sharing the delight of discovery.

I’m thrilled for your family and grateful to be able to follow along with you, as I have so enjoyed each of the pregnancy posts you’ve made thus far.

October 13, 2016

We didn’t find out with our first two. Martijn wanted to, but I overruled. I was adamant I didn’t want to know – it felt like an imposition on nature to me. With the third, I let the practical side win out – it was so sensible to have a clear out prior to fitting another child into our house. So we did find out, and funnily enough I was quite happy to know, and Martijn found it to be an anti-climax – so boring to know! In the end, we would have actually found out we were expecting a girl by necessity when we had to have some extra scans. That was something I had never thought of – that you could possibly NEED to be informed of the gender during your pregnancy!

October 13, 2016

p.s. I totally get the x-ray analogy. I also never wanted a 3D scan for the same reason (but did get one with the third!)

October 14, 2016

I am with you Courtney. I love surprises in fact it’s a rule for birthdays and Christmas there must be one surprise so to me it was easy not to find out. My husband for our first wanted to find out I think because everyone else does but he didn’t and after the birth told everyone how amazing it was to be surprised! He know tries to convince people to wait and be surprised!

My sister in law finds out and can’t believe I don’t want to know but it’s nice that we can agree to disagree and we still get along so well and agree on more important parenting aspects!

Can’t wait till you get your fifth surprise! Hope you are feeling well and enjoying the miracle!

October 14, 2016

I HAD to know on the first one. I’d love a surprise for any future babies <3

Katy Moss
October 14, 2016

I have 2 children and didn’t find out with either, best surprise ever x X

October 14, 2016

I’ve had 4 babies and never found out the gender with any of them. I love the surprise of being told after months of waiting that ‘it’s a boy!’ or ‘it’s a girl!’. It’s the best surprise EVER! And it is!!!!

October 14, 2016

I found out with my first. I figured there were enough surprises as it is. And my second was a surprise. I’m not sure if it was because I was already busy with one child and time poor, but I found it much harder to connect with my second pregnancy. As it was she was another beautiful girl and I found some it easier to connect with my second baby once she was here than my first. So go figure.

October 14, 2016

My second baby was carried by a surrogate mother so the 20 week scan was filled with members of her family as well as mine. We took a vote and I (the biological mother) was voted out of revealing the gender of the baby. Hahaha, still makes me smile to think of it now, 3 years on!!

Courtney in London
October 14, 2016

Oh I love this story! How funny you were outvoted! 🙂 xx

October 14, 2016

I didn’t find out with either of my two kids. I find that everything is told to us straight out whether we would like to know or not. It’s one thing that we can leave as a surprise so why not! But in saying that I had a dream for each baby but I didn’t tell anyone just incase I was wrong but both my dreams for each pregnancy where spot on.

Clare Hewitt
October 14, 2016

So we have four children and this decision became something we talked over and over.
But when it came down to it, for our first two children anyhow, it was whether the sonographer asked us or not! The first time around, I remember being unsure as to whether to find out. Within the appointment, the topic wasn’t brought up and we left, more excited about the scan pictures. The surprise at birth certainly is a significant memory and one that filled us with joy!
Three years later, still undecided, and with cold jelly stuff on my tummy, the question was asked and, with a look at each other, myself and Ian couldn’t resist!
The thought of identical twins was something that took a great deal of getting used to and fortnightly scans multiplied the temptation. I admit, the thought of having three boys under the age of 2 was a daunting prospect and one I could never have envisaged! And if anything, it was about making the job of naming two babies easier, when your favourite names have already been used up! It seemed most twin mums found out the genders as, unless you were expecting identical twins, there are more possibilities!
I feel that, within our friendship group, there has been a turn away from finding out in recent years. I’m knitting creams and greys for new babies and it all is much more exciting when news of a new baby is being shared!
Wishing you well with the rest of your pregnancy, Courtney. Myself and Fiona at Millesimebaby, were only saying the other day how we follow your family’s life like a very slow but all-encapsulating soap opera! x

Sarah Lightfoot
October 14, 2016

We never found out with any of my pregnancies & after having 3 boys we were convinced no.4 was a boy, even hearing baby referred to as ‘he’ a couple of times during scans. We couldn’t have cared less what gender baby was & long as all went fine. I washed little blue babygrows I had kept. I had a C section & to say we were overwhelming shocked and surprised to find out she was a girl was an understatement !!!! It was the most utterly incredible moment even the surgeon welled up in reaction to our reaction. We were stunned ! I feel it’s the only unknown & surprise we can have nowadays with the ability to know everything. Currently pregnant also with no.5 and we don’t know what this one is either ☺️

Cathy Jackson
October 14, 2016

I had my first wee gem 6 months ago and never found out the gender…being in that delivery room eventually hearing “IT’S A BOY!!!!”… OMG a BOY? Wow I just gave birth! MY baby…and it’s a BOY! No better feeling in the world. What a moment.

October 14, 2016

I definitely didn’t want to find out. We had a few extra scans towards the end of the pregnancy and each time the sonographer said “look away now if you don’t want to know!” It just never felt like the most important thing to me…I didn’t think of my baby as boy or girl I just couldn’t wait to hold my baby. In fact I wrote it into my birth plan that I didn’t want anyone to announce it to us when baby arrived and the midwives were amazing and totally respected that. After delivering in the water I held onto our baby for a good five minutes before we looked and found out we had a BOY!! Enjoy every second Courtney 🙂

Courtney in London
October 14, 2016

Oh how funny — it was the same for us when Marlow was born. She was born in the water and I scooped her up from the water and held her close to my chest for a good five minutes before we realised we didn’t know if it was a girl or a boy!! xx

Leanne Carr
October 14, 2016

I had 3 babies and the sex was a delightful surprise at birth. Although for my third after 2 boys I had a feeling it was a girl. My husband and I both did not want to know, but when we had the ultrasound we were asked do you want to know the sex and he said a definite No and I said Yes without even thinking. Well we were not told due to both of us not saying Yes. But really I didn’t want to know I thought later. 😃

October 14, 2016

we didn’t know for our first and I loved that in the delivering room my husband asked: AND? WHAT IS IS? in a kind of frozen hurry. the nurse told him to come and see. I had to wait until he crossed the room to tell. I keep a very fond memory of all this. For our second pregnancy (surprise twins….) we were to shocked and stressed out to add this incognita.

October 14, 2016

Nothing beats the surprise. My first was a surprise and it was such an incentive to push through labour to then ask what is it? I found out with my second and felt like a cheated in an exam. I would never find out again if I have a third, the surprise was so special and exciting.

October 14, 2016

I am super curious so i really had to know with my two pregnancies. When i hear friends of my who keep the gender a suprise i really like the idea of not knowing. But I guess i am too curious for that 😀

Lottie S
October 14, 2016

It’s wonderful to keep it a surprise!! It’s almost harder not to find out these days!! The Christmas present analogy is so true! We didn’t find out with any of our three and LOVED the surprise when they were born.

I was convinced that my third was a boy, and couldn’t believe it when we had a girl a few weeks ago. My other children are so happy – they’d thought all along the baby was a girl, and now love to remind me how they were right, and I was wrong!

Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy Courtney! x

October 14, 2016

on the first I was more curious but was really happy that I only find out at our second ultrasond, at 22 weeks.
but I always had on my mind that what’s done is done so we can’t really do nothing to change the gender, so sooner or later you will know…
on the second I tried to convince my husband not to find out, on the ultrasound the doctor turned the screen and didn’t say anything but gave us a closed envelope – he knew most people are curious…
my husband couldn’t wait… he wanted do know, and so we did,a few days later, but we kept it to our selfs a little longer.
I really enjoy the feeling of keeping that secret for longer, it’s like it’s just your thing, your super sweet secret thing.

October 14, 2016

With the first two we really didn’t and similarly went to scans with eyes and ears firmly shut so as not to find out. Funnily enough though I just ‘knew’ what each baby would be but kept it to myself (and was right both times – mother’s intuition?). With this current pregnancy – which was a little bit of a surprise – I felt that I needed to know. I found the first few months very hard, both because I was quite ill and because this wasn’t something we had planned. Your pregnancy announcement post really resonated with me Courtney, as I had been feeling exactly the same. But once we saw that little person on the screen anxiety turned to excitement, and knowing her gender just enhances that. We had to wait until the 20 week scan though – no blood test is offered on the NHS here in the UK that I am aware of. What I like is that we have the choice now – if we want to find out we can, but if we don’t want to that’s OK too. That choice is empowering, whichever way it is executed.

October 14, 2016

I think it is funny how people say they want to wait until they have the baby to find out because they want to be surprised. It is a surprise to find out what your baby’s gender is if you find out early or later. You never really know what you’re having until you go to the doctor. I found out at my 20 week appointment with all of mine and I was happily surprised every time. 🙂

October 14, 2016

We didn’t find out with our girls either! There’s something so special and old-fashioned about not knowing beforehand! Besides I say it gave me extra motivation to “push!” 😉

October 14, 2016

I am also with you 🙂

We had our first and we also had a “surprise” baby. At the hospital they were so excited that it was a “surprise” 🙂

In our group of friends that were having a baby in the same year, we were the only ones that decided to not-know.
We thought it was actually more common, but it turns out that that friends of friends were checking their baby sex as soon as possible…

We were alone on this adventure :/ some close members of the family didn’t accept well this decision and even decided not to give any gift before birth as sign of disagreement.
Some friends also didn’t understood why we did not wanted to know, and were bugging us a lot and making many questions…
most of them decide to know the sex as soon as possible and decide the name also as soon as possible (all new parents, none with a older brother or sister at home to make a smooth transition)

anyway, I love it and will do it again!!
congratulations for your new baby 🙂

ps: I love your kids names 🙂

Mallika Dsylva
October 14, 2016

In Indian, it is illegal to find out the gender of our babies till they are born, because of the old custom of female infanticide (on finding out that is a girl, most old fashioned traditional families who prefer boys, abort the baby) so we have always known that e couldn’t find out, and that makes me deliciously happy to know that I’m going to get a wonderful surprise. Husband and I just only keep saying that we want a healthy baby when we are asked what gender we hope for. (Although I know secretly my hubs who comes from a family of many many brothers really wants a house full of little daughters to dote on)

October 14, 2016

With our three pregnancies, it was very important for us not to know what we were having. We felt giddy with the excitement of the big day…because boy or girl, we were over the moon.

When we had our first, the midwife told my husband that he would tell me the gender when the baby was first delivered. I will never forget hearing his voice choked up, in awe, “it’s a boy”! It was the most special moment and for the next two babies, we made sure that he was the one to tell me the gender. I never would have thought of that when we prepared for our first delivery and I’m so grateful to that midwife for creating an unforgettable tradition for us.

All the best wishes to you Courtney!

October 14, 2016

We LOVED having a surprise. It was so exciting!

As a midwife I feel that the trend is heading back towards not finding out. I will look forward to your news…

Courtney in London
October 16, 2016

Oh that’s so interesting that you’ve noticed the trend reversing! x

October 14, 2016

I found out with my first, but my husband wanted surprise for our second. I agreed, reluctantly. Even when he was born I said, if we ever have a third child, I’m definitely finding out, I hated not knowing! However, reading all of these comments about the thrill of the surprise is making me reconsider…not that I’m pregnant, just dreaming 😂

Shannon Schnurr
October 14, 2016

I love the surprise too! I didn’t want to find out with my first 2 and if we have a 3rd I’d wait and find out as well. My favorite moment from giving birth to my first was having them put the baby on my chest after a very challenging delivery, looking at her, and then turning to my husband and telling him “it’s a girl”.

October 14, 2016

We had three surprised and then when pregnant with Annika I was adamant she was going to be a girl – third girl in a row. We decided to find out simply because we were sure it was going to be our last baby and we didn’t know what finding out was like. So we did! I didn’t really feel any different about it – if anything it helped get zakused to the fact he was going to have three sisters and no brothers – he was pretty devastated but by the time she arrived that disappointment was gone (now that she is older though that disappointment returns frequently when they gang up on him! Ha!) with Zak I let Steve find out first and tell me; with Layla it was me who told Steve and with Imogen my mum was in the room too so she told us. It was nice to share it around. It took ages after annika’s birth before we thought to look and double check she was in fact a girl! Enjoy your fifth surprise! X

October 14, 2016

So many good reasons to find out AND to not find out. I found out with my first two (both daughters). We plan to go for #3 one day, but I don’t think we will find out this last time. We’d be delighted with either sex, but in case it is another girl, I don’t want to deal with the comments. (Oh were you trying for a boy? Are you disappointed? Does your husband want to try for another?). If I didn’t know and the baby was just there, people would just gush over the baby instead of saying ignorant things. Those comments are really laughable but when your pregnant, it’s easy to feel really sensitive about such commentary!

Joanne Richardson
October 14, 2016

It should definitely be baby’s secret. I never found out before having my 2 girls…as you’s such a lovely surprise to find out when your baby is born (the suspense also helps you push that little bit harder!) Good luck with everything, you have a beautiful family 🙂

October 15, 2016

Yes, every pregnancy so far we wanted to know. I’m a very curious person haha so I can’t keep myself together not knowing what gender is growing inside of me. But… I do love surprise as well but waiting for 9 months? I can’t do that. I love your comparison with heist as but that’s just waiting for a few days. This is too long for me 🙂

October 15, 2016

We’re with you!

My husband and I didn’t want to know and we’re at 38 weeks today! Not long until we find out now!

Hope you’re feeling well

Shelley x

Courtney in London
October 16, 2016

Oooh amazing! Those final weeks are so magical – the anticipation is one of my most favourite things!
Sending you happy and peaceful birthing vibes. xx

October 15, 2016

I didn’t find out with the first two and they were both boys. I found out with my third because 1. I knew it would be my last and practically I wanted to know if I could throw out the boy stuff or keep it! and 2. I was tired of people asking if I was hoping for a girl. (I wasn’t, truly). I just wanted a healthy baby and so after I found out my third was a boy I enjoyed telling people and assured them that I was delighted to have a third amigo to join the family! Surprises are fun but I guess it is always a surprise at some point, whether it be 10 weeks or 20 or 40! 🙂 I only just now read the comment above and we have the inverse situation. But in the end I found out and she didn’t for pretty much the same reason. haha!

October 15, 2016

I had to find out, and it’s funny, it doesn’t ruin the surprise a bit- it’s still the greatest most magical surprise of all time when you find out, whether the first time is in the delivery room holding your beautiful baby or in the sonogram room the first time you see your baby ❤️❤️ That said, both times, I knew in my heart I was having a little boy! And I loved being able to plan, lay out clothes, decorate, etc… you really can’t go wrong either way, can you.

October 15, 2016

I found the emotional aspect of giving birth and having a new baby so overwhelming, actually too overwhelming. I didn’t find out the sex with our first, but it just made the day of the birth too overwhelming for me. Don’t get me wrong, I loved being pregnant and I loved my baby but the whole uncertainty of being a new parent was beyond me. I think choosing to find out the sex prior to the birth can, for some of us, calm down some of those uncertain emotions.

October 15, 2016

Knowing or not knowing, it could not ruin the magical moment of meeting our newborn baby. It is after all a more or less 50-50 probability, not that a big surprise in my opinion. In 3 pregnancies, I have known and not-known and it did not make any difference for me and my husband. We were just so grateful to enjoy a healthy baby that we did not pay attention to gender for a while, knowing or not-knowing. I do understand why parents want to know or not-know, not worth of a big debate. We can’t go wrong either way, right? Enjoy your surprise!

Rachel | The Little Pip
October 16, 2016

I have 2 children and didn’t find it either time although the second time I “knew” it was a boy because he seemed so much bigger than my daughter. And I was right. He was 10lb 8oz!

Andrea R
October 17, 2016

I only managed to read this now, but I was very interested to read your view. It’s interesting you say most people want to find out. I am not sure if it is within our circles or not, but I noticed the other trend. Most of our friends and family had surprises. We had a surprise the first time, as I wanted to know it only at the magical moment when I met my baby first. And, I also wanted to avoid gender specific presents, as I much more prefer gender neutral clothes for babies, i.e. white, grey, navy, browns etc.
My main argument which convinced my husband was, we’ll know long enough once the baby is born whether boy or girl, so why spoil the magic?
We did find out with the second one, as my husband was too curious and I thought I went my way the first time. Yet, we kept it private irrespectively, as again, I did not want to be showered in countless gender specific gifts. The beauty of it was indeed, we did not get unneccessary pieces that got never used. People tend to be more thoughtful of gifts when they have more limited choices and we received less as well, which is what I prefer anyway.
Both decisions had their pros and cons, but in the end what mattered was a healthy and happy baby.
Good luck with your pregnancy and your upcoming adventures here in Down Under!

Andrea R
October 17, 2016

Oh, and I forgot. My godson was predicted to be a girl according to the sancs. So the parents set themselves up for a girl, to find out a month before his arrival that the doctor was wrong. I know the new test is bullet proof, but just imagine you have to reorganise your carfuly selected girly pieces because of a medical error :-/

October 17, 2016

During my second pregnancy, we were sure we were having a second boy and as we were on our way to hospital, we finished our choice for the girl name. At the second, we said OK for Louise, the water broke down and I went immediately on the very end of the delivery.

When I realised that, I took off my trousers and underwear and said to my husband that we would have our baby in the car. He said “we are not on TV” but a few minutes later, he parked the car. He ran on my side, opened my door and Louise fall on his hand. He looked at me with a “regard” I had never seen before and asked “what are we doing now and our baby is a girl ?” I took my tee shirt off and Louise rested on me till the ambulance arrived to take us to hospital. Our daughter is now 4 and she knows that she was born on the road during an extraordinary adventure. And I will remember the emotion I got this evening till the end of my life.
Virginie (French mother of two 4 and 6)

Courtney in London
October 17, 2016

Oh what an incredible story! Wow, wow, wow!! What a way to find out your baby’s gender! xx

October 20, 2016

I am pregnant with our third child. We have a boy and a girl already, and we found out the gender with both. With this third (and most likely our last) baby, both my husband and I are quite content to wait until birth! Since this was a surprise pregnancy, we find it fitting for the gender to be a surprise too:)

October 24, 2016

I never asked for my three pregnancies. So excited for you!!

Nicola Friend {}
October 25, 2016

I feel the same as you, I really don’t want to know, really looking forward to finding out as nature intended on the day when he/she arrives! But all of the midwives have been really surprised that we don’t want to know so it must be getting less and less common. The funny thing is, the people on the other side of the fence can’t understand why we wouldn’t find out!

October 26, 2016

We never found out the gender for our two kids. For me it is one of those last magical things we can’t have control upon and i wanted to experience it like that. After labour, that moment when you discover your baby, the excitement “oh my God it is a girl” “oh my God it is a boy”…one of the best surprises in a lifetime. Why would you not to experience it?

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