My Husband Wanted to Know the Gender of Our Baby But I Didn’t

The nicknames for Benjamin are endless – Ben, Benny, Banjo, you name it. It’s a name with historical significance while still popular today. Even without shortening it, Benjamin transitions smoothly from a child’s name to an adult’s.

“Do you know what you’re having?” “Boy or girl?”

These are the most obvious questions to ask an expecting woman and I heard them over and over again while pregnant. When I said I didn’t know and added the obligatory “As long as the baby is healthy” some people would offer their guess based on the way I was carrying.

I never wanted to know. I was satisfied to wait. I love a good surprise.

I chose yellow for the colour of the room and bought a red baby sleeper for the coming home outfit.
In my head, I knew what I hoped for, but I was more concerned with having a pain-free delivery. Besides it wasn’t like I could give the baby back or exchange him/her for a different sex.

There were times when I studied the ultrasound image trying to decipher the sex of that strange looking alien thingy inside me, but what did I know about reading ultrasounds?

You know who did know how to read an ultrasound because that’s his job? My husband.

My husband is a physician and there is no way he could look at the ultrasound and not know the sex of the baby. Reading ultrasounds is his job. I guess he could have chosen not to look at the image but of course as a first time Dad he wanted to make sure all the bits were in the right places.

So there it was, he knew the sex of our baby and I didn’t. He wanted to know, and I didn’t. And luckily, he never let it slip. As a doctor, he took an oath of patient confidentiality that apparently extended to pregnant wives and he never said a word. Nine months later I gave birth to a beautiful healthy baby girl.

Fast forward, 8 months later and I was pregnant again. This time I still didn’t want to know what I was having because in my heart I already knew. I was having another baby girl.

Again this time my husband looked at the ultrasound and was able to tell the sex of the baby but he never confirmed whether it was a boy or girl. He let me go on and on about how excited I was to be having another girl and how happy I was that my daughter would have a sister.

I was carrying this pregnancy completely differently but I justified that by thinking that I was working out during this pregnancy and it obviously affected my shape. I remember my best friend even commenting, “If we didn’t know you were having a girl I’d think you were having a boy from the way you are carrying.”

I went out and bought my daughter a very expensive first snowsuit because “her sister” would wear it the next year. And then baby number 2 came quick and easy.

Baby number 2 was not a girl.

I was so shocked when they said she was a he that I laughed and then I cried. I wasn’t disappointed.
I was shocked. Surprised and a bit confused, but mostly shocked.

It took me a few minutes to fully understand what was happening. My daughter’s sister was actually a brother? I wasn’t going to have two daughters I was now the mom of a boy?

Looking back, I love that I never knew the sex of the baby. I laugh at how I convinced myself I was having a girl. I got over my shock pretty quick when that beautiful blue-eyed baby boy looked up at me. He had chosen me to be his Mom and I can’t imagine not having a son now.

I’m not now and I was never disappointed that my daughter didn’t get a sister because the relationship my children have, even now as teenagers, is incredible. They are probably closer than sisters would be because they don’t fight over clothes.

Although, she happily shared her expensive pink snowsuit with him that next winter.


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