Apparently I’ve reached the pinnacle of reproduction. I might need to get some business cards made up or something. Maybe produce a line of t-shirts. I definitely need to advertise my skills in some way.
Lauren Dubois, journalist, writer, pigeon pair producer.
It’s a talent I didn’t realise I had but I’m assured I’m “very clever” for conceiving a daughter when I already have a two-year-old son.
When I announced I was having a girl, people were genuinely THRILLED.
I mean, I knew people wanted me to have a girl. I’ve already got a boy and I knew if I announced I was having another one the reactions would’ve been…. less. There’d be a slight tone of commiseration. I’d get the consolation prize comment of “at least your son will have fun with his little brother” with a faint whiff of “never mind, you can try for a girl next time”.
But I’ve achieved the perfect boy/girl combo so all I got when I told people was pure excitement and repeated commendations on my ‘cleverness’. People assume I must be extra happy this one is a girl.
You see, having one of each is the ultimate goal (apparently). Two of a kind is sort of ok but obviously not as satisfying as a pigeon pair. Three of a kind is a DISASTER in which the parents must be living a half-life of disappointment and deprivation because they’ve failed to produce an even distribution of children.
It baffles me that people are so invested in the make up of other people’s families. Bus drivers, shop assistants, randoms in the local park… they all have opinions about how happy or sad you must be with the kids you’ve got. Like it affects them in some way.
I’ve been told people actually turn up to visit mothers in hospital to pass on their condolences over a third son or daughter. “I’m so sorry” or “maybe next time” or even “you must be so disappointed”… Don’t even get me started on the reactions to the fourth or fifth of a kind. A black veil and dark glasses would be required.
Too many boys means too much dirt, noise and OH MY GOD the food bills. Too many girls means bitching and fighting and dad needs to get a shotgun etc. etc. cliché, cliché. It’s positively SIDE-SPLITTING. Oh my, let me sit down before I wet myself.
Look, gender disappointment is a real thing. Some mums and dads do have a preference, especially if they’ve already got a few of a kind. It’s completely understandable because it does affect the dynamic of their family.
But the disappointment, acceptance and eventual joy in welcoming a new baby boy or girl belongs to the parents and the parents alone. It has zero impact on anyone else. And it doesn’t make it easier for them when everyone else has a smart arsed comment about it.
I’ve learnt the ‘clever’ pigeon pair mums don’t escape the comments either.
It appears I must be done with the child bearing. Once you’ve got a pigeon pair, you simply mustn’t produce any further children. It’s selfish and unacceptable. WHY would you want any more children when you’ve got your boy AND your girl you greedy, ungrateful glory hog?
Even my obstetrician said “well done! You don’t need to do this again!” even though she’s technically doing herself out of some future business.
Just so we’re clear, I had no say about what I’m getting. We do know that, right? I mean, I’ve gotz skillz, but choosing the flavour of child I produce is not one of them.
It’s one of those great levellers in society. You get what you get and you don’t get upset. It doesn’t matter who you are or how talented you may be, it’s a total lucky dip.
I am, of course, thrilled to be having a little girl. But, the thing is, I would’ve been thrilled to be having a little boy.
GASP! She lies!
Nope, I’m serious. I wanted to have another baby to have another BABY. Not a girl, not a boy, just another human being we could love and cherish and raise as part of our family. Most of all, I wanted a sibling for my son. Part of me is a tiny bit sad he’s not getting a brother. I worry he won’t be as close to his sister as he would have been to a brother.
But, you never know, I might really piss people off and go for a third.
Do you have a pigeon pair? Do you understand why people are so obsessed with having at least one of each?
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I think there is no such thing as the perfect family (except maybe two of each with BBGG or GGBB so everyone gets a same gendered close in age sibling but then again they still may not be close and you will have to buy a bigger car too)
I do envy pigeon pairs and I use the term pigeon pair though I have now dropped the third ‘P’ word perfect from it. PPP lol.
I have three boys and I think they are perfect together. I was thrilled to have a boy first and wanted a second until I found out I was having identical twins and we only planned on three children and I did always feel like raising both genders was important to me.
The reason I used to be jeolous of the blessing of having one of each is that if you do want both genders you really can have as many children as you want children, not just trying to get that other gender. That must be horrible pressure!
It may not be the best for the kids though with the parent getting ‘the prefect family they wanted’
My boys are such a tight knit close bunch and love each other so much. My twins are their big brothers little ‘twinions’ and they think he is the most amazing person on the planet. They play so so well together-for ages now, Gosh I love them!
My partner has a little Sister and they are super close too though so I know it is not always just up to gender.
I do sometimes wonder if I have been dealt a harder life than other parents with three boys so close in age and a partner who works alot because they need to burn off so much energy to be able to sleep at night and the twins are nearly 4 and I can fully see their testosterone boost arriving and they often accidently hurt me with love. I wouldn’t change them though and although I still want a girl, if I could get pregnant now and garuntee one I would say “No thank you!”
I may change my mind one day but not anytime soon. It is not about stereotypes as I was a tomboy, it is just about what I took for granted would happen my whole life and it can be hard to re-adjust. It is more about completing my family because someone is yet to join it, not that a set of steriotypical experiences are missing.
Congrats on your amazing family. Enjoy them 🙂
When I saw your gender reveal my first thought was, “Well she doesn’t need to have any more children now HAHAHA” because I’ve read your posts and know how much you’d hate to hear that :p The way people talk about which gender they need makes it sound like their children are accessories and they need the right kind to match their lifestyle or something. And so much of it involves massive gender stereotyping, too – I heard of this guy who said he either wanted a boy or a lesbian so he could play sport with his first child. I mean that child is going to be on the planet for 70 or 80 years, how much of that time are you going to spend playing football? Or dressing in pink in the case of a girl?? Your children are not toys ffs!
I was convinced I was having a girl this time, absolutely convinced. I’ve thought that with both my previous babies (both boys) but this one I was absolutely 100% convinced and even had her name picked out. And my skin was bad! Girls do that, don’t they?? So yeah it’s another boy. I was disappointed for about a day and then I was like meh. So what? My 3yo changes his teddy bear’s nappies and takes a tiny stuffed dog to bed after he carefully swaddled it and tells me it’s ‘so cute!’ My 16mo likes sweeping and vacuuming. They play together basically all day and don’t bother me for hours at a time. I have absolutely nothing to complain about.
Apart from the toilet paper they dumped on the living room floor, and the fact that there’s a box of bicarb in my bed. But apart from that….
Oh God Madeleine, you are so right! They are human beings who’ll be around for a lot longer than a few years of tutu wearing or football kicking. What a great way to look at it. They are SO NOT accessories.
And if it makes you feel any better, I’ve heard girls are just as dirty as boys… 😉
P.S the bad skin would have convinced me too. My skin has been horrendous this time around. And I’m so much fatter. I keep blaming it on the fact I’m having a girl. Poor little thing!
Lauren, given that number 2 is still in the oven, I’m guessing that number 3 is still an entirely abstract concept, but I have one word of warning for you: twins.
The universe has a sick sense of humour so beware!
Argh!! No thank you!!! I tip my hat to the mums of multiples but I would hate that!
I have a pigeon pair and people even wrote in the cards I received “your family is now complete” Thank you for deciding that for me I thought reading them.
Haha! As in – YOU MUST NOT PRODUCE ANY MORE CHILDREN. Did your first child not make you feel complete? You had to have your second? And what would a third child do? Overflow?
People are odd
During my second pregnancy I was repeatedly told by my mother in law that I was having a girl (first child is a boy) and I really must want a girl. I can honestly say that my husband and I truly did not have a preference, as unlike so many couples we were blessed to be able to conceive. Why when it is nothing short of a miracle to conceive, carry a child to term, and birth a healthy baby is the gender of the child such a big issue? So many people would give their heart and soul to have a child, full stop.
We had a boy whom we of course adore, interestingly mother in law regularly mispronounces his name (Caleb) and never remembers the date of his birthday, just knows it’s around October/ November (November actually). She only has six grandchildren and he’s the youngest, who would have thought that was too hard to remember!
How do you mispronounce Caleb? It’s not exactly a bizarre name! How sad she couldn’t be more excited for her baby grandson Kim.
I was over the moon to find out our second was a boy as I had kept all of our eldest’s clothes – wardrobe complete! No need to buy a thing 🙂 I still get comments of “so you’re trying for a girl next?”, and “poor you, just boys. You must want a daughter too?” I’ve learnt to restrain myself from slapping these people….
Ugh, it’s just rude Emma. And it’s so awful to your second son. It’s suggesting he was a disappointment or something.
I really have no idea what all the fuss is about either. It’s not like we have any control over it what so ever. You get what you get and you don’t get upset (as my three year old tells me). I had the perfect pigeon pair and then I totally ruined it by having a third, hahaha!!
Robyn, the whole “perfect” thing makes me want to have a third just to be a little bit of a rebel. A pigeon pair just feels so neat and I feel like I might need to mess it up a bit 😉
Oh god, I deadset wanted to slap my mother when I came from the ultrasound. When I told her it was a boy she went “Oh. That’s disappointing. I was hoping you’d get your girl”. WTF. It took 5 years of infertility and IVF to have my first boy. When I fluked my second boy naturally in between IVF cycles I was so far over the moon you wouldn’t believe it. To be told that he was a disappointment made me FURIOUS, because it was the complete opposite to the way I was feeling. I was ECSTATIC. But my mother who had two oops babies to make a pigeon pair thought this was somehow important. EYEROLL.
Whoops. A few too many caps there. Issues much?
Oh, ouch. That’s incredibly insensitive. Was it a case of verbal diarrhoea or did she really mean it? I’d hold a grudge big time over that.
Isn’t it weird how some people think? We decided to only have one, and I couldn’t believe how it upset so many people, and not the ones I really cared about!
Huge congratulations on your awesome achievement of having a healthy BABY, Lauren x
Hahaha, it’s like you’ve set out to personally upset people Lisa. How dare you only raise one child! It’s socially unacceptable!
I didn’t realise I was so clever! Actually isn’t it the male who provides the X or the Y and so determines the gender? So I guess I didn’t realise my husband was so clever!
We had a boy first and then we had a girl but honestly we would have been thrilled with another boy. Actually at the time I was hoping for another boy because that is what I knew. Plus the whole, go with your dad down to the park to kick a ball and leave mom here to sip a coffee and look at a magazine aspect of two boys seemed appealing.
But the thing is, whatever you have, you don’t know any different so you can’t compare!
That’s true actually, it is up to the bloke! So I guess my hubby is the clever one too.
A huge congratulations on your BABY, boy or girl 🙂 There’s something about having a baby that seems to make people think they have the right to comment on every aspect of the pregnancy and then your child rearing. So frustrating! I used to get a lot of “she’s crying because she’s hungry”, “she looks cold, she needs a hat!” ARGH! Enough with ALL the comments, NONE of them are necessary. Enjoy your pregnancy, can’t wait for more updates 🙂
So true Christine. The comments never stop. Everyone has an opinion about EVERYTHING!!!
I wont lie, when I found out that I was having boy number 3 I did weep a little. Only because I new it was my last and well I always pictured myself with at least one girl. I kept that to myself though and God help anyone who showed me any sympathy though because as far as anyone else was concerned I was proud of my 3 boys and I would have punched someone if they dared to say ‘sorry’. xx
Oh Sonia, god help anyone who dishes out the pity over your perfect children! I mean, you’re allowed to have a moment of sadness – not for the child you’re getting but for the child you’re not getting – but if anyone else says anything about your precious baby… WATCH OUT.
God the expectations are endless… When are you getting engaged; when are you getting married; when are you having a baby; when are you giving him/her a play mate? In my case “Surely you are not going to stop at ONE?” Oh the horror! Xx
So true Sandra! It’s an endless list people are waiting to tick off. Get engaged, get married, have babies… and god forbid you take your time doing any of those things. We waited 7 years to have a baby after getting married. It really pissed people off!
Haha I don’t even know what to write!!! Congratulations on your amazing reproduction abilities lol !!
I am so beyond caring what people think of my family make up….we’d love em no matter their gender so that’s all that matters to me!
I can only imagine the comments you get!!!
How frustrating is it when people expect you to have a certain gender, like the other isn’t good enough! We have a girl and my BIL just announced he and his girlfriend are having a boy so ‘now the bloodline can continue’… like having our girl wasn’t good enough 🙁 My mother in law also told me ‘boys are the only good ones’ at my baby shower… nice hey!
WHAT!? Who says something like that? Boys are the only good ones? What the hell?? Lu, I would have slapped her!
Isn’t it fascinating how your bump is now everyone’s business and that they’ve all got an opinion about it? I think the point as you so rightly point out,what really matters here is that you’re bringing a healthy and happy baby into the world, whatever it’s gender. As for Thud, I think he’d have loved his sibling hard whatever the gender. I’m not sure about Pigeon Pair, I think when Thud and his little sis team up, they’re going to be a Formidable Pair! The power of two!
I’m almost worried about the formidable pair Sammie! I’m going to be outnumbered. Scary!
I recently had a mum telling me how lucky I am to not only have a pigeon pair, but to have a girl first. Apparently that is the ideal and she wishes that she had had that, rather than a boy first then a girl. What do you say to that? I adore who I was blessed with, but no matter what I got I can’t imagine wishing for something else. I hope your little chickadee is being good to you. Don’t kick mama too hard!
Jesus that’s really sad Kirralee! I can’t believe she actually said that out loud.
And she’s kicking the crap out of me. I thought, being a girl she might be a bit more gentle than her brother but she’s just as rough and never seems to sleep. Crazy child number 2!
I’ve got 2 girls and I was happy with whatever we got my husband was trying all sorts of weird things to get a boy (which clearly didn’t work) as at the time it seemed important to him but he’s delighted with our girls now. I think perhaps he was given girls to learn some lessons??? who knows.
Hahaha, maybe they have Vicki! I’m sure he’s beyond besotted with them now.
This is awesome. I think if we have a second I will just lie and tell people we don’t know to avoid at least 10% of the pregnancy judgement. Although I do like the idea of a cute gender announcement.
I seriously considered keeping it a secret Toni!
Totally baffles me too why complete strangers what to have an opinion and say about essentially personal business.
I have a girlfriend who had 5 sons before a girl and this “going for a girl and going to stop now” maddens her no end. As a Mum who certainly has had more children than three;) I say “go for three and bemuse them all::)
Oh I can imagine it’s ALL anyone says to your friend, Erin. She must find it infuriating!
I get the pigeon pair comment ALL the time. From the moment my little Mr popped out. And I do love having one of each and getting to experience all the boy and girl things but would have been equally happy with all girls or all boys. We are done at 2 but I do wonder that if we had of had 2 girls if I would have felt different about having a third? Will never know I guess. Xx
I’m actually thinking I might like three now because I like the idea of having two of a kind…. but I could totally change my mind when this little girl arrives. She could be a horror!
I’m expecting a baby boy Lauren (about as far along as you are I think) and already have a girl and I’m getting all the same comments. Yes it’s exciting but we would have been happy either way 🙂
Congrats Lauren! Another procreation genius 😉
I love your gender reveal photos! Brilliant!! I am happy with my lot. I wonder if people think I’m clever or not? I had twin boys first up and when they were just over two I then had a daughter. When I had my daughter people were relieved for me and assumed I was then done. I had both sexes at last after all! I was then done (because I was exhausted!) and I was thrilled I had a daughter but a healthy baby was truly my only desire! 🙂
Oh naturally Min, because you had a girl you couldn’t possibly have any more kids! People make so many assumptions.
Two girls here (which is what I always wanted… But boys would have been good too lol). We knew we were having another girl & perfectly happy about it. Got a few next time comments but the worst was when I was having crazy braxton hicks at bro in laws 21st, possible pre-labour & 99% sure it was a girl from a late scan. One guest & family friend said good luck, hopefully it’s a boy after all. OMG!
Oh god that’s rude Holly. I had a comment similar to that when I was pregnant with my son. I had a ‘friend’ say (quite eagerly) “maybe the doctor made a mistake!” because she’d been hoping we were having a girl. It was my first baby… I didn’t care what I was getting, but it seemed to matter to her. So so rude.
My husband had this premonition that we’d only have girls, and while the pigeon pair is awesome, I’m happy and delighted with my family. I, like you, just wanted another healthy baby. I didn’t really care what was or wasn’t between their legs. Comments will always be far and varied. I now get… so are you going to go for a fourth to try for a boy and I say no because I’m cut and tied and I will get my sons when my girls get married.
Plus, you could keep going forever trying to get a boy. You could end up with 8 girls! That’s a lot of gambling just in an effort to get a particular gender.
I had no idea until recently that people were so committed to the ideal of a boy and girl in every family (I was from a family of 3 girls…must have been oblivious to the heartache of everyone who saw us). I had slightly wanted girls because I wanted to replicate my happy childhood, but as soon as I had my son that idea just seemed ludicrous. He was so much himself and wonderful. I was then a little concerned (like you) that a boy and girl might not be as close but really looking around every family dynamic is no way determined by gender. Some kids are close to their siblings and parents and some aren’t for so many other factors beside gender. I bet you start seeing lots of close brother/sister pairs everywhere now!
And although I agree gender disappointment seems to be a real thing for some people, it’s a bit dangerous I think to be uber-committed to seeing one gender as being the one to fulfil your dreams as the baby will be an individual personality and you are more likely to be disappointed if you have a fixed idea of what that will be – your boy might hate sport, your daughter might not be communicative etc. Plus practically you really could keep having babies for a long time before randomly getting your desired gender!
And like you say it’s even WEIRDER that other people care so much. Perhaps they think they have to police the gender balance of society and that it actually depends on one of each in each family?! Also they are living in a strange world if they think you can control your child’s gender if you are clever enough!
Exactly Emma, there are no guarantees that you’ll get a girly girl or a bloke boy. They’re all little individuals.
I so hate the term pigeon pair. When we found out number 2 was a girl I cringed every time someone said it. I wanted two boys, well I thought I did. Wouldn’t change Leni for the world, though she is showing signs of crazy already and I swear she achieves dirty far faster than Ari ever did.
Hahaha, just because you get a girl, doesn’t mean you get a lady! Go Leni!!
I have 2 girls and a boy, and I can’t count the number of times people have said to me “Oh, you must have been thrilled you finally got your boy” – as though there was any skill and/or planning involved in the outcome. I never, ever cared whether I had boys or girls so I do find it a bit surprising. Anyway, ‘well done’ on your ‘achievement’, lol. Most importantly, I hope you’re feeling happy and well 🙂
It’s always the “you got your” comment isn’t it, Lara? Like you went hunting and bagged your prey or something.
Well I get told how SMART I am because I managed to have 2 of each. And to add to my intellect I had 2 girls then 2 boys boys “gosh you did well”… Yeah ok I had sex and this is what happened…
Bahahahahahaaaa…. Maybe you’re a sex genius Natalie!
Isn’t it strange?! I got the ‘smart’ comment too, after having a girl and then a boy. Turned out I was bloody stupid though, because I followed it up with another girl 😉 And no, I was not / am not going back to try again for another boy. I’m done!
Oh I get condolences all the time for having two boys! I hate to think how my friend feels having her 6th boy (no girls). I also got told I would be alone forever once they grew up and married and I HAD to try for a girl.
Oh, and for some reason more than one girl is far more acceptable in peoples opinions than more than one boy. Don’t even get me started! LOL
Totally agree with you Haidee. People seem to find multiple boys much more troublesome than girls. Why is that?
I was the opposite. I think that if I had had two boys or two girls upfront, I might have stopped there. x
I’m the same Bron! I think if I was having another boy I might have been done. But having a girl makes me think I might like to have three… not exactly sure why.
Haha flavour of children…love it. I have none, and no plans for any, which brings with it a whole other set of questions and looks.
Oh god Vanessa, I’m sure! People can’t keep their opinions to themselves when it comes to baby making. It’s insane.
you should have heard how disappointed people were for me when we found out our third baby was ANOTHER boy? Don’t mind the fact I had two miscarriages trying to convieve or that it had taken about two & half years or that we’d just gone through an amino test to make sure he didn’t have a disease that could kill hiim, just be sad that I’ll be lumped with a third son people! FFS!!!! If they had seen me drop to floor in tears & sheer relief when I got the phone call to say my 19 week embryo was 100% & would live past a few weeks old then maybe they would have kept their disappointment to themselves. But then in the flip side, when we told people our fourth baby was a GIRL you could have been mistaken for thinking we had won the lotto jackpot! Even my mum could hide her excitement for us. It was as if my life was complete & would have been over had I grown another healthy boy. Even now random strangers say to me ” how lucky you finally got a girl” or ” thank god you didn’t have to try a fifth time?” People are jerks. Babies are awesome.
It makes me feel sad for your sons Reannon. Like they weren’t worth as much as your daughter. Every single child should be celebrated like you’ve just won lotto. ESPECIALLY when it’s been such a tough road to conceive.
Me too, especially when they say ” how great you finally for a girl ” in front of my older boys. They are teenagers, they get it & it pisses me off because I would have been happy with whatever. I just wanted healthy kids.
It baffles me as to why people make stupid comments when you obviously can’t pick, what response are they expecting? I just have the one at the moment and honestly would be wrapped with either the second time around. I’m one of three girls and I always remember mum telling me the horrid comments her and dad received ‘are you disappointed.’ Yep my dad probably went through hell living with 4 women but seriously people?
Why do people always pity fathers with daughters? Like every man needs a son to be whole. So strange.
This is so true. AS a mum to 2 little girls I can flabbergasted how many people say ‘oohhh wouldn’t it have been nice to have a boy’ or ‘Are you going to try again so you have a boy’. I am very happy with 2 girls and to be honest happy not to pop out another watermelon for the sake of getting a boy. Hope you are feeling ok and the photos looks just gorgeous!
I find it so dismissive when people say that Caroline… like your second daughter wasn’t good enough so you’ll have to try again. Rude.
With my first, I was positive she was a boy. Nope. Second time around, I was positive it was a boy. Nope. 2 girls. All I heard was how lucky I was because boys are apparently awful. You know what? I would have loved a little son. But it wasn’t to be. I do understand gender disappointment to a degree, because I felt that way, however fleetingly. In the end, I’m more than happy to have 2 girls and I don’t think I’ve failed by not having one of each.
Of course you haven’t failed. You have two beautiful children. You’re amazing Amy!