Pregnancy: How Gender Disappointment Healed me
By DeAnna Houston
Gender disappointment is defined as feeling of depression or anxiety experienced by an expectant parent when the sex of the baby does not match his or her preferencere. to a parent being disappointed in the gender of their child. This term is used by psychologist providers Therapist. There are even support groups for gender disappointment
It took me a very long time to get pregnant the first time. Four years to be exact. The first year we tried to get pregnant naturally. The second year we began fertility treatment, which included medicated cycles, six IUIs, and one cycle I got blood work for 14 consecutive days to try to figure out a solution. The third year I went the holistic route seeing an acupuncturist, taking Chinese herbs and changing my diet. The fourth year we went back to fertility treatments which included egg retrievals, two IVF‘s cycle, which finally ended with a twin pregnancy!
During those four years, I only dreamt of having little girl. I hung pictures of her on my vision boards and around my house. I even meditated envisioning her in my arms.
When I found out I was pregnant with twins I knew that at least one had to be a girl. There is no way that I would’ve gone four years of struggling, heartbreak, exacerbating all of my strength and it not end up with a girl.
We decided that my husband would find out the gender of the twins and surprise me with a private gender reveal. He set up the cutest surprise for me. He made it like a game show and had two doors in the nursery with ballons and a small wooden signs.
The first one reveal boy. When the second one reveal boy I cried and remember saying out loud "oh no" over and over again. I was hysterical. My husband replied "I knew you would be upset, but I didn't think you would be this upset." I cried for the next five days.
I eventually pulled myself out of that hole and decided to focus on gratitude for these two boys in my life. For the time being, I let go of the dreaming of my girl.
After the twins were born, I was so in love! The were absolutely perfect and I could never imagined it being any other way. I love being their mom. The way that they look at me, the way they run to me, the way that they sit on my lap and hug around my neck. There is no doubt that they love their mama.
When the boys were 18 months old, I naturally got pregnant. My husband and I were shocked. We weren’t trying and had not made a decision if we wanted any more children or not. But we embraced the news and started getting excited thinking about all of the girl names. It could not possibly be another boy.
I am pretty intuitive. And each time I would tap into the energy around my belly, I just knew it was feminine energy. I knew that my girl and finally arrived.
Since my husband found out the genders last time, we decided that this time I would find out and surprise him. I took a blood test, and when I received the results I logged in right away to find out the results right. There was a moment right before I clicked the results that my stomach was upset and I all of a sudden did not want to look. As soon as I did, I saw it was a male. My heart sunk and I instantly started crying.
In that moment, I did not want to continue on with the pregnancy. I hate admitting this. I felt such guilt. I should have been grateful for the natural pregnancy that I had hoped for years. But my dream of having a girl was over. My heart was a was broken.
I wanted to to raise my girl to be strong, to be sure of herself and confident, to stand up for herself, to love herself deeply and to truly believe in herself. I wanted to teach her everything that I missed out learning early in life.
I spent the next two weeks deeply depressed. I was disconnected from the baby and did not know how to move past this. I journaled, I meditated, I saw my acupuncturist, I talked to my best friends but nothing was helping. I was still so sad.
It wasn’t until I talked to my therapist and she brought to my attention the real issue surrounding this gender disappointment was that I needed to heal myself and that even if I had a baby girl I would never deeply be happy because I was not happy with myself.
She told me to start doing inner child work. Start imagining myself at different ages and having conversations with that little girl. Showing her love, acceptance and healing what hurt her at that age. It was work and not fun at times, but it was something I needed to do my whole life.
The work is not complete yet but I’ve dedicated a lot of time to healing my inner child to healing all the wounds that happened in my past to excepting them into finding forgiveness strength and really healing and holding space for that little girl. She was the one I needed she was the one, I needed this whole time.