Author Topic: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"  (Read 16355 times)

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Allyson

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #30 on: October 13, 2012, 12:22:05 AM »
"Please don't ever say anything like that again, especially in front of her! We don't want her to hear that she's a disappointment, and we don't agree."

As a semi aside, the 'want a boy to carry on the name' thing makes a lot of assumptions. That a boy will marry, that he will marry a woman, that he will have children, that his child will have his last name and not his wife's. That any children a daughter might have would *not* have her last name. These things are not all true now, and they will probably be even less of a safe assumption 20 or 30 years from now. (I feel the same way about things like 'I want a boy so he can play football with me' or 'I want a girl so I can put her in pretty dresses'.)

LifeOnPluto

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #31 on: October 13, 2012, 01:44:47 AM »
"Please don't ever say anything like that again, especially in front of her! We don't want her to hear that she's a disappointment, and we don't agree."

As a semi aside, the 'want a boy to carry on the name' thing makes a lot of assumptions. That a boy will marry, that he will marry a woman, that he will have children, that his child will have his last name and not his wife's. That any children a daughter might have would *not* have her last name. These things are not all true now, and they will probably be even less of a safe assumption 20 or 30 years from now. (I feel the same way about things like 'I want a boy so he can play football with me' or 'I want a girl so I can put her in pretty dresses'.)

POD to the nth degree!

I'd reply with "Grandma, it's the 21st century. Women don't necessary have to take their husband's surnames upon marriage, and they can also give their children THEIR surname if they choose. So please bear in mind that DD's children may very well carry our surname."

Another thing to consider - the "passing on one's surname" thing is only as good as the next generation. So even if you DID have a son, he could very well have daughters (whose children then get their father's surname). So having a son is no guarantee that one's surname will endure for a long time.

AylaM

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #32 on: October 13, 2012, 07:58:05 AM »
People can get so weird about this.  My grandmother kept urging her sons to have boys.  Until this past coupe of years all of her grandchildren were female, and to my knowledge, her husband was an only child.  So she kept telling couples that they should have another one so that they could have a boy to carry on the family name.

But she was never crass enough to say anything about being disappointed once the gender was actually known.

That is not to say that she doesn't have her moments.  There was a particularly  :o moment when she told her very young (but not quite a newborn) granddaughter that she would be disowned if she dared to become a lesbian.

That being said, if grandma only said it once, upon finding out the gender,  I'd chalk it up to a moment of thoughtlessness. I'd not like it, but it wouldn't be a huge deal. But more than once I agree with previous posters that say she does it because she's been allowed to get away with it.

DistantStar

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #33 on: October 13, 2012, 10:30:17 AM »
"Please don't ever say anything like that again, especially in front of her! We don't want her to hear that she's a disappointment, and we don't agree."

I would drop the "please."  And I would say "She is not a disappointment!  She is our daughter!"  There would probably be fire coming out of my ears as well.

But for me this would be a hill to die on.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2012, 10:32:05 AM by DistantStar »

Allyson

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #34 on: October 13, 2012, 11:44:02 AM »
That is not to say that she doesn't have her moments.  There was a particularly  :o moment when she told her very young (but not quite a newborn) granddaughter that she would be disowned if she dared to become a lesbian.

...wow. I have to ask, what did everyone else say to that one?

Slartibartfast

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #35 on: October 13, 2012, 12:08:59 PM »
I got the opposite - a lady at church told me I was lucky our first child was a girl, so she can help me take care of all the others  ::)  (SO many assumptions in that statement!)

DH's grandmother was disappointed when we had two girls - FIL is an only child, DH is FIL's only biological child and only son (the SILs are DH's half-sisters), and we're not planning on any more kids.  DH's family has a tradition where the first boy in each generation shares the same first name - James Middlename Lastname - and they all go by their middle names.  We would have done James Ian if Bittybartfast had been a boy, but she's not so that's that.  GMIL likes the idea of little dresses and girly frou-frou, though, so if she's complained it's not to us  :)

Firecat

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #36 on: October 13, 2012, 12:17:01 PM »
"Please don't ever say anything like that again, especially in front of her! We don't want her to hear that she's a disappointment, and we don't agree."

I would drop the "please."  And I would say "She is not a disappointment!  She is our daughter!"  There would probably be fire coming out of my ears as well.

But for me this would be a hill to die on.

POD. I don't have children, but if I did, anyone who expressed disappointment about the gender would be having a deeply unpleasant conversation with me, on the spot. Having been on the receiving end of such comments when I was younger, I can testify that they do hurt, and they do get remembered.

So I would drop the please, and go with a very firm, preferably deadly cold voice, and say something like, "Do.Not.EVER. say anything like that again. She is our daughter, not a disappointment." Take the baby back (if necessary) and walk out of the room.

And if anyone else in the family is foolish enough to interfere with something like "that's just how Grandma is," tell them "Do you honestly think that the girls old enough to understand what she's saying aren't hurt by it? I will NOT have my daughter treated in that fashion." You may well get some flack for upsetting Grandma or rocking the boat, but be firm, and remind them that what Grandma said was very upsetting to you. Talk to your DH; he should be supporting you in this.

JoieGirl7

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #37 on: October 13, 2012, 12:18:12 PM »
Granma is not going to scar your child by making a comment like this.  Just tell your child the same things that others have been trying to tell you: "she doesn't mean it in a bad way, hers is a different generation, don't let it get to you."

You can tell her, of course, that you are offended by the comment and to please not voice around you, but schooling Granma on modern thought is not likely to do any good.

LadyClaire

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #38 on: October 13, 2012, 12:19:44 PM »
My MIL said similar things when my SIL got pregnant and they found out it was a boy. MIL has all grandsons, so was quite disappointed to discover that it was going to be yet another boy. She said something like "great..another stinking boy" when the gender was revealed. BIL has told DH and me that we'd better hope we have a girl when we get pregnant, just to placate MIL.

Firecat

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #39 on: October 13, 2012, 12:20:12 PM »
Granma is not going to scar your child by making a comment like this.  Just tell your child the same things that others have been trying to tell you: "she doesn't mean it in a bad way, hers is a different generation, don't let it get to you."

You can tell her, of course, that you are offended by the comment and to please not voice around you, but schooling Granma on modern thought is not likely to do any good.

I disagree completely. Grandma can continue to be a misogynist if she wants to...but she can also be trained to keep her mouth shut around the OP and her daughter.

jemma

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #40 on: October 13, 2012, 12:26:47 PM »
I'm not sure how old great grandma is, but it is worth remembering that the elderly often lose their inhibitions.  I think it would be mean to deny her access to her family if she is saying this type of thing due to the side effects of getting old.  If she said that when her sons had daughters I think being harsh is more justifiable, but as a mother of two daughters I would probably just explain that great grandma is old and doesn't think clearly, or she would know that your daughter is exactly who she is supposed to be.

gramma dishes

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #41 on: October 13, 2012, 12:28:01 PM »
...   "she doesn't mean it in a bad way, hers is a different generation, don't let it get to you."


I respectfully disagree.  I'm 70 and my Mom died seven years ago at the age of 98.  Her own parents (and my Dad's) died long before that, of course.  NONE of them would ever, ever, ever have said such a totally inappropriate thing.  The only thing that mattered was that the baby was okay.  So "different generation" has nothing to do with it.  Maybe it's a 'location' thing.

I think someone should tell Great Grandma that that reaction to baby girls (or any girl great grandchildren) is hurtful and terribly inappropriate and that she may be limiting her ability to see and interact with her girl grandchildren if she keeps spouting that nonsense.  By just accepting that "this is how she is" no one is giving her a chance to correct herself.  She isn't too old to learn.

JoieGirl7

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #42 on: October 13, 2012, 12:30:41 PM »
Granma is not going to scar your child by making a comment like this.  Just tell your child the same things that others have been trying to tell you: "she doesn't mean it in a bad way, hers is a different generation, don't let it get to you."

You can tell her, of course, that you are offended by the comment and to please not voice around you, but schooling Granma on modern thought is not likely to do any good.

I disagree completely. Grandma can continue to be a misogynist if she wants to...but she can also be trained to keep her mouth shut around the OP and her daughter.

Granma is not a dog to be trained.  You can request that someone  not voice certain things around you.  If they refuse you can take your leave of them.  But adults do not train each other.

Tea Drinker

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #43 on: October 13, 2012, 02:32:58 PM »
I'm not sure how old great grandma is, but it is worth remembering that the elderly often lose their inhibitions.  I think it would be mean to deny her access to her family if she is saying this type of thing due to the side effects of getting old.  If she said that when her sons had daughters I think being harsh is more justifiable, but as a mother of two daughters I would probably just explain that great grandma is old and doesn't think clearly, or she would know that your daughter is exactly who she is supposed to be.

In some ways, I think that would make it worse. It's bad enough to have a relative who will say "it's too bad she's not a boy," worse to know that that relative sincerely believes that. It's not a joke, it's an actual belief that there's something wrong with the baby. I don't think someone who considers a baby inferior because of her gender is entitled to access, or likely to be a good influence. So I'd go with something like "I'm sorry you don't consider girls satisfactory, but of course we won't make you spend time with her. Please hand me my wonderful daughter" if great-grandma was holding her in the first place.
Any advice that requires the use of a time machine may safely be ignored.

Oh Joy

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Re: "It's such a shame your baby isn't a boy"
« Reply #44 on: October 13, 2012, 02:38:44 PM »
Congratulations!

I have a healthy twelve-day-old son...wanna switch?   ;)

I'm going to swim a bit against the tide here.  Granny's not being thoughtful or considerate, but I don't interpret her comments as that heinous.  I hear 'Universe, I wish there was a boy' rather than 'Baby Girl, I wish you were a boy.'  I do hope she tones it down, but I wouldn't take it as a slight against your pink bundle.

Best wishes.