The Gender Reveal

Just in time for our May party issue, MomSpeaker Shivaun Williams looks at a shower trend sweeping your social media feed: the gender reveal. Where do you stand on this type of prenatal announcement: all for it or in total agreement with Shivaun's minor rant?

Oh, how quickly we become annoyed by trends, once we find ourselves far removed from a situation. (Read: When you get old, everything bothers you.)

And by "we," I, of course, mean "me."

And by trendy, I am totally referring to the latest in pregnancy-related activities. It's called the gender reveal, the festive time when young parents choose to find out, along with a room full of loved ones, the gender of their baby. Months before the baby is even born.

You might think that the gender reveal first got its start back when ultrasound could kind of determine the sex of the baby (assuming you can see what they're showing you). Back then, an ultrasound tech, along with two teary-eyed parents, would gush over the presence (or absence) of a tiny gender-specific body part. Elbowing and poorly executed jokes of the little him being "hung like dad" all a part of the scene.

However, the gender reveal can be traced back even further than that. In ancient times, the gender reveal, also known as the birth, was celebrated the moment a child was ripped from its mother's womb, upon which an intelligent scribe or midwife or doctor would announce to everyone in the room: "It's a (insert gender here)!"

For centuries, this was how the sex of a baby was revealed. And it worked well. Then Pinterest was created, and now everyone is planning cute country weddings, drinking from mason jars, wearing flannel shirts like it's their job and hosting elaborate gender-reveal parties.

At these parties, the baby's gender is revealed with the slice of a cake. Its color, revealed as pink or blue, bringing  joy and excitement to everyone in the room. (Even the woman who still has three more months left in her pregnancy.) But at least she can get started on decorating that nursery. And really, isn't that all that matters? Stocking up on gender-specific nursery items during your last trimester is much better than acknowledging swollen feet, exhaustion and nights filled with runs to the bathroom to pee. It's all forgotten, I guess, now that you know you can throw out that list of other gender names.

The gender reveal can cut the nine-month pregnancy pretty much in half. Pregnancy begins with the excitement of "we're having a baby" and ends a few months later with "it's a boy/girl," followed by another three months of "well, where's the baby?" 

My only question for those who are buying into this trend is, what do you say? What does everyone yell when that baby finally makes it appearance?

Hashtag, spoiler alert!

Shivaun Williams is a Bucks County, PA writer and mom of three. This post is adapted from her blog, Dar Liomsa (In My Opinion).

Categories: MomSpeak