Let’s hear it for the...girl?
The New York Times reports that while previous Gallup data has shown that surveyed Americans from 1941 to 2011 say that if they could only have one child, 40% would rather have a boy than a girl (those who wanted girls were 28%, others couldn’t care less), but that’s now changing.
In the past, American families who had a girl would keep trying for a boy. But now studies have shown that more people are stopping at having a daughter. The NYT also looked at data from adoptions and fertility procedures and found that more parents are choosing to have girls, as well. Some people still reportedly prefer to have sons, like first and second generation American immigrants, and unmarried fathers are reportedly less likely to marry pregnant mothers if the ultrasound shows that the baby will be a girl. But for the most part, it looks like there is a growing, widespread preference in America for girls.
It could be that kids are expensive, period, and people are choosing to have less children, but it could also be that boys on a whole are seen as more work: compared to girls they fall behind in school, job markets traditionally dominated by men have shrunk, and now we’re collectively dealing, as a culture, with educating men and boys about sexual assault and consent.
But the reality is, your kid could grow up to be any gender. More teenagers than ever are identifying as gender non-conforming and trans and there is a growing consciousness that the gender your baby is assigned at birth might not be that same gender in the next ten, or twenty, or thirty years! So parents, you can hope and pray for a baby girl or boy, but gender just isn’t that simple. And it’s certainly not as simple as “ties and tutus.”