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Myths About Being Pregnant With a Boy

By Katie |

I am a science person. I can’t help it, I love facts and figures and studies and graphs. And while I’ve been told that babies are not so much into the science, I can’t help but try to bring science into my pregnancy. One such area has been the Old Wives Tales. There are about a million of them and while I think most of us assume they are myths, there are others (like my mother-in-law) who are completely certain of their veracity.

When we found out we were having a boy, I started paying a little more attention to these old wives tales. You know how much I love to prove my MIL wrong. And if you don’t, then just trust me, I love it a lot.

I don’t give much credit to myths about strings hanging over bellies or calendars that predict the sex of a baby based on the month of conception, mostly because I have a better grasp on science than that and am a total stick in the mud, but there are others that I really wasn’t sure of. In my mind it seems logical that being pregnant with a boy would come with perhaps a slightly different mix of hormones than being pregnant with a girl.

Except that so far all but one myth about boy pregnancies that seemed like it might have a credible hormonal component has been totally false for me. Which is frustrating because these are all the myths I WISH were true. Sigh. Without further ado, these are my 6 greatest lies myths (and 1 truth) about being pregnant with a boy.

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Myths About Being Pregnant With a Boy

Morning Sickness

Somehow there is this common conception that morning sickness is easier on those expecting boys. Everything I read says it's usually less severe and has a shorter duration. In short, if you hate puke and nausea as much as I do, being pregnant with a boy sounds like a dream. Well, lies, I tell you. At 22 weeks I am still completely incapable of eating in the morning without Zofran. And it doesn't look like it's going to change any time soon. It turns out morning sickness has pretty much nothing to do with the sex of your baby. Or I am just super unlucky.

What myths about pregnancy with a boy or girl have been true for you?

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About Katie



Katie is a former teacher, part-time PT, wife, and first-time mother to the baby with the best ears on the Internet. You can find more of her grammatically questionable writing at her blog, Overflowing Brain. Read bio and latest posts → Read Katie's latest posts →

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40 thoughts on “Myths About Being Pregnant With a Boy

  1. Beth says:

    I made dirt pudding the other night out of a desire, only to throw it up later, but it sure was good while it lasted!

  2. Nicole says:

    Actually, the association between female fetal sex and hyperemesis gravidarum is well established in European, North American and Asian populations.When both severe ketonuria and high urea were present at initial hospital admission for hyperemesis, 83% of the fetuses were female. Therefore, it is more likely if you have severe morning sickness that you are having a girl!

  3. Kim says:

    The way you carry is a myth as well. Carried both my son and my daughter low.

  4. Mindee says:

    Craving dirt is NOT GOOD. Not just because it sounds nasty. My sister had this craving in one of her pregnancies only to find out that it was because of a severe deficiency! A dangerous one. I wish I had all the facts for you, but this happened over a decade ago. All I know is that if you’re prego and craving dirt, tell your doc. asap.

  5. alimartell says:

    My first two pregnancies were exactly the same.
    I gained the same amount of weight, looked the same, even craved the same food…and then I had a girl and then a boy.

    I don’t believe in ANY of the myths at all. NONE of them.

  6. candice says:

    every person and preg differs BUT i have to say that most of these were dead on with me. with my son i ate steak and potatoes, his heart rate was lower, and my preganancy was just all together ezier with him. with her i was sick all the time, raided the candy isle constantly and her heart rate was high, i spent the last two mnths prego with her on bed rest.

  7. Amy Crowell says:

    Funny…I’m 30 weeks pregnant with another boy & I have had that same craving for dirt cake. But made with cream cheese instead of pudding :)

  8. Nanette says:

    It really is funny how all this works. I’m interested to see how my eventual next pregnancy is compared to our first, which was probably one of the easiest out there.

    My friend, who has two boys, had completely opposite pregnancies. The first was easy, no morning sickness at all. The second one was absolutely miserable.

  9. Heather says:

    I’m having identical twin boys and the hair growth and clear skin definitely fits me. But I had a lot of morning sickness in my first trimester and I’m always craving sweets! And I’m carrying kind of everywhere with two in there :)

  10. Leah says:

    I have a son and am currently pregnant with a girl, and the only wives’ tale of these that was true for me was the hair and skin one. I had nice, thick hair and clear skin when I was pregnant with my son, and this time around with my daughter my hair is limp and thin and I have awful acne. I carried high with my son and low with my daughter, and I craved sweet like crazy with my son. Oh, and both of their heart rates have been 140.
    And when people ask me if it’s a boy or girl and I tell them girl, they look at me and then tell me not to be surprised if it turns out to be a boy. I have to have monthly ultrasounds for a medical condition I have, and it’s been very obvious that she’s a girl at each one. It drives me crazy, but that’s probably the pregnancy rage talking.

  11. Leah says:

    Oh, and my morning sickness was WAY worse when I was pregnant with my son. I lost 10 pounds the first trimester and threw up daily until 5 months, and then it came back again the last month. This time, it’s been a lot easier to deal with, though I’m 6 months and still throwing up at least once a week.

  12. Erika says:

    I had 2 boys and the pregnancies were COMPLETELY different. No morning sickness with the 1st but needed a Zofran pump for the second one.

  13. Grace says:

    I carried my son low and people were always asking “You having a boy?” without me having to tell them. and i was always told how they could tell by how low i carried him. both my sisters carried girls and they carried them higher then me.

  14. Cena says:

    just incase you wanna know.. the differences in my pregnancies and some myths. My first was a boy..heart rate was high, i had serious specific cravings like..pickles,chips.. but would only crave them once but intensly.started with salty/sour. had morning sickness from week 1in pregnancy till 5weeks AFTER he was born!! he kicked hard but not alot. and the pencil/thread myth, turned out true. 2nd pregnancy was a girl, heart rate high, had a general the 1st trimester of sweet/salty. only a lil dizzy every once in a while during first trimester.she kicked ALOT but not hard.the string/ring myth and the gender calendar and pencil/thread were all true.they both were really close in weight but she was 2inche shorter at birth, and she passed him in length percentile from birth months far. she is now 7months.

  15. Erin says:

    I’ve had 3 boys and 1 girl. The only difference with the girl is I got gestational diabetes. Where with the boys I had no sugar problems. My hair grew longer with my daughter too. It was easier to bounce back after having the boys. After having my daughter I think I had more baby blues.

  16. Katie says:

    I have a baby boy and my morning sickness was so bad i landed in the hospital with dehydration so MYTH!

  17. Bitter Betty says:

    I laugh because I seriously thought I was having a girl this time around since all my symptoms were so different from my first pregnancy (with a boy) All of the above myths I experienced this time around, and I am indeed having a boy again. Just goes to show that wivestales are a bunch of crap and each pregnancy is different!!

  18. lonek8 says:

    one old wives tale that is apparently absolutely true – the more heartburn you suffer during pregnancy the more hair the baby will have. Weird, huh? But totally true according to the internet and my own experience. Tons of heartburn w/ my son and he was born with a head full of black hair. None with my oldest daughter and she was bald as a cueball.

  19. Suzanne says:

    No morning sickness with either pregnancy here, two boys. I’d read long ago that some doctors believed that if you got morning sickness, you were probably more likely to be hypnotized, as in you’re open to the power of suggestion. I doubt it.

    Now that milk chocolate bordeaux? It’s a darn good thing I didn’t try See’s until my kids arrived, since they’re on the West coast and we’re not!

  20. Kelli says:

    With both my boys I had periods the first 3 months of pregnancy, all day sickness, craved salty foods and carried low. With my daughter no periods, no sickness, craved sweets (specific ones, too, like French toast and birthday cake) and carried high. My skin, hair and nails where fantastic with all 3.

  21. Jess says:

    Two boys—one bump looked like a watermelon, one like a basketball. One low heartbeat, one high. One with no sickness, no hormonal rampages. One with horrific morning sickness and senseless bursts of tears. We are currently expecting a surprise baby (birth control failure) and the hubby says we should let the gender be a surprise as well…but I have had crazy cravings, awful spells of morning sickness, and insane mood swings. He says girl…I say another boy!

  22. AM says:

    I totally just wrote about old wives tales predicting gender – and I still can’t even make an educated guess! I’m split down the middle. Who know WHAT it’s going to me!

  23. nicole says:

    I’ve had some typical some not. I think the fact that literally every pregnancy is different, even for the same woman having the same sex, again it could be completely different. Old wives tales are fun..but they really can’t be taken seriously..everyone (but me) knew I was having a boy because I’m carrying all in front and very low..the standard “boy” but as far as heart rate, my unborn and my husband both had high “girl” heart rates. My cravings have been sweet my entire pregnancy. I cant seem to get enough candy or fruit..i try to stick with fruit though..haha. My morning sickness was mild, exactly 5 weeks..practically to the day and then i felt fantastic..but my mom, with me also had little to no morning sickness. So yeah…pregnancy is a very interesting thing..and different for everyone. I do hope i get to have a girl next so i can see what kind of differences they have between them.

  24. Jessica says:

    In Switzerland it says (don’t know if everywhere) that if you only show a big belly it’s a boy and if you gain weight all around it’s a girl.
    In my first pregnancy I gained all around (about 60 pounds) and it was a boy. But I had no sickness! And I craved only healthy things for the first trimester, afterwards it was about half/half sweets and salty. Now my second pregnancy is completely different: I was sick a lot till week 20, gained only a belly (but a big one so far, and I have still 4 months left) the cravings so far are like before… and it should be a boy again.

  25. Suzanne says:

    I’m 28 weeks with a boy. I crave sweets, am carrying so low I tell my husband every day he’s trying to come out. I haven’t had this many black heads and pimples since Nirvana was a constant in my CD player. The heart race has consistently been high and like you, everyone insisted I had a little girl in there. The only thing I can’t really comment on is the nausea. I’ve learned not to call it morning sickness anymore after being given numerous dirty looks by preggos suffering from the night pukes. I was really sick and nearly lost my life in 08. After being in a coma, on a vent, and undergoing a trach to save my life I have made peace with the fact that no sickness now is an attempt at Mercy by God and I’ll take it. Bless you all. Good luck.

  26. yvette says:

    daughter: sick til almost 7 months;carried high, gained weight all over; craved healthy foods; skin was amazing; not really sure about the hair or heart beat

    Son: little to no morning sickness;carried low; gained weight only in belly; craved food.. any food not fast food; skin was acne prone; hair was the same it seemed and not sure about heart beat

    surprise: little to no morning sickness LOTS of nausea until 5months carrying low; weight only in belly; craving sour candy; hair is “fuller”; skin is acne prone << don't know why I have great skin usually; heart beat is about 145 each visit..

    so this is going to be the tie breaker.. I want another BOY .. If I have a girl, these "wives tales" are going out the window! I'll keep you posted!

  27. Joanna Piervallo says:

    A guy walked up to me at target the day after my ultrasound and said Boy?, I said where in the hell were you last week. With girls the belly is wider, boys it sticks straight out in front of you. WTH???

  28. jodi says:

    with my daughter i had an easy pregancy apart fro the horrendous morning sickness, didnt find out the sex and used the needle test that said she was a she. not found out the sex this time round and needle test said im having a boy, im 33 weeks now and had an easy pregancy up till 28ish weeks with no sickness but now this baby is causing me lots of pain and i may be getting induced at 34 weeks because of problems. im actually smaller with this pregnancy but dont have the gorgeous skin and hair, quite the opposite. i swear i am having a boy this time as ive had nothing but problems lol, will keep you posted

  29. Michelle says:

    ive had 3 boys,all the myths held true for me!! heartbeat low,carried low,craved meats not sweets ( steak tenderloin,MMMmm), I never broke out,had lil to no morning sickenss…but i did have very little hair growth everywhere,but my actual hair on head got super thick!!!
    My girl her heartbeat was high,i carried high,i couldnt eat a damn thing the whole pregnancy, insnae hair growth and my skin was nothing but bad!!

    THESE old wives tales have proven true for me :)

    lots of heartburn= full head of hair has proven true for me to!! 2 /4 kids horribble heartburn and acid indigestion,LOTS of hair, the other two i had none,and they were basically bald!!

  30. Lisa says:

    I have two daughters 26 months apart and carried them differently, both were mild morning sickness; the more I ate the better I felt. I guess that’s why I gained 58 lbs (1st) and 62 lbs (2nd) daughter; lost the weight easily and quickly….yeah!. I had terrible acne and limp hair with both girls which I do not usually have problems with my skin or hair. Both girls had heartrates between 150-160 and I craved red meat with both pregancies; NO sweet cravings at all. So I guess the milder morning sickness, bad acne, limp hair and fast heartrates myths actually were correct for me with my girls. The old myths are fun but definitely NOT reliable :)

  31. Amanda Hale says:

    First off during my pregnancy I couldn’t stand the sight of sweets or sodas! I was only able to drink waters and juices. Also I was sick for my first two trimesters ending in the middle of my third trimester and I was sick constantly without relief. Guess what I had? Yes it was a boy! I did carry him low but with my first pregnancy it was a boy and I carried him high! He was so high that my diaphragm was non existent!

  32. Allison Zapata says:

    I agree! With both my boys, I was SO SICK. The second one more so…everyone kept saying, “IT HAS TO BE A GIRL IF YOU ARE THIS SICK!” Wrong.


  33. Allison Zapata says:

    Also, worst heartburn ever….and both my kids were bald :)

  34. Julia says:

    both pregnancies basically identical…no sickness with either, great skin, great hair, carrying the same, same heart rates etc…1st was a boy, this one is a girl…

  35. angela says:

    If your having cravings for dirt or anything else like stop or dont do it and go to your doctor they will put you some medication because you have a vitamin defficency

  36. Debbie LoveJoy says:

    I was hoping for a boy but it was not to be i had every symptom in the book especially cravings and morning sickness but our lil girl is the best. as for the myths i had a few but boy were they wrong.

  37. HEC says:

    I am currently 32 weeks pregnant with a boy…and though I have heard a lot of myths…everything about this pregnancy is different than with my little girl. Morning sickness was so severe I lost weight, he is WAY up high and upside down, my hair is growing really slow and I have had no craving…except for the occasional taco bell (yuck) Though I love this little guy to pieces being pregnant with a boy if much harder than with a girl. For me anyways.. Everyone is different.

  38. maureen schoonover says:

    i don’t think it much matters, when i had a boy he had a headful of hair, and i had lots of heartburn. and i gained only 19 lbs. and he was very small 6lbs. 7ozs. and i gained all around, the best thing is if the baby is healthy, i never had any more experience to have any more children, couldn’t have anymore, i wanted a girl so bad but when i seen him i would never trade him in for anybody. and now he is going on 27 yrs. old and so handsome and he gave me a beautiful baby granddaughter weighing in at 7lbs. 7ozs… now going on 17 months old…. named her kylie angelina. all i can say is what more can i ask for ……………….

  39. Kyva says:

    When I was pregnant with my son I didn’t have too many cravings and the ones that I did have were mild compared to some that I have heard. Mostly I ate yogurt with green grapes since I loved the tart or sour taste of them. Anything sour really did it for me and he was always content with it too. I had some heartburn but that wasn’t until the last trimester. My son sat low with his head literally in my left hip so I was unable to lay on my left side or I would put him in distress. It was scary. He had a high heart rate 160′s or higher the whole pregnancy. I had high blood pressure with no normal symptoms (ie: headaches, spots in vision, dizziness) of it until they gave Lebatalol 400mg to lower my blood pressure to a normal rate than I got all of the symptoms, but the baby was fine through the whole thing.

    Through all of the complications though I had my son two weeks early on December 6th, 2010 at 9:34pm 6lbs 7oz and 21 inches long. He is my little handsome man and I love him to death. Wouldn’t trade him in for the world. He is now 13 months old and a total H.A.M. which are his initals backwards lol

  40. Cassia says:

    Had a girl 1st…now a boy. I’m 5’1″…not much room to carry high or low. I’m just carrying out. I hadhave nausea & heartburn with both. I didn’t crave much with my girl, but I’m constantly hungry with this one. I wasn’t tired with my girl, but I could honestly stay in bed all day this time around. I’ve never had acne, even in high school and my hair is the same. I am eating healthier this time around, but that’s probably because my fiance is a health freak and he does most of the cooking.

    …and the author isn’t craving actual dirt. If you read what she wrote…she’s craving pudding with oreo cookie crumbs & gummy worms.

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