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Dad-To-Be Devastated After Wife And Her Adoptive Mother Lied To Him About The Baby’s Sex

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Lets just get this out of the way right up front: Your gender does not indicate what kind of person you are, where your interests lie, or what choices you’ll make in your life.

At all.

The gender you are assigned at birth, even less so.

So, when a mother lies about her expected child’s gender to the father and his reaction is less than ideal, who is to blame?

That was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) Leading_Gene4976 when he came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.

He asked:

“AITA for overreacting after my wife lied about our baby’s gender?”

A reason to celebrate.

“I (32M) and my wife (25F) are expecting our first child.”

“I’ve reacted in ways I’m now questioning and need outside perspective.”


“My childhood was a tumultuous one. Growing up, I always craved a strong male figure in my life.”

“I never had that bond with my father and always envisioned having it with a son. My wife was aware of this deep-rooted desire.”

“During her first pregnancy appointments, I was on an essential business trip.”

“These trips, though draining, are critical since I’m the only breadwinner, trying to ensure a different life for my child than I had.”

“In my absence, my wife and her adopted mother attended the check-ups.”

More good news…

“Upon my return, she excitedly told me we were having a boy. We invested emotionally and financially: a blue nursery, boy-themed items, even naming him after my late grandfather.”

…or not.

“However, a chance remark from her mother disclosed we’re having a girl.”

“My wife admitted she knew from the beginning but didn’t tell me, thinking she was protecting my feelings.”

“I was devastated, feeling the weight of past hurts and fresh betrayals.”

“In my pain, I cleared out the nursery and, in a moment I regret, told her mother she wasn’t welcome at upcoming family events, seeing her as part of the deceit.”

“I acted out of deep-seated emotions and past traumas. I love my wife and regret my reactions, but I feel lost.”

OP was left to wonder,

“AITA for how I responded?”

Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

    • NTA – Not The A**hole
    • YTA – You’re The A**hole
    • NAH – No A**holes Here
    • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors decided: ESH

No heroes.


“I cannot imagine why she thought it would be less painful for you to think you were having a boy and then disappoint you later. Getting your hopes up accomplishes nothing.”

“That said…”

“You very much did overreact in clearing out the nursery and disinviting her mother from coming over. This reaction is crazy and you talking about this pain and devastation surrounding having a girl is probably the reason she was afraid to tell you.”

“Because she probably wants to be excited about this child and didn’t want to deal with you acting like it’s something devastating that it’s a girl.”

“Also, you are projecting wayyyy too much on an unborn child.”

“What if you did have a boy, but he wasn’t as interested in this intense father-son relationship that you are craving?”

“Can any real life father-son relationship actually even live up to the one in your head that is supposed to heal your past wounds?”

“Your kids are real people, don’t set them up for failure by having all these weird expectations for how they will better your existing traumas.” ~ ThoroughlyGray

“I’m just wondering if she was legitimately scared to tell you because she didn’t think you would respond well.”

“Honestly, it doesn’t sound like you’re really in a mental place where you’re ready to be a father if you would have needed that much time to ‘come to terms’ with your child’s sex.”

“I’m gonna say ESH.” ~ Outrageously_Penguin


“Your wife allowed you to develop a bond with a child who doesn’t exist.”

“A**hole and just really stupid.”

“How long did she think she was going to protect your feelings for?”

“But you seem to have an extreme preference for a boy, not to mention some pretty unrealistic expectations about what a baby can do for you, which makes you a bit of an a**hole yourself.” ~ MrsWeasley9


“She lied not cool and I’m not sure how you come back from that but you care that much about the gender and not just hey I want a healthy baby….. WTH.”

“You can have a close bond with your child if you put in the effort but you have to not care about the gender.”

“I’m a girl and I was my dads best friend and his shadow growing up.”

“He taught me how to fix cars, lawn mowers, clocks how to drive a huge stick shift tractor, ride horses. Gender doesn’t matter the opportunity to teach and grow is there if you take the chance.” ~ Visual_Balance8617

Gender issues.

“The way OP is acting about having a daughter comes across like he’s going to have the same kind of relationship with her that he had with his own father.”

“Little girls need their daddy to be their first male role model too.” ~ RebeccaMCullen

“The fact that men are often disappointed by our very existence as woman, even in utero, continues to highlight societies sh*tty view of woman.”

“Sorry we exist?”

“Sorry you think you can’t live out your field of dreams fantasies with us?”

“That we aren’t worthy of a relationship with you or overall love since you ASSUME we don’t want to fish with you.”

“It’s actually you that doesn’t want to include us due to archaic gender roles. Why do you assume a son would want to do this with you?!?”


“She shouldn’t have lied, but it’s quite clear why she did. I really hate this sh*t.”

“Let’s all stop putting expectations on kids before they are even born.” ~ anneofred

“I’m coaching a 12 year old girl at the moment.”

“She’s a better boxer than I was at her age by a mile. I’ve coached lads who were terrible at it and were only there because a parent (usually the dad) thought they needed to be tough.”

“I can’t get my head around people who would be disappointed to have a daughter.”

“How many little girls out there are potential future champions but don’t ever find out because their parents think it’s a boys sport?” ~ BeneficialName9863

“This exactly!”

“Im so sick of men being disappointed when they have daughters.”

“Instead of being happy that they are blessed with a healthy child.”

“I’m not sure what she expected to happen at the birth, but I totally get why she lied. YTA OP, I get you had a traumatic childhood, and your wife lied, but that’s no excuse for your behavior.”

“Had she told you from the start about your daughter how would you have reacted?” ~ Mmoct

“Also, I think OP’s being pretty sexist.”

“He craves to be a father figure, but implies that that would be less important for a girl?”

“And I know this isn’t too uncommon, but a blue nursery, and Boy-themed items?”

“As well as this, the wife says that she lied about the gender, to ‘Protect his feelings'”.

“This could even mean that he would not really care as much about his girl.”

“And if the couple go on to have multiple children, and there is a mix of girls and boys, I get the impression OP would treat them very differently, and possibly show obvious favoritism for the boys.”

“So, ESH, because the wife lied, probably convinced her mother to lie too, and maybe even permanently altered OP’s relationship with a child.”

“With OP thinking, ‘I wish you were a boy like my wife said’ every time he saw the child.”

“But OP’s AH behavior I actually do not think lies as much in him kicking his MIL out of the event. It lies in his sexist attitude.” ~ SelfOk2720

Some tried to see OP’s side.

“I think more so he is acting out because his wife lied to him for a substantial amount of time and was even a**holish enough to let him name their child after his Grandpa.”

“She should have communicated with him like an adult and told him the truth from the get-go, he might’ve been bummed they weren’t having a boy, or maybe not.”

“But then it would be his responsibility to deal with that.”

“And what was the end game?”

“What was she going to say when he is in the delivery room? A moment of joy ruined because OP finds out his wife was lying to him for nearly half the pregnancy?”

“Also, you have no idea what he would’ve done had he known from the start because he was denied that. Which honestly is way more sh*tty.”

“You can buy more paint/ girl themed items, and pick out a girl name. You cannot buy back trust.”

“NTA” ~ Ezyo1000

“I doubt OP would have had this response if he was told it was a girl right away.”

“He’s obviously more upset about them lying about it and getting his hopes up. His wife created a self-fulfilling prophecy that he would be upset by lying to him that it was going to be a son, ensuring he would get upset.”

“NTA” ~ Eleventy-Twelve

Lying is rarely the way to go in any situation.

Complete honesty can be difficult, and sometimes even dangerous but lying tends to lead to more problems.

Of course, deciding that your child has to be a specific gender for you to bond with them is preposterous as well.

Your value, goals, choices, and passions are not determined by what is or is not between your assigned gender at birth.

Anyone who says different is lying – either to you or to themselves.

Probably both.

We wish this family well as the build their family and rebuild the trust lost between them.

Written by Frank Geier

Frank Geier (pronouns he/him) is a nerd and father of three who recently moved to Alabama. He is an avid roleplayer and storyteller occasionally masquerading as a rational human.