Alex Forbes, with her 23-month-old son Dexter, is happy to be expecting another boy this month but says she sought help for anxiety she felt if she was to be told she were to have a girl. Picture: Tara Croser
Alex Forbes, with her 23-month-old son Dexter, is happy to be expecting another boy this month but says she sought help for anxiety she felt if she was to be told she were to have a girl. Picture: Tara Croser

‘It’s real’: Mum opens up on baby gender anxiety

Sunshine Coast mum Alex Forbes is sure she would have gone into a downward spin if her antenatal scan had revealed the baby in her womb was a girl.

Mrs Forbes, who is 35 weeks pregnant with her second boy, is one of the many women who have a debilitating fear that they would have a child that was not the gender they so badly wanted.

Not many are honest about these feelings of gender disappointment but the brave mum was determined to work through her fears and sought mental health help from the Peach Tree Perinatal Wellness centre in Brisbane. She has managed her anxiety and fears and is looking forward to the birth of her second child.

 

Alex Forbes, with son Dexter, says she managed her anxiety after seeking help from Peach Tree Perinatal Wellness centre in Brisbane. Picture: Tara Croser
Alex Forbes, with son Dexter, says she managed her anxiety after seeking help from Peach Tree Perinatal Wellness centre in Brisbane. Picture: Tara Croser

 

"Thankfully my scan showed the baby is a boy but my anxiety has been very real. At times I felt like I was struggling to bond with the baby due to these deep concerns. I have had great support from Peach Tree as I have struggled to talk to anyone. But parents need to know it is okay to share their feelings," the mum of two-year-old son Dexter said.

Mrs Forbes said the same fears gripped her during her first pregnancy.

"Sometimes people have pasts that influence their present. For me my problems came from the fact that as a teen I was out of control, a real handful for my parents. I have always had the fear that if I had a girl she would be the same as me and make some bad choices when young," Mrs Forbes said.

"We all hold mum guilt and it seems very wrong to feel like this. I wasn't even totally honest with my husband. But I think it is important to speak out and ask for help. It's important to normalise that it is OK to have negative thoughts at times when having a baby. It doesn't mean you won't be a good mum and fall in love with the baby," she said.

Originally published as 'It's real': Mum opens up on baby gender anxiety


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