Boy or Girl? Old Wives’ Tales gender predictions

Gender predictions from old wives' tales

Since first finding out I was pregnant, I’ve been obsessed with other bloggers who’ve written about their pregnancies. In the early part, you feel very alone before you’re able to properly announce; even though I’d told all my close friends and family before 12 weeks, it’s still not public information. Those first few weeks especially, when pregnancy was something completely new and unfamiliar to me, every new symptom felt scary, hence why I Googled so many things! As I said though, pregnancy diaries, particularly ones which documented the early weeks, were my saviour, and why I wanted to share my own too.

One of my favourite bloggers (just in general, not just in pregnancy diaries!) is Forever Amber, and one of her pregnancy posts listed some old wives’ tales that are supposed to predict the sex of your baby before you find out at a scan or at birth. Considering that we have our anomaly scan today – we should hopefully know by the time this post is scheduled to go out, as long as baby plays ball! – I thought it would be fun to share a similar post to see whether there were any major tells and whether they lined up correctly. It’s all a bit of fun really rather than giving a proper answer.

Based on our families, it could totally go either way. People joke that the Thomas side of my family can’t produce boys any more – me, my sister and both my cousins are girls, but we’ve come from a family of two boys. Ben’s family seems to produce boy-then-girl sibsets as a rule – Ben and his sister, all of his cousins on both sides. Result here is inconclusive.

So we’re turning to the old wives’ tales: have any of these worked out correctly for you?

1. Cravings – sweet vs. salty

So I started off craving salty, swapped to sweet, then back to salty. My cravings have mainly been white wine (I’m still surprised by this one!), flying saucers, pickled onions, olives and foam shrimp. Probably more veering towards sweet than salty, but then again, crisps are my go-to if I need some sustenance but I’m not feeling hungry, and the pickled onion and olive cravings have been very intense. But also sour – I love me some sour. Right now, I’ll eat anything, literally, anything. I want all the foods.

Apparently sweet=girl and salty=boy, so what are we thinking here?

Verdict: Boy/Girl

2. Morning sickness

During the first trimester, I felt sick all the time. It was horrendous and awful and at times I wondered whether I would be able to cope with it any more. It has helped me deal with my emetophobia somewhat, which is a good thing, but it’s also not fun. Luckily I was only actually sick twice, so lots of nausea, not much actual sickness.

Girls apparently give you more sickness, and boys more nausea, so results:

Verdict: Boy

3. Nub theory

This is more of a scientific theory (although not entirely proven yet!) rather than an old wives’ tale, but apparently the scan between 11 and 14 weeks shows a “nub” that can develop either way. If it’s pointed slightly upwards (30 degrees or more), it will develop into boy parts; if it’s parallel with the spine or less than 30 degrees, girl! Read more about this here.

I struggled to figure out exactly what was nub and what wasn’t in our scan photos but I was veering towards girl with it being parallel. I posted in a private Facebook group which has more experienced people analysing the photos and had a girl response there.

Verdict: Girl

4. Chinese Gender Prediction

The Chinese gender prediction charts based on a long history and tradition are apparently very accurate, so this is an interesting one. It’s based on your age at conception and the month you conceived, and I’ve heard a lot of people say it was correct! If you Google it, you’ll find all the charts so you can check yourself, but this handy calculator gave me a quick answer of…

Verdict: Girl

5. Pregnancy Glow

Girls are supposed to steal your beauty whereas boys give you a healthy glow. I started off looking about as awful as I felt – in fact, I took a photo of my face one day in week 8 intending to share it on social media saying that this is how 8 weeks feels…but it wasn’t pretty. Like, it was really quite scary. I looked like I’d just woken up from a 24 hour surgery and was experiencing jet lag at the same time. First trimester glow? No!

But second trimester has been my friend so far. When I hit 14 weeks, everything felt so much better – I don’t know if it was coincidental that we went away on honeymoon at the same time to Disney and the mountains, plus some new make up, but either way, I’ve come home feeling fresh and glowy.

Verdict: Girl…followed by boy

6. Bump high vs low

To be honest, the bump is still pretty small (something that’s still surprising me – I thought I’d be carrying a watermelon by now!) so it’s not immediately obvious whether it’s high or low. We were showing Ben’s family some holiday snaps and a bikini one popped up, to which Ben’s mum mentioned that a low bump meant boy – so I’m thinking bump is low. I’m also feeling the majority of kicks down low in my abdomen still.

Verdict: Boy

7. Galloping horse vs steam train

This based on the sound of the heartbeat where galloping horse=girl, steam train=boy. I heard the heartbeat at my 16 week midwife appointment (although I was 18 weeks at the time!) and to me, it sounded like galloping horse.

Verdict: Girl

8. The ring test

Swinging your wedding ring (or I assume any ring?!) tied on a piece of string over your bump is, for some reason, supposed to be a gender tell. Swinging back and forth is boy, swinging in circles is girl. I’ve got to be honest, I tried this pretty early and the ring was swinging all over the shop – sometimes in circles, sometimes side to side. I think I just don’t have a steady hand!

Verdict: Girl/boy

9. Nail growth

Strong healthy hair and nails is supposed to equal boy (the whole girl stealing your beauty thing again!), and I’ve had crazy strong nails so far. Hair? Not so much, that’s as thick as normal but also seems to be falling out. Weird.

Verdict: Boy

10. Clumsier than normal

Being more clumsy than your usual self is supposed to equal a boy. I, however, am very clumsy anyway and that hasn’t really changed during pregnancy – I’ve walked into just as many things, tripped over nothing on the floor just as much, and accidentally poked myself in the eye just as many times. Yes, I’m very clumsy now, but I was 4 months ago too.

Verdict: Girl


Verdict: it’s a baby!

Yep, results inconclusive! I’ve seen some posts where people have been pretty sure one way or another based on the results all generally swaying one way or the other, but mine seem to be a pretty equal split! I’m sure that, with all being well today, I’ll be making the announcement soon, so stay tuned.

But first just a quick note to say, we’re going pretty much gender-neutral with clothing, nursery and toys anyway, so whatever the baby comes out as isn’t going to make all that much difference in our lives. I’m just excited to stop calling the baby “it” as I feel mean!

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