Choosing the Sex: How to Have a Baby Girl or Baby Boy

Choosing the Sex How to Have a Baby Girl or Baby BoyA long (we never say old) friend just told me she is going to be a grandmother again – and it is going to be the sixth granddaughter in the family!  I laughingly said, don’t any of the parents of your grandchildren know the recipe for a boy?  She said she remembered there was an Old Wives’ Tale called “recipe,” but no one must have that anymore.

She underestimates this Grandma!  Of course, someone passed it down to me longer than I can remember and I still have it.  I gave it to my daughters who laughed and scoffed at this Old Wives’ Tale recipe.  Here it is exactly as given to me:

If you want a baby girl:        Shallow penetration in the missionary position (man on top) will allow your partner to deposit sperm at the mouth of the cervix, which is said to favor the slow-moving sperm. Avoid orgasm. This will help keep your vaginal environment highly acidic. To increase acidity even more, use a vinegar and water douche preceeding intercourse. Abstain from sex on the 3rd and 4th day prior to ovulation and begin making love 2 days prior to ovulation. If you are using an ovulation predictor kit, make love when the solution is darkest.

If you want a baby boy:     Use deep penetration, and the rear-entry position, which will allow your partner to deposit sperm above the neck of the cervix, for fast entry into the uterus. The environment there is more alkaline, making easier for male sperm to survive. Douche with 2 Tb of baking soda in 1 quart of water just  prior to intercourse to encourage an alkaline vaginal environment. Try to acheive orgasm at the same time your husband is ejaculating to lend in a more alkaline environment. Your partner should avoid masturbation for 4-5 days, and you should both avoind intercourse until your day of ovulation. his will help ensure the highest sperm count and give the advantage to the fast-moving male sperm. If you are using an ovulation predictor kit, make love 24 hours after the solution is its darkest.

I went on the internet to WebMD to see if there were any other recommendations.  Now, technology, though expensive, can be of assistance.  But, what was interesting were other old fashioned techniques mentioned on the website at WebMD.

Natural Methods for Choosing the Sex of Your Child

The Shettles method is arguably the most well-known natural strategy for choosing the sex of your child. Developed three decades ago by Landrum B. Shettles, MD, PhD, the plan involves timing intercourse to a woman’s cycle and assuming certain sexual positions.

In his book How to Choose the Sex of Your Baby, Shettles explains that the male (Y) sperm is smaller, faster, and more short-lived than the female (X) sperm. Because of this, it is better for boy-desiring couples to have sex closest to the time when a woman’s egg is released (ovulation). This way, the speedy male sperm could get to the egg sooner than the female one.

The Y chromosome apparently also enjoys an advantage over its counterpart when the sperm is discharged as close as possible to the opening of the cervix. This is achieved through rear entry intercourse (man enters woman from behind).

Parents desiring a girl, on the other hand, are encouraged to have sex in the missionary position (face to face, man on top) about two to four days before ovulation so that by the time the egg comes, only the heartier, more resilient X sperm will remain in the woman’s reproductive tract.

The Shettles method has reportedly been effective at least 75% of the time, with the rate slightly lower for girls than for boys. Pat Buie, a registered nurse from Canada, incorporated Shettles’ method into her sex selection plan — described in her book Choose the Sex of Your Baby Naturally — and claims to have a 95% success rate.

Many fertility experts question the value of natural sex selection strategies such as the Shettles method.

“There’s no real evidence to show that they work,” says Sandra Ann Carson, MD, president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, noting that such techniques are as effective as random sex in producing a baby of the preferred sex.

J. Martin Young, MD, a pediatrician in private practice in Amarillo, Texas, reviewed medical literature on sex determination and found that the Shettles method fared worse than random sex, with a 39% success rate in choosing the sex of your child.

Shettles’ ideas seem to make sense, but they’re a little too simplistic and not based on scientific research, says Young, who authored two books on the subject. In How to Have a Boy and How to Have a Girl, he describes a strategy that opposes Shettles’.

“If you would like to have a female, you would schedule intercourse to be as close to the time of ovulation as possible,” says Young. “If you would like to have a male child, you would have intercourse a number of days before to try to increase the probability.”

The success rate for this strategy of choosing the sex of your child, says Young, can be as high as two chances in three (about 67%), if done properly.

Hmmm.  Thirty years ago is younger than I heard about the “recipe.” Now, “Old Wives’ Tale” recipes are called “natural methods.”  I must remember that.  This Grandma’s “Old Wives’ Tale” recipe repeated above cannot be that old, as it mentions an ovulation predictor kit.  If I recall, I think I updated it about fifteen years ago before giving it to my older daughter so it may not be the original, original “Old Wives’ Tale” recipe.

Has the “Old Wives’ Tale” recipe been used successfully?  Yes, I know for at least one time that it was successful.

After all, you do have a 50% chance of getting the sex of your choice with or without a “recipe.”

When did this Grandma share the “recipe?”  At the wedding shower, of course, only half jokingly.  Remember. . . .then the baby carriage.  But a grandma or prospective can share this recipe at any time with






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