The Atlantic

Dads Prefer Sons, Moms Prefer Daughters

And other trends in parents’ hopes for the sex of their children
Source: Thomas Peter / Reuters

Most parents have no say in whether they have a boy or a girl, and yet many of them root for one or the other anyway at an ultrasound appointment or when the baby is born.

All parents-to-be have their own imagined ideal for their child, but there are discernible patterns in what American parents hope for, as well as what happens when they get—or don’t get—what they want.

For a long time, American parents on the whole (like many others around the world) had , as reflected in the fact that having a daughter instead of a son made parents more likely to keep having kids, presumably in the hopes of having a boy. But this appears to have changed recently: A paper published last fall, examining. (Even as an overall inclination toward girls seems to have arisen, though, both American moms and dads for a child of their own sex—and dads have on average a much stronger desire for sons than moms do for daughters.)

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