Much Ado About The Male Child

The male childLet me start by stating that I desire to have a male child like most people (or rather, most Africans) do, so this is not a campaign against the male child or having male children, but I have often wondered what the whole I-must-have-a-male-child-by-hook-or-by-crook syndrome was all about. if  you are reading this article from another continent apart from Africa, you may wonder why this topic is up for discussion in the first place. Well, let’s just say that here in Africa,(and I can certainly speak for Nigeria), we place a premium on having male children.

A couple gets married, they hope and pray to have children, and God in his graciousness grants them a child, a female child. They are happy, they are grateful and they rejoice. Few years down the line, they are blessed with another baby and once again it’s a girl. This time around, her arrival is celebrated with less pomp and pageantry because her parents desired something different. Suffice  to say that the birth of a third girl into that family may not even be deemed worthy to have a proper naming ceremony, and before you think I am exaggerating, I have seen this happen before. A family friend refused to celebrate the birth of his third consecutive daughter, not because he was broke, but because he felt it was an embarrassment to his manhood to have a run of 3 girls!

Many men have been lured into polygamy in the quest to have a male child, and many women are currently battling deteriorating health as an aftermath of incessant child bearing caused by the desperation to have a boy, even when they already have as many kids as they planned to have before marriage. A woman feels  unfulfilled because of “her inability to give” her husband a “successor”, and sometimes the ignorant man overtly or covertly blames her for this, oblivious of the fact that he dictates the sex of the baby.

I am aware of the whole sentiment about having someone to carry on the family name and assume the role of the patriarch of the family in future, but I don’t think that is enough reason to subject anyone to physical or mental torture. Besides, it is not uncommon to see women keeping their maiden name alongside their husband’s name nowadays. I have a number of friends who come from families of only girls and who are all doing very well in their various fields of endeavor. Why don’t we adopt the mindset of being grateful for what we have. if you are one of those who has had 2 or 3 girls and feels unsatisfied because of that, have you stopped to consider the fact that some people don’t even have one child to call their own? Do you think it is by your sexual prowess or innate fertility that you were able to have those adorable girls you have?

The Rapists, Armed Robbers and Terrorists who are currently giving the world sleepless nights are mostly male and I imagine that no expense was spared in celebrating their births as the highly sought after sex, but I am not so sure that even their parents would want to identify with them now. This just goes to show that it is not merely having children whether male or female that matters, but how well they are brought up to be responsible individuals. But that is a topic for another day. Having a child at all is a huge blessing and I will most certainly be grateful to be a mum one day regardless of the sex of my child.

43 Replies to “Much Ado About The Male Child”

  1. I believe there so many beliefs among us that we need to work on and get a better outlook on life. No child gender is better superior to another. I have seen a family torn into pieces just because there is no female child among the children. We all just have to know that what matters most is the legacy and training we gives our children either they are female or male

    1. Very true Yemi. Sometimes reverse is the case as a number or families also “look” for female children too. Thanks

  2. Hmmm,Lolade this is another good one o! It’s really interesting to me because I have 3 wonderful girls…who bring me joy everyday. Well,the good thing for me is that I have a husband who LOVES his children sooo much..and in fact, who begs me not get bitten by the “I-must-have-a-boy-Bug”…lol

    But you know the bad/annoying thing?..it is when people I respect,educated people,some family and loved ones,spiritual leaders or persons etc, urge me every now and then to pray harder and try harder!! Because the family is not yet complete!! And it hurts,not because I don’t have a boy,but because of their thinking!

    I honestly wish God can make people share the same thoughts as you, that all we need is to be grateful that we even have at all.

    1. Wow! Idowu. I’m so glad you chose to share your experience, I’m sure you are not in this alone. You’re lucky to have a husband that isn’t putting you under any pressure. God bless your lovely girls.

  3. Lolo, u are a talented writter . Wetin u dey do for our dept ?? I’m impressed with all ur write-ups. Thumbs up dear.
    As fr d much ado about d male child, dats African mentality. I blieve no sex is superior. We should be thankful to God for the gift of children no matter the sex n pray to have good children. May God help us all,Amen

    1. I believe no child is superior too. It’s what we train them to be matters…thanks for the compliment Anwuli, and as usual your comment is highly appreciated.

  4. Lolom,you’ve mentioned the most important point which is training our children to be responsible irrespective of their gender. We are all girls in my family and my father couldn’t have been happier! He isn’t bothered about our gender and has no regret whatsoever! Generally, times are changing fast and the quest for male children has drastically reduced. Parents have learnt that gender is not a barrier to achieving whatever goals they have set for their children.

    1. Exactly my point. Let’s focus on bringing up our kids to be the best they can be regardless of their sex. Thank you Ronke.

  5. Hmmm,this is another interesting one! I know a man who failed to visit his wife in d hospital simply bcos ‘It was d third girl’. I was still in d sec sch so it was like a puzzle to me then. Reason being that I grew up wt a father who never placed any child above d other. According to him,any child who gives him joy deserves his full attention irrespective of d gender. Even when my ONLY brother started displaying an attitude,my father made it very clear to him that he isn’t in any way more important than his sisters. And I can bet with u that his disposition is so so glaring to everyone in the family.That’s d way it should be!! I think it’s high time we started showing appreciation for the GIFTS OF GOD irrespective of their gender. Pls keep up d good work!

  6. Children are Daddy God heritage parents are custodian.I have two wonderful girls.I am very grateful to God abt them cos LOVE is the bedrock for any child to be great

  7. Hmn it’s more of a Nigerian thing,let’s say d truth it’s nice to have a mix of both sexes as children,but it shouldn’t now be a do or die affair.personally av always wanted to av a male child as my first child bcos it sort of relaxes ur quest for a male child especially in subsequent pregnancise.I know of a family friend of 7 boys and it was a quest for a female child that made them go that far,I also have a friend of 5 girls and they are all doing well.even those (men especially)who say they really don’t mind about the sex of their kids search their (heart of hearts) you’ll still see the strong desire to have at least one male child even if the rest will be female.I even have someone I presently know who ordinarily would want to have just 2 kids but the 2 he currently has are daughters and hence they’ll be likely trying for a 3rd and I seriously hope for them that it will be a boy this time around but what if it’s still a girl again?and this was someone that had a little delay before having any kid at all (how quickly we forget our blessings).So I admit it’s wrong to treat a sex better than the other ,afterall we are all equal before God.we should work at being Godly parents and raising up good children instead.Am glad though that am privileged to have a mix of both sexes.Lolo this is a wonderful writeup my friend.

    1. Thanks Victoria. I know that it feels good to have both sexes, but I’m sure you wouldn’t kill yourself or be ungrateful to God if you had just girls. The bottom line is let’s learn to be grateful. We can’t have everything.

  8. Interesting topic. I presently have 3 girls – d 3rd one just came 2 months ago. There’s a 5 yr age difference btw her & her immediate senior. After waiting for 4 yrs we decided to give it a shot for a boy. In d process we had 2 miscarriages at advanced stages. We tried again with some expert advice on how to have a male child. The pregnancy was turbulent and my wife was on bed rest for most of d 9 months. We “begged” God for a male in d midst of all d stress but guess wat? Anoda girl. When I looked at d child’s face after labour she had d countenance of an angel & D Lord said “complain now and let me hear…” I had no guts to do that. That child is a bundle of joy in our home. Each time I look at her my heart is full of joy. She steals the show anywhere she is taken to. We r grateful to God for such a wonderful gift.

    1. Hello Dike, your response actually left me stunned! I’m so touched by your story and appreciate you sharing it here. I can testify that your baby is gorgeous! And I’m sure there’s a bigger plan for her arrival into your home. Thanks so much.

  9. Nice topic.I think its best if u have both sex though its all by God’s grace.most women even without the input of their husband beat themselves up mentally when they have only female children and the society does not make it easier on them.I know a woman 46 years with 3 girls and four miscarriages after still trying for her legendary male child.so as the song goes “we are africans”

    1. Lol @ “legendary male child”, of course I’d rather have both sexes, but we don’t determine these things. It’s all up to a higher power. Thank you Amaka

  10. This is Africa and it would be hard to convince. Its like saying polygamy should stop in Africa. traditions are deeply rooted in the blood of African and to change it takes a miracle. It seems people don’t want to give birth to many children these days but in all its not beans to give birth. I can only imagine the pain that a woman faces giving birth and you subject her to more pain because the wants a boy. How sad.

    1. Yeah…that’s where we have found ourselves with our African mentality and tradition. God help us. Thanks Kfayiga.

  11. This is a great piece. I perosnally still don’t know why people get so angry and ungrateful when they give birth to a girl and not a boy. Male or Female , its a blessing you’ve received from above and while screaming and nagging over the whole male child issue , someone is somehwere just praying to God for child either male of female.Its so bad for this people that they go to the extent of selling the child because it a female or put her up for adoption.When a female child comes to you too easy you’ll not appreciate it but if you’ve waited 50 years before God grants you a child(female) you will cherish her. Either female or male, I’ll be forever grateful.

    1. Thanks Enigmatic! Some people are still waiting to have just one child after so many years, while some are ungrateful for the one they are lucky to have. It’s sad.

  12. Focus on bringing our children the way of Lord and when they grow up they will not depart from it,matters a lot than having to hurt yourself in haunting for a male or female child. We should always be thankful to Almighty God for even giving us a child. Either it is an african /nigerian thing,our mindset matters feel it is an individual attitudes. For me I love boy n girl whichever God put me in custodian of I will forever adore Him. I Thank God I have a husband that we both share thesame mentality. I remember when I was pregnant on my first child which happens to be a girl,my husband n I love our first born to be a girl but we chose to submit to God’s will whichever one. About four of d scan I did ,my lil angel was covering her private part then we decided not to do any scan again n continues with my pinky n yellowing shopping as in colours for a baby girl but even for a boy too cos we were glad is a child n she is breathing not a monster. Around my third trimester Dr adviced for another scan ,we did n she eventually shows her face n then happens to be a boy,we were very glad all the same n thank God for d mixture shoppings that I did. To cut d loooooooong story short on d day of delivery God still remain God inspite…. I gave birth to a beautiful adorable princess. Well,maybe for my next baby girl nii o or boy nii ,our arms are large open to receive anyone God give. So my take is be thankfull to God always. Lolade,welldone that a beautiful one.

  13. I don’t have an issue with the gender of my child,it does not really matter to me,i think the most important thing is that we should see them as God’s best gift to us and also see them as blessings,they are to be adored,loved and brought up in the way of the lord which is the most important anyways,and the quest for a male child in times like these does not really matter anymore because these days,”what a man can do,a woman can definitely do better” some women are now head of blue chip companies and establishments which were handed over to them by their dad’s who probably did not have a male child and is still confident enough to hand over his company to his female daughter to be the head,because like you mentioned ealier, the upbringing matters alot, boy or girl, and you can bring up your child the way you want them to be,gender does not matter,the foundation and upbringing is all that matters,wish I could day more…

    1. Good to have a man say he doesn’t mind having only female children. Wish more people could be open minded like you. Thanks Babatunde.

  14. This “pandemic” of “who will carry on my name” is borne not just out of sheer ignorance but lack of wisdom too! Like you have rightly stated, its amazing how highly enligthened individuals carry on about this. I have a daughter and I’ve always fancied having 2 girls thus I must be from another planet! Probably its because I grew up not having a sister. Unfortunately my dear blogger and realistically too, this “ado” shan’t pass away anytime soon. However, it will gradually phase out in this part of the world over time which may transcend beyond our generation. The orientation is gradually changing. Interestingly, with the proliferation of gay relationships, “our people” may soon get confused on specific sex to request from God’s baby store. . . Hahahaahahaha! Nice piece Lolo; Keep it up!

    1. Wow! Abayomi, you’re definitely from another planet! Funny but true that we may soon start getting confused about what to ask from God regarding the gender of our kids. Thanks a lot for commenting.

  15. Princess request to be transferred to the editorials nah en leave us to battle advert generation since you write so so well.
    On the issue of baby bobo or mamma, I dont really care en will happily say “Alhamdulillah” to any that comes mah way. As a PRINCE that I am, wouldn’t mind a bobo. People should just count their blessings en be grateful for what comes their way.

  16. Let’s be frank, having a mixture of both sexes gives u some kinda ” done and dusted feeling”. Any other addition would be a bonus or balance (like I love to say if u hv an additional one after having both sexes or u hv two extra “a boy and a girl”. But having a boy shouldn’t be a do or die affair. Accept whatever child God has blessed u with as a special gift from him and raise and nurture that child In d way of D lord (God knows what’s best for everybody). Rather than complain, be grateful for there r some people out there who u r not better than that r crying day and night just to have a child (boy or girl).
    No child is superior to d other, they r both God’s special gift and should bring equal joy.

  17. Interesting topic Lolade, but the reverse is the case for me. I will cry if I dont have a female child….LOL just kidding.
    But I think a lot of people have said the truth about this. Children, the bible says are God’s heritage not male children .We only need to change our opinion about life and start to see things from God’s perspective.
    @Dike, that’s a good lesson from God and thank you for sharing.

  18. All children are from God, no doubt..and who is man to pick which is preferable over the other? Some of the most brilliant minds are of the female stock..and it is even a fact that the female child is morr caring for her parents than her brothers could ever be (well my sister is)..
    Now lets put ourselves in a mans shoes..the male child is like the harbinger of continuity for a genealogy, he carries on the family name which the female child will drop right after she is bethroted to another family..reason why most families will want a son, a scion, a pipe of continuity..pls lets not begrudge a man this love for his family name.
    My two kobo…
    Btw, nice piece lolade..

    P.S. Ronke Oyefeso longest time ooo, we fight ni? Holla at your boyyyy..

    1. Thanks Laitan. Trust me, I honestly understand the man and like I said I also would like to have a boy (and a girl). All I’m saying is it shouldn’t be a do or die affair.

  19. From d African perspective>yes we are equal but d man child is still d man child,no matter how we look at it.a man lost his wife a year ago and he has 2 children to take care of,dey openly told him to move on and have another wife before next year (dats gud abi?he can’t kill himself) but if it were d oder way round people will expect d woman to remain a widow or wait longer dan 1 year before dey feel she should move on.I feel it’s related to dis topic somehow as d man child seems to av upper hand or exemptions from some rules.y is it so?

  20. just as I rightly posted on the 21st of may 2014,about someone I knew who ordinarily wanted 2 children but has 2 girls, and I was speculating dat he might try for a third one bcos of d desire for a male child;
    well it’s as if I saw it coming bcos he just had d third baby and guess what?it’s a female child. So should I still speculate for a 4th baby until d boy comes???

    people let’s learn to be grateful for whatever God has given us,we can’t have everything on this earth

  21. I have a family friend that had a baby girl through a surrogate after 20+ years of marriage. When we heard they had a baby, I think it was after a few days that I remembered to ask about the baby’s gender; that man is the proudest father I have seen in a long time.
    We are living in a time when there’s a famine of men as they truly ought to be; we have children going about in the bodies of adult males with a very high sense of entitlement.
    Every child is a gift from God and no one should ever be made to feel like a 2nd class citizen.
    FYI, I am bingeing on your articles and loving them,

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