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20 WEEKS, 3 DAYS

137 days to go...

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Your baby today

The eyelids are still fused shut to protect your baby's developing eyes from prying fingers and toes. Deep within the brain, connections are starting to form to link the senses to those areas within the brain that are able to process information.

Part of the fun of not knowing your baby's sex is anticipating what it might be, but be prepared for others to do the same.

If you and your partner decided against finding out the sex of your baby at the 20-week scan, the guessing games will begin and you won't be short of people telling you what they think you're having.

Perhaps your own instinct is the best of all: in one study that asked women to guess the sex of their baby, 71 percent of the expectant moms surveyed guessed correctly.

The Lowdown

It's definitely a...

If you like testing a few old wives' tales on gender, consider these:

  • Ask someone to tie a gold ring on to a piece of string and dangle it over your belly to "dowse" for the sex. If it swings from side to side or back and forth, it's a boy; if it spins around in a circular motion, you're having a girl.
  • Hairier than usual? Apparently, according to the "old wives," you're more likely to be carrying a boy.
  • If your baby's heart rate is faster than 140 beats per minute, you're having a girl (but see You are 16 Weeks and 4 Days!).
  • Craving sugar, spice, and all things sweet: girl. Sour or salty foods: boy.

Although you may prefer to have a child of a different gender, you might find that your children are delighted to be having another same-sex playmate.

Ask A... Mom

I've found out at the 20-week scan that I'm having my third girl, but I so wanted a boy. How can I feel better about this?

It can be enormously disappointing to find out that your baby's sex is different than what you wanted, and perhaps even expected. I felt that I'd let my husband down in some way, especially since I knew he wanted a son.

The good news is that by the time our daughter was born, we were both over the disappointment, and were able to focus on being parents. We always said that if we'd waited until the birth to find out, it would have been hard to come to terms with it at the same time as trying to bond with our newborn baby.

Remember that you haven't met your new daughter yet, and it may be difficult to imagine loving another daughter, but you will do, in time. Try to focus on the fact that she is healthy and that you're having a beautiful baby.

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Excerpted from Pregnancy Day by Day.
Copyright © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited.
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