Jump to content

Why do people talk about a baby's gender not sex?


  • Please log in to reply
113 replies to this topic

#1 PatG

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:09 PM

A lot of the baby name threads say something like "we aren't finding out the gender".  Is it because the word sex is linked to things other than the biological options of male, female or intersex?  I am of the opinion that gender is something totally different to sex....

#2 cinnabubble

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:14 PM

But sex is rude and gender is sophisticated.

#3 FeralHez

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:15 PM

I agree I think in this context its because people don't like the sound of the word "sex".

And it self-perpetuates as one person says it, and another, and it snowball into the norm.

#4 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:16 PM

Well gender is technically incorrect. But honestly, who cares? It's not the end of the world!

#5 FeralSis

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:16 PM

It irks me too.

I think it is indeed the word 'sex.'

Sex and gender are not the same.

Gender is how a person identifies themselves eg male or female roles in society.

One doesn't undergo a 'gender change' - they would have a sex change.

#6 BetteBoop

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:17 PM

Most people don't understand there is any difference between someone's socialised gender role and the contents of their underpants.

So to many people sex and gender are interchangeable.

#7 FEdeRAL

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:18 PM

Hmm good question. I use the word sex in conversations and gender in writings such as on EB. Gender is a mouthful though compared to sex. But you are right, sex is the correct biological term, gender has a whole lot of other things thrown in.

#8 dimensionk

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:18 PM

Oh, I didn't even realise that gender is incorrect!

#9 Expelliarmus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:19 PM

Drives me nuts, OP.

Sex sex sex sex sex!

Just say it!

Babies don't have a gender because gender is a socially constructed self identification!

But sex is a naughty word, so ...

#10 EssentialBludger

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:21 PM

A lot of people don't know that there is a difference. I only know because of EB.

#11 Alacritous~Andy

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:21 PM

Sex is a swear.

Gender is much 'softer'.

#12 Marchioness Flea

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:23 PM

Because not everyone is as smart as some people in this thread and don't know there is a difference.


Does it matter?

#13 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:24 PM

QUOTE (EssentialBludger @ 20/02/2013, 09:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
A lot of people don't know that there is a difference. I only know because of EB.


I never learned it in school, which is quite sad. It wasn't until uni that I realised there was a difference. Public education FTW...or not.

#14 LynnyP

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:29 PM

Sex can be a mouthful.

#15 Dionysus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:32 PM

snort

#16 Expelliarmus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:33 PM

I do think it matters actually.

but I've been shot down on that before.

#17 PatG

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:39 PM

QUOTE (Jenflea @ 20/02/2013, 08:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Because not everyone is as smart as some people in this thread and don't know there is a difference.


Does it matter?



I don't really think it matters, but I was wondering why people use gender when they are referring to sex - seems to be either not realising there is a difference or the word gender seemingly being more polite.  

Not knowing there is a difference has nothing to do with being "smart" but rather being ignorant (and ignorant isn't a negative term!) due to never having being made aware of the concept.

#18 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:39 PM

QUOTE (howdo @ 20/02/2013, 09:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I do think it matters actually.

but I've been shot down on that before.


The difference IS important AND it matters. But you can't hold it against people because they don't know, or never learned it.

#19 1&Twins

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:44 PM

To be honest I just used the term 'gender' in another topic posted.  I didn't realise the difference until then.. and yeah it makes perfect sense now but whatever really... there are probably many of us that hadn't thought of the true definitions and their correct use.  It certainly doesn't bother me.

I just followed suit as most people here seem to use gender as opposed to sex wink.gif

#20 wildflowers

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:45 PM

Mareek could you please tell me why?  I would never have used it as a derogatory term to ask someone about their baby and I would never have worried if someone asked me what gender or sex my children were. I must be missing something.

#21 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:47 PM

QUOTE (wildflowers @ 20/02/2013, 09:45 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Mareek could you please tell me why?  I would never have used it as a derogatory term to ask someone about their baby and I would never have worried if someone asked me what gender or sex my children were. I must be missing something.


It is important because gender is a fluid concept. Many people identify with a different "gender" to their biological "sex".

#22 Magnus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:49 PM

Because gender and sex used in these ways are fairly specialised terminologies. They're not even used consistently within academic fields. The debates around them can get more complicated than biology vs social construction too.

A lot of people might not agree with gender and sex being used in these ways if they seem them as the same thing, i.e. 'I have female biology and this causes me to act like a female and do stereotypical things and my gender is feminine.' If you think like that then it's not necessarily a big deal or big difference, I think.

I tend to use the word 'sex' though, in the above context, FWIW.

#23 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:49 PM

QUOTE (Mareek @ 20/02/2013, 09:47 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It is important because gender is a fluid concept. Many people identify with a different "gender" to their biological "sex".


And please don't think you have been derogative. It is incorrect, but IMO not offensive if you don't know the difference.

#24 PatG

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:50 PM

QUOTE (wildflowers @ 20/02/2013, 08:45 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Mareek could you please tell me why?  I would never have used it as a derogatory term to ask someone about their baby and I would never have worried if someone asked me what gender or sex my children were. I must be missing something.



It matters because if people repeatably use the terms interchangeably it reinforces the idea that a person's gender identity is directly linked to their sex and therefore diminishing the understanding in the wider population that people can, for example, be biological male but have the opposite gender identity.

#25 ~Supernova~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:52 PM

QUOTE (Magnus @ 20/02/2013, 09:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Because gender and sex used in these ways are fairly specialised terminologies. They're not even used consistently within academic fields. The debates around them can get more complicated than biology vs social construction too.

A lot of people might not agree with gender and sex being used in these ways if they seem them as the same thing, i.e. 'I have female biology and this causes me to act like a female and do stereotypical things and my gender is feminine.' If you think like that then it's not necessarily a big deal or big difference, I think.

I tend to use the word 'sex' though, in the above context, FWIW.


In the psychological field the terms are very distinct and agreed upon. I have no experience or knowledge in other fields.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

What you need to know about pregnancy and health insurance

It's not just waiting periods that couples need to consider - there are other factors to consider when thinking about health insurance.

Yummy mummy

Nicole Trunfio breastfeeds baby on Elle magazine cover

Australian model Nicole Trunfio has taken the concept of multitasking to a fashionable new level for Elle Australia.

Warnings after baby girl died while sleeping in bouncer

Parents have been warned about the dangers of letting babies sleep in bouncers and swings following the death of a three-month-old girl.

Coping with fatigue as a parent

Sleep deprivation is a real hazard of caring for a baby. But there are ways to manage the challenges of fatigue better.

A very 21st century issue: parents, parks and smart phones

It's not all the parents, and it's not all the time, but there is often at least one doing it. And sometimes, that 'one' is me.

Appliances

Faulty washing machines linked to house fires

More than 80,000 faulty Samsung washing machines pose a fire threat in homes throughout Australia despite a nationwide recall of the machines.

'I had a lotus birth and I loved it'

Lotus birthing is not all that common, but for a number of women it feels like the most natural thing to do.

7 things you might not know about postnatal depression

Despite its widespread nature, there is still a great amount of mystery surrounding PND - and it's important to try unravelling as much of that as we can.

Is your family's car part of the world's biggest safety recall?

More than 50 million vehicles recalled for potentially lethal airbag fault - is your car affected?

Why drinking water can be deadly for babies

H2O is one of the necessities of life, but for babies a seemingly harmless amount of water can be fatal.

Mother-in-law faceplants during proposal

He had it all planned: a romantic proposal on a windswept beach. The whole family would be there so they'd all be able to celebrate the joyous moment together.

A preschooler suddenly goes mute - and it's not just shyness

When our son stopped talking, our sense of loss was painful and acute.

The mums who ask for a 'wife bonus'

They run their homes like domestic CEOs and work tirelessly to improve their family's social standing. And now, according to a new book, they want an annual perk from their husbands.

Woman shares photo of dimple on breast to warn others of cancer risk

A widely-shared Facebook photograph of a British woman's breast has raised awareness of a more subtle breast cancer symptom.

Starting a family despite a low sperm count

"I'd never really failed a test - how could I fail this particularly manly test?"

It's official: we must better protect our kids from toxic lead exposure

New guidelines have been released, aimed at reducing children's harmful exposure to lead. But they still don't go far enough.

Trouble-shooting toddler social skills

Chances are your toddler's behaviour is all completely normal - but here's how to tackle some common social problems.

Helping your first-born welcome a sibling

We did sigh with joy at the arrival of a royal princess - but, mostly, we sighed with pity at the sight of Prince George being taken to meet her.

Farewell, daytime nap

I've been in denial and I'm not too proud to beg, but it appears I must accept the fact that you have gone. I need to let you go.

The identical triplets who are one in 50 million

The father of identical triplets born in a Texas hospital says his three daughters, including conjoined twins, are "a miracle" sent by God.

Seven questions you should be asking about your health cover

If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there?s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it?s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

How to use gas effectively in labour

Many women in labour don't use gas effectively and suffer more side effects than benefits. Here's how to get the most out of this pain relief option.

'He has gastro but that's okay, right?': sick kid etiquette

We cannot place all children who are sick in a bubble till they recover, but we can give other parents a choice about exposing their kids to them.

Ada Nicodemou: 'I can never be completely happy again'

Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.

10 things to consider when you're thinking about trying for a baby

Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.

How special surgery and IVF can create a post-vasectomy baby

Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.

Belle Gibson's mother 'disgusted and embarrassed'

The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.

Doctor's mobile phone 'left inside c-section mum'

A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.

I'm a mum and I'm following my dreams

I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.

Those first daycare days

I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.

'If one person had listened, my life would have been so different'

Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.

This new plan undermines breastfeeding and baby health at everyone's expense

Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.

Couple to celebrate terminally ill baby's birthday in unique way

Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.

Life On Mars

It's men who need 'retraining', not women

We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.

Baby Gammy's dad tries to claim charity money

The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.

Where are the childcare places?

It?s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?

The pain of not having babies and not knowing why

After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.

Getting your family finances in order

Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Mum shares graphic selfie to warn against tanning

A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.

Does parenthood make us happier?

We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.

No, having a dog is not like having a human child

It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.

 

Top baby names

Baby Names

The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.