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 Jenflea

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.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Exclusive Black Friday Sale!

Get over 40% off selected products, including prams, baby carriers, cloth nappies, sleeping bags and much more! 24 hours only, on May 6 - register now for your special code.

Kelly Clarkson shares first photos of son

Kelly Clarkson has shown off the first photos of her son, Remington Alexander Blackstock.

5 childbirth myths that need to be busted

Birth is an unpredictable, mysterious process that intrigues us all, and there is a lot of misinformation out there.

Mum of three fatally shot by toddler while driving

A US mother has been shot by her toddler while driving on a highway in Wisconsin.

All you need is one minute to work out

The seven-minute-work out is old news. Research shows the effectiveness of going hell-for-leather for just one minute.

Pregnant women needed to join diabetes study

Pregnant woman in country Australia will help Adelaide researchers figure out why cases of type 1 diabetes have doubled over the past two decades.

Just announced: the Mountain Buggy Unirider

It's the perfect solution to combat those toddler meltdowns when they no longer want to be in a pram but can't walk long distances.

Authorities euthanise dog that fatally bit a newborn baby

A pit bull mix that fatally bit a 3-day-old infant last week has been euthanised, authorities said.

The push for Medicare to fund lactation consultants

While meeting with a lactation consultant can make an enormous difference to a new mother, it's not a service that is available through the public health system.

Why it's perfectly natural to dislike other people's children

Members of a popular forum are fiercely debating whether it is acceptable to dislike a friend's child.

Woman gives birth on plane, names baby after airline

A pregnant woman who unexpectedly gave birth on a flight has named her new baby after the airline, Jetstar.

Heartwarming photos show the joy of adoption after foster care

Children living in foster care can feel like their future is less than clear. But that uncertainty disappears the day they are adopted by their "forever family" 

'Oh my god, it's a baby!' Mum shocked to give birth

When the cramps started to kick in, Klara Dollan just assumed a painful period was starting.

Mum's Facebook plea: 'Help me find my daughter's father'

Kerryn has a unusual present planned for daughter Imi's 13th birthday celebrations - she hopes to be able to be able to give the soon-to-be the teenager her first ever photo of her dad.

Is it possible for your house to be too clean?

Our houses are cleaner than ever before. But how clean is too clean? Could a sterile home be putting your family's health at risk?

Millions of Monkeys: puzzles that grow with your toddler

Here's a puzzle that grows with them; the Puzzle Grow Pack by Millions of Monkeys.

Baby names from Britpop

If you grew up in the 90s you might want to look to the genre of Britpop music for baby name inspiration.

What to eat and drink when you have gastro

When you catch a bug that causes acute infectious gastroenteritis (gastro), your stomach and intestinal tract become inflamed, causing diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramping and pain. The last thing you probably feel like doing is eating.

'To this day, I owe her my life'

Would I have survived if I hadn't crossed that street?

Why baby Sonny needs you to vaccinate your children

Caitlin is a firm believer in the importance of immunisation to protect children from harmful and deadly diseases.

Five-year-old's photo captures beauty of motherhood

There is no make-up or special outfits and hairdos, but the five-year-old boy who took this picture captured the essence of motherhood as well as any professional photographer.

Babies know whether you are naughty or nice

Studies have shown that infants in the first months of life try to avoid dealing with social wrongdoers - for example, sharing less with them and helping them less - and they expect others to, too.

 
Advertisement
 

Top 5 Articles

Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

The babies who are one in 70 million

Bethani Webb was excited to find out she was pregnant, but the first time mum did not realise she was carrying four babies not one.

Exclusive Black Friday Sale!

Get over 40% off selected products, including prams, baby carriers, cloth nappies, sleeping bags and much more! 24 hours only, on May 6 - register now for your special code.

Cafe offers breastfeeding mums a free cup of tea

A Sydney cafe is offering breastfeeding mums free cups of tea in a bid to show support for the right of women to nurse their babies wherever they choose.

To snip or not to snip? When the decision is not clear cut

Jamie Oliver, who considered a vasectomy, is to be a father again. A fellow dad reflects on his own decision 11 years ago

Doctors stunned by rare twins born almost six weeks apart

To everyone's surprise, Kristen Miller "kept doing better each day", keeping her second baby safe.

Baby book ideas for modern parents

Before my son was born I was given a lovely baby book full of blank pages waiting to be filled with weights and heights and first words.

The adorable smile of a baby seeing his mum clearly for the first time

There is no doubt seeing their child smile for the first time is an unforgettable moment for parents everywhere.

Mum tells how toddler 'nearly hung himself' in cot mishap

When Alison Johnson put her 18-month-old Caleb down for a nap, she had no reason to believe her son was in any danger.

Babies are still switched at birth? Yes, it can happen

All my panic and tears aside, my biggest question looking back is about the kind of security measures used in the maternity ward.

Doctors slammed for taking selfie with newborn

Everyone who visits a mum in hospital in the days following childbirth wants to get a photo with the new baby.

ergoPouch Twosie Sleepsuit for winter breastfeeding

Finally, there's a way to keep warm while breastfeeding through winter.

Health check: How long does sex 'normally' last?

What to do with this information? My advice would be to try not to think about it during the throes of passion.

When breastfeeding sucks: fixing common problems

From niplash to tight boobs, biting to milk supply issues, Pinky McKay looks at common breastfeeding issues and how to solve them.

10 things I've learnt in my first six months with twins

Six months on we're all still alive, and the more we get to know each other the easier the days become.

Mum's loving kiss leaves baby fighting for life

Kirsty Carrington thought nothing of giving her newborn son a kiss, little did she know it would leave the baby fighting for life.

When doing chores is your new 'me time'

After children, 'me time' looks a little different.

Get going: 14 travel strollers for families on the move

A stroller can make or break travelling with a baby or toddler. Here are 15 great single travel stroller options.

10 ways toddlers are terrific

It always pays to remind yourself of how terrific toddlers can be - they're little like this for such a short time

 

ENTER NOW

Do your kids love bananas?

This is the comp for you! We have $800 worth of Myer gift cards and boxes of Australian Bananas to be won. Entry is simple: just post a pic of your little one enjoying a banana in the comments of the FB post to enter.

 
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.