So, a close relative is pregnant with her second child. They already have a daughter so now everyone thinks they deserve a son. This is the conversation I had with the woman’s father-in-law. Let’s just call him UncleJi (UJ) for short.
UJ: We hope it is a boy because they already have a girl. What’s wrong with that?
Me: Ok, so if the first child was a boy would you be intensely praying for a girl this time around?
UJ: Err… Not really. As I said, anything is ok.
Me: So, two girls is not as desirable an outcome as two boys is?
UJ: I did not say that. I am just saying that since they have a girl, they should now have a boy.
Me: Yes, yes. I don’t dispute that everyone wants a ‘balanced family’. I’m just asking you a hypothetical question. If your first grandchild was a boy and a second was on the way, would you be as intensely hoping for a granddaughter as you are for a grandson right now?
UJ: Uh… As I said, anything is ok. If the first is a boy either girl or boy would be ok. We don’t have those kinds of prejudices. I am only saying that it is good to have a boy now because we have a girl. That’s all.
Me: So if the first is a boy, you can live with the second being a girl but you wouldn’t be disappointed if it’s a boy again. But if the first is a girl the second had better be a boy because you have no boys? Good going Uncleji. You’re a well-disguised sexist.
Rolling eyes… Indian families…