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May 6, 1983

No One Wants Girls Except...

JAMA. 1983;249(17):2305. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330410019009

The other day I was shopping for a humorous greeting card to congratulate a friend on the birth of her daughter. I was struck by the fact that the card shop displayed six different cards for baby boys and only two for baby girls. This was a reminder of a long-nagging suspicion that American parents prefer boys over girls. A quick trip to the public library for some research seemed to confirm these thoughts.1,2

So many times in my private practice of pediatrics, I have seen disappointment in the faces of fathers and mothers when girls were born. One time I found a mother crying over the birth of her second healthy daughter. She told me that she and her husband wanted a boy and that she wasn't sure she could love this baby. I told her, half seriously, that I would adopt and love the baby. The next