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How to Get Pregnant with a Girl

Choose the Sex of Your Baby


Updated May 15, 2014

Mother with baby girl cut out dolls
Photo © Steven Errico/Getty Images
How to have a girl
Photo © April's Grapevine Photography

If you'd also like to see it, here's How to Have a Boy.

Trying to choose the sex of your baby, girl or boy, is a very old practice. Old customs were centered around the woman, because it was not understood that the determination of the sex of a baby really lay with the man. Though as wisdom grew, the practices changed to include men in the process of deciding, but the methods were still really out there, like tying up one testicles, believing that boys had one side, girls the other; sleeping with certain objects under the bed to influence the sex of the baby; or even medicines and poultices of odd combination including animal feces. The desire to choose the sex was that strong.

Today's desire is just as strong. In fact some places report that up to 90% of people would choose the sex of their baby if it were easier. The biggest change in the minds of sex selection is that girls are a high priority in some locations now.

How Sex Selection Works

Each parent contributes half of a baby's genetic make up. The female or mother is genetically an XX, so she is only able to contribute an X to the future baby. The father of the baby is XY and can contribute either an X or a Y. This means that sperm is the deciding factor in how your baby's sex is determined.

Over 200 million sperm are ejaculated into the vagina during intercourse, a mixture of X and Y. Most likely only one will be the one to penetrate the ovum.

Shettles Method

Dr. Landrum Shettles is known for his popular book on how to use low tech ways to conceive a baby of a particular sex, but particularly baby girls. This was true for girl or boy. The theory behind this girl getting Shettles method is that Y bearing sperm are faster but die more quickly. Therefore the goal is to stack the deck and have more X bearing sperm near the ovum at the time of conception. Following the "rules" of Shettles would mean that by the time the egg is released you have mostly the X bearing sperm left to impregnate the ovum. The basics are as follows:


  • First you must know your menstrual cycle and chart it using your basal body temperature (BBT) charts.
  • Once you have done this for a few months you can more accurately pinpoint ovulation.
  • You will begin to have unprotected intercourse after your period ends.
  • You should have sex once a day.
  • Stop having marital relations about three days before you expect ovulation.
  • For added optimism for a girl, you will want to choose sexual positions that place the sperm close to the entrance to the vagina, making the sperm have to swim further. An example would be the missionary position. (Note: If you're having trouble conceiving at all, this is not recommended.)
  • Women should avoid orgasm during sex during conception attempts, this is to prevent the vaginal environment from being more alkaline, which supposedly is not favorable to baby girls.

Previously Shettles recommended certain douches to deal with the alkalinity issue, but has since backed off that because of the risk of infection.

The Girl Diet

There are some who say that what you eat will determine whether your baby is a girl or a boy. Here are some foods to stock in your pantry if you're trying to have a baby girl:

  • Chocolate
  • Fresh vegetables
  • Fish
  • Sweets, general


This method talks about the timing of sex to occur after ovulation. It is only useful for girls and the creator proclaims a 90% success rate:

Other Helpful Girl Hints

  • Have sex in the afternoon, rather than at night.
  • Woman has an orgasm first.
  • Only have marital relations on the even days of the month to have a baby girl.
  • Woman initiates sexual relations.
  • Woman on top or dominate positions. (Sitting or laying.)
  • Have sex during the full moon.
  • Use the Chinese Gender Chart to help you decide when to conceive.

Other Forms of Sex Selection:

(It is important to note that many of these are based on old wives tales or loose science. Be sure to talk to your practitioner about sex selection techniques with the best chances of success should this be very important to you.)

Related Video
5 Signs of Ovulation
Home Pregnancy Test Basics
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  2. Health
  3. Pregnancy & Childbirth
  4. Boy or Girl?
  5. Sex Selection for Babies
  6. How to Get Pregnant with a Girl

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