That's it, the whole "gender reveal party" thing has gone way too far—and you can thank one Instagrammer for finally putting the (frankly, much outdated) practice in its grave.
First, I just want to clarify: I, too, am a human woman who has birthed children, so believe me when I say I understand being excited over learning your baby's assigned gender. (For my own "gender reveal" I had the sonogram technician write down my son's gender on a card, which my husband and I ended up opening during dinner. Then...we moved on with our lives).
Notice that, not during any part of my story, did I mention flatulence—unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Instagram user Paige Ginn (aka "That girl who fake falls," apparently?).
Ginn's Instagram video starts out innocent enough: Yes, it shows her bottomless, posing on her stomach, but the caption, which just says "Gender Reveal " doesn't really hint to anything groundbreaking. The world would be a better place if the video just stopped there, but we aren't that lucky; Ginn is seen concentrating/bearing down for a minute, only to be shown a few seconds later farting out blue powder. Let me just repeat that for you: She farted out blue powder for her gender reveal.
As a health writer, I really don't even want to get started on the logistics and safety of this whole thing (Putting baby powder anywhere down there—possibly, especially blue-tinted baby powder—is just super not a good idea right now; nor is physically forcing yourself to fart, tbh).
The Instagram video racked up nearly 800,000 views in three days—but, according to a later video by Ginn, the whole thing was a prank. After the video went viral, Ginn took to YouTube to reveal that she wasn't pregnant, and that she only filmed the video because she knew it would blow up. "No one's pregnant, we were just f**king with you.. but it worked," she said. (Still, the woman put blue baby powder in her butt and farted—so the pregnancy was a sham, but the blue fart cloud was unfortunately still real.)
Just for the record, gender reveals started with people slicing into a cake that was either blue or pink on the inside. Others took that idea and went beyond overboard with it—like how one gender reveal party in September nearly killed two people after a plane carrying 350 gallons of pink water crashed, according to NBC News. Or how, in October, a grandmother was killed by shrapnel at a gender reveal party when the family accidentally built a pipe bomb for the reveal, per the Washington Post. Or even, in 2017, when one family started a wildfire that spanned 47,000 acres after they shot off an explosive canister filled with blue powder, from CNN. You know, all super dangerous, scary stuff just to let others know whether your baby will have a penis or vagina.
To be honest, I'm convinced that the only people who truly care about gender reveal parties are the parents themselves. For everyone else, it's really just another Saturday afternoon that would be better spent doing literally anything else—only now they also have to worry about making it out of one of those parties alive (or at least emotionally unscathed).
But I'm also not here to bash you for having a gender reveal party if you truly want one; you do you. Maybe just be aware that everyone else might not share your same level of enthusiasm or care about your mode of delivery. And ultimately, having a healthy baby is really all that matters.
I mean, if you truly want to be original at this point, just find out the baby's gender at the doctor's office, and then just casually tell people. But the world needs to make a promise to each other right now: That no one else will share their baby's gender through a bodily function—we can't go back to life before seeing Ginn's video, but we don't have to cause any further damage.
To get our top stories delivered to your inbox, sign up for the WomenIRL newsletter