Baby girl turns out to be a BOY despite eight scans saying otherwise

Couple expecting their third daughter discover they were actually having a BOY just hours before he was born – despite eight scans telling them otherwise

  • Sarah Heaney and her husband William Govan bought everything pink
  • They were told by three consultants to expect a third daughter
  • But on the day of the baby’s birth, a final scan revealed the baby was a boy 
  • Max was born hours after his father bought some new baby grows 

A couple who thought they were expecting their third daughter have spoken of their shock when they found out they were actually having a boy. 

Sarah Heaney, 28, and her 29-year-old husband William Govan bought pink clothes, dummies, blankets, teddies and even a pink crib.

The couple, from County Down, Northern Ireland, also bought baby grows adorned with the words ‘little sister’.

Eight separate scans – including several they had taken on the NHS – had suggested the couple were having a girl.

So when a final scan two days after their baby was due to be born revealed their little girl was actually a boy, the family were shocked.

Mr Govan, a care worker, dashed into town to get boy baby grows as his wife began having contractions.  

Max, who is now 12-weeks-old, arrived later that evening weighing 7lbs 1oz.

Sarah Heaney, 28, was expecting her third baby girl with husband, William Govan, were stunned to discover they having a boy, Max, pictured after birth

The couple had eagerly bought pink clothes, dummies, blankets, teddies and even a pink crib because they were told their baby was a girl in several scans

The couple from, County Down in Northern Ireland, also bought baby grows adorned with the words ‘little sister’. Pictured, their two other daughters, Ella, seven, and Abbie, three

Mrs Heaney, who was a carer before having a career break, said: ‘When I first found out I was having a girl I was happy enough. 

‘I already had two girls, most of my friends had girls and I’d never really been around boys so I thought at least I knew what I was doing.

‘I was quite excited about my girl tribe but the ironic thing is my eldest daughter really wanted a brother so I had to keep drumming it into her that it was a girl and that it was going to be fun.

‘That’s why we bought the little sister clothes to try and include the girls in what was happening.’  

At 17 weeks, the couple paid for a private scan to find out their baby’s gender. They then had an NHS gender scan at 20 weeks.

From around 25 weeks, Mrs Heaney had growth scans every three weeks following concerns over the baby’s size.

According to her, all of the sonographers and three different consultants said they believed the couple would be welcoming another girl to their clan.

Mrs Heaney said she was excited to have a girl but they wouldn’t change Max for the world

The family planned to call the third daughter Luna

Max, who is now 12 weeks old, arrived the evening the couple found out they were having a boy

Even a pink crib was waiting for the baby girl to arrive

After going two days overdue Mrs Heaney went into hospital for a membrane sweep – a procedure which separates the sac surrounding the baby from the cervix in attempt to prompt labour.

She then had a final scan which discovered she was actually having a boy.

She said: ‘I couldn’t believe it when the sonographer at the final scan said she thought it was a boy.

‘I just felt the blood drain from me. I couldn’t talk for ages and my body felt all weird.’  

The shocked mother received the news alone while her husband took their two other children, Ella, seven and Abbie, three, to the park.

She filmed their funny reactions when they came to collect her in the car, with Ella bashing her head in disbelief on her car seat.

Mrs Heaney said: ‘I couldn’t believe it when the sonographer at the final scan said she thought it was a boy. I just felt the blood drain from me’

Abbie called Max ‘Luna’ for a while because she was confused. The siblings are pictured at Halloween this year

Mrs Heaney said she was surprised her husband was emotional at the news of a boy


A scan is not always correct and so a sonographer will not be able to be 100 per cent certain about a baby’s sex, according to the NHS. 

For example, if the baby is lying in an awkward position or moving around a lot, it may be difficult or impossible to tell whether the baby is male or female. 

Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce an image on a screen of the baby in the mother’s womb. 

The scan done between 18 and 22 weeks is when the sonographer might identify the gender of the baby, which is determined when the egg is fertilized.

At this point, noticeable anatomical differences in the genitals can show up on the scan. But it is all down to the sonographer’s interpretation. 

‘My husband isn’t usually an emotional person so I was surprised to see him react like that. Ella’s reaction was just hilarious,’ Mrs Heaney said.  

The family then rushed into town and while Mr Govan whizzed around the shops to pick up a few new baby grows.

Mrs Heaney, who had started having contractions, waited patiently in the car. Hours later Max arrived.  

Mrs Heaney said: ‘When Max arrived I asked everyone to double check and sure enough he was a boy.

‘It was a bit of a whirlwind at the time but he is perfect and we wouldn’t change him for the world.’

‘We had narrowed it down to two names, Luna and Penny. The girls preferred Luna so they had been calling the baby that for ages.

‘My youngest still got confused at the start even after he was born and was calling Max, Luna.

‘In my sleep deprived state I sometimes called him a she and referred to him as her too.’  

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