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  • Writer's pictureAlexandra Duprey

The Ring Test: A Family Tradition

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

a wedding ring on a string suspended over a pregnant belly

“Are you having a boy or a girl?”

How many times have you heard that question while pregnant? Even if you are choosing to wait to find out the sex of your baby, every chatty grocery store clerk is going to ask you what you are cooking in there. And it is still fun to guess, right?

You may already be familiar with some Old Wives' methods for determining the gender of a baby before they are born: like whether you are carrying high or low, experiencing salty versus sweet cravings, or are having mellow versus volatile moods. Maybe you have even heard about the ring test.

In my family, the ring test the way to predict whether you are having a boy, or a girl. It has become quite the tradition. When a pregnancy announcement is made at a holiday dinner or family gathering, the expectation is for expecting parents to participate in a bit of woo-woo.

Many people, my mother included, insist on the accuracy of this test. The claim is that every time the test is repeated, the same results are achieved and that this prediction is always confirmed, either by ultrasound or the baby's birth-- It never fails!

Am I believer? No. Have I hoisted my pregnant self onto the kitchen island (one time I believe it was a basement pool table) while my mom, dad, brother and sister, and all of our offspring gaped at a pendulous ring on string? Yes-- all in good fun!

pregnant mom being hugged by daughter while partner conducts the string test to determine baby's gender

If you are interested in trying out a little divination yourself or are at least up for an amusing game, here is how to conduct your very own gender revealing Ring Test.

Assemble the required materials.

For the Ring Test you will need:

  • One pregnant person.

  • A partner to officiate.

  • A piece of string, dental floss, or (if you are feeling particularly witchy) a length of hair plucked from the pregnant person's head.

  • One significant ring belonging to the pregnant person or their partner (like a wedding band or engagement ring for example).

Now, tie the ring to the string and have the pregnant person lie down.

The officiator must then try to remain as serious as possible-- or at least compose themselves enough not to influence the movement of the string as they dangle it over the pregnant person's bump.

If the ring spins in a circular motion-- Congratulations, you are having a girl!

And if the ring starts to swing pendulously, from side to side--Woo-hoo, It's a boy!

I hope you have fun with this! Who knows, maybe the ring test will become a tradition for your family as well!

dad smiling with conducting string test for partner

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