Elaborate spectacles to reveal the assigned gender—really a reveal of whatever genitals can be seen on an ultrasound—have earned a bad rap as more people distance themselves from societal gender roles and after a series of disasters caused by these parties.
From perpetuating gender stereotypes to causing massive wildfires to plane crashes to party guests being hurt or killed, these parties seem to be more trouble than they're worth lately.
But every once in a while, a parent-to-be will come up with a reveal idea that really turns heads.
Maria of @mariap_poledance on TikTok was a leading pole dancer in her country and she ran her own pole dancing studio where she taught a large group of students.
So it only stood to reason Maria would somehow involve pole dancing in her reveal, right?
In her video that's since gone viral with more than 343 thousand likes, Maria featured two of her pole dancing students, one wearing pink and one wearing blue. They took turns performing with the pole, while also dancing together.
But at the end of the video, with the two still performing an interpretative dance, it was unclear what the reveal was meant to be.
You can watch the video here:
The initial comments on the video were a mix of feelings of discomfort and confusion.
Some felt pole dancing had no place at a baby's party while others didn't think it was worth the watch, because it's unclear at the end of the video what the expected gender is supposed to be.
Some thought the final dancer on the pole would be in the gender stereotype color of the upcoming arrival, but when both women were still performing at the end of the video, others questioned if it could be a twins' announcement.
Maria made the decision to turn off the comments feature, due to the overwhelming confusion and negativity.
Redditors were no less confused about the reveal.
"So what gender was it? Or was it twins, boy/girl? I have so many questions." - axh28
"So it’s a…?" - cjester1121
"Anyone else mad they didn’t include the reveal?" - OutcomeDoubtful
"I mean, they are both very talented, and this is original, but just... why?" - Striker660
"There’s something… off? about seeing a bunch of half-naked, beautiful, flexible women spinning around a pole, then with a fast-cut to the husband tenderly and beautifully kissing his wife on her cheek." - daredeviloper
Twitter similarly felt the reveal was unique but also strange and confusing.
To clear the air and continue the celebration, Maria later shared a second TikTok video that was more of a compilation of the day, including artistic shots of the two women pole dancing, views of the crowd and the couple's reaction to the actual reveal, which involved the popping of a balloon.
Since she was a pole dance instructor, Maria wanted to offer a unique, interpretative dance style performance of the expectation and excitement a parent-to-be feels when waiting to learn the gender of their future baby.
They then went for a more traditional reveal with the popping of a black balloon that asked, "Girl or Boy?" on the side, though the two dancers popped it instead of the couple.
You can watch the second video here:
The couple's excitement at the news of a blue child was evident as they hugged and kissed, followed by Maria's partner jumping into the pool.
TikTok was much more receptive of the second video, as it contained an actual reveal in it.
Some were also more willing to admit this was a unique way of celebrating a reveal.
Though the first video initially caused confusion, it's refreshing that the reveal party was designed to feature one of the mother-to-be's passions, with the reveal done in an artistic and interpretative way.