Do the differences between boys and girls trigger different emotional responses within mothers? It is suggested that boys will be boys and girls will be girls. For the longest time, I held the belief that girls were these delicate flowers, and boys were the forever cops and robbers of the playground. Is this stereotype true, and if so can it really affect a pregnant mother or a new mother's health?
After my daughter was born, I noticed subtle differences between her and my son. My two year old son, is this rambunctious rowdy boy, who spends most of his days pretending he's a helicopter. He climbs every surface of the house, skydives off the table, scuba dives in the bath tub, and occasionally has been known to play water park in the toilet. Do these actions affect me the most because he is a boy?
My daughter, Amelia, takes on the world with a cautious nature. Is this because she is a girl? Or is it because she is cautious in nature? On the other hand, I have observed her playing with helicopters and copying her love-able big brother. Does her gentleness of girlhood affect my health differently, than my own son's rowdy rough toughness of boyhood? Let's explore the many ways in which a mother's health can rise and fall with the different gender's of their children.
12 Little Girls Can Make Us Tired
In a recent study, it has been discovered that a mother's body reacts differently if they are carrying a boy or a girl. Scientists followed roughly eighty women around for an entire pregnancy and made an amazing discovery. What they found was mothers carrying female fetuses had an increase in pro-inflammatory cytokine production. This simply means that a women's immune system had a higher inflammatory response, if she was carrying a female versus carrying a male. The higher inflammation means that women will have a stronger chance at fighting off bacteria and viruses within the immune system, although it can back fire and cause a mother to feel great fatigue and body pain.
11 Mama's Boy
We all know what a mama's boy is. He is the little sweet heart that follows us around like a little duckling into the book store. He is the little voice we hear at all hours of the night. We are the cherry on top of his childhood. Observing him from our helicopter parenting, wondering what sort of man he will become. But how does this relationship of symbiotic mother and son affect our health and theirs?
A strong relationship is essential with all of our children, but importantly our sons. We are raising the fathers of tomorrow and must nurture them with such care. A son who does not grow up respecting his mother, will never respect the woman he falls in love with. In their early years, it is important to let our young bundles of boy cling to us like koalas. If they don't we will only set ourselves up for later life stress. By rejecting this bonding we are setting their teen years up for disrespect, rebellion and harsh aggression. Remember raise your son to be the man you would want a young lady to marry.
By letting bonding occur, we are saving ourselves from staying up late at night wondering where they are in high school. We are saving ourselves from alcoholic parties and counseling sessions. Having this strong bond, decreases risky behavior and will bring our stress levels down. So pat yourselves on the back after a story telling session and say, "I am a wonderful mom."
10 Yin And Yang
I have experienced my son pushing my buttons more lately. In some ways I would say he can make my blood boil, with those terrible two tantrums. Not only can a mother's health be affected by a child, but so can a child's be influenced by their mother. When I mentioned my son can make my blood boil, I meant it literally.
Did you know that how high or how low your blood pressure is during intercourse, could actually influence the gender of our future children? Many believe that if our blood pressure is low that a young girl will be conceived. Whereas high blood pressure means a boy is on his way in the stork's beak. So I suppose my getting my blood pressure raised was worth it to have my little bouncing boy at home.
Like yin and yang, our children forever pull us as we push them. In some cases it might even be the opposite. With my own son he pushes me to be a good mom and I pull him to be my little man. My high blood pressure got pushed the day he was conceived and I am happy for the pulling around of my little chick.
9 Sickness From The Princess
We have all heard myths and superstitions, that what we eat will determine a baby's gender. I certainly don't plan to eat any crazing food during my next pregnancy in case this is true. Even the famous suggestion that eating salty foods meant a boy is on the way proved true for me. All I wanted to eat was french fries, in every shape and size.Remember earlier how I mention little girl fetuses can make mom tired due to the inflammatory response in the immune system? This same inflammation makes mommy's very ill. For all you mother's out there who experience terrible morning sickness, it is most likely a reaction to that little girl you are carrying around inside you. This may not be true in all cases, but in some there is beginning to be compelling evidence based in fact.
8 Baby Boy's Super DNA
Our sons can get under our skin and even our brains. A recent study suggests that women who have been previously pregnant with a boy, will have his DNA forever trapped inside her brain. During pregnancy mothers and their fetuses exchange DNA. This DNA passed from son to mother, has been known to keep Alzheimer's disease at bay.
The lingering of these DNA cells is known to scientists as fetal microchimerism. Fetal microchimerism is nothing more than the consistent presence of fetal cells within the mother post-pregnancy. How amazing that these cells are still within us, protecting us from diseases? I supposed our sons will always be on our minds and will always protect us even in the smallest of ways.
7 Living The Stereotype
Boys will be boys and girls will be girls. It really can be a challenge to not have a stereotypical reaction to our children. There is some truth behind the stereotype of gender. At an early age we find boys fighting with sticks and pretending to shoot guns. This is not something to fear, but something to acknowledge. As mothers it is our responsibility to our children to embrace the them that they are. How does this affect our health?
Embracing our children means we are happier and more active. When our little boys are playing with guns and fighting with sticks, instead of discourage them join in the fun. Get a mini work-out in with your son. Who says that the rough and rigorous is only for father and son bonding time? Wrestle with your sons and throw them in the air. They need this bonding with mother as well, to make them feel secure. A wrestling session with mom can later turn into a comfy pillow snuggle.
Our little girls are stereotyped as these porcelain dolls. Perhaps this is okay to some degree when then are small. We see them being calm, and it creates a calm in us that helps us achieve something. It helps us to be a healthy mom. I know when I see my daughter contently playing by herself, I feel security in her presence. When I have had the hardest of days, I can look at my little girl and tranquility hits me, like the sandman forcing someone into la la land. Embrace the stereotype, exercise with your son and find peace with your daughter in her gentleness.
6 Falling In Love For A Second Time
When we first look upon our first born, we are filled with overwhelming joy. We are filled with emotions, words can not describe. For me, I fell in love with my son the moment I lay eyes on him. Sure being a new parent meant many new obstacles would soon come my way. And I'll admit there was a moment in his first two days of life, where I kept wondering when him mom and dad would come pick him up. I suppose I was still in shock at my new role as mother.
If you have ever had a son. You know what falling in love all over again can mean. You gaze upon this precious new child, and realize they are apart of the man you cherish. My son Owyn, is this for me. He is a mini version of his father. I see his father and know the man he could become. Having this bond with my mini man, warms my heart. Investing in our son's lives, and letting them know they are loved by us in the most important thing.
5 Insomnia Like You Never Knew Existed
If you ever went to college or university, you may have pulled an all night-er. You may have felt like a grumpy dinosaur the next morning. Then you turned to the only substance that will wake you up, coffee. After a day or two you overcame your fatigue and got back on your feet and socialized. Not us parents.
Whether you are pregnant and tired or have kids running around, sleep is the one thing we never get enough of. Because boys are more active than girls in most cases, they are the ones who cause us to have a chronic case of incurable insomnia. I know this first hand to be true. My son, bless him, stays up til midnight every night. He will grab his shoes and attempt to head out the door to play, at 11:00 pm. Even at two, we squawks for me at all hours of the night. I can't remember the last time I had a full night of sleep.
Girls on the other hand seem to understand that mommies need a break. My own daughter sleeps through the night and always has. There is something to be said about boys being more active than girls. My son's endless activity has made it hard for me to function. I will go on to say, that boys need activity and their poor mothers need sleep.
4 The Exhaustion Continues
There is a study done by neonatal research network at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and it suggests that from the womb until adulthood males are not as healthy as females. The study shows that even as babies young males were more likely to get sick than their females counterparts. With that in mind, this could mean more work for us mothers with young boys. If this study is accurate, than that means young boys will have more illnesses and thus exposing their already tired mothers to them.We already know what happens when an exhausted mother is exposed to too many germs.
She becomes sick as well and the cycle of never ending coughing begins. As a former daycare worker, I can safely say I did notice that the little boys did appear to miss more days of school than my female students. Is there a biological component that is the culprit behind this? In a few years we may know more answers, but for now let's be more cautious when our poor little boys start to sneeze.
3 Breastfeeding Is Better With Baby Boys
Breastfeeding is said to be the best thing for all babies. I personally believe it is a personal choice. Although, I have done both nursing and formula myself. Nursing has so many benefits for mother and child. For a mother it can make our baby carrying weigh decrease. For our babies it can pass along our immunity to them.
This is even more true for our baby boys. In a study based on the benefits of breastfeeding girls versus boys, it was discovered that baby boys benefit more than girls. Why? In the study, they discovered the boys who were breastfed for six months or longer achieved higher academically than females who were also breastfed just as along. If you want your son to have the best grades in class, perhaps you should consider nursing.
2 Baby Boy Blues Is The News
Postnatal depression is the baby blues we have heard so much about. It is the depression that comes upon a mother after her pregnancy. In a study it was found that mothers were more likely to have postnatal depression, if they gave birth to sons. Doctors who worked on this study, believe there is a correlation between the men that are in these women's lives and their attitude toward men in general. If a woman had poor relationships with her husband and father, she was more likely to have a deeper and stronger postnatal depression, than those women who gave birth to little girls. This study was conducted by the Journal of Clinical Nursing based in Northern France.
The women in the study were also found to have a lower quality of life than those who had a baby girl. Many of the women who suffered postnatal depression had marital issues that caused them to have a negative response to their small boys. Postnatal depression is a serious condition and should be treated with the help of a strong support team.
1 BONUS: Testing Your Patience
We have all experienced those fun days of screaming into a pillow. I have even shut myself in the bathroom to calm my raging hormonal tempers down. Temper is the fire of a woman, and children certainly know how to add more logs to the pile. Emotions are a part of our health. Anger can make our heart pound and head flair.
It takes a real grown up to walk away from these hot headed tempering moments. I am not the best mom in the world, I do try to walk away when I can. A good shower always sets my priorities straight. Remember that yin and yang relationship? That is where this comes into play. Your kids push your buttons and you pull theirs. Don't let them push you too far over the edge, that you become an unrecognizable ogre. We have all been ogres to someone in our lives. It is not
Some things to look out for in your children is their eye contact. If your kid has lost interest in you, their eyes will show it. Little kids, especially toddlers, love to stare into their parents eyes. If you are being a troll and they are not looking at you when you are speaking, that's a sign that their shields are up and those defense mechanisms have kicked in. Calm your voice and explain to your child that such and such really bothers you, and to please not do it again. Walking away is a lot better for your relationship in the long run. Don't yell...just take a shower.
Sources: upi.com, independent.co.uk, livescience.com, telegram.com, sciencemag.org, medicaldaily.com, chicagotribune.com, bloodjournal.com, whattoexpect.com, dailymail.co.uk, brainmind.com, docrobin.com