We often hear about the effects of a childbirth on a woman’s body, but what exactly happens to a man’s physique when he becomes a parent?
Much research and literature have been dedicated to the shifting forms of womanhood when a baby enters the picture. Her hips widen, hair thins, skin glows and her emotions become like Six Flags – a complete rollercoaster.
Yet significantly less attention is given to the father’s side of things. Have you noticed though that pictures of dads show a drastically different man than the one shown in their wedding photos?
Studies show that even the shape of a man’s body changes. Testosterone levels can decrease by up to 30% in men who live with their pregnant partner for the last six months of pregnancy.
This is known as “sympathetic pregnancy”. Scientists are still working to figure out exactly why this happens, but the confirmation by researchers finally dispels the rumors that “man pregnancy” is a myth! Many believe that it’s caused by evolutionary causes.
The idea is that as a couple prepares their dwelling to host a child, a drop in testosterone makes males stick closer to the nest in order to help the mother. This guarantees that the male’s genes will be successfully passed on to his offspring. In addition to the hormonal shift, the basic workings of a male’s brain become rewired.
He learns to detect his child’s different cries, knowing when to feed, change and bathe the little tyke. MRI scans have even shown that a father’s brain activity increases in the communication and social areas post-birth.
So the next time you visit a pair of new parents makes sure to check in on the daddy as well as the mommy!