Babies are social. Even in the womb. You know it. I know it. Everyone who’s talked to her baby in utero and had that baby kick back knows it. And now the medical community knows it, too.
A new study confirms that babies are hard-wired to interact socially, and they respond to the world around them not just at birth -- but in the womb as well. How’d they find out?
Through the magic of twins, of course.
Twins in utero wave their arms at one another as early as 14 weeks; by 18 weeks, almost a third of all their movements are directed at each other. Because twins are the coolest babies.
The movements they make toward each other are different -- slower and longer -- than the movements they make in response to other stimuli, which scientists say proves that they recognize each other and can tell the difference between “my twin” and “other stuff.”
How. Freaking. Cool.
Of course, everyone has a tale of their in-utero baby responding to them. My sister used to sit in the bathtub and put a rubber duckie on her tummy, which her daughter would promptly kick off -- every time. She’d laugh and laugh and they’d do it again.
A friend told me how she tried everything to “spin” her baby downward, but what worked was tapping on him 'tll he got annoyed and wiggling away 'til his head was in position. (Yeah, I know, a lot of us have tried this to no avail, but maybe he was just more social?)
When I was pregnant with Penny, I rolled over and yelled, “Ouch!” because something felt like it was folded-over funny inside me. She swam over and adjusted whatever it was, and I was suddenly comfortable. Thanks, pal!
And when I was delivering Abby and her head was stuck going around my pubic bone, I yelled, “Come on out, Abigail!” Okay, so she would have made it out anyway, but I was pushing for two hours -- I was willing to try anything!
Was your baby social in utero? How about your twins? Tell us in the comments!
Image via surlygirl/Flickr