'Out-of-Wedlock' Births Aren't Out of the Ordinary

All the flurry over Schwarzenegger's 'out-of-wedlock' birth got me thinking about the language we use to discuss babies born to unmarried or married-but-not-to-each-other parents. To me, terms like "out-of-wedlock children" and "unwed mothers" have a culturally negative ring to them, echoing more flagrantly offensive descriptors, "bastard" and "illegitimate." Moreover, they seem outdated since out-of-wedlock births aren't out of the ordinary anymore.

How (Not) to Predict a Baby's Sex, Round 2

Just when we thought we had everything figured out about magically predicting how the sexual organs inside a fetus will turn out (barring telepathy -- although I could probably sell a TV series called "Mind Reading Mommies" faster than you can say 'breastfeeding'), some Japanese scientists had to come along and shake things right back up like a hysterical baby rattle.

Younger Parents Have Boys, Older Parents Have Girls?

Teen parents are more likely to produce boys while middle-aged parents are more like to produce girls. Satoshi Kanazawa over at Psychology Today breaks down this pattern by the numbers and comes up with a couple stunning observations:

Am I carrying my own twin?

Researchers believe that one in eight pregnancies involve twin fetuses -- so why do only one in eighty pregnancies actually result in the birth of twins? In this episode, Molly and Cristen explore the rare phenomenon known as fetus in fetu.

Guinness Is Good for...Expecting Moms?

Pro-Choice Doesn't Equal Pro-Abortion

There's a reason why Molly and I waited for more than 200 episodes of Stuff Mom Never Told You to have a frank conversation about abortion. It's one of the most controversial and divisive political, social and health issues simmering in the American mainstream. Our abiding podcast philosophy is to maintain objectivity as much as possible, and, frankly, we needed 200+ episodes of practice to present abortion in as honest, nonpolitical way possible. Hence, the podcast title "A Politics-Free Abortion Podcast."

Are Cell Phone Bills the New Fertility Calendars?

We've heard about the forthcoming STD testing app for smartphones. Just yesterday, HowStuffWorks premiered a super fantastic app that is guaranteed to change your life. And as if life couldn't get any more amazing thanks to cell phones, psychologists have discovered yet another functionality for these gadgets. Cell phones might be able to track a woman's fertility.

A Friendly Reminder About the Pill, Periods and Pregnancy

A while ago, Molly and I talked about "Can you get pregnant on your period?" on Stuff Mom Never Told You. And in brief, yes, you can. Sometimes, ovulation and menstruation can overlap just enough to where sperm hanging around after intercourse could possibly fertilize an egg. Oops. But what about being on birth control, you ask?

Childbirth Changes Moms' Brains

Having a baby bring about a host of changes in new moms' lives -- and their brains. A recent neuroimaging study suggests that women experience gray matter growth in certain brain regions during the first few months of motherhood. The added gray matter volume was concentrated in the prefrontal cortex, parietal lobes and midbrain areas that are associated with maternal care. Mothers who openly doted on their babies the most showed the greatest amount of gray matter growth, indicating that the neurological adjustment is the body's way of prepping women to be good mothers.

Wait, sorry. Did I say "party"? My bad -- I should've said "fight," "argument," "debate" or any similar synonym. I don't know that any topic I've blogged about has ever attracted as much debate as last week's post on a British study that found no danger in pregnant women downing one or two alcoholic drinks per week.