“Future research is needed to identify the process,” write the authors, but it appears that pregnant women have some control over when they give birth. A study of birth incidence on Halloween and Valentine’s Day, by public health scholar Becca Levy and colleagues, showed that spontaneous births dipped on the former and rose on the latter.
The authors suggest that this contributes to growing evidence that culture influences birth timing. Women’s bodies resist giving birth on a day associated with fright and death, but give into birth on a day associated with love. The authors recommend extra staffing on obstetric wards on Valentine’s Day and sending a few more doctors and nurses into the streets on Halloween.Lisa Wade, PhD is an Associate Professor at Tulane University. She is the author of American Hookup, a book about college sexual culture; a textbook about gender; and a forthcoming introductory text: Terrible Magnificent Sociology. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
Christine — October 27, 2015
Interesting that it's clearly not consciously controlled at all (not that it's a surprise). The trends would presumably be reversed if that was the case. (I know that a birthday on Valentine's day wouldn't be as awful as having a wedding anniversary that day, but I'd assume that mothers would care enough for their kids to want to avoid that anyhow.)
UrbanTurnip Ⓥ — October 27, 2015
I have not one, but two women in my family with October 31st birthdays
msobel — October 27, 2015
I assume because they watched Rosemary's Baby.
Miss Disco — October 31, 2015
or this means less kids are conceived in late jan/early february. Valentines i guess does nothing for the libido.
pduggie — November 2, 2015
Why "bodies". Why not write "pregnant women resist...".
Is the body the agent over the mind entirely?
celeb networth — June 15, 2021
Thank you so much! This helps me a lot.