edited to add 2 more polls at the bottom
Hubby and I are left-handed, and so are 4 of our 9 children. Maybe even 5. We’re still waiting on Bethany to make up her mind. Babies can be so indecisive.
I know those stats are way off from the average. I believe estimates of how many people are left-handed vary from 3-10% of the population, and our household has at least 54%. Now I’m wondering if our family is a collective freak of nature – wait, don’t answer that – or if “handedness” can be hereditary. I know theories abound, but there seems to be very little proof for any of them.
I have heard that being left-handed is sometimes connected to a lack of oxygen or other trauma at birth. Yes, I’m left-handed. Quit snickering. I was nearly 10 lbs, and was born with the aid of forceps. Out of the 14 children in my parents family, only one other is left-handed. He was over 10 lbs, and was very slow to start breathing. The theory seems to hold in my parents’ family.
I don’t think my mother-in-law had a particularly hard time with hubby’s birth, but he was her first, and first labors are often the hardest. He also tells me that he was more ambidextrous than just left-handed, but his parents thought it was cute for him to use his left hand and encouraged him to do so.
I also can’t help but wonder if it can be learned. My children see me eat and write with my left hand. Maybe I instinctively place the fork or pencil in their left hand, subtly encouraging them to favor that hand?
MY FAVORITE THEORY
This doesn’t explain why a person favors a certain hand, but I think I have noticed a pattern that can predict which hand a person will favor.
You know the whorl of hair on a baby’s head? You can often still see it on adults and children with very short hair. It’s usually on the left side, so a person’s hair naturally parts to the left. I think many left-handers have a whorl or part on the right side instead. Check it out. Ask a few random people who part their hair on the right side, if you can find any. They’re in the minority, and in my admittedly limited surveys, I have found that something like 50% are left handed.
What do you think?
I thought a few polls might satisfy our curiosity. Please feel free to answer as many times as you like, not just for your own family but for any others for which you know the answer.