Do you go gaga for tiny onesies? First in line to hold the newborn that someone just brought into the office? Can't stop watching reruns of Kate Plus Eight (which seems like the only way you'll catch Kate and clan from now on)?
You, are possibly suffering from baby fever. But before you freak out about the deafening sounds of your biological clock ticking, here's something that might give you a bit of comfort: You're not alone.
A recent study has found baby fever is, in fact, a real thing and it affects a large number of people -- men included. "Baby fever is this idea out in popular media that at some point in their lives, people get this sudden change in their desire to have children," lead researcher Gary Brase says in a release featured on The Globe & Mail. "While it is often portrayed in women, we noticed it in men, too." Brase and his wife, Sandra, began studying baby fever over a decade ago after the birth of their second child. They tested their theories through a series of questionnaires aimed at young adults.
They found baby fever was more common in women than men. When asked what they desired more -- a baby or sex -- women usually chose babies and men typically chose sex. "We found this kind of ironic because sex and having a baby are causally related," Brase tells Science Daily.
The Brases also looked into the causes of baby fever. The number one predictor of whether baby mania would take hold of someone was positive exposure to a baby. In other words, if you spend a fair amount of time around the cutest, most perfect little angel, you're pretty likely to want one of your own. The opposite is true as well -- if you're exposed to Satan's tiny minion, it can significantly decrease your desire for a child.
Practical factors also came into play -- issues like your finances, your career and your social life can also diminish your desire for a little one. In some cases, this can be the deciding factor for couples: "Having children is kind of the reason we exist -- to reproduce and pass our genes on to the next generation," Brase adds. "But economically, having children is expensive and you don't get any decent financial return on this investment. And yet, here we are, actual people kind of stuck in the middle."
Bottom line? Don't hang out with babies unless you are prepared to be subjected to their jedi mind tricks. We're kidding, of course. But the next time you find yourself cooing over tiny booties and feeling a pang in your uterus, keep in mind it could just be a fleeting case of temporary baby mania.