You're a good parent. You're doing your best raising your stupid little baby and, so far, you think you're doing a pretty decent job. Then one night, you put your baby in their crib as usual but instead of nodding off they sit up and start beating their head against their crib over and over again. Hard. You're in too much shock to do anything, or maybe you're just kind of a crummy parent and you want to see where your baby's going with this when, after a minute or so, it is all over and your innocent little angel is fast asleep. What the hell just happened?!
It's not just your baby, either. Starting at about nine months, before going to sleep many infants will bang their heads against something solid up to 80 times a minute. Spells can last from a few minutes to a few hours. They're not mad, they're not trying to get something, they are seemingly just hurting themselves for no reason at all other than to fuck with your already fragile and sleep-deprived parent brain.
Why Did I Do That?!
It feels fucking awesome, and it's the closest this baby can come to getting high (unless you're really crummy parents). The surge of adrenaline that the kid gets from the slight pain induces a happy, calm and relaxed feeling followed by exhaustion. They don't care if you protest, and they don't care if there's any harm done. They just want that next adrenaline fix, and they'll bang their head all night to get it.
But they can quit any time they want. Totally.
You are destroying the lives of everyone around you.
Imagine this: A guy notices his neighbor, or his brother has something he wants. A watch, or a car. This guy wants it, so he cons and lies and manipulates until, eventually, his neighbor or brother either feels guilty enough or bad enough for him, and they give up the watch. The con man gets what he wants. What would you call that? Stealing, probably. Now, imagine that same scenario, but imagine a tiny, worthless baby is doing it. What would you call that? That's right: Adorable stealing, and babies do it all the time.
If they see something they want, they'll do whatever it takes to get it. They'll scream, sure, but they'll also hit their head, injuring themselves, so their parents feel bad. One bumped head and suddenly every cookie and toy goes to the baby, and Mommy is cooing, "Are you alright?"
This behavior of self harm and manipulation usually starts before six months and can continue well into childhood. During tantrums, babies will hit and bite themselves, and some children will hold their breath for so long they pass out. This emotional manipulation is, not surprisingly, very effective.
Why Did I Do That?!
Children don't have a complex understanding of other people's ownership until they are a few years old. Unfortunately, an understanding of personal ownership comes much sooner than that. In other words, to a baby, everything is theirs. The concept of things being taken away makes no sense. If it's MINE and I want it NOW why can't I have it? Since everything is rightly yours there is nothing wrong with doing whatever you have to do to get it back. And if it takes making yourself pass out to get your damn pacifier returned, so be it. What do you care? You're a little con baby.
For a long time scientists had a theory that left handed people might have started out as twins in the womb. Their rationale was that in a set of twins one tends to be right handed and one left handed. Genetic and nurturing factors can also affect handedness, but they can't explain it completely in many cases. Maybe all lefties were the result of only one twin surviving the cage fight that is fetal development.
It wasn't until ultrasounds, and fearless cameras capable of surviving the uterus, that scientists discovered their hunch was right. Sort of. They were right in the fact that most lefties were once twins but they didn't go far enough. Scientists now think that a ridiculous one in eight people started out as two peas in a pod. Of course, only about one in 70 people actually is a twin. So what happened to your twin? You killed it and then absorbed it into your body. Yeah, those stories of adults finding teeth in their shoulder? Not urban legends.
Why Did I Do That?!
Because you're evil.
Not really. Chances are you were just the healthier fetus. Or you hogged all the blood if you shared a placenta. Or you grew faster and literally left your sibling no womb at the inn. If multiple pregnancies are really as common as they now seem, we evolved to be this way for a reason. Trying out two fetuses to see which one is more likely to survive is a pretty good plan evolutionarily. Unfortunately, carrying twins is very dangerous for the mother, meaning that our best bet as a species was to let one twin kill off the other early on in development. Just another reason lefties are a sinister, sinister group of people.
Do you have something funny to say about a random topic? You could be on the front page of Cracked.com tomorrow. Go here and find out how to create a Topic Page.
And find out what sinister qualities your cat and your child share, in 6 Adorable Cat Behaviors With Shockingly Evil Explanations. Or find out what science has to say about your child when they grow up, in 5 Douchebag Behaviors Explained by Science.
And stop by our Top Picks (Updated 2.2.2010) to find out more on the evils of babies.