Babies always look like their fathers

Newborn baby - always resemblance to father?

Similarity - so more care for the child

Scientists say: In contrast to the mother, fathers can never be one hundred percent certain that they are the biological parent of a child - and that gnaws at many fathers, consciously or unconsciously. But if you are convinced that you are really a father, you are much more committed to the newborn. That was even researched:
In one study, men were shown various photos of children. One of them had been created / mixed from her own photo. They found this child most attractive and most likely wanted to adopt it. They would also love to spend time with him, most likely spend $ 50 on it, and have the fewest problems paying alimony.

But do children really look more like their fathers?

In the mid-1990s, there was a study that actually seemed to show that one-year-olds look more like their father. In the meantime, this has been disproved: There is no natural mechanism that absolutely ensures that fathers can recognize themselves unequivocally in their offspring immediately after birth - some just look like them, others don't.

But it would be nice if it were like that

The fact that the old wives' tale of similarity is so persistent is probably due to two things:

1. The wishful thinking of fathers

In Italy it was investigated whether childless men judge family similarities differently than fathers and found a corresponding effect: overall, fathers saw more similarities between (not necessarily related) faces than childless men and also than childless women and mothers. The researchers conclude that fathers are so interested in proven kinship that their wishful thinking influences their judgment - which the children benefit from in the form of greater engagement.

2. The interest and need for harmony of the mothers

The fact that she emphasizes the similarity to the father after the birth is an expression of her urgent wish that the father should not question his participation in the offspring. In women, a need for harmony and cuddling caused by the hormone oxytocin is blamed for the fact that they want to find their loved one in the trains of the offspring. If dad is in the same room on the similarity question, mom becomes even more emphatic in her positive comparison.

French study refutes the myth

One of the most impressive studies with typical results on the subject comes from France, where mothers, fathers and strangers were asked to judge the photos of 83 babies and toddlers from 69 families for their resemblance to the father. The results showed, on the one hand, that the mothers insisted that the sons were completely the father, while many fathers had their doubts. Only a third of the stranger confirmed the resemblance to their father, the rest voted for their mother. (Text: Kathrin Wittwer)