Handedness and Heredity

So I was talking to my mom today about how I’m less scared about birth than I am about difficulty breastfeeding.  This led to my all time most feared parenting challenge is having a left-handed child (please note tongue-in-cheek being employed I’m quite sure there are much more challenging things!).  I am SO right handed that I can’t believe how ambidextrous my sister has to be as a lefty.  I think it would actually be difficult to teach a lefty how to write or hold a pencil.  So, I decided to see if there was research on how heredity effects handedness.  It seems there isn’t a specific gene and it is variable but in general the overall balance of 90% right-handed vs. 10% left handed is constant across the world and generations.  DH and I are both right-handed and according to several studies our chances of having a lefty is about 9%.

Two right handed parents, 9%
Left handed father, 12%
Left handed mother, 16%
Two left handed parents, 20% 
I’m sure if Aellyn is a lefty, Aunt Mandi will be willing to show her a thing or two!

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5 thoughts on “Handedness and Heredity

  1. My parents are both left-handed, and they have 9 children. Of the 9, only one is left-handed. Everyone else is very right-handed!

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  2. Paige,
    Samantha is looking like she is going to be a lefty. The only ones in our family are my Grandmother – her Great Grandmother, and my niece. The only thing that concerns me about having a lefty is I want to teach her to play Volleyball and I was always an ouside or middle hitter. So, I’m going to have to study up on playing left handed volleyball so I can teach her correctly. But there is big demand for left handed hitters because they play the weak side of the court, which is difficult to defend. So, maybe my dreams of having an Olympic champion Beach volleyball player can be realized! HeHe, no pressure right!

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  3. Aellyn will adapt your right handedness to her left hand. I did everything left handed by watching my right handed sister. It will all be good.

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  4. I’m a lefty and both my parents are righties. My parents taught me stuff by sitting across from me. I did a mirror image of what they did. It wasn’t a particularly big deal.

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  5. Interesting information re lefties. I am the only lefty in the first generation – memere and pepere were both righties. Both my kids are righties. The only thing I had trouble “learning” from memere was how to knit and crochet – otherwise we do everything the same as everyone else – we are just more adaptable, because we have to be !

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