Thursday, 3 September 2009

Right paw forward

I caught myself doing it again this morning: Marie was eating her cereal with the spoon in her left hand, and even without thinking about it I moved it to her right hand. The whole situation just looked wrong. Now I have nothing against left-handed people, but I so seem to have a deep-seated desire to have right-handed children. Perhaps it's just something like hoping they will like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or that they will never wear shoulder pads. Would this desire be nature of nurture? Do I just want my children to be just like me, on a kind of instinctive level, or have I been subconsciously infected by society's discriminatory behaviour towards left-paws?

I don't know why I'm so keen on my children being right-handed. I always think it looks wrong somehow when someone writes with their left. I have to say, though, I look at this completely differently since I saw Obama writing with his left hand. Because he is my secret boyfriend. He can do no wrong. There is definitely nothing unattractive about him. So ever since, I think left-handed people must have been quite sexy all along.

In my family, nearly everyone is right-handed. Babes and his dad are ambidextrous, but opted to write and use scissors with their right hands because it's just easier. I'd quite like it if the kids were ambidextrous, too, so I suppose I should stop interfering and just let them get on with it. It just looks wrong, though.

What do you think? Are you left-handed? Do you do the same with your kids? Do you think I'm a controlling bitch who should never have been allowed to have children in the first place?


  1. I am the only one in my family who is left-handed. I had plenty of teachers try to get me to be right-handed, but it just never worked. Sure, there are some things that are easier to do with your right hand, but all in all, it's no real hardship.

  2. My grandpa started out left-handed and his teacher made him write with his right hand. To this day that man's penmanship is atrocious. But maybe it would have been anyway.

  3. Dylan, my son, is left hand, I'm right handed, but my mum is left handed, so it skipped my generation. If I give directions, to work out which is my right and which is my left, I have to imagine picking up a spoon - so it took me ages to click that Dylan was left handed.

    Isn't there research that says that if you are left handed you prioritise a different side of the brain (left? right? you see my problem) than us right-handers, which makes you more creative, more imaginative, better at lateral thinking and generally a more funky human being? I would celebrate it (and close your eyes if it helps!). (Oh and buy a pair of left handed scissors - left-handers can no way use right-handed ones)

  4. ok. He's MY secret boyfriend so Back Off.

    There are a few lefties in my family, my dad, some cousins and Graham is a leftie.

    I've heard that lefties are smarter.

  5. How ever much you try and make them right handers, that left handy thing will keep on happening. Mind you, most of mine were both until about the age of 5. What the hell was that all about?!

  6. How funny! Johnny Drama (4) also appears to be left-handed and yes, to me it just looks cack-handed. Like everything he is doing looks awkward and wrong. So I am interested to see what happens now he is at school and whether he truly is a left-paw or not. I heard a snippet of info on Oprah about left-handed people and how their brains function better than right handed people, because the left / right side (can't remember which...but then again I am right handed so obviously mentally deficient) is more developed and so they can tap into both sides of the brain more easily. So maybe we both have budding geniuses on our (right) hands...

  7. I think Bill Clinton may have been left-handed too. My husband is left-handed. So is my darling friend Billy. Let your child use whatever hand she wants. Her brain works the way it works and you don't want to go mucking around trying to change something that really, doesn't need changing. That's my opinion. She is special.

  8. Yup, totally a controlling bitch. *snort* Don't be silly! My husband and BOTH of my kids are left handed. I, of course, am not. As it should be. What is WITH that anyway? I tried for ages to get girl spawn to switch to her right hand, but she refused. So now I am the odd one out in our house.

    And excuse me, but could you please keep your controlling bitch hands to yourself and off my man? Obama is mine and only mine. Humph.

  9. My hubby and I both come from a families of equal sided lefties and righties. I'm a rightie and so is hubby. I'm secretly hoping one of the kidlets will be ambidextrous like my sister :o She used to be able to write with both hands starting on opposite sides of a peice of paper and meeting in the middle...too cool.

    So far my eldest is a right handed, Ryan the middle tends towards left but will still switch as he doesn't write yet it's hard to tell. Leigha just yells, throws and hits with both...maybe in a few years we'll know how she works :p

    I still do lots of things left handed as I am left brained,sports (what little I do play I tend towards left handed like golf) maybe that is the problem, women are left brained therefore we see things differently?? Or else I'm loopy and had too much coffee tonight;)

  10. @Badass Geek - I find the knowledge that you can't determine which hand a child uses very comforting. The two times a week I interfere are not going to make one blind bit of difference because my children will grow into what they are meant to be anyway.

    @Steph - Such a cruel practice. Luckily most teachers don't do that any more.

    @Half Mum Half Biscuit - I would let her get on with it, you know. So far, there's no way to tell which hand she will favour because she's not even two, but I do think she uses her right more.

    @Creepy - He's mine, all mine!

    If they're smarter, there's a good chance she's a leftie. :-)

  11. @Ladybird World Mother - Welcome! I harbour absolutely no illusions that I can impose my will on either of my children in the long term.

    @Nicola - I suppose he may well be then, if it has been that long.

    @Ms. Moon - She is special indeed. And I would never dream of changing her. We're talking surreptitiously twice a week because it freaks me out. She's going to go her own way anyway, you should see that strong will of hers in her eyes.

    @Mad Woman - So you are in the minority.

    You realise I saw him first, so you may as well give up. Just a shame he lives so far away...

    @Meghan - My husband drinks with his left hand, which used to disturb me, but I got used to it. I now even set the table to match. I suppose you get used to anything.

  12. Nooooooo! Don't try and change her! I am left handed. Actually, I am a bit ambidextrous as I play tennis with my right (however, for a long time I just used to have two forehands). I still remember putting the racket in my hand and thinking, 'Now, which one?' And passing it between my hands. I eat right handedly (but use my spoon with my left) and use the potato peeler with my right.

    I also cannot tell my right from my left. I seem to have that innate piece knowledge missing from my DNA.

    But I LOVE being (mostly) left handed, cause it means I am not the same as everyone else.

    My sister is also left handed, and we are the only ones in our family. Her children are both right handed (she's a little disappointed about that!) and my brother is the only one in his family of four who is right handed!

  13. hm, never thought about it to be honest. I'm right handed though do a few things with my left (like opening screw tops and ironing - no idea why), and Cubling is clearly right handed too. I would think that I don't mind either way, but then again haven't been in the situation where she would have used her left paw. I do confuse left and right a lot so probably wouldn't even be able to tell which hand she was using. So maybe she's actually left handed and I got the sides wrong.

    And shocking what you guys are all on about Obama, he's married with kids, so you better behave yourselves. Really can't tell what all the fuss about him is about.

  14. Well, I'll be getting rid of my kids if they don't love Buffy, but I won't show them the Buffy until they are at least ten so it gives me some years to mold them and make sure they will be right thinking, if left handed.

  15. I'm a leftie and it never occurred to me that people (you) still try to cure us! ;-)
    I play the guitar and golf right-handed though, but that's probably how I was taught.
    One theory I heard is that lefties are surviving mirror twins where the right-handed twin didn't make it.

  16. If it's good enough for Obama...

    My husband is left handed, and claims that he was always at a disadvantage in exams, as left-handed writing is slower than right-handed.

  17. Hi Mwa, I always wanted to be left-handed, but I'm right-handed. Always thought "sinister"(left) men were dangerous (in an exciting way) and sexy (also exciting). I thought if I was left-handed I would be ultra-creative, beautiful, and so, so, cool. Still I am what I am and I'm glad I have hands, left or right. Kids and hubby are right-handed too. I never did try to make the kids use one hand over the other. To me it would go against their own nature.

  18. I'm left-handed and proud :) The only problem I had with that when I was younger was cutting with scissors. My parents bought me left-handed scissors (they didn't have any at my school, it was tiny though...) but I gave up using them at some point, I guess as today I can't cut with left-handed scissors.

    The only thing that is slightly irritating about being left-handed is trying to write on a page that's inside a ring binder.


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