'I got it from my mama' rings true...
It looks like ‘I got it from my mama’ actually has some basis in scientific fact.
According to a study referenced in Psychology Spot, our genes behave differently depending on whether they come from our mothers or our fathers – and those which determine our intelligence can only come from our mums.
Described as ‘conditioned genes,’ these genes behave differently depending on their origin.
The genes which control how clever we are can be found on the X chromosome. If you can cast your mind back to GCSE Biology, you might remember that women have two of these, while men only have one. So, you’re twice as likely to have inherited your quick wits from your mum.
In fact, even if your father does pass on some of these intelligence genes, they won’t actually have any impact on your IQ, as they’ll only work if they come from the mother’s side. As the authors at Psychology Spot put it, ‘If that same gene is inherited from the father, it is deactivated.’ Sorry, Dad.
It’s not just genetics that are a factor in how intelligent a child becomes, though. Previous studies have shown that children who have a strong emotional bond with their mums tend to be more intellectually advanced – and the reason why is rather sweet. This strong bond reportedly gives children a feeling of security, which encourages them to explore further and puzzle over problems without giving up.
Yet another reason our mums deserve a ‘thank you,’ then…