When a woman gives birth, she may picture in her mind's eye what that new tiny creature might become—a comedian perhaps, or mechanic or physicist. She might envision the adventures and mishaps she will share with her child along the way. She will, if she's smart, contemplate the frustrations and just plain hard work of bringing up baby, from changing diapers and taming tantrums to soothing hurt feelings—or worse.
But few mothers, or fathers, consider how having a baby will change them. Of course, parenthood is a life-changing event, so it should not be surprising that it molds Mom's brain—and Dad's, too. In the Special Report: Baby Power in the July/August issue of Scientific American Mind, two articles detail what researchers have learned about the striking effects of motherhood and fatherhood on our psyche. And now, Scientific American brings you a video tour of what scientists know about how motherhood, in particular, alters a woman's outlook on the world and hones the operation of that intricate organ sitting inside her skull.