Having a child changes the way you think. With a baby’s birth, parents become flooded with new responsibilities and emotions. In this special report, we explore how those experiences forge a bond between parent and child.

The connection does not depend on shared genes, as many adoptive moms and dads can attest. Nor does preg­nancy explain it all. The challenges of child care rewire both parents’ brains so that being a mother or father becomes easier.

That moms and dads have a strong influence on their kids is clear. Now we also know that on both sides of the bond, brains respond.

Read the articles in this Special Report

Maternal Mentality: Pregnancy and childbirth shape a woman’s mental makeover

How Dads Develop: When men morph into fathers, they experience a neural revival that benefits their children