How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

The Testicle Umbilical Cord

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When babies first come out of the womb, they are physically attached to their mom. But could it be possible that perhaps, somehow, they are also attached to the father’s testes? Stay with me… if you can.

For my next trick, I will light this car on fire & give you a heart attack doing backflips off of it.

As a younger man, I skateboarded all over the San Francisco Bay Area. We used to stay out WAY too late and occasionally got into some great trouble. We were always trying to go for bigger air or nail a more technical trick that seemed ever elusive. I still have a sad face emoticon tattooed on my soul from not figuring out a couple of those skateboard moves. 🙁

Another major part of skateboarding culture was our obsession with watching skateboarding videos, when it was too cold or too rainy or too late to do anything productive. A notable sequence in the videos was always a section where people got hurt. I’m sure that this was the genus of “Jackass” and all those hordes of human failures on TV. The accidents were invariably pretty brutal and brought on physical sensations when you watched them. Imagine a guy trying to navigate a skateboard down the metal railing of a staircase and ending up landing it with their sack.. Ouch. Broken arms. Road rash. It was a blast, despite those momentary physical reactions we had.

Areas affected by your child’s activities. Notice the lack of genitals. This statue was probably built in response to what I’m talking about.

Fast forward to present day: You have a child and the guy/gal is a little daredevil. But every time he/she almost falls or actually DOES FALL, you get that same physical reaction. For a father, it seems to be in your balls.

A year and some ago (eat your heart out Lincoln), when Finn was learning to walk, my wife and I were watching him try to take a few steps. He lost his footing and fell headfirst. At the last moment my hand caught his wrist and stopped him from certain death. I had that aching, kicked-in-the-balls feeling. It was like a “scrotal spidey-sense.” I looked over at Avara and she was holding her stomach. “Are you okay?” I asked. She replied that whenever she sees Finn almost hurt himself or actually sustain an injury, she gets an aching, painful feeling in her “uterus”…

Now, every time Finn almost/does hurt himself, we both deal with metaphysical umbilical cords, still connected to our son. What the hell is that?? Are we the only parents who have this CRAZY phenomenon?

Please don’t tell me we’re the only ones…


33 Responses to “The Testicle Umbilical Cord”

  1. destiny says:

    not the only ones!

  2. Shannonannon says:

    no you are not alone and let me tell you it gets considerably weirder when they are 6 and 9 and the uterus hasn’t been occupied in a few years. it’s a bit like labor all over again.

  3. You aren’t the only one. It’s the same feeling I get every time my son leaves the driveway in my car….

  4. Gabriel says:

    I totally feel that physical pain when I see them get hurt. Watching my sons falling on sidewalks leaves my chest and crotch sore.

  5. Braindonkey says:

    It seems to be normal. Almost everyone I know says this. Girls cause it too.

  6. I definitely feel the same as your wife, so it has to be something biological. But I am going to ask my husband if his balls hurt later today…since our son is just starting to walk and hurts himself on an hourly basis.

  7. Stephanie K. says:

    I’ll have to ask Jon but I definitely get that same sensation! And Liam just started climbing stairs AHHHHHHH!!!!!

    • charlie says:

      I’m thankful and regretful about having stairs. He’s so good at them now, but it was a heartache every step of the way.

      • Stephanie K. says:

        Yeah stairs are new for us…we didn’t have them when Braelyn was crawling/learning to walk. And Liam is a very determined little dude! I move him away and he keeps going back!

  8. Every time my son *almost* falls off of the couch, I gasp as though I need to suck all of the air out of the room. I also seem to develop cat-like reflexes and can catch him in the nick of time. Now that P is almost three, I’ve actually calmed down quite a bit, but it is still freakin’ terrifying.

    • charlie says:

      The cat-like reflexes is another post entirely. I could spend 8 posts on that one. But yes, I gasp too. A silent, all-encompassing gasp.

    • luis says:

      Imagine this; luis (my kid) just learned to sit

      he went with me to the bank and wanted to sit by himself so I sit him besides me and start talking with the bank guy; with the corner of my eye I barely see my baby´s legs go up in the air..

      without thinking half a bliink later I had him in the air grasped by one of his tiny legs.. I caught him before he hit the ground

      I had my adrenaline pumping like crazy and little luis giggling upside down.

      • vikki says:

        Luis – that happened to me at the pediatrician’s office of all places right after my son was sitting on his own. we’re at his 9 month checkup, he’s sitting up on his own in the crook of my elbow…I reach to my left to grab a burp cloth out of his bag and I see feet in the air out of the corner of my right eye. He decided at that second to arch his back and do a back-flip over my forearm. I caught him, pinned against the countertop with my right thigh, ankle in my right hand, and he’s cracking up…upside-down. It all happened in about .36 seconds. I still have nightmares about it.

  9. kiera says:

    It’s totally normal, I get it too. I would venture that there is a group of muscles in the lower abdomen/pelvic floor that tighten when you get a fright or fear for the safety of your child – the same group of muscles that affect the testes in men are probably those linked to the uterus in women. I think that would be a rational explanation. Just a guess though! i’m (clearly) no expert. 🙂

    • Andy says:

      I like your rational explanation, very probable, but I also like Charlie’s metaphysical girlballs/phantom-umbilical concept because it make my same-as-uterine-muscles contract with laughter. 😉 Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

  10. Roby says:

    “That’s Gotta Hurt” is a common refrain around my 3 and 5 year old. It’s like “Jackass”, without the…well….no, nothing is missing.

  11. Jenna says:

    My husbands, a retired professional MMA fighter, response “between grappling, jack ass friends and what not I have been kicked in the balls a few hundred times and watching him (our son) almost hurt himself is like death by ball kicking.”

  12. Alan says:

    Seems you are in good company.
    I am Mr. Mom to two boys under the age of 7 and they have each become an expert at stopping their body by using their face. More often than not I get a “sympathetic” headache but yes, the “testicle connection” is there too.

    • Christina says:

      My brother made a regrettable habit of using his face to stop his falls…he had to get 2 fake front teeth at the age of 7 and he still broke one of those…

  13. ragingplatypi says:

    I get that too. Two scientific explanations are that the feelings are part of the fight/flight/freeze response (a natural anxious reaction) or mirror neurons (parts of our brain that account for us being able to mimic other people or “feel their pain”).

  14. Emma says:

    Just found your blog and wow, first impression is great, I’ll be back! 🙂 My baby is 7 months and I get what I thought was stomachpain but I guess it actually is in the uterus. Very interesting! 🙂

  15. Laura says:

    oh my goodness. I tried to describe the pain I feel when I see my kids get hurt to my husband and he looked at me like I was crazy. I get it when they drop to their knees. Shooting pains up to my own spine making me want to kick in reflex. So glad to know it wasn’t just me. Such a way with words you have.

  16. luis says:

    you are not alone, i have an extreme case… i dont feel the kick in the balls only when stuff actually happens… i have a very vivid and sadistic imagination so if my 2 year old starts climbing down the stairs I immediatly have mental pictures of her falling down! I dont know why this happens so I get a free kick in the balls feeling!

    so by my standard you d¿are doing ok

  17. Kristen says:

    I usually get a “wind knocked out of you” type response…not sure if that’s what getting kicked in the balls is like…but it still sucks. Then I usually tremble or get shaky from getting so freaked out. It’s probably an anxiety attack lol.

  18. ... says:

    is just plain histericism

  19. Ryan says:

    I myself don’t get any sensation in my balls, but do get real sympathy pains running down the back of my left thigh.

    Why, I do not know, but both my eldest brother and my Grandmother had the same response to watching or witnessing anything painful.

    I’m pretty sure mirror neurons have a massive part to play and they manifest themselves in specific parts of the body, different for each individual.

  20. Rebecca says:

    Whenever my little man almost hurts himself or worse, actually does, I get a “weak-at-the-knees” feeling. It’s like a buzzing or tingling at the back of my knees. It’s definitely stronger when I see blood on him.

    Once my husband didn’t have him strapped in the stroller and when running the stroller hit a bump in the path, pitched forward, and threw our son face first into the road. When they got home his little face was covered in blood… let me tell you my knees almost gave way that time… He recovered in a couple of weeks but I don’t think my husband has ever got over it!

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