Moms Might Not Treat Ugly Babies As Well As Cute Ones

A mother’s love is supposed to be unconditional, right? Well, that’s not what a new study released by the Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital found. According to the small study of 27 volunteers, babies that are less attractive might not get as much attention from their mothers.In the study, participants were shown pictures of 50 healthy, attractive babies and 30 others with facial irregularities. The photos stayed on a computer screen for four seconds unless participants pressed certain keys to change the photo. The men were less likely to click off the photos of unattractive babies than the women were. The women left the keyboard alone while looking at the cute babies but moved along quickly from the ones with facial irregularities.

The study was small and certainly has its flaws — maybe the men just didn’t click off the ugly babies because they’re lazy! — but isn’t it sad to know that we might all be naturally shallow? If we are, it’s a good thing society expects moms to adore their children, no matter what they look like, and hopefully that compensates. [Time]