Heat waves lead to hot tempers — and here’s why – TODAY.com

grumpy pants

Remember when I, somewhat tongue in cheek, mentioned Seattle’s heat wave being correlated with divorce rates? Well, I happened across this article a few days later: Heat Waves Lead to Hot Tempers: Here’s Why, with it stating things like:

And as the temperature gets hotter — so do our tempers. Summer heat waves make us act like cranky, whiny toddlers, experts say, and studies have even shown that as the degrees tick up, so do crime rates.

Well, crime rates in this family, in the form of yelling at my sweet toddler, have certainly increased. Husband-wife contention have also increased, too, but, this explains it:

An increase in body temperature causes an increase in physical arousal – your heart rate goes up and your blood pressure rises as your poor body tries to cool itself off, explains Dr. Jeff Borenstein, president of the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation in Great Neck, N.Y. And that can be bad news for your behavior, because increased physical arousal is known to be linked to aggressive behavior.

Ugh. So aggression has an uptick in the summer months, but that is NO excuse for yelling at my kid, or cursing out my husband, right? Riiiigghht? The study also mentions dehydration and the increase in iced coffee and how that effects anxiety.  I guess I’m totally guilty of that, drinking caffeine to help with my sleep deprivation, but it’s increasing my anxiety. Sigh. What a cycle I get caught in!



Seattle Summer & Divorce Rates


Every year I am shocked by the intensity of our heat waves. I feel that it’s early this year, usually happening later in July, so I hope that it doesn’t happen twice. It’s usually this five or so day stretch with temperatures heading into the 90’s and beyond. While the rest of the country swelters under MUCH HOTTER temperatures, there is something sinister about our heat, here.  Or maybe it’s the lack of AC in any of the houses, so we’re all forced to deal with skyrocketing temperatures…in our bedrooms.


To beat the heat during the day, I’ve been spending time with a good friend and her two sons. And for all my uncertainty about being a mom, let alone a good mom, there is something so refreshingly nostalgic about watching my kid run in the sprinkler and eat blue otter pops. And we sit in the grass sunning ourselves, drinking beer and watching the two kiddos splash in the kiddie pool. If only I could sleep in the kiddie pool, that would be cool enough!


Potamus is definitely weaning. He’s not happy about it, and neither am I (in some respects), and napping and sleeping is super hard for all of us. It’s taking about two hours to put him down at night, and the other night, after nursing, he fell asleep drinking from his water bottle…after wiggling and playing tent and wanting to dive off the bed to start playing with legos. It’s a challenge to my patience, to say the least, and it’s worse because I’m sweaty and wish that he could just nurse to sleep like when he was a wee baby. I feel like my milk is drying up and he’s frustrated that my boobies aren’t working like they used to. But the night he fell asleep drinking water he slept really well, so I think that we’re in this place of transition and both aren’t wanting it to end, but I think it’ll actually help. Sigh, I’m so torn.


There have been a few years where Boof and I head over to his parent’s house to sleep for a few days to save our sanity. They have air conditioning plus all the bedrooms are in the basement, so it’s almost TOO cold over there. But we’re actually heading on up to a local island to stay in some cabins for a few days with my parents. While it’s not going to be cool, hopefully it’ll be cooler by the water. In India when it was hot I slept with wet woolen socks and a wet dupatta pulled up to my chin. Not sure Boof would want me to re-create that scene in our bedroom now!


How do you beat the heat? Tried and true tricks?