By now everyone has heard the news that recently-married Halle Berry is pregnant at the age of 46 (her first pregnancy was at 42). While I certainly wouldn’t follow in her footsteps, I do question why anyone would want to have a baby at that age. Even with modern technology we all know the challenges that women face having children later in life, such as birth defects and higher rates of miscarriage. Not to mention, the disturbance in one’s career and the sheer physical toll. But even with all of those things aside, why would you want to spend your “middle years” changing diapers & chasing after a toddler?
Other things to consider having children later in life are: fetal distress, cesarean birth, high blood pressure, diabetes, ectopic pregnancy and premature delivery. And that’s just for the mother! The baby is at risk for low birth weight, genetic disorders like Down syndrome, asphyxia, brain bleeds and stillbirth. How terrible is that?! Those are problems that occur during the pregnancy & in the delivery room. Consider what age you’ll be when your child becomes a teenager. How will your parenting abilities be as you age? Can you keep up with your children or their friend’s parents? Will you have the energy? Will you have the patience? Will you be able to keep up with the rigor of raising multiple children as you age?
According to nationalgeographic.com the average life expectancy is 81 for women and 76 for men, so why spend the second half of your life raising young children? I would think that bearing children would be best to do while you’re younger. Instead of preparing for retirement, you now have to focus on raising an adolescent. While you may be more financial stable, the more out of touch you are with the younger generation that you are now raising. Not to mention all of your friends are just about done raising their children so you won’t have the support system that you probably hoped for.
Let’s look at some other famous people who had children later in life:
- Uma Thurman – 42 years old
- Celine Dion – 42 years old (with twins)
- Tina Fey – 40 years old
- Mariah Carey – 41 years old (and she’s reportedly pregnant again)
- Nicole Kidman – 40 years old
- Kelly Preston – 48 years old
- Salma Hayek – 41 years old (her husband is a billionaire)
- Molly Ringwald – 41 years old (with twins)
- Mira Sorvino – one baby at 41 years old, and another at 44 years old
- Charlie Chaplin – was reportedly 73 years old
- Steve Martin – had his first child at 67 years old (and his wife was 41)
- Hugh Grant – fathered a child at 51 years old
- Warren Beatty – fathered a child at 55 years old
- Tony Randall – over 70 years old and died shortly thereafter at 84 years old
- Luciano Pavarotti – fathered a child at 67 years old and died shortly thereafter at 71
It is a little different when you are rich – you can pay for younger help. You can also afford the best doctors to make sure that your health & the baby’s health is in excellent condition. Plus, Halle Berry looks like she’ll be young forever! But for the average woman these resources aren’t as readily available.
I am so glad that my parents aren’t “older”. This means that they’ll be around a lot longer J