September 13, 2012

Today’s Hot Topic: Pregnancy After Middle Age


How old is too old for baby?

By Whitney C. Harris


What would you do if you found out that you were pregnant? And what if you were almost 50 years old at the time?

In a recent post on the New York Times‘ Motherlode blog, mom of two Erin Kelly finds herself in this exact situation–wondering what to do, weighing the risks and the benefits, and worrying about her family’s future.

The ongoing political debates regarding a woman’s right to an abortion haven’t really considered the cases of those who are simply beyond their reproductive prime. But with all of the increased risks for both mother and baby, the decision to have a child becomes even more important as we age. So while the average age of first pregnancy is rising, the issues surrounding a woman’s right to choose must come to the forefront of the national discussion on reproductive health.

If you were in Erin Kelly’s shoes, what would you do? Go ahead, read the article. I’ll wait right here.

Intriguing right? Most of us probably can’t predict how we would react to a surprise pregnancy at 49. Regardless, you have to respect Kelly for being so open and honest in her essay. And, whether you agree with her or not, you have to respect her thoughtful reflections on how a new baby would affect her entire family. And perhaps breathe a sigh of relief that she ultimately didn’t have to make the difficult decision that so many women are faced with each year.

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