Why I think 40 is too old to have children

A friend of mine recently gave birth to twins and while I was ecstatic for her, I worried a bit because she's in her early 40s. Not because she wouldn't be able to be a good mom or anything like that, but rather because having a newborn is super exhausting and it's something you don't really understand until you're in the midst of it all. Imagine then, having twins.

Luckily for my friend, she's not alone. According to a government report released on Wednesday, women in their early 40s are getting pregnant more often than before. In fact, pregnancies among women ages 40 to 44 went up nearly 65 percent between 1990 and 2008.

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And so my question is, how old is too old to start having kids? By the way, I'm not talking about having a second or third child. I'm talking about your firstborn. Although I consider myself an older mom because I had my first child when I was 33, if I had had her a full decade later, I guess I'd have to consider myself a super old mom. 

Truth is there really is no wrong or right answer for this question as this is obviously an individual choice. But now that I have two kids and we've survived the first few years of their childhood, I can say with certainty that I can't imagine, not even for a minute, having my first child in my 40s. 

Check it out, my friend who just had twins, will be in her late 40s by the time her kids are getting ready to go to kindergarten. Most other parents her age will actually be helping their children fill out college applications. I'll be 49 years old when I start doing that with my daughter and I really wouldn't want it any other way.

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Then again, an argument could be made about the fact that my friend got to do whatever the hell she felt like for the first half of her life without having to worry about anybody else's well-being but her own. Even so, I'm looking forward to my kids being old enough for me to recoup some of the "me" time I used to have before having them while I'm still young and energetic. 

In your opinion, how old is too old to start having children? Does age even matter? Leave us a comment with your thoughts.

Image via Rahego/Flickr

Topics: pregnant  child rearing  on parenting  parents and children