Does Advanced Maternal Age Really Mean You’re Too Old to Give Birth?

What do you consider advanced maternal age? What age do you think is too old to have a baby? Pushing aside, finances and social norms what is your cut off date? I had always said I’d never have a baby after 35. I know, I was so adorable thinking in absolutes. I drew that line in the sand before I knew anything about life.

Then I found myself wonderfully and unexpectantly pregnant at 39 and I couldn’t think of a reason in the world why that would be wrong. I was scared; terrified to be exact. I’d heard all the horror stories of all the things that could go wrong. In the end, it didn’t work out the way we had hoped but if it could have, I was absolutely ready to have another baby because even though my eggs might have been 39, my mind and heart felt 25. Does that matter? How much does that factor in?

A German woman, Annegret Raunigk, is about to make history as the world’s oldest woman to give birth to quadruplets. The 65-year-old mother of 13 and grandmother to 7 already made the news ten years ago when she gave birth to her daughter Leila at the age of 55. Well, she’s making news again now because Leila has requested a younger sibling. The things we won’t do for our children, right?

After several rounds of artificial insemination, Raunigk finally became pregnant with four embryos. Thankfully, the pregnancy hasn’t had any major complications so far.

Is 65 too advanced maternal age to have a baby?

Of course, Raunigk has been blasted with questions regarding the pregnancy, her age and the effect the pregnancy might have on her and her unborn children’s bodies. This is her response…

“I’m not actually afraid. I simply assume I’ll remain healthy and fit. In matters of organization I have enough experience, that’s not new for me.” When asked about the “moral implications” of being pregnant at her age by German broadcaster RTL, she had this to say “How does one have to be at 65? One must apparently always fit some cliches which I find rather tiring . . . I think, one must decide that for oneself.” 

I am all for living your life your way and I don’t think it is anyone else’s business to tell anyone, man or woman, what to do with their body. Female empowerment is one of my life causes and anyone who has been a long time reader of The TRUTH knows that I am a ferocious advocate for women’s rights, reproductive especially. I don’t believe in putting people into boxes or labeling human beings.

However, in this case, I think there is something that no one has mentioned, what about those children? Granted the children may be perfectly healthy and happy, which would be ideal and I don’t necessarily think it’s my business to tell anyone when and how to have their babies but what happens in 20 years when these babies are 20 years old and she could quite possibly be dead?

It’s one thing to survive a pregnancy and delivery at 65-years-old but it’s quite another to bring a child into the world that you won’t be around to be available to them. My mom is 65-years-old and you can’t tell me that she would be able to be the same mom to a newborn as she was to me.

I realize that any of us can die at any time and age has nothing to do with how much we love our children but I just feel like giving birth at 65-years-old could be irresponsible and not fair to the children because 20-years-old is too young to not have your parent. This is a very real possibility for these babies.

Parenting is something we do for our entire lives and our children need us to guide and love them well into adulthood. Maybe that’s naïve of me but when I read this story I felt sad knowing that this mother might not be around to see these children grow to adulthood, get married or have their own children.

I guess the world is full of uncertainties and unexpected blessings and we can only do our best to thrive in our current situation but I feel that the emphasis in this entire situation should be on the children and not Ms. Raunigk.

What advanced maternal age do you think is too old to have a baby?

Related Posts

Comments (1)

That’s the first thing I thought of when I read about this situation, how long this mother will be around for the youngest children. Of course, I wish them all well, but it’s sad to think of how little time these children will have with their mother.

Leave a comment