In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Late-in-Life Motherhood: Do You or Don't You?

Late-in-life motherhood: Should you or shouldn't you, that is the often debated question.

Television host Nancy Grace, a first-time mommy-come-lately at 47, has some pretty strong views on being an older mom.

"Forget about it. Don't do that, everybody. Please listen to me. The health risks are incredible and I had no idea going into it. On the other hand, if I had to do it all again to get Lucy and John David, I would do it in a heartbeat," Grace said. "I'm glad I did it, but I wouldn't want to wish that on anyone else."

Grace gave birth to premature twins--a son and a daughter--on November 4th after developing pregnancy complications. A week later, she suffered a blood clot to her lung that nearly killed her.

Pregnancy at any age is risky, but there is no getting around the fact that risks increase as a woman ages. An older woman faces an increased chance of miscarriage, chromosonal abnormalities like Down syndrome, as well as the chance of developing high blood pressure or diabetes.

Despite these risks, late-in-life motherhood is still the biggest trend on the maternity front in the last 10-12 years, and it shows no sign of abating. Why? Just reread Grace's quote. She starts off saying Don't do it and then almost immediately says I'd do it all again and I'm glad I did it.

With so many mommy-come-latelys, both first-timers and repeaters, women must agree with Grace that late-in-life motherhood is worth the risks.


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