In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Friday, February 29, 2008

Pregnant women by the Census Bureau's numbers

Pregnant women are working longer into pregnancy and returning to work sooner than they did in the 1960s, according to a report released Monday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

As I read through the article, I kept wondering, "Are they going to say anything about the huge increase in late-in-life moms?"

I scanned past the statistic stating 67% of women who were pregnant with their first child from 2001 to 2003 worked during pregnancy, compared with 44% in the early 1960s. The report found that about 80% of women who worked during pregnancy from 2001 to 2003 worked until their last month of pregnancy, compared with 35% from 1961 to 1965.

And--Eureka! There it was. The report also found that the percentage of first births to women 30 and older increased from 4% in 1970 to 24% in 2000. That's quite an increase in older moms--and I would wager a good portion of those women fall into the over-35 catergory, which earns them the Advanced Maternal Age Label.

So--those are the stats. I have to admit, I was a bit surprised. Not by the increase in over 30 moms. But because I keep reading about more women leaving the business world to be stay-at-home moms. But, according to the numbers, from 2001 to 2003 about 55% of women returned to work within six months after giving birth, compared with 14% in the early 1960s.

Motherhood--it's an interesting experience, any way you look at it.

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