How old is too old to have a child?

Maria - posted on 03/17/2010 ( 293 moms have responded )

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I am 37 with a 3 year old and will be married in September to a younger man who has no children. He wants children one and I am on the fence about it. I want a child but, don't know if I will up for the physical work it takes to take care of one let alone a second. I was a single mom so maybe I am still in the mind set of doing it alone and I won't be alone. What do you think... I need some help with this one.

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Mary - posted on 03/17/2010

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Whether or not to have a child is something that needs to be decided between the two of you before you get married...regardless of age. If he really wants a child of his own, and you really don't want another baby, this could become a hugely divisive issue in your relationship.



At 37, I don't think that age should be of major concern...yet. You should keep in mind that fertility does diminish after 35, so I wouldn't wait forever to start trying if you do decide that you want another child.



I was 38 when I had my daughter. I had a completely uncomplicated pregnancy, and worked up until delivery. In no way shape or form do I feel like age has been an issue in "keeping up" with her (she's now 16 months). I was in great shape when I had her...actually better than I was in my 20's. I still work part-time, and I walk her and our 2 dogs at least 3-5 miles a day (she's in a soft carrier on my back!). IF anything, I'm more active than a lot of my much younger friends with children her age. And, trust me, even if you don't have a baby until you're 40, you will NOT be the only "older" momma in his kindergarten class...you may actually be younger than some =)

Lexie - posted on 03/22/2010

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This is a personal decision really...would you like to have more kids?
My Mum had me at 40...the only part I'm biased about with later aged birthing Mums is that I lost both my grandfathers before I was born, my Nana when I was 4, my father when I was 16 1/2 and my last grandparent, my grandma when I was 17, so I only have my Mum left of the previous generations, so my kids only have my Mum (their Nana) left. This is the main reason why I had my kids before I was 30, to grow up with them. But that's not everyone's opinion, some ppl prefer to have their career first, travel etc, without kids and once they feel ready is when they start their families....

So in answer to your question, no, you're not too old to have another child, the main question is "Do you want another child?" Good luck with your decision.

Debbie - posted on 03/19/2010

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I think with already having one thats only 3 you'll do fine having another one. They will all too soon be playmates for each other. And I think you are right...you won;t be going this alone, you have a husband who will be of help. Unless you're absolutly, possitively set against having another, I say go for it. Having a child is a wonderful thing to share between a husband and wife.

Lydia - posted on 03/19/2010

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My son was born on my 40th Birthday. He is now 6 and I am 46. I am a little less energetic than my younger friends but such as life. We get done what is important.

Jill - posted on 03/18/2010

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But, if you don't want another child - don't marry him because it would be unfair of you to do that knowing he wants to start a family.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

293 Comments

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Carolyne - posted on 03/27/2010

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Hi, I say go for it. I had my 2nd child at 38. We married late and the first babe arrived when I was 31. She was almost 6 and we had given up on ever having another baby. I gave birth to a beautiful healthy boy when I was 38. All I can say is it go for it. Sure it's a bit scary but health care is great and you have the support of someone who loves you. It will be great for your 3 yr old to have a sibling now and in the future. They keep you young and on your toes. I am 54 now and have a great relationship with both my kids and they are very close. Sure it's not always easy I worked night shift from the time he was a baby. I was tired but trust me you can do anything you put your mind to. Age is nothing when you look into those eyes that light up everytime they see you.

Ann - posted on 03/27/2010

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My first and only daughter was born the day after my 45th BD..she was a true blessing gift I've ever had in my life. She was 8 lbs 3 oz, 21'' and very healthy. I was very healthy when I was pregnant , so the age didn't mean anything as long as you are in the good and healthy shape. Now I am turning 52 she is turning 7 very smart and atheletic. How do I keep up my energy level to deal with my super busy / high energy girl at this age of 52 ??? I work out at least 1 hour to 1.5 hours a day/ 6 days a week with the P90X workout program. It keeps my energy high enough to get up 7 am and go to bed 11 pm everyday. I am blessed to be a stay home mom so I cook, clean, take home lunch to school everyday, my daughter has afterschool activities 5 days a wee...yes, we are super busy.. Working out as much as you can will be the best advice. If you are strong and healthy then you can deal with whatever around you. Go for the second child, you are still young and the first one will be 4-5 when this #2 comes along..it will be nice to have a little brother/sister for your first one!!! Good Luck and take care of yourself, Maria...

[deleted account]

I had my son at 42. It was one of the best things I ever did. Age is only a state of mind and even though the physical work is taxing at times, It all goes away when that child says "I love you, Mommy!".

Sharron - posted on 03/27/2010

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I remarried after having two kids, my youngest was seven, Two years later we decided to have a child-his first...I was 42. It was very hard but worth it. He is ten now and keeps me going, but I would do it all over again.

Heather - posted on 03/27/2010

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I think your children will be close in age which will be nice. I know a woman that had a child at 39 and is loving life! You do need to keep in mind that you are no longer a single mother and that your new husband is there for you. Good luck!

Jacqueline - posted on 03/27/2010

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My situation is similar to yours. My husband passed away when my daughter was 4yrs old. She's 7 now and I've been with my present partner for 6 months. He is keen to have kids and I guess I am too but i'm also mindful of my age. I will be 40 next year and feel that we have to make decision before then.....i'm more worried about the safety of my child, having one that late in my life. I'm not worried about my ability to care for a child at a more mature age.....i think it's a bonus!! I have more experience behind me and more common sense (I hope!!). I think that second time around will be more relaxed, even though every pregnancy and every child is different, at least I know what it's all about this time around.......does that help??

Ellen - posted on 03/27/2010

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I think that talking to your doctor about age is the best advice I could give you, but don't let the work part scare you off, I think that it gets easier with more they tend to entertain each other! I've had 6 and had the last one when I was 45, it was definitely easier when I was younger, I was 22 when I had my first, but would not trade any one of them for anything! What a blessing and a joy each one has been.

Erin - posted on 03/27/2010

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I think too old is when you can no longer conceive naturally because of AGE, not any other issues. 37 isn't too bad. I just turned 30 and am pregnant (surprise!) with our second. My daughter is 2 1/2 now. I was not thrilled when I learned I was pregnant, believe me. But We've both come around and gotten used to the idea of another (now we know) daughter. It is a lot of work and you know once you start on that road there is no turning back. I think if you have any doubt, don't do it. That's just my opinion. If we hadn't messed up one day we wouldn't be having any more children either.

Susan - posted on 03/27/2010

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I was 40 when my daughter was born. My first daughter was born when I was 35. Yes, it was starting over but, I enjoyed the ride. She was the best present I ever got. To find love again is wonderful; to have a second chance at motherhood is a quite a gift. Your fiance' wants a child of his own; to have it with you. If I were you, I'd grab this chance with both hands and wouldn't let it go. How often does a chance like this come along?

Nina - posted on 03/27/2010

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I turned 40 in October and had my first child in December. I got pregnant VERY easily and the pregnancy was virtually effortless and without complication. The difference in your situation is you will be doing this with a partner and you will share the responsibility. I have found, with my husband, that at times I have to ask for the help I need but when I do, he is always willing. The problem is when you expect them to know that you need their help and don't ask for it, then become resentful that they don't offer their assistance. It's ALL about the communication no matter what age you are. I'm sure that once you have that little angel in your arms, it won't even feel like work.

Amanda - posted on 03/27/2010

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i am nearly 39 and have a 9month old i am single .i also have a 16 year old ,when i had my eldest i did not realize how wounderfull and lucky i was to have him its only now that i have the little one i feel blest to have to great boys,i had a terrible pregnancy spending 3 months in hospital ,and a breech natural birth but as soon as i sean ryan i realized how lucky i was,so to your answer of how old is to old ,as long as you are healthy i would not worry i think that with my age it just makes it easyer i realize just how lucky i am.pluss when im 40 i would love another hopr this helps amanda.

Joy - posted on 03/27/2010

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I have a friend that is 42. She had her first child in July 2009 and she is loving it. I am 43 and have a 16 and an 11 year old and just got remarried in Novemver 2009. My husband, who is 50, does not have any kids but he has accepted my two as his own. We dated for for 6 and a half years before we got married. I think if I did not have any and we married sooner, we would have had one. With my kids being the ages they are we decided to focus on them. I think it is something that both of you should agree upon. It is such a wonderful thing and I love every part about being a mom.

Delreith - posted on 03/27/2010

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MMMM Well I am 37 And I would like more has my Husband has none of his own either but i all ready have 4 and i can not have any more but if i could i would i know a friend of mine was in her 40 when she had her last i think it all the pends on the persion or not.

so its up to u but if thats what you want i say go for it.

good luck with it all.

Julie - posted on 03/27/2010

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I am almost 39 and have a 3 1/2 year old son, and a 9 month old daughter, and I am still contemplating having another...age is how you feel...my pregnancy with my daughter wasn't a breeze chasing a 2 year old around, but wow, I took the weight off fast after! BUT...you do have to make sure it is what you want too!

Louise - posted on 03/27/2010

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You are NOT too old. I had my three boys when I was 36, 39 and 42. My husband is 4 years older than me. We love them all dearly. The main thing I found with being older is that we were in a postion that I could be a stay at home mum whereas if we had them earlier this would not have been an option. By the way, my Nanna was 47 when she had my aunt. This was back in the 1960s so she fell pregnant without any assistance.

Louise - posted on 03/27/2010

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You are NOT too old. I had my three boys when I was 36, 39 and 42. My husband is 4 years older than me. We love them all dearly. The main thing I found with being older is that we were in a postion that I could be a stay at home mum whereas if we had them earlier this would not have been an option. By the way, my Nanna was 47 when she had my aunt. This was back in the 1960s so she fell pregnant without any assistance.

Lucy - posted on 03/27/2010

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I think the best thing the two of you can do before deciding one way or the other is to PRAY and seek the Lord's will. He knows best! Best wishes to all of you.

Grandma Lucy

Sharmin - posted on 03/27/2010

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My sister-in-law was 47 when she had their twins, and they do a great job. Only you know what is best for you. I had our last one at 37, and have a great hubby who has helped with him since day one. Now at age 5 (almost 6) he's a Daddy's boy!

Diane - posted on 03/27/2010

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hi there - I was 40 when I had my first. secong mariage for me, first for him. He's 10 yrs younger than me. We had our second when I was almost 43. No problems.

Jennifer - posted on 03/27/2010

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I'm 33 and considering having another one as soon as I get my IUD out next January. You're definitely not too old, and the fact that your child is older is a great advantage. I have four children, 13, 9, 5, & 4. My two little guys are 15 months apart and it made it very difficult when they were babies and I think my middle son got the short end of the stick. Your older one is old enough to have his own things and won't feel like the baby is taking you away from him as much. And if your husband is good with the first one, then you're all set. My husband is a HUGE help, and it makes all the difference.

Christine - posted on 03/27/2010

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I had my son at 21. Tried for years for a second baby, but it never happened. I had a wonderful surprise at 44. I gave birth to my little miracle baby girl, who is now 8. Perfect in every way. The odds were way against me at my age, but I would do it again in a heart beat.Not to say at 52 some days are not a challenge! But she is so worth it.

Cindy - posted on 03/27/2010

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I had my last child ( of 6) at the age of 42- at home - He was much younger than his sibs ( which made it harder since they were becoming adults and moving out ) I had my first at 24 -- I have to admit - I had a lot more energy to chase a toddler at 24, but I believe we are a different parent with each of our children no matter what our age is. I was also a single mom for several years with 5 of my children. I think the more important question is .. why do you want a child? AND if the reasons in your heart are right for you.. go for it. I had my children at home -- and my last child at home, assisted by the same midwife who helped me with my oldest son at home 15 years previously. Good luck to you.

[deleted account]

I had my first child at age 37 and tried unsuccessfully for a 2nd until I was 46. I have a friend who birthed a child at age 50! there is no 'norm' these days. If you are healthy don't worry about the age. As a former single mom, you have a VERY valid concern and one that should be discussed upfront with your husband and only proceed if you feel his support. My situation was the reverse. My husband was older and after so many attempts he was firm on not wanting a 2nd. I finally agreed not to adopt, but it took years to lose that yearning for another child. Its a very personal decision..but if you wait you may not have the choice and it may be very hard for your husband to forfeit this opportunity.

Loretta - posted on 03/27/2010

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A friend of mine was 41 when she had her last child. Of course, she didn't do it alone. He's her husband of many years and the father of her two other children. I too am a single parent. I am 38 years old and not in a relationship. My younger daughter is 11 and the other is on her way to college. Having another child is a lot to think about, especially for a single parent who is use to raising children alone. We have a different mindset than married women! I often think about getting married and what if my my new husband wants a child? I'm hearing three area of concern:

- Age factor

- Physical ability and

- Mental challange

I will offer what I have considered. Although my biological clock is ticking, I would give it at least a year. He's marrying you, but it is a package deal! He must love your children as if they were his own. If you are in good health, don't worry about the physical challange. You may have to be a bit more health conscious, but it's amazing what the human body can withstand. It will probably be a breeze (mine are 9 years apart and the 2nd time was easier than the first). Don't worry about doing it alone. Just believe that this time around is going to last.



Assuming he's a great family man, I would then consider adding another addition to the family. It's ultimately your decision, but if he wants children going into the marriage, you must consider that before jumping the broom. Do not go into it with any pre-conceived notions. If you're still on the fence., make sure he's okay with not having children of his own as well.



God Bless

Loretta

Janine - posted on 03/27/2010

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I'm a 41 yr old mom of an 18 month old. I didn't marry until 36 and that's just how the timing worked out. For me, it's been great because I got to spend my 20's and 30's having fun and traveling. Now I don't mind staying home as much and don't feel like I missed out on anything! Plus, I think of it as great motivation to stay fit and young at heart for as long as possible!

Kat - posted on 03/27/2010

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Do it!! I am 39 and have my first and love it. It is a ton of work even with support but the joy of the child is more than the work. We are actually trying to have another.. yupe crazy but never been happier!!! Work is totally worth it.. I'm going to be 40 with my second and my first probably still in diapers. :o) You got my support!

[deleted account]

Hi From a 36 year old mother of 2 I would also consider a few other things too - sibling rivalry, the increased risks of health problems for your bub such as down syndrome after 35 and your partner's feelings. Sibling Rivalry has been huge in our family - we have 2 girls and the older is very competitive comparing herself to her sister, being jealous when we praise our younger one and again comparing what she thinks we think about her in comparison to her younger(braver and more resilient little sister). There will also be another dimension to this for your family as you will have children of different fathers and it will be important for your partner not to favour his biological child. Obviously after 35 there is the increased risk of health problems for the babies - you'd be better talking to a Dr about that. I would think this is a huge deal for your partner as he has no children - could you imagine not having children if you really wanted one because your partner denied you? I would say it is very important that you decide this together BEFORE getting married as it could be a deal breaker for your relationship down the track! If he is a loving committed partner and you think he will be a good father then your work may be divided by about a third but there will still be all the baby dramas including sleepless nights and double the work you have with one child! You will just need to weigh it all up - perhaps a pros and cons list might help!!!! At the end of the day I think you both need to make the decision! All the best with whatever decision you make! K!

Susan - posted on 03/27/2010

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The physical is only one part-just wait when they want to drive a car or go to advanced schools

Joanne - posted on 03/27/2010

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Hi Maria, thats a tricky question. I had my last child when I was almost 35 & I noticed the extra strain it put on my body later on in the pregnancy, My body just didn't seem to handle it as well as my other two pregnancies & it took longer to recover after the birth. If you decide to have another baby you will have the extra help this time but I wouldn't put if off as fertility really declines after 40 I've heard. I think it would be lovely for your 3yr old to have a sibling so if I was you I'd go for it. You will have your husband to help you & it will be a much more enjoyable experience for you this time round.

[deleted account]

One child is hard work, two is much easier because they have each other to entertain, I've had three and been a single mother since my youngest was five. Your not too old to have a baby but time unfortunately is not on your side. Be honest with him he has to decide whether to move on if the decision is no, what would you do in his position???

Alison - posted on 03/27/2010

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Go to a high risk OB and get a check up. How old depends on the health of your uterus and eggs. I had my first at 35 and my second at 37 - but I did have to go to a high risk OB because of age. Go ask the experts. If your eggs are good - go for it.

Joleen - posted on 03/27/2010

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Do it, do it, if your heart tells you so! I had my 1st baby at 42. Hana is perfect, healthy, & 3 y.o. now. I believe I have even more to offer her, as age & wisdom go hand in hand. I am a work from home mom, so she and I have a ball. See a picture of us on my web site Sendoutcards.com/24838 I will "cheer you on" if you decide to go down this path.

Lydia - posted on 03/27/2010

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I don't feel that your age should hold you back if he's a good man and he treats you right then be happy you deserve it I had my last child when I was 42 my husband's 1st child he's almost 14 now and I don't regret him for a minute I have a 36 & 23 yrs old as well and they get alone just fine.

Nicola - posted on 03/27/2010

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I had my first baby in December 2008, two months before I was 35. I'm now 36 and expecting my second baby due in three months time. I do get tired but that's because of the pregnancy. Before I was pregnant i loved playing with my little one, we still play now but mummy has problems getting down to floor level just now! Personally I wouldn't have children any later than 40 but as long as you're fit and healthy I can't see any reason why you can' have another baby. You're only as young as the man you feel after all lol.

Lisa - posted on 03/27/2010

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I just turned 39 in November and my daughter is 7 months old. My younger fiancé wants more children so we are letting nature takes its course. I also feared that I would not have the energy after having a son that is 17 years old but it’s working. Having my daughter has completed me. I fear sometimes of not being around for her graduation and I have a lot of people cracking jokes with me about being in a nursing home when she is 18 but I ignore them! People are rude! Having my little girl was the second greatest experience in my life and I will never regret it. I was a single mom since my son was in kindergarten prior to this… If you know in your heart that YOU want another child trust me.. you will have the energy for the physical work and all will fall right into place..

Latonia - posted on 03/27/2010

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I was 40 with my last pregnancy. I miscarriaged. But if I wanted to try again Should I give.

Give it up.

Jessica - posted on 03/27/2010

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This day in age women are doing things much different. I have a friend who didn't start having children till she was 38 and had her third at 43. So I think as long as your up for sleepless night agin and starting over with a new baby then go for it. Also health care is so much better then it was in our parents baby makiing days that the risk and complications are so much less. I just had my 4th baby a month ago and was thinking the same thing because we are crazy enough to go for 5 lo.



hope this helps



by the way all of my friends kids are healthy she had them at 38,40,and last at 43

Jessica - posted on 03/27/2010

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This day in age women are doing things much different. I have a friend who didn't start having children till she was 38 and had her third at 43. So I think as long as your up for sleepless night agin and starting over with a new baby then go for it. Also health care is so much better then it was in our parents baby makiing days that the risk and complications are so much less. I just had my 4th baby a month ago and was thinking the same thing because we are crazy enough to go for 5 lo.



hope this helps



by the way all of my friends kids are healthy she had them at 38,40,and last at 43

Cassandra - posted on 03/27/2010

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Well, I'm no lawyer or expert on anything, but I believe that you're too old to have a child when God stops allowing you to have one....If you're up to doing what it takes to get one, you probably got enough energy to finish the process (bringing one into the world)...

Lisa - posted on 03/27/2010

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You aren't too old! Just had my 1st at 35. The thing is, you have to want to do this 100 percent. The fact that you are on the fence tells me you are not too sure. Like someone previous said, the doctors will treat you like you are 75 once you get past 34. I hated that. Granted, I had complications but none of them had to do with my age.

Alison - posted on 03/27/2010

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I think in circumstances such as yours Maria it is ok to have another child. I am 29 years old and my husband is 12 years my senior so if something was to happen to him and I was to meet someone else and fell in love and he wanted a child I would certainly have another. However I see you have been a single mum with 3 kids, your new partner would obviously help you with this one. Or you should maybe sit down and have a talk to him about this. As for your other 3 how old are they. They could possibly help you. Either way I think you are not to old to be having a baby. and I wish you all the happiness in the world. I hope I have helped. Ally

Rose - posted on 03/27/2010

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When I was 39 I had my last child and got married to my second husband. She is now 22 years old and I have never ever been sorry that I had her. She was my miracle baby and is still a very special person!! We have a special bond because I had her later in my life and had time to enjoy her more. You can handle it because you are not alone anymore now that you have a new husband to be. Good luck!! But never be afraid to have another child that will bring you unlimited amounts of joy!!

Kim - posted on 03/27/2010

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Hey there! If it helps, a cousin of my cousin (sounds weird eh???) is 42 and just had a baby. She is finding it tough but her baby is cholic so that may be the main reason it's tough right now. You just have to be careful because your risks greatly increase the older you get, but talk to your doctor and see what he/she says... depending on how healthy you are, he/she may have some suggestions for you. Good luck!

Sharon - posted on 03/27/2010

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Hi Maria ! I think the answer to your question is within yourself. Everyone's situation varies, so I can only give you my experience.



I am currently 48 yrs old, and will be having a birthday this summer. I also remarried a younger man without children. We married when I was 42, became pregnant almost immediately and had our daughter at 43. Did I mention that I also have a daughter that is 27 and a son 26 ? LOL At any rate, it is a challenge to start all over again...but what a blessing as well :) Just make sure that you are very clear as to the help you will receive from your soon-to-be-huband and clearly define what "roles" each of you will fill.

I say go for it..but again..take a deep look inside..the answer is there waiting for you :)



Best of Everything,

Sharon Wallace

Eileen - posted on 03/27/2010

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Go for it! I am 39 and going through a divorce. I have a wonderful 6 year old and would like another child. I hope that I meet someone new and fall in love and get married again. I would like to have another baby and hope it's not too late! Good luck!

Roberta - posted on 03/27/2010

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Think long and hard about this one. It's really not all about you. How about when you are 58 and your child is 20. I'm almost 58 now and my girls are 30 and 33 and my mother is 92! My dad was even older and he's been dead for over 20 years. I now take care of Mom in addition to a full time job and all else that life sends my way. It's about the kids too. My mother had me late and my sister later and yes we most definately noticed a difference that our parents were older. We felt it. We were brought up differently then kids who's parents were like 10 years or more younger. It left it's mark. And let's face it. I am happy at 58 to be chld free and not worrying about colleges, etc. The physical toll also is tough because you've probably been used to a fairly independent life. It won't be that anymore,it's diapers, late nights, pedi visits and if you have a profession that pretty much goes on hold . Is it worth is, absolutely but only you can make that ultimate decision. And if you decide yes make that yes from you not to please your husband.

BTW my now husband is 13 years younger then me and he never had kids but calls my girls "his girls". No regrets and we are happy that we have the life we have and I am perfectly willing to share.

[deleted account]

If you want another child and think you can give birth to a healthy kid, go for it. I am 39 and have a 4 1/2 year old and a 1 year old. It isn't a problem keeping up. They are so fun. I understand feeling like you are getting older, but your aren't feable..and won't be for a long time.

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