According to my 19 year old stepdaughter, 35 is too old to have a baby. As a woman turning 36 this month, I was a bit taken aback by her “revelation”. Now, I have never given birth to a child of my own, but instead spent much of the last 12 years helping raise her. I think I am like many women, who don’t necessarily feel ready for a baby, but would probably be distraught if told I couldn’t have one. Like most of my professional female clients, I like to think I am in control of my destiny – even when the evidence stares me back in the face! I like to tell myself that I still have the option, so was rather taken aback when my stepdaughter, who doesn’t have A-levels or any kind of stable job, announced she “would like to have a baby by 23 or 24, not really old like 35!” Ironically, she still frequently encourages me to have a baby – conveniently forgetting I am ‘past it’ according to her definition.
Now, I love her, but she hasn’t taken the straightest of paths to maturity. What she thinks is going to happen in her life to make her financially able to care for a baby AND have the career she says she wants at such a young age is a good question. My fingers are crossed she’s out of university and starting a job she likes by 23 rather than cutting coupons for nappies. If anything, I think late 30’s is a great time since you have already had time to live for yourself, and are more likely to be financially stable. But in my case, time also makes it less attractive; I already love my life as it is. In any case, I think the question is not – “Do I want to have a baby when I’m 45?” but actually “Do I want to deal with a 15 year old when I’m 60?” If you want more career planning information click here