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Modern Fertility Anxiety

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Wednesday, February 01, 2012 | 0 comments

Hutterite Fertility Data and Modern Fertility AnxietyThe many stories circulating about fertility problems and treatments may give you the impression that the incidence of infertility is rising.

On the other hand, a 2002 CDC report says that infertility has actually declined substantially in the past twenty years, though that report has been disputed.

If you’re confused about fertility, it’s probably because you’ve been paying attention—the messages out there are mighty mixed.

Though the use of fertility treatments is rising, there’s no evidence that the intrinsic span of women’s fertile years has changed much over time.

While advancing treatment options can expand the span for some, the blockage of fallopian tubes brought on by pelvic inflammatory disease or endometriosis can impair it for others. Then there’s the male infertility element.

So if women aren’t more infertile now than in the past, why are the numbers of visits to fertility doctors rising?

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Image: Ready: Why Women Are Embracing The New Later Motherhood, by Elizabeth Gregory. Publisher: Basic Books (December 25, 2007)
Ready: Why Women Are Embracing The New Later Motherhood
by Elizabeth Gregory

-- Over the past three decades, skyrocketing numbers of women have chosen to start their families in their late thirties and early forties.

In 2005, ten times as many women had their first child between the ages of 35 and 39 as in 1975, and thirteen times as many had their first between 40 and 44.

Women now have the option to define for themselves when they're ready for family, rather than sticking to a schedule set by social convention.

As a society, however, we have yet to come to terms with the phenomenon of later motherhood, and women who decide it makes sense for them to delay pregnancy often find themselves confronted with alarmist warnings about the dangers of waiting too long.

In Ready, Elizabeth Gregory tracks the burgeoning trend of new later motherhood and demonstrates that for many women today, waiting for family works best.

She provides compelling evidence of the benefits of having children later -- by birth or by adoption.

Image: Buy Now on Amazon.comPaperback: 336 pages
Click to order/for more info: Ready - US | CDN | UK

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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