As I switch between Facebook and Instagram I’m faced with announcements of pregnancies, safe arrivals of newborns and daily reminders of their cute faces filling my newsfeed. Don’t get me wrong, I hit like at every one of those adorable faces I see. But that’s where it ends. I don’t feel broody, I don’t start planning baby names or start tracking my menstrual cycle. At first I thought there was something wrong with me. I want kids yes, but just not yet. And that’s okay. Its taken me a while to come to this conclusion.
However there are times when after a few glasses of wine I nearly succumb to the social pressures and question my life choices. I’m nearly 30…. am I running out of time? Should I think about having babies? But why? Because of my age? Because every else is doing it? Because my parents already had two kids by the time they were 25 and I’m nearly 30?
More and more people are having babies in their 30’s and now even in their 40’s. All I hear in connection to this is, oh the risks, there are so many risks the older you get. Yes the risks increase with the increase of age, but then there are risks with every pregnancy. Did you know that the chances of having a baby in your 30’s is only slightly less than in your 20’s? And that the chance of having twins actually increases in your 30’s?
There are pros to having a first child in your 30’s. You’ve had more time to experience life, are more likely to be financially stable, in a stable relationship and in a stable career. Career is one of the main reasons women have been putting of having children until their older and why not! Women have just as much right to pursue a career for themselves and I don’t believe for one second that its selfish. I was very close one day to deciding to have a baby at the exact same time that I had a job interview for a career that involved a lot of travelling. When I was offered the job the decision to not get pregnant was made for me…. and I felt relieved….. I wasn’t ready to have a baby and was only thinking of having one because that’s what I thought I should be doing.
Just to add, I’m not saying that those who have decided to have a baby in their twenties or earlier aren’t going to have a stable career. What I mean is that the longer you work, the more money you make and the more time you’ve had to be a position of stability in your career. It’s just a statistic (amount of years multiplied by annual salary).
I don’t believe there is a right or wrong answer to when to have a baby. Everyone’s circumstances are different and there are both pros and cons as to whether to wait or not. If you are, like me, approaching 30 and still don’t feel maternal. Don’t feel pressured by family who want Grandkids or when people say, ”it will your turn next.” I hear this all the time so I’m prepared for it. I’m writing this to tell myself and anyone else in my position to say that its okay to not feel maternal or broody just yet. Enjoy your life as you see fit, enjoy watching your friends babies grow up, learn from them so one day when you do decide its time, you’ll be great at it.