How old is too old to have a baby?

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Today reports: A 59-year-old British woman hopes to become a mum for the second time after a London-based fertility clinic agreed to offer her IVF treatment to help her conceive. Susan Tollefsen, who turns 60 in October, is the oldest person to be offered fertility treatment by a British clinic in a move which overturns guidelines on treating women aged over 50.

“I’m still so full of life and healthy at 60, I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t be treated,” she told The Mail on Sunday.

Hmmm, this is a tricky situation, but of course I still have an opinion! While Ms Tollefsen may still be full of life at the age of 60 and may desperately want a second child, (her first was born 2 years ago via IVF) is it the right thing to do? I personally think that she is too old. And I know I am saying that without having met her, or know anything about her health. But in reality when the child is 10 she will be 70, and when the child is finishing school at 18 she will be 78.

I hear countless stories from mum’s aged anywhere from 25 to 40 about how tiring it is to raise children, so I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like to be a full time Mum at the age of 60.

Politician’s have given their opinion: Conservative MP Nadine Dorries has called for parliament to intervene and announce new laws setting an upper age limit for IVF.

“Once you pass the point of natural conception, that’s when you should stop,” she told the newspaper. We need to legislate for this because, inevitably, society will have to pick up the cost later.”

It’s so hard to not be judgemental in these situations, and I do think that a lot of where my opinion is coming from is what society views as acceptable, or see’s as the norm.

You can read the full article HERE. What do you think?

  • Megan
    January 18, 2010

    Such a tricky issue. One could say that nature stops women having the ability to have a child naturally at a certain age for a reason, but it’s more than that. If we were that concerned with natural conception, we wouldn’t have IVF, other fertility treatments or sperm/egg donors.

    But yes, I agree there should be an age limit. The wellbeing of the baby needs to be the biggest concern, first and foremost in the minds of all involved.

  • Jane
    January 19, 2010

    I’d feel bad for the kid! Imagine if she was my mum, she’d be 80 now! My grandma isn’t even 80 yet and there’s no way that someone her age would have the energy to keep up with me. And vice versa, I would have way too much energy to drop everything to look after her whilst still in my twenties.

    It is a tricky issue as I don’t really like the idea of someone being denied the opportunity to be a parent, but like Megan said, the wellbeing of the child is paramount. Not just in infanthood, but in 30 years. It’s just weird.

    I’m in favour of an upper age limit. And as for this woman, perhaps she should’ve started earlier!!! xx

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