More and more women are wondering how long they should put off conceiving their first child. After all, life is expensive, it’s difficult to get on the property ladder, and careers pay the bills. But what worries every person that knows they want to have a family is the ticking of the biological clock. The trouble is that the most fertile years are often too young for most of us to feel mentally and emotionally ready to raise a baby. So what is the answer to the age-old question?
There is no right or wrong answer. Everyone is different, and every life is unique. If you’re in a long-term relationship, then you might feel that you’re perfectly placed to have a child. But relationships sometimes don’t last. Of course, a good parent doesn’t always need to have a life-partner to raise a healthy, well-rounded child. You might choose to ignore any philosophical, religious, and cultural issues altogether. That still leaves these considerations:
It’s not just your fertility that needs to be good. Your partner also needs to be in good health to give you both the best chance of conceiving. It’s not nearly as easy as you might have been told at school to conceive. There are just two or three days a month that offer a good environment for an egg and sperm to meet!
You should already have been taking folic acid and eating a healthy diet for several months. Your partner should be taking something like Caruso’s fertility vitamins and watching his diet and weight too. Avoid all bad habits like smoking and drinking to give the best health to your uterus.
Stress can hinder your ability to conceive and can be quite dangerous for a pregnancy. Life events can be hard to manage. Finding a quiet time in life is even harder! But try to wait for a time when you’re not pushing your career hard or coping with difficult relationships. No matter how independent we are, pregnant life is so much easier with a support network.
If you’re struggling with debts, try to get this back on track before you have to add the cost of starting a family to the pressure. Sadly, miscarriages are also quite common. If you’re recovering from something like this, make sure you’ve given yourself enough time. Not all of us can naturally conceive either. Would you consider fostering or adoption?
Grown Up Enough?
No matter what age you are, nobody is ever ‘ready’ for a baby. Even if you’ve read every book there is about parenting, it’s hard and surprising. Becoming a parent certainly changes you in a lot of ways. But that doesn’t mean you have to feel that you’re grown up and responsible. Your age also shouldn’t come into it. Parenting is a role you’ll grow into, and in the meantime, you’ll have your support network to help you through the tough times.
It doesn’t matter what age you are or where your career is. Your priorities will change as soon as your baby is here and you will adapt. No parent feels ready, but that’s normal. The best time to have a baby is when you trust yourself to take that big leap into the not-yet-known!