The 'Big Pregnancy Lie' Unveiled: Just Because Celebrities Are Having Babies Later In Life Doesn't Make it a Good Idea
A new book by author Tanya Selvaratnam attempts to set the record straight between the perception and reality of delayed pregnancy.
No matter how fashionable it may seem, a woman delaying pregnancy into her late 30s and 40s may not be such a good idea reports CNN.
The author of a new book "The Big Lie: Motherhood, Feminism and the Reality of the Biological Clock" Tanya Selvaratnam discusses how celebrities depicted in media as having successfully delayed motherhood is unrealistic for the average woman, and the coverage does not fully take into account the struggle that it takes to get pregnant later in life.
"One of the reasons I wrote the book was because I was frustrated by the conflicting messages and information out there," Selvaratnam said. "We see celebrities having kids seemingly without any problems and we have no idea what they went through. We see the end result, but not the struggle."
According to the Southern California Center for Reproductive Medicine, a woman as young as 35 has only a 10 percent chance of becoming pregnant without medial intervention, risks a 25 percent chance of a miscarriage when pregnant, and one in 350 babies born to women over 35 have Down Syndrome.
"When women have miscarriages or infertility we feel like failures. I want people to realize how common these issues are. When you see the statistics, it becomes clear you are not alone," Selvaratnam said. "You look at celebs and think 'What's wrong with me?' when it seems to work out for all of these other people. But the truth is, for most people, it doesn't work out."
Despite the biological reality, the trend has been in recent decades for more and more women putting off motherhood until later in life. A Pew study has revealed that in 1976 there were only about 580,000 childless women in the United States between the ages of 40 and 44. The number in 2008 was 1.9 million.
"We are the guinea pig generation for testing the limits of our fertility, or our chances of having a child. The shock and the lack of preparation when you're not prepared and the pressure women feel in general about our reproductive selves adds to the shame women feel when they can't get pregnant," Selvaratnam said.