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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    162

    Best time to have a baby?

    Very broadly speaking, when do you think is the best time to have a baby?

    I know there is no 'right' answer and there is a huge mix of biological, psychological, and sociological factors to consider but it's always nice to hear other women's experiences.

    I ask because I'm coming to a point in my life where I think the right time for me could be soon (in about 12-18 months perhaps) and it's a little exciting and scary at the same time. I was born when my parents were very young; my mom was 18 when my brother was born, and then 21 with me. I decided when I was a teenager that I was going to wait until I was more established before bringing my own children into the world, and I've done that. I got my BA and MA, traveled, and found my partner. I will be 26 soon and starting a PhD. I will have good health insurance, and I will even have 8 weeks paid maternity leave with the university. I've also read on a lot of academic mom forums that many women found having a newborn as a PhD student was less stressful than when they entered their first teaching position (tenure-track or adjunct) because the hours are more flexible, etc. I'm also not really interested in pushing my fertility as long as I can. Besides the fact that I have had some ovarian problems in the past, I am not terribly interested in having young children when I am 50 (though I am definitely not judging; I can definitely see the benefits of waiting). I guess I am the type that believes there will never be an absolute perfect time and I'd rather my children be part of the journey instead of the destination. My partner also wants children while he is relatively young.

    Of course, I am not looking for approval or anything like that. It's just really nice to have some outsider opinions on when the 'right' time is since most of the women in my life were either 18 or 42 when they became mothers and I have so few opinions from the 25-35 year-old moms!

    So, when did you become a mom? Pros? Cons? Thoughts?

    TIA!

    ETA: I don't mean to sound at all flippant about the possibility of having a baby. Just trying to condense my own situation down as much as possible to allow for a broader discussion.
    Last edited by peacebird10; July 7th, 2013 at 07:35 PM.

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    3,962
    The best answer I have is: When you feel ready, and are of fertile age, and are responsible for yourself & financially able.

    So basically, any time after puberty & before menopause when you have your sh!t together and want to have a child imo.

    Personally, that was late 20s for me. I wanted to party & travel for the most of my 20s, I wanted to finish school & establish myself with a career, I wanted to wait to be married & with the right partner...

    It also depends on how you want to do it. I didn't own a home when I first had my daughter, I lived in a small Brooklyn apt, I didn't have a mini van...I didn't even have a car! I didn't get the baby bouncer & the bottle warmer & the swing & the fleet of strollers like my suburban SIL who feels the need to have the same amount of bathrooms as she does kids...space is just such a different concept when you live in a city! So basically, if I felt I must have the big sprawling condo with a yard, the live-in nanny & the Bugaboo pram...I wouldn't have considered myself "ready"...but my lifestyle is more modest & I felt ready to have a kid with the kind of parenting style I was going for...so "ready" or "financially ready" is really subjective!
    "ready" career-wise is subjective too since parenting will probably never really help you move up in most fields!
    It all depends & is so personal!

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    270
    Quote Originally Posted by taz View Post

    So basically, any time after puberty & before menopause when you have your sh!t together and want to have a child imo.

    Just spit out my drink.... Perfect answer!!

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    2,584
    Ha, Roxanne, I was just about to quote Taz, too! I agree, it's incredibly subjective. I don't think there's a "perfect" age. But I do think you should "have your shit together" emotionally and financially. Sounds like you're ready or will be soon. For me, I'm ready now at 29. I could have been ready earlier, but wanted to get married first. That's just how things worked out for me. Of course, everyone is different and only you can make that decision! At 26, you've got a few years if you want to delay for a while before age becomes an issue. My advice would be: have a baby when you feel ready (or as ready as you can feel), not because you think you should feel ready. But, having said that, there's no perfect time! Good luck!
    Last edited by sarahmezz; July 7th, 2013 at 09:25 PM.
    First baby due on April 10, 2015

    Audrey - Beatrice - Clara - Daphne - Flora - Jane - Mabel - Susannah

    Arthur - Barnaby - Edward - Frederick - Henry - Rupert - Theodore - Walter

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    462
    For me personally, the right time is when the following criteria are met in my life:
    - feeling ready and excited to have a baby
    - my partner feeling ready and excited to have a baby
    - financial stability and substantial savings
    - sufficient money in my income/budget to pay for child-related expenses like diapers, formula, medical care, insurance, and childcare
    - career stability - feeling like I want to be in my job for some time/being in a job I appreciate
    - owning a home, and have a home in a family friendly neighborhood with good schools

    For me personally, it looks like this will be happening within the next 4 years, and most likely within the next year and a half. Very exciting! If I can encourage you, please take the decision of when to have a baby very seriously, as I'm sure you are. Your baby deserves the most responsible and loving parent they can possibly have.
    Current Favorites:
    Elizabeth Lily nn Ellie
    Mary Emmeline nn Maisie
    Sarah Evangeline nn Sadie

    Nathaniel nn Nate

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