There is a lot of debate around what is the right age and time to give first birth. And the truth is –
There is no right time to get pregnant!!
I would like to kick off this article with Indra Nooyi’s comment on the question “Why women can’t have it all?”. And she said that biological clock and career clock are in total conflict. They go hand in hand and women have to find a right balance.
No one can tell you when is the right time to become a mother. This is a very personal decision but of course, with my little research and asking few people around, these are some of the questions you should ask yourself in order to get some clarity:
1) Am I happy with my career progression so far?
Smart women know where their career is heading. They generally have a goal in their mind. And at every stage, one evaluates whether I am on right track or do I need to push myself more? After about 7-8 years of experience, you have kind of made a mark for yourself in the industry and you have enough proof to showcase the good work. It’s not a bad time to take a break and focus on family life for a while. Of course, that doesn’t mean quitting the job but just being less aggressive on career goals.
2) What am I planning to achieve in next 5 years? (personal goals)
This is again a very personal question because everyone has their own path of achieving success whether personal or professional. If one have clarity on the goals for next 5 years then she is in a better position to plan a family. If goals are too aggressive then may wait till you are happy with yourself.
3) Am I happy in my relationships?
Ask yourself if you are happy with your current relationships. If your future looks bright and stable, go for it.
4) Is my partner ready to have a child?
Some men just freak out in the name of being a father. They are just not happy with all the frills that come along – losing the wife to the child, changing diapers, waking up at nights and always being available for the child. It’s better to discuss with the partner if he is happy to have a child and ready to share the burden of bringing up a child. His consent is important no matter how much you want to have a child. And vice versa.
5) Are we financially stable? Or do we have enough savings?
The money would never be enough. Wants are endless. But as mature individuals, evaluate the overall expenses to judge if you are happy to raise a child without any financial stress. I think this is very important because, at times, there are fights in a family because of the financial burden of raising a child. Before child, two people are contributing to the household income and therefore disposal income is high. Now one person is working and there is an additional member of the family to take care. For some families, it is a huge shift and it takes a while for them to adjust.
6) Am I healthy?
Women need to be healthy to produce healthy babies. Blood pressure, sugar are some of the common diseases that are seen these days. It’s best to have a child when the body is healthy.
7) What is my age?
We all know that with age, the body doesn’t function as smooth as when we are young. It is good to have a baby early than later. Another important aspect is that after childbirth, body retracts much faster when you are young. That means women who are worried about losing their body curve after pregnancy should plan to give birth at a younger age. With good diet and exercise, there are higher chances that you can get back to your pre-pregnancy weight much faster. But if you still have question on right age – read this.
8) Do you have a motherly feeling when you see a baby/toddler?
I think this could be a sign on whether you would like to have your own child. Looking at other people’s baby/child evokes a strong feeling of love. If you are experiencing something like that, rest assured you are ready to have a child.
9) Are you happy to sacrifice your Social life for few years?
Having a child is a commitment for life. The young baby needs a lot of time. At times, new mothers don’t even get time to pee peacefully. Meeting with friends, dinner outings etc. can be thing of the past. You won’t even realize because you are so busy with the newborn. But social life does take a backseat after child’s birth.
|Child comes first|
10) Why do you want to have your own child?
This is more of a soul searching question. You just have to give a thought on whether you want to have your own child or you want to adopt. There are many kids in this world who are looking for a suitable home and good parents. In order to be a parent, one doesn’t need to give birth to a child. So, have a good thought and then decide.
Please don’t have a child just because all your friends/colleagues are giving birth. Everyone is in their own time zones (of life). Don’t get pressurized by your family too. Nobody but you who will have to commit, taking care of your child. There would be tough days, tougher and some days will be even crazier than that. You should be prepared (or at least willing) to take to take on those challenges.