***UPDATE*** Be sure to check out the encouraging comments on Facebook, too!
I’ve so enjoyed the discussions generated on our last two topics, Ideal Child Spacing, and When to Start a Family, that when a reader emailed the following question, I offered to ask it here. This, again, may be a difficult subject for some, but I think there is much value in getting perspective from many different angles, and that is what my readers have to offer!
I am now 35, and had two healthy and happy pregnancies and boys at age 30 and 32 (almost 33). I want number three! My husband is on the fence. Thirty-five means high risk is an OB’s book. I would be late 35 or 36 when I have a baby. On one hand we want a third, but I get scared of the risks of birth defects as they increase with age. I would love a baby however God created it, but a special needs child would change our family and what we could give time-wise to our boys.
Are we greedy by wanting a third at age 35/36, and should we just count our blessings as they are? I know there were risks when I was 30 and 32 too, but for some reason the 35 scares me more. So I have to ask, because you’ve divulged your age on the blog a few times, and I think you were about 35 when had your fourth and 36 shortly thereafter. Did you think about the risks before getting pregnant or just knew you wanted a fourth and trusted in God that he wouldn’t give you more than you can handle? Did you think, there are risks and we’re willing to take that chance?
I am otherwise healthy and not overweight, but the dr said those things don’t even matter with chromosonal birth defects — it’s solely based on age. I knew I wanted a third and in retrospect should have tried last summer but with our youngest 1 1/2 at the time life/the house was still too crazy, or so I thought at the time. Thanks for any insight!
Such a great question, and one I feel completely and totally unqualified for! Here are my thoughts, anyway:
- Our fourth baby was born just 2 1/2 months shy of my 36th birthday. When we got married just after I turned 24, our plan was to have 4 children by the time I turned 30. God had other plans.
- I honestly never once thought of the birth defect issue when trying for our much prayed for #4 (or any of our other children, for that matter). Which, looking back, is quite surprising, because I tend to be a worrier. The thought just didn’t occur to me, and I’m glad I didn’t have those concerns.
- Count your blessings as they are? Yes. Absolutely. But…
- No, I do not think you are greedy at all. Children are a blessing, whenever they come and however perfectly God chooses to form them. On a personal note, we still felt strongly incomplete with “just” two children, but I know that we are very much in the minority with that. (again… another post for another day)
- I don’t know the statistics, but would concerns about chromosomal defects prevent us from trying for another child? Most likely not. And definitely not as much as being exhausted from the four we already have would.
Your turn, readers. Again, I know this is a touchy subject. I know that some of you are blessed beyond your wildest dreams with beautiful, perfect children who may have a chromosomal defect in the world’s eyes. I also know that those of you who generously share your thoughts and perspectives in this discussion will do so gracefully, and I thank you.