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The story bothered me deeply and left me wondering who will take care of her little ones once she passes on, because the likelihood of her living a long, prosperous life and STILL being capable of taking care of two small children seems small. One of my student's has a mother who is in her early fifties and a father who is 73. They actually conceived again naturally last year, but found the child was going to have severe neurological and physical impairments, so they made the choice not to have it. It is not that I think you shouldn't be able to have children when you are older, but I think nature has a way of trying to prove to us that it may not be the BEST thing.

We watched the ball drop, being that it was only 9pm here, and we were asleep thirty minutes later. We feel old and it is kind of depressing, but hey - no hangover today.


I think its irresponsible press in the fact they left out the ENTIRE donor egg aspect of this story. Some women will think you can get pg with IVF and thier own eggs at any age, and that just isn't true. In telling half the story, the press paints the wrong picture of ART and what it can and cannot do.


I was bothered by the ethics of the whole thing. Is it ethical for a 67-year-old woman to bear a child, knowing that even if she lives 10 years past the average life expectance, she'll probably still die before her child is in college? That seems selfish to me.

I sent J out without me last night, since I had a migraine. Sadly, that's the second year in a row that we've spent New Year's Eve apart. Last year, we had no babysitter and the party was with J's friends (about whom I'm not particularly fond), so I sent him on alone then as well. I feel ancient even at almost-29.


While it gives me the slightest shred of hope that being on the cusp of 35 I am not through yet with the possibility that I could conceive whether it be through an IUI or more expensively IVF, reading the story of that woman did make me cringe at her age. I was displeased with the 65 YO woman referred to in the article when she gave birth, I again found my jaw agape that a 67 YO woman did the same. I hope that it doesn't lead to fertility clinics having to see one of these two ladies die while their children are young before they actually STOP allowing these women to go through with IVF at their ages. (Though it is hard to say at what age is too old, I was conceived naturally when my mother was 42 but would that be considered "too old" for the purposes of a 42 YO infertile woman to be impregnated via IVF?)


It's a tough call. How can you say that a man can impregnate someone at say, 67 and choose to have that child - but a woman can't?? Where do you cut the line??

Personally, I don't agree with either situation. I could go on and on about my opinions...but they're just that. So I'll leave you with the thought - if 60 is the new 30 - what makes 30 - 15?? :)


On the one hand I think if you want to have a child and a doctor tells you your numbers are all good and the liklihood of healthy children is good, then go for it.

BUT. As you said, it gives the ignorant the perception that IVF is easy. "Oh! You should just do an IVF. If a woman who is 67 can have a baby, YOU certainly should." And what happens when we tell them that we've had two that failed? That makes it appear that there's something seriously (more seriously) wrong with us.

I'd like to have the whole story: was it her eggs? Her partner's sperm? Doubtful. How many IVFs did she endure? How many embryos were transferred? And really? What kind of cash did it take for the RE to agree to be privy to what statistically is nearly impossible and really not a healthy choice for child or mother?


Yeah, that story bothers me too, for all the reasons you mention. I hate that folks assume IVF is an easy out, or in, I suppose. Its so not.

We had a tame New Years in, as well. And the babe woke up at 11:58 on cue. Ha!


I feel about it the way I feel when I read about pgd for non-medical sex selection. I believe it's wrong, but I'm hesitant to criticize, because I know many people believe the pgd I did (to avoid genetic disease) was wrong, or that all ivf is wrong for that matter. But I also don't believe "it's all relative and if you want it, it's ok."

Even the age issue is problematic. There are other reasons people may not live to see their kids in college. I thought about life expectancy (do to illness, not age) a lot before we did ivf. I remember Cancer Baby brought this up when people were criticizing a woman for having kids late (Joan Lundgren? I don't remember.) It wasn't an issue for the ivf clinic, but it would have been for the particular country's international adoption we were looking at.

Sorry to ramble!


It bothers me for the same reasons as you, and also because I have friends whose parents are "older" for our generation and the relationship is so odd -- the "kids" (now in our late 30s) are treated like babies (i.e., mom calling to say "the weather is getting bad - remember how Daddy taught you to handle the car in a skid?" when it had just started raining), and some of the parents are long dead. Having lost my mom early (she was 37, I was 15) my heart aches for kids who go through losing thier parents while they are still young, and of course the older the parents, the more likely it is that could happen. Frankly, my opinion is that they should not perform ART on women who are above the average age of the onset of menopause, i.e. 50, but that is just my opinion, and doesn't amount to anything.

We stayed in, and everyone but the baby and I were asleep at midnight. Lame, but satisfying to us.


I'm struggling with feeling too old to have another one at 47, using the frozen embryos that we have left. I can't imagine it 20 years from now. The only problem that I can see with age cutoffs are that they are always going to disappoint someone. I think that after a certain age, things should be taken on a case by case basis. I would hate to be refused by my clinic because of an arbitrary policy, which could be a possibility, since I have no idea what their policy is.


Question 1: neither maturity nor decreptitude. I've always resented feeling obligated to make a big affair out of new years eve. Sometimes I secretly thank my kids for being an excuse to just stay home.
Question 2: I think 67 is too old to have kids. Bad idea and I'd tell her that to her face. But I'm rude like that.


"How can you say that a man can impregnate someone at say, 67 and choose to have that child - but a woman can't?"

Toni, while I, like you, have a problem with the 67-year-old parent thing regardless of gender, there is a difference here, I think - while we've had ancient fathers throughout eternity, generally they've been reproducing with women who were, at most, in their mid-40s (and usually younger). So you haven't traditionally had TWO older parents. Unless this 67-year-old is married to a significantly younger man, there's a better-than-even chance that that child will be *orphaned* before it's a legal adult.

Also, stories like these *are* exploited for nasty effect. I'm still peeved about the treatment that egg freezing got on a Washington Post.com blog a few weeks back - the blogger posited that, if adopted widely, it could lead to large numbers of working women choosing to delay childbearing to their late 40s or early 50s. A debate over whether it's okay to trick biology ensued, with plenty of married parents talking about the "selfishness" of these straw women who wanted to delay childbearing, ignoring the fact that hey! a lot of women who would like to be mothers are approaching the end dates of their biological clocks without having found Mr. Right and don't want to bear a child alone. Ugh.

Sigh. All this makes me wish we lived in a Lois McMaster Bujold world where egg age wasn't an issue and we were all going to live to be 120 or so in good health.


I saw this story also, and it bothered me, deep to my core. Partially, because I think it gives IVF a bad rap, as you stated; and partially because I thought of these poor children who won't have a mother to see them as adults, get married, play with grandchildren.

As you said, the point of all this reproductive technology is to assist biology. And biology as I know it rarely, if ever, allows a 67-year old woman to get pregnant naturally. So if biology, the basic makeup of the human being, says that 67 year olds aren't at the right stage of life to bear children, why should we think we have the right, or the intellegence to override that???

No, I don't think legislation should determine what the cutoff age or other factors should be. But it is the responsibility of the doctors to use some common sense, and perhaps let biology be their simple guide. Ugg.


Okay, I don't love the idea, but a lot of the objections seem to assume that having kids young will make things work out better. What about my relatives who had kids young (loved, wanted children), who have lost a home due to financial instability and still are at risk of losing their stressed out father to a heart attack?

My mom had me young and she doesn't get to play with grandchildren because I'm infertile. Maybe I'm just being cranky, but it seems like good planning doesn't make everything work out, so sometimes people have to make less than optimal choices -- because all those optimal choices were closed to them or because all choices have consequences and sometimes we find ourselves having to grapple with them.

And her kid doesn't have the choice between old-as-the-hills mama and young-hip-healthy-and-safe-from-accidents mama. Her kid gets this mama or nothing. Likely to be orphaned or non-existence. So far, whatever life deals me, I'm opting for living over never having been. Even though sometimes my mother and her choices baffle me.

(actually, I guess the ability to adopt snowflake babies makes that last point a little less clear. But, whatever.


O.k., this is totally morbid, but my grandmother (my GRANDMOTHER, not my mother) died at about that age. I just totally don't understand WHY one would want to have children at that age. Seriously, what were her reasons? How did she come to the conclusion that it was a good idea, that it would be a good thing for she and her family? It's mind-boggling to me.


I'm not sure what I think about this. I did want to point out, though, that if the life expectancy at birth is 76 (even for someone born in 1980), then a person who has made it to 67 probably has a significantly higher life expectancy than 76. Life expectancies include all the people who die in infancy, youth (mostly accidents, I think), adolesence (kids doing stupid things), middle age, etc. Someone who has avoided all of that, and at age 67 is physically healthy enough to carry twins, probably has a much higher AVERAGE life expectancy.

Not sure that makes much of a difference in this case, though. Probably extremely unlikely that she'll live past 85 or 90 even under the best of circumstances. They say that kids keep you young, though, don't they? :)

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