Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Perfect age to have a baby? 26

Written by Katy Pearson
New research by Seven Seas Pregnancy (www.seven-seas.com) has revealed that parents believe the perfect age for a women to have a baby is 26.

Although those without children say that the perfect age to start a family is 28, those that have experienced parenthood wish they had started their families earlier in life, says the report.

More than half of 2,000 parents polled (52%) are happy to earn a collective wage of just £25k before starting a family - £1,200 less than the national average salary for one person.

Owning a house and getting married were the two key milestones most parents wanted to have reached before having children. While the achievements that mums and pregnant women deem unnecessary before starting a family included owning a fancy car (96%), receiving a promotion (95%), travelling the world (81%) and being established in a career (81%).

Some 62% thought it important to be married before having a child.

Claire Halsey, Clinical Psychologist said: “The results of this survey are quite surprising, as we would have expected parents to think the perfect age to start a family to be late twenties to early thirties, as opposed to mid-twenties.

“Contrary to popular belief younger women are planning a family after just a few years of working rather than waiting to establish a career, going travelling or spending time on hobbies.

“Perhaps there is a realisation that as the recession affects work prospects, planning for a family can come first and career later.”

One of the most popular reasons that parents cited for wanting to have a family at a younger age (national figures show the average age in the UK for women having their first child is 27 years and 11 months) include being able to have a bigger family, while a quarter (24%) say that they were concerned about how long it would take to conceive.

Midwife Nikki Khan said: “Fertility problems and issues remain on the political and news agenda which is good. However, the downside is that infertility is increasingly perceived as a treatable medical issue therefore women are less concerned about potential problems of leaving family planning until later in life.

"It is important for women to remember that infertility is linked to age and that the biggest decrease in fertility begins in the mid-30s.”

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