I have two children, am aged 34... but I already feel 'too old' to have a third 4 weeks ago

I have two children, am aged 34... but I already feel 'too old' to have a third

The average age of women giving birth in Ireland is 32.5 years.

Irish women have their first child aged almost 30. Indeed we have the oldest mums in Europe.

There are lots of reasons for this, and while the health-risks associated with conceiving later in life are much documented, there are advantages too (more financial and domestic stability, for example).

I'm now aged 34 and have two children: a daughter aged 5-and-a-half, and a son, aged almost three. So I was the below the average age giving birth on both occasions.

When I look around at the other mums and dads in my children's school and creche, I'm also undoubtedly younger than most of them - sometimes by ten years or more.

However, increasingly I'm realising that any possibility of adding to my family with another child is becoming less likely.

Advertisement

Firstly, I'm constantly jaded by the demands of my current crop of smallies. Then there are the financial considerations - how on earth would I afford another round of childcare fees?

But most of all, I reckon I'm simply getting too old.

With two carefree pregnancies under my belt, I'm nervous about embarking on another in my mid-30s (as opposed to my late-20s or early-30s). My six- or seven-year older body just mightn't take as kindly to pregnancy.

Of course, plenty of my friends are only getting around to having baba No.1 now. And plenty more haven't even thought about taking the plunge yet. Still, for me - and at a different life-stage because I'm already a mum with a school-aged child - the thought of returning to nappies and newborns feels pretty overwhelming.

So I'm gracefully bowing out, accepting that my time is up... even at age 34.