Is having children in your late 30s a good or bad idea?

What is the right age to start having children?

We look at some of the benefits and challenges that can come with choosing to have children at a later stage in life. 

Mother and baby
Mother and baby / iStock

Becoming a parent is a decision that should not be taken lightly. 

A lot needs to be considered such as how that decision will affect your career and other goals in life. 

One of the most important things to think about is also age. The number of eggs women have decreases as they get older. This means the chances of you falling pregnant lessens when you get older. 

Another thing is that late pregnancies come with additional risks of complications. 

According to, some of the complications include hypertension, diabetes, or chromosomal abnormalities like Down syndrome for the baby. 

READ: Children see, children do 

However, having kids at a later stage also comes with benefits. Many women want to be financially stable before bringing a baby into the world. They want to be able to provide a home for the child and be able to afford the best schools. 

There is also the benefit of being more emotionally and mentally prepared, which can benefit both the mother and the child. 

In South Africa, according to Stats SA, the average recorded age for first-time mothers is 28. This is the highest than at any point in the last 20 years.

Media personality, Redi Tlhabi, is one of the celebrities that says she chose to have kids at a later stage when she was more settled. 

She says having kids at a later stage allowed her to travel, invest, and be more flexible when it comes to work - and it affords her the opportunity to see her children more often. 

"I had kids at 35 & 38.  I spent my 20s studying, working 3 jobs, (radio, tv & print). I traveled! Then I learnt about the stock market & directed my income towards a healthy investment portfolio. Now I work when I want. My kids see me!" she wrote.

Tlhabi was responding to a Tweet where the user was throwing shade at women who chose to have kids at a later stage. 

READ: Expert offers tips for parents to help their children thrive in school

See the post below. 

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Image courtesy of iStock/ @Galina Zhigalova

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