It's official: Just as women have been told they have a reproductive sell-by date, so, it seems, do men. Today's Science Times (our favorite section, cause it makes us feel a little bit smarter) reports that our Y-chromosomed brethren have a similar (if not as sharply-defined) biological clock that needs tending to.

Here's the news in a nutshell: those guys like Eric Schaeffer who lord it over us women with boasts that they have their whole lives to have kids are correct - but with a twist. New studies are suggesting that men over the age of 40 have an increased risk of siring children who suffer from autism, dwarfism or schizophrenia.

But before you start waving a stopwatch in the face of the commitment-phobe guy in your life, consider what detractors have to say, namely, that maybe putting off having kids isn't really a man's fault:

Skeptics say the studies find an association but do not prove a causal relationship between an older father's genetic material and autism or schizophrenia, and note that other factors related to having an older father could be at play, including different parenthood styles. Another possibility is that the father's own mental illness or autistic tendencies are responsible both for the late marriage and for the effect on the child.

Wee! Our therapist will hate to hear this, but we're going to start blaming our fathers for our life's failures.


Male Biological Clock — It Seems The Fertility Clock Ticks For Men, Too [NY Times]