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New Study Suggests Biological-Clock Frenzy Is Bullshit

Illustration for article titled New Study Suggests Biological-Clock Frenzy Is Bullshit

It turns out that, even though women are delaying marriage and children, infertility rates have not increased in the last 30 years. So is all that barking about the time on career women's biological clocks running out just a load of crap? Yes and no.


According to a study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics, infertility rates have actually come down a little bit since 1982. Researchers analyzed data from the National Survey on Family Growth. About 22,000 people were interviewed between 2006 - 2010. It was compared to the same survey given to people in 2002 and 1982.

The surveys showed that 8.5 percent of married women aged 15 to 44 were infertile in 1982 – defined as having been married and having unprotected sex for 12 months without becoming pregnant. This fell to 6 percent of the same age group, married or unmarried, in 2006-2010.


But this isn't because more people are receiving fertility treatments. The NCHS is part of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Federal Law requires doctors and fertility clinics to report fertility treatments and success rates to the CDC. When this data was reviewed, researchers found that the percentage of adults receiving fertility treatments has been the same since 2002.

According to Dr. Richard Reindollar of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine:

Even though the ages at which women in the United States have their children have been increasing since 1995, the percentage of the population suffering from infertility or impaired fecundity has not increased.

Image via Maridav/Shutterstock

Fertility crisis myth? Rates unchanged, even though more waiting to have kids [MSNBC]


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Interesting data. I have to admit though, that I still wish I'd met my husband at a younger age so I could have gotten started having kids younger. I turn 34 in September, and will have my first baby in early January (just found out it's a boy!). Assuming we have two, by the time they are both done college and fully on their own, I'll be about 60. That...freaks me out. Most of the girls I went to high school with have kids who are starting first grade this year, and I can't help but admit some jealousy. They'll still be YOUNG when their kids are fully grown, I will feel like an old crone who won't have the energy to chase around after grandkids some day. Ugh.