Have We Believed A Lie About Fertility After 35?

Mention a woman becoming pregnant through natural conception over age 35 and you get a slew of medical and non-medical opinions. Or as we say in the South, “you done open up a whole can of worms.”

In her Psychology Today blog, Jean M. Twenge, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology at San Diego State University, addresses this subject inWho Says YouCan't Get Pregnant After 35? The myth of rampant age-related infertility.”

She references the findings of the April 2012 study by the National Center for Health Statistics. The report found a big increase in the number of women having two children after age 35.

“How is this possible, if fertility is so compromised for women over 35? In short: Because it’s not,” says Dr. Twenge. “We have been lied to. (More precisely, given bad information; whether that was purposeful is hard to tell).

When a woman over 35 has problems getting pregnant, fertility issues other than age are usually the culprit, including male issues such as sperm count and motility—almost half of fertility problems are due to male issues. (Yet how often do you hear that mentioned or agonized over? Not much.)”

If you’re in your late 30s and 40s and feeling discouraged about pregnancy, I urge you to check out Dr. Twenge’s entire post.

Do you think most people are too accepting of misconceptions about pregnancy over 35? Thanks for sharing  your thoughts here or on the InSeason Mom Facebook page.


  1. I'm not a doctor, butttt... how many eggs does it take to make a baby? So you don't have as many as you had at 20. I agree that checking out the male is necessary. A blogger who had fertility issues for years, divorced her husband, got a boyfriend and yes, got pregnant right away. Unfortunately, she miscarried, though.

    Keep up with your research, Dr.Twenge!

  2. Anita, your wisdom always helps me to see things clearer. You're right. "How many eggs does it take to make a baby?" Love it!