The Pros and Cons of Having a Baby Later in Life

PHOTO: The Pros and Cons of Having a Baby Later in LifePlayABC News
WATCH Women's Health: Having a Baby in Your 40s and 50s

A new parenting trend shows that more women are waiting for motherhood. Stars like Janet Jackson, Eva Mendes, Salma Hayek and Halle Berry are all having children later in life.

Harper’s Bazaar recently looked at older first-time moms, asking, “Is 50 the new 30?” when it comes to getting pregnant, and pointing out that a surprising 1 in 12 women are having their first child after the age of 35.

“It’s pretty rare for women to get pregnant on our own after age 45,” Dr. Joanne Stone of Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York told ABC News of conceiving naturally, rather than using other methods such as freezing their eggs or using in vitro fertilization.

Singer Sophie Hawkins, who shot to fame in the 1990s, also waited to have kids, eventually having son Dashiell at age 44 and daughter Esther at 50.

“When I was younger, I wouldn’t have been so creative, I wouldn’t have been so patient,” she said at her show in Los Angeles Wednesday. “I wouldn’t have been that mother at 20 or 25 or even 35 to be honest with you.”

Hawkins, now 51, used her own eggs that she’d frozen when she was younger, which is also becoming more common.

“When you want to have a child, the only important thing is you want to have a child, whether it is from frozen embryos or you adopt a child or however you get it, you want a child that’s your kid,” she explained.

But with In vitro fertilization running about $12,000 per cycle, it’s not cheap. And older moms are also at higher risk of complications.

“Sit down and meet with a maternal medicine specialist,” Stone said. “You really need to know what you’re getting into.”