Baby girl for France’s First Couple

Former party-girl and First Lady of France, Carla Bruni, 43, has given birth to a baby girl! Though this is certainly great news for the First Couple, we can’t help but wonder...what exactly are the challenges of having a late pregnancy?

First Lady of France Carla Bruni and her late pregnancy

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Carla Bruni-Sarkozy gave birth to a baby girl yesterday hence becoming the first serving First Lady of France to have a child. President Nicolas Sarkozy, 56, spent around half-an-hour with his 43-year-old wife on their historic day, before heading off to a meeting in Germany.

This is their first baby together as a married couple.

The birth took place in conditions of utmost secrecy, with the couple doing everything possible to keep it under wraps. Bruni, the former supermodel turned pop singer, had insisted that it was a ‘private matter’, and even said there would ‘never’ be any photographs of the child.

The delighted new mum, who already has a son with a previous lover, will remain at the private Muette Clinic in Paris tonight. President Sarkozy was expected to re-join her on returning from a meeting with German Chancelllor Angela Merkel in Frankfurt.

Bruni, who was born in Italy, was seen arriving at the clinic on Wednesday morning, with one member of staff confirming later: “She’s had the baby – it’s a little girl.”

The report was confirmed by an Elysee government source at around 10pm, French time. Despite giving numerous interviews about her pregnancy, the First Lady of France always insisted that very little fuss was made about the birth.

Not surprising seeing that she already has a 10-year-old son, Aurelien, with a former lover, the philosopher, Rafael Enthoven. The President himself also, has two sons, 26-year-old Pierre and Jean, 25, from his first marriage to Marie-Dominique Culioli, and a third, 14-year-old Louis, from his second to Cecilia Ciganer-Albeniz.

The birth marks the latest episode in a remarkable and unlikely relationship which started at a Paris dinner party less than four years ago.

Sarkozy, who is 5ft 5ins, married the then Miss Bruni, 5ft 9ins, following a whirlwind romance of just 80 days, and they spent their first official trip as man-and-wife staying with the Queen at Windsor Castle. Since then, they have become one of the most photographed couples in the world, with the new bride relentlessly trying to reverse her party-girl image where she used to regularly posed nude and she once admitted that ‘monogamy bores me’.

The former girlfriend of celebrities including British rock stars Mick Jagger and Eric Clapton has even given up her Socialist Party allegiances, saying she only votes for her husband’s conservative UMP coalition now. Despite insisting that they would not use the baby for political purposes – or even allow it to be photographed – the famous mum, has given numerous interviews in the build-up to the birth.

She said: ‘Quite frankly, I can’t stand it anymore. I spend most of my time either sitting down or lying down. I can’t drink or smoke any more. I’m in a hurry to get it over with. It doesn’t interest the French.’

The age game

Sure it all sounds like sunshine and daffodils for France’s First Couple fact that mattered is Bruni did gave birth at 43. Though having a baby so much later in life is not really recommendable, it is not exactly forbidden either.

It’s often been said that the best time for a woman to be pregnant is when she’s between 19 and 25. It is best to be a mom in your twenties because you are physically able to meet the demands of the baby and cope with the increasing weight you have to carry.

But psychologically speaking, the best time to have a baby is reckoned to be when a woman is in her late 30s or older. Reason being, this is a point in a woman’s life where she still has plans and dreams of her own and so looks to the future with optimism, but at the same time she’s gained enough life experiences to be realistic about what she can expect, and to be patient and understanding of those around her.

This divergence of information of “when” makes it impossible to choose the best time to have a baby.

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Pregnant and in your 4os

Most mums will tell you that the most difficult period in pregnancy is the last three months. This will be particularly true for those in their 40s, because no matter how well we look after ourselves, the fact is we all tire more easily as we get older, and pregnancies do take a lot of energy. This is a fact that we all have to deal with.

Pregnancy complications are another concern.

In your 40s, you’re far more likely to develop problems like high blood pressure and diabetes during this late pregnancy, as well as placental problems and birth complications. Women over 40 have a higher risk of delivering a baby that has a low-birth-weight or is premature.

Stillbirth rates are also higher, and studies show that children born to older mothers are themselves at increased risk of type one diabetes and high blood pressure. All these downsides can be disheartening but don’t forget that some women do get pregnant well into their 40s, and many of them do have a complication-free late pregnancy and healthy babies.

And while older mothers may be at higher risk for negative pregnancy results, the overall number of such incidents is low. However, while there are financial advantages to waiting to have children…there may be liabilities as well.

“If you wait, you’re likely to have to continue working to an older age, for one thing,” says Marnie Azner, a financial planner in Morris Plains, New Jersey.

“You’ll still have financial responsibilities at a time when many of your friends are beginning to retire.

If you haven’t been putting aside money for retirement up until now, it’s going to get even harder to do so after you have children.”

So if you are in your 40s and planning on having a baby, do think it through. Not all of us are blessed with the Bruni-Sarkozy’s luck in looks as well as wealth.


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Carla Bruni gave birth to a baby girl

Getting pregnant in your 40s