When’s the best time to conceive
Are you newly wed and wondering about the best time to conceive? Before you stock up on home pregnancy test kits and start spending more time in the bedroom, here are some real-life stories shared by our readers.
If you and your spouse have not broached the topic of family planning prior to tying the knot, you may be in for a long discussion. To help you with this life-changing commitment of becoming parents, two of our readers have kindly shared the reasons behind their decisions.
Best time to conceive: Having Children Earlier
If you – like the rest of the world’s population – have spent a significant amount of time searching for "The One" before settling down to a domestic fairytale, it would be wise to start conceiving before Mother Nature slows down your biological clock and turns pregnancy into a long extended struggle.
A mother of 2 girls, Pamela shares her reasons for becoming a mother at the young age of 22: “I was afraid of how aging would affect the health of my babies. And knowing that younger mothers potentially have less pregnancy risks, it was a natural choice for me and my husband to start early.”
A year after the birth of Lauren, Pamela and her husband planned and conceived their second child. They had decided that they wanted a 2 year gap so as to foster closeness between the children, and to cut down the amount of time she had to leave work behind to commit full-time as a stay-home mom.
As fate would have it for their best laid plans, Eirian was born when Lauren was 25 months old.
Pamela had suffered from severe morning sickness in both pregnancies and was glad that her child spacing plan minimized the agony during her second pregnancy as Lauren was already walking and more independent. Pamela joked: “I think if I had them any closer together, I would have gone mad from the amount of effort!”
Best time to conceive: Having Children Later
After 8 years of courtship, Tony and his wife got married at 34 and 33 years old respectively, and had initially not planned for children at all. They had wanted to enjoy what life had to offer – traveling extensively and enjoying the local arts scene together.
5 years into their marriage, they accidentally fell pregnant and decided to keep the baby. To this day, they have not once regretted the decision as Tony shares: “Being older, we had a maturity that came with age. We were also financially able to provide a better life for our little girl.”
With the new found joy of parenthood, Tony and his wife decided to try for a second child when their firstborn turned three. However, luck was not on their side.
Shortly into their second pregnancy, their unborn child was suspected to be at high risk for Down’s Syndrome during a Nuchal Transparency Scan, which was later confirmed through amniocentesis. It was a heartbreaking choice for them to undergo an abortion.
“Our children are a reflection of us; and when that reflection is very much less than perfect, we got frightened of the amount of effort and resources we would have to put into helping our kid thrive. There is too little government and society support for special children, and all that just led to one great giant fear.”
Tony and his wife conceived again a year after the painful experience, and have since given birth to a healthy baby boy.
“If we could choose again, I think we would have our first child two years earlier to cut down on all the health risks – for both mother and child – associated with a higher maternal age.”
Best time to conceive: The ultimate choice
There are indeed pros and cons for both sides of the coin when it comes to the best time to conceive. With having children earlier, while there is significantly less risk with fertility and health issues, you may not be as financially stable. It can also be tiring to cater to a little one during your youthful years when your peers are out having fun. Sometimes, it may even feel like you are being robbed of your freedom and finances.
On the other hand, waiting until you are financially ready may mean undergoing the many risks involved with higher maternal age. While you may have gotten bored of an exciting social life and can’t wait to settle down into familial bliss, you may also find yourself having less physical energy to spend quality time with your children.
At the end of the day, there is no touted "best time to conceive". It all boils down to how ready you are in becoming a parent, and how much you are willing offer in all aspects of your life.