"We thank God for our blessing," Janet Jackson said as everyone celebrates her latest journey: being the 50-year-old mom.
Janet Jackson - A Mom At 50
Jackson gave birth to her first child at 50. The superstar announced in a video on Twitter in April that there will be delays in the second leg of her "Unbreakable" world tour. The reason for this is that Jackson and her husband, Qatari billionaire Wissam Al Mana, are focusing on planning a family.
"I thought it was important that you be the first to know. My husband and I are planning our family, so I'm going to have to delay the tour," Jackson said. "Please, if you can try and understand that it's important that I do this now. I have to rest up, doctor's orders. But I have not forgotten about you. I will continue the tour as soon as I possibly can."
Being A Mom At 50 A Fad? Numbers Are Growing To Date
Jackson shares the same story as other mothers who gave birth at 50. Singer Sophie Hawkins decided to have another baby at 50. "I went through waking up crying and saying, 'Am I too old? Will I suddenly at 51 have my knees give out?' " said Hawkins who admitted that at her age, she had second thoughts about the life-changing step. Hawkins used a sperm donor and implanted it with her frozen embryo.
"Now I don't have any of those fears because I feel healthy and strong. I'm also setting up a good net of support, and that's the key to anybody having a child," she added. Both Jackson and Hawkins represent a growing group of women who have become mothers at the age of 50 and beyond.
In 2012, women who are 50 years old and older gave birth to 600 children compared to 144 births in 1997- according to Centers For Disease Control and Prevention. In the year 2013, an average of 13 children were born every week to mothers who are 50 years and older.
These numbers do not capture the women who have become mothers through surrogacy or adoption. "That was the best decision we made, or she helped us make ... because I do think that it's a bit of a burden on an only child to have an older parent," Deborah, who had a child close to 50, said. Deborah used a surrogate upon learning about how in vitro fertilization could allow her to get pregnant but not carry a child to term.
A few years later, Deborah had another child. He surrogate offer to carry and delivery a second baby for her and her husband. Being a mother at the age of 50 or older is a brave decision for any woman. Middle-aged women who wish to get pregnant would need to rely on IVF and make use of egg donations- or they can freeze embryos at a younger age. IVF using an egg donation can cost at $25,000 to $30,000 for a single attempt.
According to medical experts, older women who wish to bear children may have higher health risks such as diabetes, hypertension, and even death. Further risks to the child are also anticipated.