When you look at what it was like to be a first-time mother in the past, it is significantly different in modern times.
Comparing motherhood experiences across generations reveals stark differences – what you experience is not the same as your grandmother’s experience.
Have you ever been curious about how modern mothers are different?
I’ve put together the below eight surprising facts about modern mothers. Do any of these apply to you?
The modern mother may have conceived using in vitro fertilization (IVF).
IVF is responsible for over five million babies born since its inception. According to the latest findings from the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology, 61,740 babies were born as a result of IVF or other fertility procedures in 2012, the highest number in history so far.
The modern mother is familiar with fertility treatment.
Approximately one or two of every 100 babies born in the U.S. is born as a result of advanced fertility treatments.
The modern mother may have children from donor eggs.
In 2012 16,858 embryos were created from donor egg and used in fertility treatment, up from 11,627 in 2003 (SART).
The modern mother may have frozen her eggs for future use.
Women choosing to freeze eggs and stop the biological clock continues to grow in popularity, particularly since the American Society of Reproductive Medicine removed the experimental label from the procedure in 2013. Doctors estimate that over 5,000 babies have been born with eggs frozen for fertility preservation.
The modern mother is older.
Older women have shown the highest increase in birth rate. According to the CDC, the birth rate in 2012 for women ages 40-44 was 10.4 births per 1,000, the highest rate reported in 33 years. The birth rate in 2012 for women ages 35-39 increased to 48.3 births per 1,000. Birth rates among women in their early 20s hit a new record low, and births declined among women ages 25-29.
The modern mother may not be married.
According to the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, 48 percent of all first-time births in the United States are now to unmarried women.
The modern mother may work full-time.
When mothers with children under age 18 were asked whether they would prefer to work full time, Pew Research found that mothers preferring full-time work has grown to 32 percent in 2012 from 20 percent in 2007.
The modern mother may be a stay-at-home mom.
Pew Research recently found that the number of stay-at-home rose to 29 percent, up from 23 percent in 1999.
Dr. Eve C. Feinberg
Dr. Feinberg is board certified in both Obstetrics and Gynecology and in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (REI), Dr. Feinberg serves as the Medical Director for FCI’s Center for Fertility Preservation. Dr. Feinberg completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Northwestern University and went on to complete a three year fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Feinberg is an Editor for Fertility and Sterility, she sits on the Practice Committee of the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology and is on the Membership Committee for the Society for Reproductive Endocrinologists and Infertility Specialists. She has received numerous patient care and research awards for excellence in her work. Dr. Feinberg is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the Pritzker School of Medicine at The University of Chicago and has lectured on topics such as egg quality, fertility for cancer survivors, and endometriosis.