The Ticking Clock: What’s True (and False) About Female Fertility? – from Dame

Dr. Amy’s at it again. Dame, a website “For Women Who Know Better” interviewed her on the topic of the “biological clock” specifically the misconceptions surrounding it. The article does a great job of debunking a number of fallacies surrounding female fertility. For example, did you know that the ‘fact’ that women in their late 30’s face catastrophically declining fertility rates is based on “French birth records collected from 1670 to 1830”?

Could things have changed since then? Should we maybe factor those changes in?

While knowing more about these myths of female fertility may not be all that interesting to those of us who’ve already made the childfree choice, they are certainly relevant to anyone on the fence and to those who promote having children based on outdated or flatly false information.

The Ticking Clock: What’s True (and False) About Female Fertility?

Taking a hard look at the science, myths, and misconceptions that fuel women’s pressure to conceive.

Written by August McLaughlin

The tick of the biological clock is something women are made to hear loud and clear from the moment we reach childbearing age. We’re warned to not delay having babies, or risk living a life of kid-less regret. Women who don’t yearn to procreate are often scorned as “selfish” and even “bad for America.” But just how real is this clock we’re always warned about? And what if we can’t hear it ticking, and don’t care to? It turns out much of the information touted about female fertility involves a mix of fact and fiction. And that innate urge to procreate? It has shockingly little to do with science and everything to do with socialization.


Conception Misconceptions

Women without the desire to have kids don’t need to feel like their biological clock is broken, or may suddenly impel urges to procreate—turns out maternal inclinations guide those feelings more than science.

The most common myth regarding the biological clock is that women’s desire to have children is purely instinctual, says Amy Blackstone, PhD, an associate professor and chair of sociology at the University of Maine. “The key force behind the desire to have kids is socialization,” she says. “Children are taught from a very young age that one of the most important things they can do when they grow up is become parents.”

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2 Responses to The Ticking Clock: What’s True (and False) About Female Fertility? – from Dame

  1. smona101 October 21, 2013 at 2:01 pm #

    LOL, I so don’t care if I’m “bad for America” …. I live in the UK 😉

    • Lance October 21, 2013 at 5:57 pm #

      You’re bad for the UK. 🙂

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