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Ellen Lavin – The Essential Over 35 Pregnancy Guide

Older Mum rates this …..


At about 35 I started noticing pregnant tummies and cutsie cutsie newborns EVERYWHERE. This was a strange new experience for me – the fertility clock was ticking loudly. I still wasn’t sure I wanted a baby but at the same time I felt the pressure of my advancing years. Most articles I read in the papers about AMA (advanced maternal age) were all doom fertility this and gloom fertility that. I wanted to read something reassuring and that’s how I came across this book.

Ellen Lavin has a Ph. D in psychology and is a marriage, family and child counselor specialising in pregnancy issues. She didn’t have her first child until she was forty.  Like myself she didn’t meet her husband until she was 33 and eventually married at 38. At 39 Ellen started trying and became pregnant straight away but went on to suffer two miscarriages before finally falling pregnant successfully. She gave birth to a healthy boy at thirty eight weeks. Even though there is a greater risk of miscarriage later in life, Ellen says that age is not a reliable yardstick for measuring who will have a successful pregnancy. After all women in the prime of their childbearing years can still suffer miscarriage.

The Essential Over 35 Pregnancy Guide has a positive message about later life pregnancy, is easy to understand and down to earth in style.  It covers everything you would want to know; the fertility issue, preconception care and explores the myths and realities of pregnancy at midlife. Her views on conception and stress are refreshing. She points out that stress can only affect your ability to conceive if your tension is so high that it stops you from menstruating or ovulating.

The book goes on to cover screening tests, fertility treatment and pregnancy.  There is an excellent chapter ‘Embracing Pregnancy Again’ which explores the emotional repercussions of becoming pregnant after miscarriage.  She is very reassuring if you have miscarried and now blame yourself for not having a baby sooner.

As the book is written for an American audience it refers to their health care system but don’t let that put you off as all the information is still relevant. The only thing missing is pictures of older pregnant mums and that’s why I’ve only given it four stars.

Be supported and reassured …..