alnair20aug93 on Apr 6th 2018 at 12:19:24 PM
Last Edited By:
alnair20aug93 on Jun 25th 2018 at 4:08:24 PM
Page Type: trope
Women past their mid-40s and early 50s go into the stage of menopause, where the menstrual cycle stops completely, barring any production of egg cells, so they can't have children at that point.
Not for these women. The thought of having children at an age beyond 50 is very unlikely. They're old enough to be grandmothers, but unknown to them, their biological clocks are still ticking. That revelation can cause several reactions; It's a wonder especially for an old woman who longed for a child, and it's a shock for another old woman who had children to have another one at that age.
Can be Truth in Television in part because menopause takes time and occurs at different ages depending on the woman. Women over 60 will have a slimmer chance of being impregnated naturally, so artificial means such as in-vitro fertilization are highly recommended. This can also be possible if the mother uses eggs from a donor, although the child will not biologically be hers. And being pregnant and giving birth at such an old age in both cases, can cause health risks. Both Writers Cannot Do Math and Artistic License – Biology can also be a cause of this.
For this trope to work, this trope only applies when the mother's age is remarkable or unnatural for her species. It's not an example if they're Really 700 Years Old or a Long-Lived species like an elf, a straight example if they're human over 70, or a justified example if they've got some sort of Longevity Treatment or Fountain of Youth that delays or reverses menopause.
The Other Wiki has a list of mothers who gave birth over the age of 50. Guiness World Records, however, refuses to accept a number of well-known historical cases due to suspicion that they might have been cases of Family Relationship Switcheroo to cover up a younger family member's out-of-wedlock pregnancy.
- In Father of the Bride: Part II, George is worried enough that his daughter is having a baby, but after mishaps like selling the house, now he's getting more stressed that his wife Nina, who thought that she was entering menopause, is also pregnant.
- Sybil Ramkin-Vimes is in her very late forties at least before she has her first child. Reality Ensues when she has serious complications during the childbirth, though both she and the baby fully recover.
- Justified in Honor Harrington due to life-extension therapy, "Prolong", being commonplace in the setting: it extends both life expectancy and fertility.
- Honor herself is 68 when she has her first child with Hamish Alexander.
- Defied in The Laundry Series. Bob and his wife Mo initially decided against having children due to fact they might have to Mercy Kill them in the event of CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN. Towards the middle of the series, though, Bob says in moment of optimism that they could still try, and Mo points out among other things that he isn't the one "who'd have to go through a first pregnancy in his late thirties."
- In The Left Hand of Darkness, Genly hears at one point that the king of Karhide is pregnant. He finds it funny. For the androgynous Gethenians it is also funny, but not because he is pregnant; rather, because he is well above forty. For them, mid-twenties is the age when they usually stop trying to conceive, and forty tends to be the menopause.
- Star Trek: Typhon Pact: Beverly Crusher is 57 when she delivers her and Jean-Luc Picard's first child in Paths of Disharmony. Justified due to the Enterprise crew's youth having been extended by exposure to technobabble in Star Trek: Insurrection.
- Vorkosigan Saga: In Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen, Cordelia plans to have a baby while in her 70's by using a Uterine Replicator. As a Betan her life expectancy is around 150.
Live Action Television
- An episode of Chicago Med has a couple in their fifties come into the hospital with the wife suffering from a mystery ailment. At one point, she gets up to go to the bathroom and releases a lot of fluid as soon as she gets out of bed. Dr. Choi realizes that the "urine" is actually amniotic fluid and immediately gets her to the maternity ward.
- Due to writers not being great at basic math; in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Keiko's mother apparently gave birth to her while in her sixties as her mother is said to be celebrating her 100th birthday during the episode "Dax" and Keiko is in her late thirties or early forties.
- In the The X-Files season eleven finale episode, planned to be the series Grand Finale, "My Struggle IV" Scully is pregnant at age fifty.
Religion And Mythology
- The Bible:
- Sarah had a child at the age of 90. Prior to that, Sarah forces her slave Hagar to sleep with her equally elderly husband Abraham, and Hagar gave birth to Ishmael. After Sarah sends Hagar and her child away out of jealousy, God tells her that she's going to have a child, to which Sarah laughs it off due to being too old. She gives birth to Isaac, whose name means "she laughs".
- In the Gospel of Luke, the angel Gabriel tells the priest Zechariah that his wife Elizabeth is going to have a child. Even though the couple had prayed for a child for many years, Zechariah finds this unbelievable, since they are both old, to which Gabriel renders him mute until the child, whom they named John, is born.
- Janet Jackson gave birth to a son named Eissa al Manna at the age of 50.
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