17/02/2010 16:34 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Ask Joanne - Am I Too Old To Have A Baby?

What's your biggest challenge in family life? Send your questions and dilemmas to experienced life coach Joanne Mallon via this confidential form. Your name can be changed on request.

Angie asks:

I'm in a new relationship, and got pregnant on the first date, at the age of
42. My daughter is nearly three. My periods are regular as clockwork. - twenty eight days on the dot but no sign of another pregnancy...any advice??? thank you

Here's the life coach's reply:Dear Angie

So if I understand you correctly, you got pregnant at 42 and your daughter is now three, making you at least 45. The fact that you have had a pregnancy in your forties and still have regular periods are both good signs. What does your doctor say?

Women do get pregnant at your age and older - look at Cherie Blair who had her son Leo at the age of 45, or Dr Luisa Dillner who is currently writing a column for The Guardian about what it's like to be pregnant again at 48. Statistics released last year showed that the number of women giving birth in their forties has doubled in the last decade. And over 1,000 babies were born in 2008-2009 to women aged 45 and over.

But just because it can happen occasionally, doesn't take away from the fact that it is much harder to get pregnant at this age - some experts say that the chance of getting pregnant naturally in your mid forties is only about one percent. If you decide to really pursue this as far as you can, you must prepare yourself mentally and emotionally for the fact that it still might not happen. But even if it doesn't, you still have the blessing that is your daughter.

You'll find a lot of practical, helpful advice on the Mothers Over 40 website. This is also a good article from babycentre which spells out the issues you need to consider. Think seriously about how you want to pursue this - would you go for fertility treatment, IVF, donor eggs, adoption? Then go and have a chat with your GP about your options.

Best wishes and good luck


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