The world’s oldest mother is dying. The 70 year old Indian woman lied to doctors when she underwent in vitro fertilization 3 years ago, claiming she was 55 – the legal cutoff age for the procedure. She and her husband are poor farmers who have been “desperate” to have their own child during their 56 year marriage.
Now their daughter is 18 months old and her Mom is dying because of complications from her birth. Mom and Dad took out a $3000. loan to pay for the in vitro. Mom says it was worth it and she can die happy knowing she finally had a child.
Last week a 66 year old woman became the oldest in the world to have triplets. She too underwent in vitro at the same clinic at 65. Don’t they even bother to check birth certificates? It seems the so-called cut-off age is awfully loosely enforced.
I understand the urge to have one’s own child and everyone is allowed to treat it like their birthright, no matter if they’d be lousy parents or have no money or are in their late 60’s. In my heart, I’d like to see more people choose to adopt the lonely and forgotten ones, the orphans, who are already here right now and in desperate need of a family. But if you say that out loud you risk alienating people who wish to point out that you don’t have a child of your own so you can’t possibly understand, even though they don’t know the reason why. (The possible reasons are many!)
Not only is bearing a child at 67 disgusting, it’s not how the body was apparently designed to work. There’s a dying woman in India who’s going to leave a destitute child and husband behind soon, who knows that now. It’s her life, it’s her body, it’s her decision. But what about the little one, brought into a penniless existence with parents who felt compelled to have her so late in life that she’ll never really get to know them? I’d like to suggest a little power over one’s mind and biological urges. A human can change their mind about what they want when the bigger picture determines it no longer makes practical or moral sense.