Tick Tock On The Clock – Your Fertility Is Declining

by Melissa Coci

As if you didn’t know. But there’s a new campaign in town, and she really wants to remind you.

A recent study surveyed 1000 women and showed that 70% of us want to start having babies when we’re in our early 30s. First Response, a global pregnancy test company, isn’t down with that.

The company claims that women aren’t aware of how fickle fertility can be, so it’s taking action – launching a ‘Get Britain Fertile’ campaign. Britain is their target country because average age of a British woman’s first pregnancy is 30 – one of the highest average ages in the world.

Their spokesmodel is 46-year-old TV presenter Kate Garraway, who’s been painted and padded to look like a 70-year-old pregnant woman for the campaign’s photos.  Garraway, who had her two children at 38 and 42, says she wants to “alert women to start thinking about their fertility at a younger age” than her generation did.

Kate Garraway in her “normal” state.

 On a strictly medical level, ignoring all the reasons women wait until their 30s or older to start trying to conceive and (not to mention any economic motivations of First Response), the ‘Get Britain Fertile’ campaign might be a cool thing.

It is true that factual, well-explained information about female fertility is hard to find. It is also true that waiting until your thirties to start popping out kids will make it more difficult than beginning your child-popping in your twenties (apparently female fertility begins declining at 27 and drops sharply at 35).

 However, are the campaign’s ‘shock’ tactics the best way to go about this?

 Get Britain Fertile has already begun courting controversy ahead of its June 3rd launch date. Most notably, it’s irked Think Progress writer Aviva Shen. Shen has a very strong stance against the campaign:

“First Response has decided the solution to the trend of women waiting longer to have children is to criticize them, prey on their fears of ageing, and exploit social disgust for even moderately sexual old women,” Shen writes. She argues the campaign does not tackle the “real fiscal issues young women explicitly say are keeping them from having children earlier.” 

Personally, I think any discussion that involves scientific facts about female fertility should be welcomed – I’m talking about cold, hard biological facts. This type of knowledge could allow females to know what to expect from their bodies at all ages, and better prepare them for the challenges that come with conceiving babies. Time will tell if the ‘Get Britain Fertile’ campaign will act as a “knowledge is power” tool or face the backlash of older mamas who don’t appreciate the “shaming.” What do you think?


Images courtesy of Huffingtonpost.com and getbritainfertile.com.

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