Parenting

72-Year-Old Becomes First-Time Mother—20 Years After Menopause

Personally, I can’t think of anything more exhausting, but there is something to be said for this couple’s determination. In April of this year, a couple in India welcomed their first child, thanks to the medical wonders of in vitro fertilization (IVF), or fertilizing an egg outside the body in a lab. Sure, millions of people have undergone this procedure since it first worked 35 years ago. But this time, the first-time parents are different.

Daljinder Kaur, the mommy in question  is 72 years old.

She and her 79-year-old husband, Mohinder Singh Gill, were never able to conceive naturally. She went through menopause about 20 years ago, but they never gave up the idea of becoming parents. They found a doctor who routinely works with older patients after reading about him in a newspaper:

“Our track record in handling IVF in older women has been fairly good, but not everyone is fit to conceive. In her case, she looked visibly frail too, so I had to refer her to a cardiologist to get clearance for the procedure and a battery of other tests to ascertain fitness levels,” said Dr Bishnoi.

Luckily for her, Kaur’s medical reports were normal and she was fit to conceive.

“We started work within two months in 2013 but the first attempt failed, which is normal. After six months, another attempt was made and that also didn’t succeed. Finally, the third attempt was successful,” he said.

Doctors say her infertility was likely caused by a tubal blockage. “Her fallopian tubes were blocked and no attempt was made to detect the cause when she was menstruating. The procedure could have worked better then had efforts been made,” he said.

Next page: The father’s unusual explanation for the decades-long infertility. 

The baby’s father has another explanation, however:

The husband blames it on a lack of awareness and a family feud that was on for years because of which they didn’t get time to see a doctor. “It was embarrassing to not be able to produce a child, no doubt, but we have been busy with litigation all our life and hardly had time to think it over,” he said. “After we got a little free a few years ago, we thought of trying for a baby. The newspaper article was spotted at an opportune moment, I’d say,” said Gill, a farmer and now a proud father.

While the child is surely a blessing to this happy couple, one has to question the ethics behind choosing to bring a baby into the world when the parents are of such an advanced age. Plus, no one likes sleepless nights with a newborn even in their 20s. Imagine waking up every 2 hours for feedings in your 70s? More power to the new parents.