The time when women choose to have babies has changed through history. At the beginning of the 20th century, Doctors told women to wait until they were at least 24 to become pregnant, because it was known that giving births earlier resulted in "damaged" babies due to the lack of medical knowledge at the time. Waiting too long, however, also resulted in fertility problems. Of course, much of this advice went by the wayside as lack of reliable contraception led to birthing at a younger age anyway.
The Great Depression put a real "stymie" on women choosing to have children in their twenties. Lack of income reduced interest in sex and men told their wives to not fall pregnant. At least this is what we are told.
War in the late 1930s saw all of this self-control fall away as couples fell pregnant with the view that one could be dead tomorrow. Even in 1942 a doctor said people were selfish and wanted creature comforts more than children. How he came to this conclusion is a mystery. With a war on there wasn't much to buy. All labor was directed to the war effort.
After the War, the predilection for early childbirth continued. Male dominated society saw women tied to the home. When war ended people wanted to get back a stable family life as soon as possible. Too much conflict and death can do this.
The birth control pill was established in the 1960s. This was a whole new ball game. Women could now choose when to have children. By the 1970s the number of women giving birth in their thirties doubled. This rate has continues to rise to the present day.
Culture changed along with this. More women entered the workforce as having two incomes was necessary for the high demand way of life that was developing. Two incomes were not necessary for a couple to live in past eras. People today want everything that our forebears did not have like cars, homes, air conditioning, private schools, quality health care and more importantly, safe workplaces.
Will the future continue along the same path. We do not know. Technology keeps moving forward. It is possible that eventually the human body will not be necessary to carry babies. They are conceived in a dish so perhaps they will be "carried" in some sort of chemical container.
✴ Culture by Ty Buchanan ✴