Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Tables Turned

Ever since I turned 35, the media articles on womens' fertilty have been relentless. I feel haunted by my age & dare not tell anyone...'oh 35 are you ...not much time left dear..." The idea we only have 10% fertlity left, the worry of abnormalities & the stress on our ageing bodies. Let alone if we are single & have no time left to find a mate & start pro-creating.

The catch phrase 'biological clock' sends me into a frenzy of frustration. So much emphasis on the women's side of things. Where is the pressure on men.?..they seem to be lounging around waiting for some 27yr old to come dancing into their lives, ready to settle them, if they feel like it. There is a myth that men don't have this pressure. Once fertile, always fertile for them.

Finally, reading US Elle / March 2007, quoting a book by Harry Fisch MD -' The Male Biological Clock' was the phrase men need to hear.. 'I'd always considered fertility a women's hassle...the guy is the culprit in 40% of cases.. (also) men have proven to be the causal factor in half the cases where both partners are over 35.' Mens' fertlity drops just as womens' does. In fact at 30, men begin andropause, a slow but steady decline in the production of testosterone (rhymes with toblerone) which aids in sperm creation & erections.

The article writer, John Meils, aged 34, has his sperm tested for fertility and worries, too, like women have, if he is fertile & if not & how this may affect his dating life.

Without a shred of schadenfreude I look forward to the balancing of articles in the media. Men are equal contributors to fertility problems, more so if they ignore the reasons why - particulary - age, smoking, weight, alcohol: the usual suspects. Finding a younger partner is not the only answer.


concerned heart said...

The interesting truth is that there is a large body of scientific literature pointing to the male biological clock beginning in 1955

Many genetic disorders including schizophrenia and autism etc. etc.start becoming more prevalent in offspring of men by their mid 30s.

Please read these just these two articles from Science Daily: Here are some excerpts:

"It makes sense that the mutations causing these diseases would occur more frequently in older men, and indeed that's what we saw for Apert syndrome," says Ethylin Jabs, M.D., director of the Center for Craniofacial Development and Disorders at Johns Hopkins.

Importantly, disorders linked to advancing paternal age begin to increase rapidly at about the same time as maternal risks increase -- age 33 to 35."

"A recent study revealed that sperm in men older than 35 showed more DNA damage than that of men in the younger age group. In addition, the older men's bodies appeared less efficient at eliminating the damaged cells, which could pass along problems to offspring.

""When you talk about having children, there has been a lot of focus on maternal age," said Narendra Singh, research assistant professor in the UW Department of Bioengineering and lead researcher on the study. "I think our study shows that paternal age is also relevant.""

concerned heart said...

I tried to e-mail you back but couldn't. You are very welcome.
This is also a good source on the paternal age effect.

It is quite a serious matter regarding the health of children and future generations