One first needs to be ready for this all-encompassing, exhilarating, and life-giving experience.
This answer, however, is not written in stone. It is fluid, subjective and prone to change.
A woman who is not ready for motherhood at one point in her life may be ready later on.
Mother and Motherhood
Young women must be clear about the difference between mother and motherhood. They are not one and the same.
The word “mother” describers the biological state of having given birth to a child.
The word “motherhood” describes the cultural process of raising that child.
The first may be attractive, the second is hard work.
Before you become a mother you have to deeply want to be a mother. You have to know what motherhood involves, and you need to have the means (both emotional and material) to provide the basic physical, socio-emotional and mental needs of your child.
The Age Factor
One of the most important facts to remember is that a woman’s window of opportunity to become pregnant, with no complications and minimal cost is relatively short. The prime childbearing years are between ages twenty to thirty-one.
The average forty-something woman trying to get pregnant for the first time faces daunting odds no matter how hard she tries, or how much she spends.
Women should start thinking of these age-related issues at the beginning of their adult life rather than leave it to when they are 30. Ideally, they should begin thinking about these factors as early as in high school, when they start to contemplate their future education and career paths.
Young women who know that they want to have children, and give birth naturally with minimal complications and cost, would be wise to plan on having their first child no later than in their late twenties.
This may conflict with their professional plans, but there is no smart responsible way around the biological fact. It is wisest to work with biology rather than against it.
Young women would be wise to invest the time during their twenties, in addition to furthering their education, also in serious romance and finding their life partner.
Instead of viewing one’s gender as a shackle, women should accept their femininity as a glorious manifestation of nature (or God).
Why do women not see that in motherhood lies their power”?
~ Ann Dally, British Psychiatrist
Be Ready for Motherhood
In summary, you have to be ready for motherhood before you become a parent – physically, emotionally, mentally, and financial. Responsible couples (especially the woman) should avoid getting pregnant as long as they do not have the ability and the means to provide their babies with basic physical, emotional and mental needs.
For more information on the importance of mothers, read “The Drama of the Mother-Child Bond”