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Aging Sperm? Not the End of the World

Judith Shulevitz’s recent New Republic essay on how later parenthood is “upending American society” claims that delaying kids could lead us down a rabbit hole of genetic decline. But the evidence is inconclusive and somewhat anecdotal.

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Babies on Hold: Data Show Women Acting to Make Better Lives for Themselves and Their Families

New CDC birth data out Wednesday confirm that the U.S. birthrate dropped one percent to reach an all-time low in 2011, extending the downward trend begun with the recession in 2008. Put down your knee-jerk fears about smaller population. This drop is a good sign, foretelling not a diminished but a strengthened workforce down the line.  

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Slut Limbaugh and the Virgin Queen

Birth control has unraveled the social fabric that bound all but the very exceptional women with shackles of shame, violence and penury.   There’s a way to go before we weave a pattern of full fairness, but there’s no going back.  Good riddance.  The queen is dead.  Long live the enfranchised citizen.

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Helen of Troy: Some Women’s History Should Stay That Way

Women’s history month 2011 provides a special kind of lesson. At least since Helen of Troy, our leaders have been actively denying women the right to choose how to run their private lives.

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Fair Pay Could Mean a More Fertile Future

At first blush, the debate over the Paycheck Fairness Act may not look like part of our ongoing national fertility discourse. But failure to pass the PFA will give women yet another reason to have fewer kids.  

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Post-fertile Boomers Push Birth Rate Drop

Fertility rates in the US have fallen. But the needs of the news cycle for drama notwithstanding, nothing drastic or frightening is happening on the fertility front this year. It’s just plain family planning.

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Childlessness Up, Down and Steady: Parsing the New Pew Research Center Report

Last month Pew Research Center confirmed there are indeed more older moms around. This month they report fewer women are having kids. Both reports resonate with the recent 50-year anniversary of the birth control pill.

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Planning Motherhood: The Pill and the Social Transformations it Helped Us Realize

The birth control pill helped redefine the dynamics of motherhood and transform the lives of women, men and their kids, both physically and socially.

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Just the Facts, Ma’am: Later Childbirth and Autism

Hot on the heels of last month’s fertility scaremongering about ovarian reserve came a new scare for women planning to start their families later, this one about autism. Once again, reporting ignored essential facts and skewed the takeaway.

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Pushing Babies: The Assault on Childless Women

Childless women of all ages are under assault. If you’re a teenager, you’re pushed toward motherhood by “moralizers.” If you’re a woman 35 or older, you’re subject to ominous news stories about fertility anxiety.

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