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More Children Born to Older Women Than to Teens

The average age for a woman to have a baby in 1990 was 24, today it is 25, according to a new study released by Pew Research Center. That might not seem like a giant leap, but consider this: between 1990 and 2008 the number of births to mothers older than 35 jumped from 368,000 to 603,000. And today, women over the age of 35 giving birth out number women under the age of 20. In fact, teenage births dropped from 533,000 in 1990 to 441,000 in 2008. Researchers believe part of this shift is due to medical science, later marriages and evolving attitudes about motherhood.

Suzanne Bianchi, a sociologist at UCLA says, "Children born to highly educated mothers increasingly are born later in life. The mothers are usually married, and they have a much higher chance of raising children in a stable marriage that lasts through a child's childhood." What doesn't coincide with this trend is the fact that the number of unwed mothers giving birth has risen since 1990, accounting for roughly four out of every 10 births. Moreover, the number of women who have never had children is also rising. In short, this simply means that the family dynamic in the U.S. is changing, and whether that's good or bad is to be determined.

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