Nineteen-year-old Miley Cyrus and Australian actor Liam Hemsworth, 22, made headlines when they announced their engagement on May 31. It was your typical engagement, yes, but some people were surprised by their decision to wed at such a (relatively) young age. Now, just six week later, the former Disney star reportedly has babies on the brain. “Miley and Liam really want to have a baby quickly,” a Cyrus family source tells Us Weekly.
“They are both mature and ready for this,” the source went on to say. “Miley is 19 going on 40.” Of course, this could all be rumor, but it does raise an interesting question: What age is too young for kids? It’s a subject we’ve discussed often here at Mommyish. We all know people who waited ’til their mid to late 30s to have children – they were focused on career and enjoying a child-free life of travel – then found themselves struggling with infertility once they finally decided to start a family. There are also those who chose to have children while still in their 20s; in fact, one of my sister’s closest friends had three kids by age 30, a fact that both exhausts me and sparks a tiny bit of envy.
Either way, it is such a personal decision and I don’t think anyone can ever say which is better (starting a family in your 20s vs 30s or even 40s). Of course, there are pros and cons to each, but everyone’s experience is unique. At the end of the day, we all have to do what’s best for us and what feels right – plain and simple. That said, I personally don’t know any women in my own generation who planned to have a baby while still in her teens (I do know several who had unplanned pregnancies and went on to become wonderful mothers, but that’s a whole other topic).
But back to Cyrus for a minute. If the rumors are true, there will no doubt be tons of people out there who will call her crazy. They’ll tell her that 19 is too for kids and to wait (what’s the rush, they’ll want to know). I’ll admit that was my gut reaction, too, until I thought about it for a few minutes and realized who are we to judge?
For me, personally, starting a family was the last thing on my mind at age 19. And I certainly don’t regret waiting to have my boys. But maybe this is the best possible decision for Cyrus, who knows? All I know is that if any teens in my life asked for my advice, I’d tell them to wait. But Cyrus is not asking the world at large for advice. She’ll have kids when the timing’s right for her.
That said, how would we be reacting if she were, say, 16 years old? Or even 17? What is the age where it’s “acceptable,” in North America anyway, to plan for a family? Is there a magic number?
What do you think?