Spanish women are waiting until later in life to have babies with 8.8% of the country's female population not becoming a mom for the first time until after they've turned 40.
You have probably noticed that in general, people are waiting until later in life to have children. Chances are your parents were younger than you were when they had you than when you had their first grandchild. It's also very likely that your grandparents were even younger again when they started a family.
There are a number of reasons for that, both good and bad. The main reasons tend to revolve around people leaving home later in life due to not being able to find a stable, well-paying job that will allow them to buy a house. According to El Pais, that is especially true in Spain. The Spanish don't leave home until the age of 29, on average.
That means the average age at which a Spanish woman has her first child is even higher. 31, to be exact. As recently as 2017, Spain was the leading European country for women not giving birth for the first time until after their 40th birthday. According to Eurostat's numbers, in 2017, 8.8% of women in Spain were over the age of 40 when they gave birth to their first child.
While most men have the luxury of being able to start a family at almost any age, women do not. It's no secret that the longer women leave it to have children, the more likely it is that there will be complications. In fact, the same statistics mentioned above also revealed that more than a quarter of childless women over the age of 40 in Spain don't have children because they can't, rather than due to them opting not to have any.
Meanwhile, the age at which women are having their first child in Eastern European countries such as Bulgaria and Romania is on the decline. In those countries and neighboring ones, one in eight babies is born to a mom under the age of 20. That means, on the same continent, there is a divide between countries with an aging population, and nations which are getting gradually younger.