More evidence of the suicidal madness of a once-great nation, as reported by Laura Donnelly of the Daily Telegraph on May 28, 2011:
The number of women having abortions in their 40s has risen by almost one third in a decade, according to new figures.
Experts said the dramatic rise reflects increased sexual activity among older women, and higher numbers of single women and divorcees – who are far more likely than previous generations to have casual sex or short-term relationships...
...The government statistics disclose that the number of abortions for women aged 40 and over has risen by more than 30 per cent since 2000. In total, 8,179 women aged 40 and over terminated pregnancies last year – including more than 650 women above the age of 45, and 21 women aged 50 and over.
Ann Furedi, chief executive of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, said: "I think women are generally remaining sexually active for longer, and women in their 40s increasingly see themselves as sexual players – whether or not they are in relationships – in a way that they didn't even a decade ago."
Many older women, especially those who came off the contraceptive pill because of their age, were inclined to take chances with contraception, only to be "stunned" when they found themselves pregnant, she said.
The figures include women who had tried to get pregnant in their 40s, only to opt for termination when screening disclosed a high chance of abnormalities such as Down's syndrome – the risk of which rises with age, said Mrs Furedi.
However, most abortions among older women took place before 12 weeks, which is when the first antenatal screening takes place. Among women aged 35 and over [there aren't figures for 40+ on this], just 2,200 abortions occurred after that point.
Josephine Quintavalle, from the Pro-Life Alliance, said: "These figures are extraordinarily depressing – when we see high rates of teen pregnancy we often end up debating whether ignorance is to blame, but you would think that by the age of 40 women would have some idea how things work. It seems incredible that at that age, any woman would take such reckless chances."
The figures reflect large-scale social changes in recent years.
The percentage of single women in Britain has more than doubled in the past three decades, with 43 per cent of women under 50 never having married in 2009...
...Separately, studies have established that men and women in their 30s and 40s are less likely than teenagers to practise safe sex.
While almost 70 per cent of those aged between 16 and 19 use a condom when having sex with a new partner, the figure is less than 35 per cent among those aged between 35 and 44, according to a study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.
And in 2008, an international study suggested British men and women were the most promiscuous western industrial nation.
The academic study, which examined the numbers of one-night stands, sexual partners and attitudes to casual sex among 14,000 people in 48 countries, found Britons were the most promiscuous – ahead of Australia, the US, France, the Netherlands, Italy and Germany.
At the same time, women are having babies past the age of 40 in dramatically increasing numbers – echoing the increase in abortions.
Figures published earlier this year showed that some 27,000 babies were born to women over 40 last year in Britain, a number which has doubled over the past two decades.
Many are having their first baby at 40 or above, something which was exceptionally rare in previous generations.
A report last year by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development concluded that women in Britain are among the latest to start having families.
The average age for a women having her first child in this country is almost 30, compared with 25 in the United States, and 28 and a half in France.
Fertility treatments have partly fuelled the increase in births over 40, but some of those treatments end in termination.
Last year, statistics disclosed than an average of 80 abortions a year are carried out in England and Wales following IVF treatment – many likely to be because of the higher rates of abnormalities associated with late motherhood, particularly Down's syndrome.
And many women do not have children at all: a study of women in their late 40s found that some 19 per cent arrive at the menopause childless – a figure exceeded by only three countries in Europe: Germany, Finland and Italy, was there a higher percentage of women who ended their reproductive lives childless.
David Willetts, now minister for universities and science, sparked controversy in opposition when he said that a "Bridget Jones generation" of well-educated young women who cannot find a suitable match was fuelling the collapse of the family.
Because more women than men were gaining degrees, women struggled to find a partner with good career prospects, and men were no longer given the opportunity to "bring home the bacon", which was bad for families, he said.