Motherhood after 50: Brigitte Nielsen welcomes baby girl at 54

Her four sons are adults and she's a new mom again.

Motherhood after 50: Brigitte Nielsen welcomes baby girl at 54

After four boys, 54-year-old Brigitte Nielsen is now a mama to a baby girl.

The actress and reality TV star welcomed her first daughter on June 22 with her husband Mattia Dessi.

"We are overjoyed to welcome our beautiful daughter into our lives," the couple told PEOPLE. "It's been a long road, and so worth it. We've never been more in love."

The couple chose the name Frida for their daughter, who came into the world weighing 5 pounds, 9 ounces.

The announcement

Nielsen's other children are decades older than Frida. Her oldest son, Julian Winding, is 34. Her other three sons—Raoul Meyer Jr., Douglas Meyer, and Killian Gastineau—are all in their twenties.

Nielsen announced her pregnancy in late May via an Instagram post, sparking a flurry of headlines about her age. At 54, Nielsen is certainly older than most new moms, but it's not like she's the only woman to have a baby in her fifties.

Other high-profile moms to welcome babies after their fiftieth birthday include Senator Tammy Duckworth and Janet Jackson.

It's not easy

That's not to say having a baby after 50 is easy. Duckworth and Jackson have both reportedly used IVF technology, and while Nielsen hasn't publicly discussed the particulars of Frida's conception, back in 2008 she told Hello! magazine that she and Dessi were considering IVF. Back in 2008, Nielsen (then 44) would have been approaching the cut off age for many IVF clinics, but times have changed.

The Chicago Tribune reports that "many IVF clinics once refused to treat women over 45, but today that number is more typically set at 55." Dr. Helen Kim, chief of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the University of Chicago, told the Tribune she's seen a change in recent years in how older mothers are viewed within her profession.

"People are saying, well, people are living longer now, women are healthier now," Kim explained. "There's no evidence that someone who's 50 is any less healthy than someone who's 44, and I think that's another reason that there's an increase is that doctors are willing to do it."

Media messages

Kim notes that positive media portrayal of older mothers are great, but cautions that "people don't realize how rare it is and probably that they used an egg donor. I think many of these celebrities have used egg donors, and they just don't come forward with that, and it gives people a false impression. It sort of makes you feel like maybe you can have it all, but there is still a biological clock."

Her comments echo the findings of a recent study by New York University's School of Medicine. It determined the way the media covers Hollywood pregnancies may be misleading people about how easy it is to get pregnant after 40.

Birth rates for older moms are rising

Still, figures from the U.K. show that the over 40 demographic is the only age group experiencing a rise in pregnancy rates, and it's the same in the U.S. Birth rates have declined for women aged 15–39 from 2016 to 2017 but rose for women aged 40–44, according to the CDC.

At 54, Nielsen is statistically off the motherhood charts, as the CDC includes moms over 50 in the birth rates for women aged 45–49. The number of births to women 45 and older rose 3% from 2016 to 2017.

Nielsen is older than most mothers, but her journey reminds us that how and when a woman experiences motherhood is for her to judge. Some women embrace the journey in their 20s, while others are in their 30s, 40s or, like Nielsen, even older. We mamas may have been born in different decades, but we can all support each other.

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It's hard to say who loves these more—my kids or me.

When I became a mama five years ago, I didn't put too much thought into whether my son was getting the right vitamins and minerals. From breastfeeding to steaming and pureeing his first bites of solid food, I was confident I was giving him everything to support his growth and development.

But then the toddler years—and the suddenly picky palate that accompanied them—came along. Between that challenge and two additional children in the mix… well, I knew my oldest son's eating plan was falling short in some vitamin and mineral categories.

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It wasn't just the variety of supplements offered by Nature's Way that won me over: As a vegetarian mama, I'm the picky one in the family when it comes to scanning labels and making sure they meet our standards. The trick is that most gummy vitamins are made with gelatin, which is not vegetarian friendly.

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Nature's Way Kids Mulitvitamin

Meanwhile, my pharmacist husband has different criteria when evaluating supplements, especially when it comes to those for our kids. He appreciates the variety of options from Nature's Way, which gives us the ability to rotate the vitamins based on our kids' daily needs. By keeping various children's supplements from Nature's Way on hand, I can customize a regimen to suit my kids' individual requirements.

Of course, high-quality products often come at a higher price point. But (to my immense gratitude!) that isn't the case with Nature's Way, which retails for a competitive value when compared to the other items on the shelf.

Like all mamas, my chief concern is supporting my children's health in any way I can. While I see evidence of their growth every time I pack away clothes they've outgrown, I know there is much more growth that doesn't meet the eye. That's why, for my oldest son, I like stacking the Brain Builder gummy with the Growing Bones & Muscles gummy and the Happy & Healthy Multi. My 3-year-old also enjoys getting her own mix to include the Healthy Eyes gummy. And both of my older kids are quick to request the Tummy Soothe tablet when something isn't sitting right in their stomachs.* And I'll admit it: I've tried it myself and the berry blast flavor really is tasty!

Although my current phase of motherhood may not be as "simple" as it once was, there is so much to appreciate about it—like watching my kids play and sing and create with their incredible imaginations. Along the way, I've eased up on some of my need for control, but it does help to have this range of supplements in my motherhood tool kit. So while I may not be able to convince my son to try kale, having the Nature's Way supplements on hand means I do know he's right on track.*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

This article was sponsored by Nature's Way. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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