Maria del Carmen Bousada de Lara

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Carmen Bousada
Born María del Carmen Bousada
(1940-01-05)January 5, 1940
Cádiz, Spain
Died July 11, 2009(2009-07-11) (aged 69)
El Puerto de Santa María, Spain
Cause of death Cancer
Nationality Spanish
Known for Formerly World's Oldest Mother
Children Pau Bousada, Christian Bousada
This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Bousada.

María del Carmen Bousada de Lara (January 5, 1940 – July 11, 2009) was a Spanish woman who gained worldwide attention when she became the world's oldest mother on December 29, 2006.[1] She later became an outspoken advocate for the rights of older mothers and a subject of considerable controversy.[2]

The twin baby boys, Christian and Pau, were delivered prematurely by caesarean section and weighed 3.5 lb (1.6 kg) each.

Bousada de Lara admitted that she had lied to physicians about her age when seeking in vitro fertilization treatment at a clinic in California. At the time of the delivery, Bousada was the world's oldest documented mother, surpassing the record established in 2005 by Romanian mother Adriana Iliescu, who was also 66.[3] Two years later, Omkari Panwar, a 70-year-old woman from the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, gave birth to twins. However, Panwar's age is not officially documented.[4]


Bousada died of ovarian cancer on July 11, 2009, when her sons were two and a half years old.[5]

Ethical controversy[edit]

Critics of later-late motherhood characterized Bousada's decision to have children as "selfish, unnatural and wrong, her children innocent victims in her pernicious plan for reproductive self-gratification."[6] Her own brothers publicly criticized her decision.[7] Bousada herself vehemently defended her decision. At the time of the birth, she stated, "Everyone has to have children at the right time for them. This was the right time for me. It was something I always dreamed of."[8] In an interview in 2006, she stated that her mother had reached the age of 101 and that therefore she expected a good chance to bring up her children and perhaps even to see her grandchildren. However, she died of cancer less than three years after giving birth.


  1. ^ World's oldest mother dies at 69, BBC News, July 15, 2009
  2. ^ Appel, Jacob M. Motherhood: Is It Ever Too Late? July 15, 2009
  3. ^ Irvine, Chris. World's oldest mothers. The Telegraph December 9, 2008.
  4. ^ Appel, Jacob M. Motherhood: Is It Ever Too Late? July 15, 2009
  5. ^ [1] Spanish woman who became the world's oldest mother at the age of 66 has died of cancer just two-and-a-half years after giving birth to twins, raising fresh questions about the ethics of fertility treatment for women past natural childbearing age, "The Guardian", July 15, 2009
  6. ^ María del Carmen Bousada de Lara's death does not mean she was wrong July 16, 2009
  7. ^ Keeley, Graham. Family turns against world's oldest mother, 67, The Sunday Times January 14, 2007.
  8. ^ Mills, James. Why I lied to doctors, by the woman who became the world's oldest mother at 67, London Daily Mail, January 29, 2007

See also[edit]