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"Cut the crap, Hamlet! My biological clock is ticking, and I want babies now!"

A typical plot in a Dom Com, when a woman realizes that menopause is right around the corner and that she doesn't have much time left to have children if she hasn't already, or that she won't be able to have more. Given the Law of Inverse Fertility, the harder she tries to become pregnant the less likely she will be to actually get pregnant, but the moment she decides that she doesn't want a baby she will suddenly become pregnant.

Common plots involve a woman looking into sperm donation or adoption, or if she is approaching Christmas Cake status, attempting to get married. As in Real Life, the latter is not a good idea and almost always ends disastrously.

Reminding her of her biological clock is usually her parents screaming "I Want Grandkids!"

An Older Than Feudalism variant is the woman who wishes for a child and proceeds to have a Wonder Child. See also Mandatory Motherhood.

Examples of My Biological Clock Is Ticking include:


  • An entire story arc of Rosario to Vampire focuses on Mizore's problems because of this. Specifically, her race can only reproduce through her mid-twenties, and was nearly forced into an arranged marriage to preserve her race. Break the Cutie ensues. But she gets better.


  • This is part of one of Lisa's monologues in My Cousin Vinny, with a beautiful counter from Vinny.
  • Inverted in 24 Hour Party People when Tony Wilson expresses great desire to be a father while talking with his first wife.

  Tony Wilson: Two words: Body Clock.



  • In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Trillian gets the urge for a kid some time between the fourth and fifth books, and so uses sperm donated that Arthur had previously donated to a lab in exchange for money, and then the kid winds up with Arthur since she left the baby at a day-care center and when she came back to pick her up she was an adult because of the Timey-Wimey Ball.

Live Action TV

  • Friends had this several times.
    • Monica was babycrazy practically from the start, and especially from the first season finale, and it led to the end of her relationship with Richard (played by Tom Selleck) since he didn't want kids. Later seasons saw her and Chandler adopt after they had trouble conceiving, though ironically Courtney Cox really was pregnant when the adoption episodes were filmed.
    • Phoebe didn't seem to have these feelings until she served as a surrogate for her brother (a plot necessitated by the actress' real life pregnancy), at which point she started wishing for her own family.
    • Rachel's feelings on the subject seemed to be limited to "be married and have a baby before I turn thirty-five", which she did get, in a roundabout way.
  • On Sabrina the Teenage Witch, aunt Hilda once had a problem with her biological clock (a literal magical clock) and began a series of desperate measures to try and become pregnant, including randomly choosing a guy off the street to marry. Sabrina eventually offered her own clock as a substitute for Hilda's, but luckily it all worked out in a timely fashion.
  • In an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit involving a stolen cryotank of embryos Olivia comes face to face with her own anxiety about having children and reveals that she had been turned down by adoption agencies for not having an extended family network. Her partner Elliot offered to help her in whatever way he could... whatever that means.
  • Liz on Thirty Rock in "The Baby Show". Tina Fey later made a whole movie about it called Baby Mama.
  • Though it wasn't necessarily due to age, one of the lesbian couples on The L Word decided they wanted a child in this sort of plot.
  • Actually happens to a man in the backstory of Power Rangers Operation Overdrive, in which Adventurer Archaeologist Andrew Hartford decides his clock is ticking, and so he builds himself a teenage son (Mack, who, incidentally, becomes the team's Red Ranger). Being a childrens' show, why he doesn't use his ungodly amounts of money to get a gold-digger wife is never explored. (We even met a woman he had chemistry with but nothing came of it.)
    • Mack wondered the same thing, he asked why didn't he built a wife. He probably was so busy in his career that he just didn't have time for love.
      • Naturally, that is not the most popular fan theory.
  • House had a sideplot involving Cuddy trying to get pregnant via sperm donors and fertility treatments. The title character handles this with his usual variance of sensitivity, ranging from agreeing to inject her in the backside with a hormone treatment to actually using her infertility as a vulnerable point to lash out at her. In the end, she adopts.
  • From Spin City, Carrie is so desperate to have a baby that she ends up stealing Mike's sperm.
  • Also a sideplot on Grey's Anatomy back when Addison Montgomery-Sheppard was still in Seattle.
  • One contestant on Travis Stork's season of The Bachelor told him at the first-night party that she was there because "My eggs are rotting." He didn't keep her past that night.
  • Dr. Elliott Reid of Scrubs started to feel this way in later seasons.
  • Fran Fine from The Nanny. Not helped by her meddlesome mother Sylvia constantly lamenting her lack of grandchildren.
  • Dr. Brennan in Bones had no interest in parenthood during the first few seasons, until towards the end of Season Four, when she decided she wanted to be a mother, and asked Booth to volunteer as a sperm donor. This plotline was interrupted by Booth's brain tumor, and made academic by the end of Season Six, when Booth and Bones conceived a child the old-fashioned way.


Web Comics

Western Animation

  • This is running theme for Marge's sister Selma in The Simpsons, who at various points had considered sperm donation, dated several men, had been married several times and took on an iguana as a substitute. She eventually adopted a baby girl named Ling from China.
    • Parodied with Mr. Burns in one episode. "My biological clock is ticking. I could be dead again soon."
  • Drawn Together had Toot try to get pregnant before she was convinced to try adopting a Nicaraguan baby as a test, which was of course handled with all the good taste the show is (not) known for.
  • Sealab 2021, "Chickmate", with Debbie's clock going off. She wakes up screaming "I want a baby!", briefly treats a dolphin like her baby, then starts interviewing all of the males on Sealab to find a suitable father.
  • In a very not funny example, Harley Quinn and the Joker jokingly reference this is Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker in a flashback, only to then laugh at the concept of "the joy of childbirth". The result is an attack against Batman that involves a Mind Rape against Tim Drake that turns him into a mini-Joker and leaves him mentally scarred for life.
  • A Family Guy cutaway showed a 37-year old woman, desperate to get pregnant, on a date with an ex-convict.