Group Discussions

Does Age Really Affect Motherhood?

  • OK, I don't know if this is a popular opinion, but I do feel that becoming a mom for the first time at 41 affected a lot of things early on such as:

    1. My body didn't recover after 6 weeks. Or 8 weeks. Or 12 weeks. It literally took me almost 7 months before I could walk without limping.

    2. Breastfeeding was pretty much a bust for me and I had low milk supply even after pumping all the time (for 11 months).

    3. My hair is still falling out 14 months post partum - I'm almost at that "you can see the scalp between strands" stage. I'm either going to shave my head bald or start wearing a flashy wig. I just heard that women who have a baby later in life may enter menopause sooner. Now they tell me!

    4. I was so settled and established in my life and business that having a baby threw me into a tailspin. I felt like I had lost my entire identity and couldn't figure out how to embrace being a mom. Finally getting closer.

    5. I ended up with PPD - which I hear is common with women who experience infertility (I had 4 miscarriages in 2 years prior to my successful pregnancy). Maybe this isn't an age thing - but at my age, hormones were already starting to go a little wacky so PPD was just hormone wackiness to the nth degree.

    I'm not complaining - I'm just saying that I think some/a lot of this stuff can be attributed to age. I don't see my 20-something mama counterparts dealing with the same stuff. Do you? What did you go through as an older mom?
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Aliza Sherman on 16th August 2007
  • For me, the biggest challenge has been the point you raise in 4. I became a mom at 42 and didn't really know what hit me. In addition to being tired all the time, having to be attentive to someone else (and a baby at that), after spending so many years as my own person, was super hard.

    My son is now 4.5, and I have a bit more time to devote to my own pursuits while he's in pre-K, but I am always thinking about him, planning his schedule, researching things to do.....etc. I find it very hard to focus since it feels like I'm constantly racing the clock.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Robin Gorman Newman on 7th September 2007
  • I'm still trying to get my mind to catch up with my body. I just had knee surgery and it really threw me out of whack for a bit. My kids are 6,4 and 2 and I'll be 42 in a couple of months. Trying to keep up with my kids was tough enough without adding an injury. When I went in to see the doc, she told me that it's common for women our age to have knee problems. Like I needed to hear that. For me, when I get to feeling old, I remind myself that I wouldn't have it any other way. I needed to grow up A LOT before I was ready to devote myself to having a family. The sacrifices are easier for me to accept knowing I've done so much with my freedom before I had my babies. The challenge for me right now is accepting that it wouldn't be wise for me to try to have another baby. I wanted to try to for another girl, but the last pregnancy genetic testing put the fear of God into me. I was fortunate enough that the intial tests were wrong, but I thought I was going to have a stroke while waiting for the diagnositc results.

    Trying to get back to my pre-baby wieght is pretty much a lost cause, but being older I feel more comfortable and confident with the way I look.

    You freaked me out with the menopause coming earlier thing. The hormones are so difficult for me to manage now, I can't believe I get to experience the upheaval sooner. I'm really going to have to consider anti-depressants if it's worse than what I'm experiencing during my regular cycle. Yikes.

    I don't feel like I have that much in common with the younger moms in my daughter's kindergarten class. I thought I would be able to find some common ground having kids in the same class, but it feels awkward. I don't know if it's age or what. I find it challenging to meet other moms that I can relate to, so I'm happy to find this group.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by unkeptmomof3 on 11th November 2007
  • At just over 40 when I gave birth to my son, I certainly agree with the comment about it taking over 6 weeks....I didn't feel like myself, particularly at work, until just this past month - 8 months post-partum. I must say thought that I don't think even a young lady of 20 something is ready to rock& roll again at 6 or even 8 weeks.....especially with the first child. My co-workers kept telling me that 6 months is the magic date to really start noticing the body back to normal.

    My main complaint has been how sick I've been with colds & runny noses....I think I have spent more money on OTC drugs & Kleenex than ever in my life!!! I can't wait until I've caught and created antibodies for all darn 214 rhino virus!! Yuck! Not sure this is a 40 something issue but it knocks me out!
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Mshell on 27th December 2007
  • I remember being exhausted with my 1st at 20y old, I remember being exhausted with my 2nd at 23y. I remember feeling overwhelmed with my 3rd at 34y. Having a baby is exhausting and overwhelming at any age.

    When I was pregnant in my late 40's, I told my Naturopath that I would nurse right into menopause. She told me that being pregnant & nursing would delay it. I don't know if it's different in your early 40's?

    Catherine from and
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Catherine on 8th February 2008

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