7 Things Not to Say to Women of a Certain Age Who You Assumed Were Done With Babies

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You may think that your 40-something friends who have a couple of kids are done, as they say, with a capital D. The marathon of sleeplessness and diaper duty are in the rear view mirror. They can finally focus on themselves. Workout whenever. Go out to dinner. Or can they? When you're facing the end of your fertility, fantasies of another pregnancy can hit you like an emotional tsunami. No matter how irrational, financially challenging, logistically challenging, career challenging and marriage challenging the one-last-baby idea may be, the longing may be there as well.

 

This week we learned that 40-year-old bombshell Sofia Vergara, who, by the way is two decades out of the baby stage with a 21-year-old son, is freezing her eggs and/or possibly using a surrogate to have a second child with her fiancé.

Gwyneth Paltrow admitted that she's missing her third. The actor/wellness guru/cookbook author and mother of two, miscarried some time after she had her 7-year-old son, and "almost died" from the complications. Now, at 40 and a half, it sounds like she's feeling "broody."

If you know someone who you thought was Done, but may really not be done, best to avoid saying the following.

  1. Your kids grew up so fast. They're like teenagers! Even when just an exaggeration, it drives home how much time has past since you were in the game.
  2. You'd never have another, right? I mean, I don't know how you keep it together as it is. SO judgey!
  3. There's really nothing better than that new baby smell. If you love infants, this is a killer.
  4. I wonder if you'd have a hard time getting pregnant now because of your age. Like a knife in the heart.
  5. Don't you worry that if you had a baby now, you'd be taking something away from the kids you already have? The pieces of the pie argument. Logical, perhaps. But the decision isn't always an A +B = C type of thing.
  6. Maternity clothes are so much cuter now than when we were pregnant. For the fashion alone, it can be tempting.
  7. It's funny I always thought your husband really wanted a boy/girl [which ever one you don't have]. A total projection but a huge guilt-trip nontheless.

Do you ever think about having another kid?

Image via Normanack/Flickr

trying to conceive

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Rhond... RhondaVeggie

I'm Done with a capital D, I've got my two kids and I hate being pregnant. Take my maternity clothes, I don't need them anymore.



Then I think about never feeling another baby luck inside, never going through labor and delivery again, never holding another little newborn and suddenly I'm just a little less done.

Momin... MominPa74

I would love to have one more. We have 2 girls. The oldest having just turned 16 (and a 10 year old). But considering I'll be 39 this year and haven't been on birth control of any kind since 1998 (oldest was a year old) I think it highly unlikely that I will have any more. I loved being pregnant even with the severe 9 months of morning sickness. I still hope every month... Guess I might just have to wait 10 years or so for some grandbabies....

nonmember avatar Debbie

I have two teens and am nearly 50. I have never minded when someone says any of,those things. I do fantasize bout having a baby, but the key word here is FANTASY. If I actually was in mourning and felt wounded every time someone mentioned these things, I would head straight to a therapist. What a stupid article, this writer doesn't have a clue.

Adrie... Adrienneharvey2

I need some advice!! I am 42 with a 24 year old son- whom I adore and have a wonderful relationship with. I have always wanted another child. I recently remarried and have a wonderful husband. I can't stop thinking about having a baby. We have talked to a genetic counselor, a high risk ob/gyn and a counselor to discuss risks, issue and pros and cons, we have just not tried yet. It is so scary. Anyone have a similar situation? Is it too late? Is it ridiculous? I can make my own decision, but hearing from women who have had a baby late with a big gap in ages would be so helpful! My husband is amazingly supportive, as is my family. I am healthy, educated, patient, loving and really really really want to. Is that a good enough reason? There are no grandchildren in my near future. Thank you!

craft... craftycatVT

@Adrienneharvey2, I think you should go for it. Yes, really, really wanting one is a good enough reason, (is there a better one)? My Aunt had my cousin in her early 40's and she turned out perfect. Also, my mom had my brother when my sister was 15, (I was 10), and there were no problems there, either. If biology is not on your side, you could always consider a surrogate or adoption.

SuzyB... SuzyBarno

@adrienneharvey2 my grandmother had my uncle in 1940 at the age of 22 and it almost killed her to deliver. She never had any more with that husband but then met my grandfather and had my aunt in 1955 and my dad in 1960 at the age of 42. Everything turned out fine and that was out of the ordinary for 1960. Some people will say "oh, what if you don't survive long enough to see your Children graduate high school?" We'll I'm here to say that next week we are celebrating my grandmothers 95th birthday. I always tell myself that I am not a fortune teller. I have no idea what is gonna happen in the future. God has a plan yet he gives you free will. Try and see and if He says no, then there is your answer. Babies are a joy, how nice for you and your new husband to share in that joy together?!

kjjakjja kjjakjja

@adrienneharvey2, I had my first child last year at 42. It was a healthy pregnancy, but near the end I started dilating early and had to go on bedrest. I admit some age comments bother me. I thought I'd have kids in my 20's and early 30's, but life doesn't always work out how you intended. I met my soul mate later and now we have a perfect, healthy son. We're considering having a second baby. I can't comment about the children age gap, but it sounds like you'll have good family support to help out. Think about what would work best for you and your family. If you're up for it, I'd say start the prenatal vitamins now and go for it!

Melissa Young

With women having babies later nowadays anyway, it just makes sense not to say anything. Just smile and congratulate them.  I have a friend whom I though would be done after 4 kids.  She is 46 and now has 6 kids.  Never worth the faux paux.

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