I remember feeling panic when I found out that I was pregnant with my last child. I was surprised with an intense fear about giving birth at 41-years-old! On one hand, I could have said, "It all still works," but I thought... "How did this happen at my age?" I know, just go with it... Not to mention, my Obstetrician-Gynecologist (OB-GYN) kept saying things to me like,
Ok stop! My attitude was, "I AM NOT OLD!" Haha. "Stop talking to me as if I am 80!" It drove me insane especially because I thought, my crap works! Most of all, the baby and I were just fine. Yeah, I was fertile so watch out folks once you hit 40! Also, please know that I adored my OB-GYN and she took very good care of my "old butt" over a decade ago. (If you are in St. Louis, I will link her information at the end of this blog). However, it was hard for me to believe that I was being considered as very advanced material age; I felt so good and healthy, I guess I just never felt advanced. Honestly, I ignored all of the noise about being at a very advanced material age and just cared for the baby and I as we traveled through the next 32 weeks. My pregnancy was smooth; there were no concerns, and I delivered a healthy baby. Amen!
"Old Dads," A Netflix Film 2023
I will not tell a lie. When I saw this film was released on Netflix, I did not not plan to watch it and Bokeem Woodbine is one of my favorite actors. For the life of me, I could not understand why Bill Burr and Ben Tishler thought of developing a comedy about old dads. I mean, men can have babies until they are 90-years-old if they want to but old moms take all of the physical risks associated in pregnancy after age 35, according to Cleveland Clinic. I mean, what do old dads go through that merited a film about it? Why did they choose men and not women? I went on and on with negative thought processes and irritated myself (laughing) because not only do I adore Bokeem, but I also like a good comedy. So, it made sense for me to watch it, and I did.
The movie definitely showed the differences between old dads and moms in general, and I was delighted for the producers to show old dad emotions during the pregnancy process. Dramatically done, yes, but expressed in every aspect of their situation. Nevertheless, it seems as if I was not too far off about my initial hesitation about watching the film. Old moms face the emotional aspect of being very advanced maternal age, but also the physical process of the pregnancy while old dads, the emotional portion of it. Old dads can certainly take the pregnancy just a shocked as we do, but the movie depicted them as being confused jerks which was odd to me.
I read a lot about child development in graduate school. During my pregnancy, I viewed many articles about how the age of mothers impacts children. I learned that advanced maternal age can have both positive and negative effects on children. Understand that the age of a mother is just one factor among many that can influence a child's development, and the impact of being an older mother varies from family to family. Here are some potential effects:
There are many factors that contribute to a child's development, and the age of the mother is just one of them. What matters most is the love, care, and support that old moms and dads provide to their children. A positive way of being supportive to older parents is to offer emotional support. Provide a listening ear and emotional support allowing them to express their thoughts, feelings, and concerns without judgment. Validate their experiences and acknowledge the challenges they may face as older parents. Respect their choices, try to avoid imposing your own opinions, and support their decisions.