Thursday, 17 November 2011

Guest Post - 'Why I Became a Mum at 37'

By Minibreak Mummy.

Her blog eloquently and succinctly chronicles life with her toddler son and she has an aesthetic eye for a unique second hand bargain to boot! 

Enjoy .....


My husband, H, started to get really broody about 4 years ago. We talked about this, and it was clear that H would be disappointed if he never got chance to be a dad. And I started to realise that I would be sad if someone so obviously suited to being a good father never got chance to do this. But I was worried about the potential impact on my career, which has always been important to me. So I asked H if he would be prepared to consider working part-time and/or taking a career break if that was what was required in order for us to become parents. He said he would.

So this is how we got to where we are now. Me in a senior job and H taking a career break in order to be a stay-at-home dad for our lovely 3 year old boy, born when I was 37. Full-time childcare at a nursery or childminders wasn't really an option for us as our son has had some health problems (asthma-type symptoms in response to allergens and viruses).

Some people may think I'm extremely weird/selfish/unfeminine to be leaving the bulk of the responsibility for childcare to my husband, but it works for us. It doesn't mean that I love my son or my husband any less. The best thing I can do for my family is to be the breadwinner during the working day and be the best mum I can be outside work. I actually got my current job after maternity leave. Somehow, after surviving an emergency c-section, a job interview seemed much less scary.

There have been some challenging times with broken nights and expressing milk at work, but if I had been at an earlier stage in my working life it would not have been possible for us to manage on one salary. There was no way that I could have had a child in my early 30s in any case, because life was going a bit pear-shaped back then. I had to get myself sorted out before I could even think about getting pregnant.

There were only a couple of downsides to being an older mum from my point of view. I was put under a lot of pressure by NHS staff to have tests I didn't want. I held my ground but it was tough. Also, my father-in-law died last year, so our son missed out on growing up with his grandpa. But he still has three remaining grandparents who love him to bits and spoil him rotten.

Overall, I am very pleased with the way things have turned out. I think I'm a better mum to my little boy than I would have been if I were younger, probably more able to be patient with him. And I really enjoy spending time with my little boy and watching him

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  1. I had my last baby when I was 39 and felt really reassured that I was referred to medically as a geriatric mother! I love being a mum and I am the same person as I was when I had my first, just with a bit leas sleep!! My husband is the main wage earner and often says he would love to stay at home and look after the children so I don't think there is anything wrong with you going back to work!

  2. It is fab that your husband gets the chance to look after your son and you get to continue your career that you have worked hard at. Like you say you make the most of the quality time when you are off. I think us older mums (I had ds1 at 35 and ds2 at 37) can be hard on ourselves but we all make the choice that is right for us. xxxx

  3. I am really enjoying this series, but you are all making me feel even more ancient. What a lovely piece. I love brave women.

  4. I became a mum at 37 and 39... and it was my partner that was getting broody also, but luckily neither of us had to give up work, he works in retail so has some days off in the week and I have a 3 day weekend. We never see each other like, but it works for now... A lot of my friends are older mums and they are are more settled and very patient than we ever were when we were under 35...

  5. Thanks for all your lovely comments! I really appreciate it!

  6. What a great post and story! I think it is so great that you and your husband found a way to have your cake and eat it too! My sister has a career she loves and her husband, who is a painter was a better fit to stay home with their two beautiful children. They are both wonderful parents and have very happy boys, 3 and 1 born when my sister was 40 and 42. I often have to remind myself that any of the societal pressures I may feel to live my life a certain way are really nothing more than imaginary constraints that are often formed out of fear and ignorance. I'm so happy for you and your husband! Thanks again for a wonderful post!!

  7. More and more men seem to be the main carer for the children these days while their wives go out to work. Lovely post! Polly

  8. I think it's great that your OH is staying at home. I think in a marriage we have to split up the work in a way that best suits our skills and interests regardless of whether they are traditionally male or female roles. I've taken maternity leave to look ofter both boys because hubs doesn't have that option but outside of working hours he takes on a lot of the childcare and a fair bit of the house work while I tend to do all the financial and organisational stuff and most DIY/decorating because that's what we're best at. Thanks for linking up to 'All in a day's work'.


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