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Contemplating kids at 50....talk me out of this.....


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#51 Renovators delight

Posted 21 March 2019 - 05:55 PM

I'm 46 this year and would happily have another baby, even though logic dictates against it.

Re: the sibling support thing - my mum is the 2nd youngest in her family - had sister who was about 23 years older, and a brother 17 years older.

She often helped provide support for her older sister during various life events. She has provided some support to her 91 year old brother over the years as well.

So its not totally impossible that the younger sibling could end up being a source of support for the elder ones in the future.

Having said that, I am on team no in your case OP.

#52 bikingbubs

Posted 21 March 2019 - 06:05 PM

What does your husband think about #3?

#53 missminx

Posted 21 March 2019 - 06:19 PM

Correction - Virginia Trioli was 47 and her husband was 65 when they had their first (and only) child.

#54 Lallalla

Posted 21 March 2019 - 06:46 PM

I’m exhausted at the thought of it!

I totally get yearning for more babies. I still do, but I know I can’t, I just can’t. And it’s not even about my age, I have 3 kids and they are amazing but so so exhausting.

Also with an 8 and a 10 year old i would totally be enjoying the good times between toddlerhood and the teenage years! Not going back to the sleep deprivation of a baby right before hitting the stress of a teenager

Edited by Lallalla, 21 March 2019 - 06:47 PM.


#55 Romeo Void

Posted 21 March 2019 - 06:53 PM

My sister helped raise our baby sister.  It was a very large contributing factor to my sisters decision to never have children of her own, she said it burned her out.  I would do everything in my power to not place this burden on my children.

#56 Veritas Vinum Arte

Posted 21 March 2019 - 07:27 PM

I will say the 2.5yrs gap to my older brother vs 7.5 yrs gap to my little sister was so life changing that in having 3 children I had 22m between the first 2 and then 28m between #2-#3.

I actually fell pregnant on my stated last cycle of TTC (as that cycle started I told DH it was the last and would have stuck to it). If I hadn’t fallen pregnant that cycle all bets were off and we would have been a family with only 2 children. So I have less than 4.25yrs total from oldest to youngest.

That was how scarred I was by the large spacing in my family growing up.

#57 robhat

Posted 21 March 2019 - 07:36 PM

I agree with pretty much everything everyone else has said, but want to add one more thing to consider...

You're talking about donor eggs, right? So we're talking IVF, yes? Do you know anyone who's been through IVF? I do and I know that it's not quite the same as just getting pregnant. There are a hell of a lot of drugs and things that make you feel awful, loads of tests, lots of waiting and in general it doesn't work very quickly. Many people spend at least a few years trying to get a baby to stick. Some wait 10 years. It's not like you can just go out and get pregnant tomorrow. You could be looking at a few more years at least before you actually have a baby in your arms, if it works at all. I know people for whom it hasn't worked. Oh and it can be very expensive.

#58 Paddlepop

Posted 21 March 2019 - 07:54 PM

Do you want another child or do you want a more secure future for your existing children via having an extra child? If it's a more secure future then go and see a lawyer, financial planner, etc and get your will done, savings plans and trust funds set up, and things like that to look after your children in the event of your death while they're still children. Use the money you would have spent on IVF, donor eggs, international travel, nappies, etc.

I'd also suggest that you go and get some counselling with a psychologist or psychiatrist to work through your feelings about not having a third child, and your plan of having a child who will be born to carry out the purpose of securing the other children's future. What a sh*tty expectation to place on a new child.

We don't all get to have the number of children that we want. Sometimes we have less and that's just how life works out. Learn to accept that, and get psychological help if you need it to be able to do that. I have one child. I would have liked at least two but life circumstances mean that we've stopped at one.

If you want contact with babies how about volunteering at a hospital NICU to cuddle premmie babies, or with a charity to help struggling mums with looking after their babies, or via a church as a helper to new mums?

What about fostering kittens and puppies? They need love and round the clock care.

Don't have another child at 50 when you already have two healthy children, and a shaky marriage. That sounds like a really dumb idea to me.

#59 luke's mummu

Posted 21 March 2019 - 07:54 PM

I’m 48 with 2 kids ( 13 and 9) and the decision not to have any more was difficult. There will always be a “ missing “ part of our family after a very traumatic miscarriage, 20 more babies wouldn’t change that.

What I’ve found helpful is looking forward to other goals in my life- travel, fitness, hobbies, charity, career. And watching my 2 gorgeous sons grow into young men.

Regarding the family support- is there anyone you can reach out to for extra support? My son has a friend who’s an only child with quite elderly parents and grandparents and they have purposely tried to help him make strong friendships with similar families to them

#60 MrsLexiK

Posted 21 March 2019 - 08:34 PM

Slightly different but my dad has custody of kids his 61. Now they are aged 3.5 - almost 12. It is so hard on him and his wife.

My MIL is 1 of like 8 or something. She is somewhere in the middle but has a much younger sibling. The gap between oldest and youngest is like 20 years or more. And yes my MIL’ parents where much older (well into the 40’s very close to 50) when the last child was born (grand children had started I think) TBH the relationship between the youngest and her parents was bad because and siblings did much of the raising. Alzheimer’s hit and the youngest was still at high school. Youngest only has a relationship with 2/8 siblings and their kids don’t have a relationship with any of the family.

#61 blueskies12

Posted 21 March 2019 - 08:38 PM

Big hugs, OP.
You are so wonderful to open up here and to put it all on the table. I connected with your post  so much. We don't have similar circumstances, but something sang out on your post that reminded me of me. I also badly want a third. It consumes my thoughts and my mind. While it is possible. In some ways it likely isn't possible. Life circumstances and so on. From your post and I could be making huge assumptions...is that you have kids that are growing up before your eyes and in your eyes, soon they will be teenagers (although they are years off, it sometimes feels like they grow literally in front of us), then your Mum with whom you have a great relationship and live with is 77 and then there's your husband and your marriage is on your rocks. Are you scared of being on your own? A new baby could stop those fears. It's like there could be all this change going on around you, fear of change, fear of loss etc and a baby could be making you feel better about it all. Please excuse me if I am out of line.
Could you babysit regularly for a family that you know? Work with small children?
Can you make plans for your future? Make decisions about your husband?
It sounds like you have the most wonderful (and what we all desire for!) relationships with your mum, and your two children. Can you keep filling those cups?
Turning 50, I imagine, would feel like a big milestone.

I want a third, but for many reasons it could be unlikely. The usual ones....bigger house, bigger car,  private school fees, want the other children to have some sort of extra-curricular activity, that is just the financial, then there is the emotional needs and the physical needs. I have learnt on here that kids often have greater emotional needs in the teenage years- as babies they are easy to fix with a fully tummy and a new nappy, cuddles etc, not quite the same emotional energy expended. Could I give it to 3 equally? Or is there a chance of me burning out? Then we had a child with additional needs, he will do mainstream schooling and won't need much support, but the early intervention and therapies have been quite exhausting. I am worried about rolling the die again and we have one with additional needs again, as the parenting experience is quite chalk and cheese. This is all without the added age factor, iVF/donor factor.

But you can say  the cons all you want...it is really hard to let go wanting another child. What has helped me. is to really keep looking at the two that I have and to think what would they actually be missing out on if we had more (I will need to remember this, before I go and nag my husband for a third). I know bigger families can absolutely have it all, but in the case of my two with their  unique personalities, plus our own family dynamic, means that we have to take this into account.

Big hugs, you aren't alone X

#62 FeralRebelWClaws

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:05 PM

Just because there is a large age gap between children doesn't mean that the older children will look after the younger. child/ren.

DSD is 16 and DS is 2. She is in year 11. She does all her study, isn't interrupted. I don't think she's ever babysat him, except for maybe if he's already been in bed and we popped out to get takeaway (and DS doesn't tend to wake up.)

I have no intention of expecting her to look after him either. He adores her and loves spending time with her. But he's not her responsibility.

#63 TrixieBelden

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:07 PM

The thing that stands out for me is marital instability. I would not have a third child in those circumstances.

My father was in his 50s when we were born; I have siblings 20 years older than me. They were not my second parents, and we have a good bond. My mother was the youngest by 15 years and adored her older sisters (and they her).

When people describe negative effects of having older parents or siblings with a large age gap, they are not describing the natural consequences of these things. They are describing sh*tty parenting or bad relationships.

Honestly I find the talk of age gaps being scarring or older parents somehow life-damaging flat-out ludicrous. May we all have such easy lives that a parent being older is a major cross we have to bear.

How healthy you are as you age is also very individual. I often read posts on eb aghast that women my age, but with older children and 9-5 jobs (50% of my work is at night and it is the norm that I do not eat, drink, wee or sit down over a 13 hour period) are exhausted, falling asleep whenever they sit down, or constantly aching. I don’t know if they are obese, have chronic disease, are anaemic, have sleep apnoea....no idea. But their experience is certainly not mine.

#64 literally nobody

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:11 PM

View PostFeralRebelWClaws, on 21 March 2019 - 09:05 PM, said:

Just because there is a large age gap between children doesn't mean that the older children will look after the younger. child/ren.

DSD is 16 and DS is 2. She is in year 11. She does all her study, isn't interrupted. I don't think she's ever babysat him, except for maybe if he's already been in bed and we popped out to get takeaway (and DS doesn't tend to wake up.)

I have no intention of expecting her to look after him either. He adores her and loves spending time with her. But he's not her responsibility.

that’s all fair and good but she’s anticipating to be single and looking after her mum who is already 77. she won’t be able to do it all without a partner/if her mum was younger. She also will probably have to take her mum to appointments etc and it would be no fun bringing a toddler.. who else to mind him/her but the siblings.

#65 ERipley

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:12 PM

View Postmissminx, on 21 March 2019 - 06:19 PM, said:

Correction - Virginia Trioli was 47 and her husband was 65 when they had their first (and only) child.

Her ex nanny babysat for me once. She was a very expensive nanny. Virginia Trioli had a LOT of expensive help.

#66 FeralRebelWClaws

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:19 PM

View Postliterally nobody, on 21 March 2019 - 09:11 PM, said:

that’s all fair and good but she’s anticipating to be single and looking after her mum who is already 77. she won’t be able to do it all without a partner/if her mum was younger. She also will probably have to take her mum to appointments etc and it would be no fun bringing a toddler.. who else to mind him/her but the siblings.

It's still a choice. You just take the toddler with you. It sucks but you do it. I did it when my mother was having cancer treatment last year. It's not the end of the world, its a consequence of *your* decision so you live with those consequences, if you know what I mean.

I think the high probability of being a single mother is a separate issue.

But my point was that having a large age gap doesn't mean the older children automatically have to give up their "lives" and are automatic babysitters.

#67 ERipley

Posted 21 March 2019 - 09:48 PM

First off, I have twins. You might have twins. That likelihood increases as you get older. I cannot tell you how sick I was during pregnancy. My back has never recovered from carrying them and they’re 2.5. I was 36 when they were born. It was so hard. The last few months of pregnancy I could barely eat, hardly sleep, was just aching. I only had one other child to take care of during pregnancy and a very supportive partner. There’s no way I could have been feeding and running around after two teenagers, especially if I were single.

Then the twins were born! It was actually easier to look after two newborn babies than the pregnancy. At first anyway. My partner took 50% of wake ups but 2.5 years on they still don’t sleep through. I’m exhausted. If my partner deserted me at the start of all that there is absolutely no way I could have coped. Do you have an amazing support network of people who would help raise your children like a father should?

This is all just an aside though. The main concern is your current children. They are about to enter a turning point in their lives and they need you. Not exhausted, sleep-deprived, grumpy, snappy, falling apart you. They need you at your best and most supportive. If their parents are about to divorce they will need you even more. They will feel it so strongly if you go and do IVF and throw all your time, energy, love and money into a new baby. No matter how much you think now that you will be there for them, you can’t be. You can’t be present when you’re holding a screaming, colicky baby upright for the first 4 months of their lives, being vomited on at 4am, being screamed at because they’re hungry and changing eleventy billion nappies every day.

I’m still in the thick of it. I adore my son like I never thought possible but I constantly live with guilt because I just cannot give him the time and attention he deserves. I still have time to make it up to him when they’re all older. I wouldn’t dream of pulling the rug out from under them like this when they’re teenagers.

#68 Amica

Posted 21 March 2019 - 10:12 PM

Going against the grain... if it's what you want, do it. You don't need anyone elses approval or judgement.

#69 Expelliarmus

Posted 21 March 2019 - 10:30 PM

My siblings are older than me - 16-10 wen I was born. The 10yo resented me, the rest were fine and I have/had a good relationship with them. She's weird tho.

Relationship with parents also unaffected by the age gap. They parented me, my siblings did not parent me. They babysat sometimes but it wasn't expected.Most of the time my brother (16mths older) and I were dragged everywhere with our parents. So. Many. Boring. Choir. Performances.

That said, I myself wouldn't have a child at 50 nor when I had children as teens because I find teenagers incredibly hard work. I would also not want a baby with aging parents. That would have been far too difficult.

#70 Mollycoddle

Posted 21 March 2019 - 10:40 PM

View PostFeralRebelWClaws, on 21 March 2019 - 09:19 PM, said:



It's still a choice. You just take the toddler with you. It sucks but you do it. I did it when my mother was having cancer treatment last year. It's not the end of the world, its a consequence of *your* decision so you live with those consequences, if you know what I mean.

I think the high probability of being a single mother is a separate issue.

But my point was that having a large age gap doesn't mean the older children automatically have to give up their "lives" and are automatic babysitters.

Not as easy as all that, as we've found out since my sister got cancer and then had a stroke. My Mum is my main before/after school and school holiday carer and we were both juggling care of the kids with hospital trips, vacation care etc, I had to take days off work and on a few unavoidable occasions, had the kids in at work with me. They are older (7 and 10) and it was still very difficult.

#71 Ellie bean

Posted 21 March 2019 - 10:45 PM

Hell no. But, I’m not you. Good luck with whatever you decide!

#72 fascinated

Posted 21 March 2019 - 11:19 PM

Unfortunately you would be judged a lot on your age, being single and the large age gaps of your children. You might also find it hard to fit into mothers groups, playgroups, the school mum scene where a lot of the other mums are in their 30's. It could be a very lonely and isolating experience. There is also a real chance that at 50 your body does not cope with the pregnancy and the baby is not born healthy. My vote is no to having a 3rd. Focus on your exisiting kids instead and find new things in life to make you happy.

#73 Octopodes

Posted 22 March 2019 - 04:44 AM

See a psychologist, get to the bottom of what is making you want a child at 50. Are you trying to fix something in your life that you don't know how to fix by having a baby? Do you want to end your relationship but don't know how and so are using talk of another baby to push him to end it? Are you unhappy in you job? Are you struggling with your existing children growing up so fast?

I would address any possible underlying issues before seriously considering following through with your plan.

I had my only child at 22, there is a chance I could have grandchildren at 50, so there is no way I would consider having a child myself at that age.

#74 Freddie'sMum

Posted 22 March 2019 - 05:11 AM

TrixieBelden - I am one of the women you talk of being completely exhausted. I am 49 this year.  One of the main reasons I am shattered is because for the past almost-14 years has been consumed by parenting.  Neither DH or I have put ourselves first for over a decade.

The kids - their needs - have always come first and it has damn near killed us.  We have no family support.  Never had it. It's just been us and it's taken a heavy toll.

#75 LambChop

Posted 22 March 2019 - 05:36 AM

So, your existing children are only 10 and 8, you're thinking of separating, and somehow that seems like a good situation to bring a baby in to the story ??  How will you support the family financially if you're on maternity leave ?  How will you care for the baby if you're working ?  How will you balance the emotional/physical effort across all the children and yourself ?

And, as hard as it might be to face, what happens if the baby needs a lot more care due to disabilities ?

I think that there are other ways to fill the emotional void you are currently interpreting as 'another baby' - are you having counselling ?




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