The Truth About Being an Older Mom

The Truth About Being an Older Mom - SavvyMom

“Who’s your favourite boy band singer?”

I’m asked this recently while sitting at a table with a group of moms at a nearby drop-in play center. I contemplate my answer, making sure to keep an eye on my two-year-old son who is running around, clutching a plastic farm animal, clearly enjoying our weekly visit.

Jonathan Knight from the New Kids on the Block, I decide silently.

“AJ, for sure”, one mom blurts out.

“No way,” another one pipes in. “Nick Carter, he was definitely the cutest.”

They laugh. I laugh too. I keep my answer to myself. They are talking about the Backstreet Boys and I’m about a decade beyond that.

Just the week before, I listened while a few moms reminisced about how they spent their childhood Friday nights watching ’90s classics like Full House and Family Matters. Already a teenager by then, I was too old for such family sitcoms, having moved on from boy bands, hulled up in my room contemplating life and listening to Pearl Jam and Nirvana.

I gave birth to my first child at the age of 37 and my second the day after I turned 40. I am an ‘older’ mom.

It’s not the way my husband and I planned it, but that’s the way it worked out.

The Truth About Being an Older Mom

The truth about being an older mom is that sometimes I’m out of step with my mom peer group. While friends and siblings my own age are immersed in a haze of hockey practices and dance classes, I’m busy googling potty training or packing knapsacks full of diapers, sippy-cups, and goldfish crackers. They shudder in horror when I mention that my toddler still wakes at night. “I don’t miss that!” they tell me.

Conversations with friends who are just a few years older focus on lippy teenagers and rising university costs. They complain about irregular cycles and peri-menopause while I’m researching daycares and dealing with the remnants of postpartum body changes. It’s sometimes an odd dichotomy to balance.

The other truth about being an older mom is that it has turned out to be one of my life’s biggest blessings. I spent my twenties and most of my thirties doing what I wanted; establishing my career, traveling, and spending quality time nurturing my relationship with my husband. I am, without a doubt, more patient, less selfish, and a lot wiser than I was a decade ago. The long journey to have my children, although challenging, also helped to shape my perspective on parenting. No matter how or when your children come to you, they are a gift to be cherished.

I experience moments of hearing “Do you know how old you’ll be when your kids are teenagers?” that are balanced with “You’re so patient with him. I don’t know how you do it.”

The butt-wiping, car-seat strapping, and night-time rocking I do during mid-life motherhood is also balanced by the fact that I was able to take a long hiatus from my teaching career to enjoy things like walking my four year-old son to school and volunteering on his class trips. An opportunity I may not have had when I was younger.

It makes perfect sense to have your children sooner than later, as a woman’s fertility is time-sensitive. But for some, when you have your children is not a choice. And for others, it’s exactly that — a well thought-out decision. One that may involve finishing school, establishing a career, or finding the right partner —all of which can better prepare them for one of the hardest jobs they’ll ever take on.

For me, the greatest gift of being an older mom has been the ability to let go of timelines. So often we suffocate ourselves with time restraints, cut-off points, and rules dictating at what age we should accomplish which milestones. These restrictions can lead to anxiety and feelings of failure when, in essence, each person’s path is unique.

Not too long ago, I ran into one of my former students at the grocery store. No longer a tween, she’s now a woman with a child of her own. We hugged in the middle of the baby section and she introduced me to her toddler, all smiles and legs dangling out of slots in the shopping cart.

“Is this cutie yours?” she asked, turning her attention to my cart and clasping my son’s hand.

Instead of focusing on the the fact that this woman, who was more than a decade younger than me and one who I once nurtured in some capacity, had a child the same age as mine, I simply smiled back at her. “He sure is.”

And I wouldn’t have it any other way.



  1. Andrea on July 28, 2017 at 9:12 am

    Lori – I loved reading this! I am so happy for you! I thank God everyday for my two boys – I can’t imagine a better time in my life to share with them💕.

    • Lori Sebastianutti on July 28, 2017 at 9:24 am

      Thank you Andrea! I really appreciate it❤️

  2. Lisa on August 2, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    I hadn’t found the right man so I was 32 before I got married. I had my first child when I was almost 34 and my second when I was almost 37. I have no regrets with being an older mom, My daughters are now 12 and 9, mature for their age, and know how to behave in public. I think being an older mom has given me the chance to be patient and raise my daughters a lot like I was raised, to be an independent and confident girl. Most people that meet my daughters are very impressed with their behaviour, attitude and compassion.
    I think us older moms are wise and have much to pass on to our kids. Kuddos to you and keep enjoying your little ones, they grow too fast.

    • Lori Sebastianutti on August 3, 2017 at 7:38 am

      Thanks Lisa! So glad you could relate to the piece!

  3. Jennifer on August 3, 2017 at 6:05 am

    I can relate to this in so many ways. I was 35 when I finally found and married the right man. I had my first daughter at 36 and my second one at 41. They are now 7 and 2. I didn’t plan to wait so long to have kids, but I wouldn’t change a thing! I learned long ago not to sweat the small stuff and I think it is reflected in my parenting style and in my daughters too.
    I am comfortable and confident in who I am and I hope to instill that confidence in them too, and that is something that I think comes from being an older mom 🙂

    • Lori Sebastianutti on August 3, 2017 at 7:44 am

      Thanks Jennifer! So happy you could relate!

  4. Michele on March 25, 2018 at 10:55 pm

    Loved your story Lori! Not only are you apparently patient with your sons, but your wisdom to take time out of your career to BE with them is a gift that often doesn’t come until we have more life experience, and we realize that TIME TOGETHER is so very important for parent and child. Time is one thing we don’t get back. I encourage parents everywhere to do whatever it takes to BE PRESENT in their children’s lives. I had my babies at 29, 32, 36 and 38. They kept me going, and they kept me young!! All the Very Best to you! Michele

    • Lori Sebastianutti on March 26, 2018 at 7:56 am

      Thank you Michele! The gift of older motherhood did indeed show me that time is finite & I choose to spend as much of that time as I can with my kids.

  5. Naomi on July 31, 2020 at 5:20 pm

    Having children later keeps me young. I was four days shy of 40 when my daughter was born, 41 when my son came along. I had a long time to figure out who I was as a person and what kind of parent I wanted to be for my kids. They are now teenagers and I love keeping up with their interests and they are learning a lot about their parents’ taste in books, art, music, film, TV, video games. I felt more grounded and patient as a forty-something parent of toddlers compared to where I was at in my 20s and 30s.

  6. joyce on January 16, 2024 at 6:12 pm

    so hi my names joyce so i was born october 1 1963 my oldest daughter was born on march 21 1993 then my youngest daughter was born on march 4 2011 so shes almost 13 so im an older mom so i had my first at 29 so it was diffrent cause you know at 29 people typically have kids so back in my day people had kids early so 29 was older so wth her i was so happy so then with my daughter kaera i found out i was pretnant at 46 so i was so depressed like what do i do if i cnat take care of her so then when i gave birth to her at 47 i wouldnt let anyone touch her like i was so over protective

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