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MidAge Mom is for women who are parenting in midlife rather than celebrating the empty nest on a beach in Bali . . .

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Posts Tagged ‘older mothers’

Why Older Mothers Rock

We all know the disadvantages of having kids late.

It’s harder to get pregnant and pregnancy can be tougher than if you were younger. You’re more likely to develop diabetes or high blood pressure. Your risk of chromosome abnormalities resulting in Down syndrome is also higher.

I had to do fertility treatments and had C-sections with both of my daughters, born when I was 40 and 42.

But actually being an older mom rocks. The benefits of having children over 35 or 40 are significant. The more research they do, the more they seem to find.

Consider five advantages of having kids late:

-Your children are smarter and better educated. Swedish research shows that babies born to older mothers stay in the educational system longer, are more likely to attend college and do better on standardized tests than children born to younger mothers.

-Your children are better behaved. A study done in Denmark found that children of older mothers did better emotionally, socially and behaviorally. This was because their mothers were more psychologically mature than their younger counterparts and, for one, didn’t scold their children as much. Frequent scolding has a negative effect on behavior.

-You live longer. A New England Centenarian study found that women who gave birth in their forties were four times more likely to live to 100 than women who gave birth at a younger age. Perhaps the women who had children late were just in better shape to begin with. But I can also say from experience that having children late keeps you young.

-You’re more emotionally and financially secure. By 40 you and your mate have probably established your careers and are a lot more stable than you were in your twenties.

My husband, Bill, got tenure as a law professor a few months after our first daughter was born, allowing him to share parenting in a way he would not have been able to do otherwise. By the time we had kids, I’d lived in Los Angeles, New York and Nicaragua. I’d gotten a lot out of my system and was ready to settle down in Miami, where we still live 20 years later.

-You’re less likely to experience cognitive decline. Researchers at the University of Southern California found that women have “better brainpower after menopause” if they had their last baby after age 35. Their research cited strong evidence of a “positive association between later age at last pregnancy and late-life cognition.”

That’s not to say it is easy to be an older mom. I have less energy than I would have had at a younger age. But the advantages are significant, and this is only a partial list.

I’m definitely a better parent than I would have been earlier. What about you? Share by commenting below! Or email me at: jenniferbhull@gmail.com

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                                                                                 Photo © Aledeane

Disclosure: I use some affiliate links. If you click and buy a product, I make a small commission. Thanks for your support!

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The Real Older Mom Behind New York Magazine’s Cover Photo

New York Magazine’s recent cover is causing a stir. And for good reason: it’s a Photoshop nightmare.

The cover article is on parents over 50 having children. But the famous Vanity Fair photo of Demi Moore pregnant features the head of a woman who looks at least 65. Yikes!

But isn’t it ironic?

The cover article is called “Parents of a Certain Age: Is there anything wrong with being 53 and pregnant?”

Maybe New York Magazine should have directed that question to the woman who shot the original Demi Moore cover in 1991, portrait photographer Annie Leibovitz.

A Real 50-Plus Mom

Leibovitz had her first child at 51 and twins by a surrogate mother a few years later. The country’s most famous photographer, she is now a mom in her sixties with children in elementary school.

But she sure looks younger than the supposedly fifty-something woman on New York Magazine’s cover.

When I heard Annie Leibovitz speak a few years ago, she was thriving as a late-in-life mom. In an aside, she even noted that she got along surprisingly well with the younger mothers at the school. Family is clearly important to Leibovitz, even though she waited to start her own.

Then again, it’s probably good she didn’t have kids when she was hanging out with Mick, Keith and the rest of The Rolling Stones, right?

Let’s Do Better

Motherhood after 50 is a serious topic worth exploring. But let’s not caricature these moms and make them look older than they are. Shame on you New York Magazine for your distorted cover.

Real women are so much more interesting.

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Any thoughts on New York Magazine’s cover? On having kids after 50? Please comment here!

Want to learn more about Annie Leibovitz?

A Photographer’s Life: 1990-2005 includes her portraits of well-known figures such as Nicole Kidman and Nelson Mandela. Highly personal, the book also documents Leibovitz’s relationship with writer Susan Sontag and the photographer’s extended family. Leibovitz is even featured nude and pregnant at 51 in her own echo of the Demi Moore cover .

But, of course, the head and the body match.

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Photo of Leibovitz © Marc Silber/Silberstudios.com

Disclosure: I use some affiliate links. If you click and buy a product, I make a small commission. Thanks for your support!

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A Great Resource for Midlife Moms

Are you looking for a place to connect with other women and get information about motherhood after 40?

Recently I discovered a site that has tons of valuable resources for midlife moms as well as active forums. I’ve just begun to explore all it has to offer. You may want to check it out too. Here’s the site’s description:

FlowerPowerMom.com—The Truth About Motherhood After 40, features real mom stories, expert advice and the first online community to empower all women on the journey of motherhood after 40. A Child After 40 online offers support and free “Ask Our Expert” educational forums on midlife motherhood—from fertility, ART, pregnancy, birth or adoption, to parenting after 40.

I’ve signed up to participate in their forums so maybe I’ll see you there!

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