Age shaming — The Bump
Pregnant after 35

Age shaming

Hello bumpers! I’m currently 34 and 12 weeks pregnant with my first, going to be 35 halfway through my pregnancy. Has anyone had experience with doctors scaring the crap out of you regarding your age? My OB and the ultrasound technician have bought it up frequently and it’s really causing me a lot of anxiety. I know I’m no spring chicken but I don’t think I’m in an unreasonably “old” age bracket to be having kids. I already deal with high anxiety and the constant reminders about my age are causing me more anxiety to the point I get panic attacks before appointments. I’m also on the fence about the genetics blood test as I feel like that may cause more anxiety, especially as I’m not willing to risk miscarriage associated with definitive tests like CVS or amniocentesis. I know that doctors obviously need to be upfront with you about age and potential risks and I know I need to do everything I can to stay calm but I’m having a really hard time. Any tips on anxiety coping skills that have worked for people during pregnancy?

Re: Age shaming

  • I will be 39 at delivery (baby #2, had #1 at 37) and my OB has never once mentioned anything about my age or expressed concern at all. Personally, I would consider a new OB because 34 is NOT old and it seems rude they would even consider mentioning, unless you have other health issues as well.

    Don't feel pressure to take the tests. We declined them all. My theory: I'm not prepared to terminate my pregnancy voluntarily if there is a concern, the pregnancy will end naturally if that is what is genetically meant to be, so why add stress unnecessary in advance. If the baby is downs/etc, knowing ahead will only stress me more and possibly harm my pregnancy, and I will love her despite and deal with it at birth.

    I too deal with anxiety. Keeping active with light exercise, deep breathing and meditating helped me with both pregnancies. Focus on keeping your body healthy, you and the baby need that. Stay off Google. Find one or two solid, like minded people who are already Mothers to give advice and ignore anyone who is too judgy :). Trust your gut. 

    You got this!
  • edited January 12
    Thank you for the tips! I have started feeling better about my decision to decline the extensive genetic testing. I feel like all the what if’s and possibilities are just going to amp my anxiety to a counterproductive state of being. I will definitely try fitting more light exercise in. Best of everything to you and your bean :)
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  • Don't feel old! I was 38 with my first and almost 12 weeks pregnant now at 46. :smiley: I will decline too, because it won't change my thought about going forward and I'd rather not risk a miscarriage.
  • @BrooklynGirl28 you too!!! - with all the hormones we're producing self care is so important in this time of our life. 
  • I’ll be 45 in April, due with my first August 3rd. My general practitioner and OBs have been super supportive and have all told me many times that it’s becoming more common for folks to have kids later. My general practitioner had her 2 after 45. My husbands teenage kids think “it’s gross” and we’re too old. Everyone else has been great tho. 
  • I’m 41 and will be 42 when the baby comes. They dr hasn’t mentioned my age other than to say I don’t look 41. I don’t feel old so...🤷🏽‍♀️🥴
  • @pelwyn I have two teenage girls, one going away to college next year.  Younger one is super excited, but older one gave us the third degree when we told her! lol  She's coming around though and now they are so concerned about me and baby--it's like having two moms in the house with me. 

  • lagerbabylagerbaby
    5 Love Its First Comment Photogenic
    I’m 36, 11w 7d w/ first baby and my doc has been AMAZING at making me feel not old. She had always said that people have kids later and later these days, and there is nothing to be worried about.  If she was lying or covering it up, she did an excellent job covering for it and making me feel totally comfortable that everything will be OK. There has to be *some* age cutoff, so 35 seems to be it. Hang in there, I think we’re all crazy anxiety ridden, especially if it’s our first. You are not alone, hang in there girl!!
  • I had DS when I was 31... one Dr referred to my pregnancy as "geriatric". I lost all of shit on him. All of it. Hard! I will be 36 with this baby is born. I have every intention of going into my 1st prenatal warning them that the "G" word is completely off limits. Can you tell it's a touchy subject for me? LOL

    Me: 35
    DH: 37
    Married: May 2011
    DD: Dec 2013
    DS: Sept 2015
    #3: EDD 2/28/20
  • @BrooklynGirl28 hope everything is going fine. I was 36 when I had my first and am now trying for #2 at 38. Age is just a number, as long as you're healthy everything should be fine. 
    I know this is an older thread, but hopefully this info. will be useful for anyone else reading this.

  • Adding for future women reading. I had first child at 19, my second at 35, and I'm 17w4d with my third at 42. I'm watched a little closer for pre-eclampsia and GD, but the main difference between 19 and 35&42 is the genetic screenings were covered 100%. In fact, as I panicked about my age and the complications, my OB and the NP told me to relax and enjoy my pregnancy. In her words, "Yes, you can win the lottery. 21yos win the lottery. But, sweetie, when was the last time you won it?"

     I also became pregnant easily with both. I know that's not common, but statistics are just that. Not every woman ages the same way, and that applies to her reproductive system, too. 

  • Omg yes! I got that too and said what the fuck in front of the doctor, because I was shocked being called geriatric pregnancy. Couldn't there be a nicer way in saying it?! 
  • I'm so concerned about this.  I'm 37 and this is my first.  I hope the doctors are kind.  However, at 37 I'm very self assured and outspoken.  I will let the doctor or whoever know that I understand that I'm over 35, but there is no need to be to add to my anxiety.  I stopped my anxiety medicine so we could try to get pregnant (under the care of a doctor).  Any doctor that tries to add to my anxiety will not be tolerated.  
  • @lizm1234, any doctor that shames their patient needs to be replaced. The worst thing that happened to me was a reproachful look from my OB because she'd sent me off from her office three months earlier with birth control pills, lol. I love you, Dr B!

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