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'Geriatric' mum defends having a baby aged 43

Lucy Devine

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'Geriatric' mum defends having a baby aged 43

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

A mum who was criticised for having a baby at the age of 43 has defended her decision.

Lucy Baker, now 46, was deemed a 'geriatric mum' after having her third baby three years ago.

A 'geriatric mother' - also known as a mum of advanced maternal age - is a woman who is having a baby at 35 years or older.

Lucy welcomed Rocky three years ago. Credit: SWNS
Lucy welcomed Rocky three years ago. Credit: SWNS

"I think as soon as women announce their pregnancies somebody goes out of their way to make a comment," says Lucy, from Lincolnshire.

"I was scrolling through Stacey Solomon's pregnancy announcements and people were saying she was too old.

"I sympathise with her. She must read some of them and it must sting. People don't know what she's been through, she might be feeling vulnerable."

Lucy was delighted when she fell pregnant with her third child, Rocky. She had her first child, Nancy, 12, when she was 34 and her second child, Ivy, 10, when she turned 37.

But despite explaining her final pregnancy was the easiest, she received cruel comments about her age, with one fellow mum telling her she'd be 47 when Rocky started school.

"That has always bubbled away in my head. I thought, 'Am I going to be the oldest mum at the school gate?'" she says.

"For mums over the age of 35, the term 'geriatric' or 'advanced maternal age' can be used. The term makes me squirm.

"Men are not judged in the same way, nobody seems to comment in the same way about older men having babies."

Lucy had her eldest, Nancy, when she was 34. Credit: SWNS
Lucy had her eldest, Nancy, when she was 34. Credit: SWNS

Lucy didn't just feel judged by other mums. She claims that at her first appointment, the midwife saw her date of birth and gasped.

"She wrote 'OLDER MUM' in capitals under the 'other' section. You start thinking 'what am I doing?' and it flicks your mind into worrying about risks," she continues.

"Some people said, 'Aren't you too tired for this?'. Others said, 'I thought you had given up nappies'.

"People made the assumption I would be crawling around knackered. It was a perfect pregnancy - I loved it.

"So many people asked me if it was planned. I remember booking a holiday with a travel agent and she asked if it was planned.

"For the first time, I grew my courage, kicked back and said, 'I'm not going to answer that question.'

"I would never say that to somebody - you never know what's going on behind closed doors.

"Women could have struggled for years with their fertility and suffered miscarriages - you just don't know what someone has been through."

Lucy set up a blog to help other women in her position. Credit: SWNS
Lucy set up a blog to help other women in her position. Credit: SWNS

Lucy took to Facebook where she started the group 'We are geriatric mums'. She also set up a blog to help other women in her position.

"It was so positive and, as the host, I got a lot out of it myself," she says.

"People need to stop judging other women for their pregnancies and parenting choices, you don't know what someone has been through - there is a finite time to have babies."

Topics: Life, Parenting

Lucy Devine
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