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Why are we having kids in our twilight years?

 
Should we be spending our later years relaxing or bringing up babies, asks Marlon Abrahams.
By Marlon Abrahams

Pic: Dare

Article originally in Parent24
Rod Stewart, 66 and his 40-year-old wife Penny saw their arrival of their second child in February this year, and apparently raising the baby and his 5-year-old brother is causing him to “take the odd afternoon nap.”

Rod now has 8 children, the eldest, apparently 48-years-old. The article made me wonder if this is in fact a trend that has somehow cottoned on in recent times. A while ago I wrote about Kevin Costner enjoying being a parent again, and I don’t think it is so much of a surprise that these old goats are having babies at this late stage of their lives but that they are actually enjoying it.

I had my first child at the age of 33, and I can honestly say that I have no doubt that having them younger would have been a lot more challenging, especially from an emotional maturity point of view.

Stewart and Costner and the others like them have loads of life experience, and in many ways they probably experience life in a lane not travelled by many. Having kids while in their mature years can only bode well for the kids themselves. If the trend of a longer life expectancy continues, it would appear that we can operate quite well, with full mental capacity well into our 80s, except of course if your name is Bob Mugabe. So having a dad in his 60s should, all things considered, provide the baby with dad’s attention for at least 20 years or so.

The story about the 62-year-old woman who gave birth, is also proof that it’s not just us boys who can do it. Although, personally I’m not a big fan of artificial procreation. It is what it is I guess.

I think we all have observed how older people and young children seem to bond naturally. I always feel it’s a meeting of like minds when the child, unfettered by fear or having to conform to preconceived social constraints, recognizes an older wiser being who, also having abandoned fear, is capable of guiding them to adulthood. This role is generally played by grandma or grandpa. Though it seems that a few grandparents are choosing to put up with the sleepless nights, bottles, diapers, trips to the emergency room and all those lovely things that keep us young and fit, when they could actually be sitting watching the sunset from the porch of a retirement village.

What could be more interesting than raising your own wonderful, little mite when you’re past 60? When I asked a friend this question he told me how his 70-year-old parents have been travelling the globe in an old beat-up Land Rover for the last few years, and showed me a photo of them sitting around a camp fire in a spectacular reserve in Alaska a year ago.

So just why are we having children in our twilight years?


Read more by Marlon Abrahams

Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.

Read more on: health  |  safety  |  grandparents
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