You’re Too Young to be a Mom…

It happens to me pretty frequently.

I’m just in a casual conversation with someone…

And then my daughter comes up in the conversation.

Wait you’re a mom?!”

“Yes.”

Whoa, you look too young to be a mom!”

Ya…”

I get that a lot.

And every single time it is rude, condescending, and judgmental. Regardless of what that person’s intentions are, to (yes, a young) mom, what we hear is this…

“your age means you shouldn’t be a mom, or you aren’t capable of being a good or decent mom, because again you’re too young

There must be a socially acceptable “look” for a mom, because even my 7 year-old neighbor has asked me if I’m just the babysitter. And he’s 7!

I often wonder what the “magic age” is for a mom. At what point will I look old enough to qualify as a mom. When will I no longer receive these types of comments. Is it upper 20’s, 30’s, when I have a ring on my finger to make it “ok” to be a mom?

I really have no clue.

Just once I wish I had the guts to turn around and ask someone…”what makes me too young to be a mom?”

Because I really am curious.

Do you have to be educated enough? Own a home? Have a minivan?

But I’m slowly starting to care less and less about how other people define my mothering capabilities.

I used to be really self-conscious about my age as a mom. I would try to wear more professional clothes when I went out…I even contemplated wearing a fake wedding ring for most of my pregnancy because I thought that one piece of jewelry would make me seem old enough.

When people comment on my age as a mother…ya it hurts. I see the judgment and I feel as if I now have something to prove because the secret is out. I’m only 23 and I have a 2 year old.  I can see people doing the math…she had her baby at 21, she must not be through college, how does she make money, where does she live, is she on government aid, who is she using for her resources?

I want to scream at them…no, I’m a grad student, I work, I’m published in 2 books, I speak professionally, I’m doing things with my life, I’m not too young…

But then that’s just falling into their whole idea that age is a qualifier for respect and it’s not.

The stigma of being a young and single mom is ridiculous. It comes with a lot of nosy questions and pity. Both of those actions are designed to make someone feel inadequate and I refuse to buy into that.

I deserve respect just like every other mom out there.

Because in reality, every mom, old or young, is just a mom doing her best. We are all just winging it. None of us knows what we’re doing half the time…and when I turn 30 that’s not going to change.

Yes…maybe I can’t give my daughter what the “older, established” mothers give their kids, but I trust that what I’m giving her is enough.

Because I’m not too young to sacrifice for her, I’m not too young to play with her, I’m not too young to provide for her (even if it means asking for help), I’m not too young to tuck her in at night and say prayers with her, I’m not too young to wipe away her tears, I’m not too young to put her in a time out when she needs, I’m not too young look into her eyes and see how beautiful, precious, and valuable she is, and I’m certainly not too young to lover her.

Oh, and I’m not too young to stand up for myself either.

So yes, you’re right, I’m a young mom…and I will never let you make me feel ashamed of that.

 

 

 

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7 thoughts on “You’re Too Young to be a Mom…

  1. You are not too young to be a mom. If it wasn’t that then it is questions like when are you having another or you are having another? I was 28 when i had my first, people were asking WHY don’t you have kids YET?!?!?! So it is a never ending cycle of nosiness and mommy guilt. Keep you head up high and enjoy your daughter, I had my fourth when I was 36 and man ol’ man how I was wishing that I would have started having kids younger because being pregnant at 36 is no walk in the park – not that pregnancy at any age is easy. And when the dr.’s office gave me a receipt after my first appt it said the medical code, term and the word elderly! What the WHAT! Yes that was like a kick in the gut. I googled it and it said it just meant pregnant at 35 or older. But when I tell my friends and family this they all giggle at me.

  2. I’m sorry you have to go through that. I am told a lot by my mom that I am too old to be having babies. Grrrrrrr. Babies are a blessing, and good moms can be of any age.

  3. I loved this!!! I could totally relate! I did/sometimes still do depending oon where I’m going try to dress “professional” to look older.. and I contemplated buying a fake wedding band to wear around places. And I cut my hair short because I thought it would make me look older lol. Glad I’m not alone 🙂 it was really nice to see your perspective and how you are demanding respect 🙂

  4. I was 19 when I had my first, 20 when I had my second….. I know very well how you feel. I had two before you had one! Lol I like a good challenge! I went to the store with my mom and she was pushing my daughter in the cart and everyone thought she was hers, until she said, no.. this is my grand daughter..then they looked at me like… oh…. but you know what, I was over 18 and it IS LEGAL! Lol if your body was not made to have babies so young, it couldn’t. Not that I’m saying girls should so young, but women are born mothers, some better than others lol, some shouldn’t be at all lol but most have the natural ability. I have a friend that had a baby at 16 and he is one of the best kids I have ever seen! Some are naturals. You keep at it and be the best you can be and your kid (s) will love you for being the best parent you can be. Don’t listen to all those negative Nellies out there.

  5. I don’t have children yet and I’m 20. But honestly i get tired of people telling me and my fiancé (he is 24) that we are to young to have kids we need to wait a couple years. It gets so old hearing it all the time because I feel the same way what is old enough to people these days to have children. 2014 is no different then 1970’s when they had kids at 14. All you can do is hold your head high and not listen to what people say. You are doing a great job help or not!

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