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“My Mum Has Just Had a Baby at 52 and Wants Me to Move Back Home to Help!”

For parents of teens and young adults, looking back on their children’s baby and toddler photos can bring on powerful pangs of love and longing.

Look how little and cute they were!

Remember when they couldn’t bear to be away from you and would even follow you into the toilet?

How you miss those weekend mornings when they’d climb up into bed and snuggle their little body up to yours.

How wonderful would it be to go back and just live one of those days with them again?


However, for most of us, the thought of REALLY going back to sleepless nights, and caring for a newborn around the clock, would be akin to hell on earth. Having independent children means that we have more free time to do things for ourselves again…at long last! Our days of wandering around like a zombie and smelling of baby vomit are well and truly in the rear-vision mirror! Thank goodness!

However, some people do choose to become parents again in their more senior years. Each to their own, right? They’ve been there before and know exactly what to expect and the enormity of the commitment they are taking on – so who are we to judge?

One young man, whose parents used a donor egg to have another baby in their 50’s, has turned to the internet for advice after his mother expected him to move back home at 23-years-old, to help care for his new sibling.

So I (23M) recently moved into a new home with my girlfriend so I’d have space for my aquarium setups and be able to manage everything without constraints (instead of moving back in with my mom after college like most of my friends). I grew up in a bit of a toxic home, so it feels good here even though it’s really tiny.

My mom (52F) recently had a child – a girl. WOW. In my opinion, it’s pretty awesome how she had a kid at her age. I was worried that the child might be sick (I’ve read about that happening in the kids of older people) but the girl was actually really healthy! And yes, for anybody who was wondering, it was an egg donor. The donor mom was in her 30s (I think).

So now it’s time for the story. My mom and dad were so happy that they got to have another kid – but in my opinion, I don’t know why they would do that. They had trouble raising me and weren’t great at supporting me, and they weren’t very financially well-off. Now they are very wealthy after having me out of the house, and they still have jobs.

My mom asked me to help with their daughter a couple days ago. I suppose at their age they get tired of the crying faster or something, but my mom seemed desperate. The kid is probably 3 months old. I was all for helping out until she told me that I would have to move in to provide proper help for the girl. Wait, what? I didn’t want to move in, so I told her I wouldn’t move in, but I would happily help here and there. It was their decision to have a child, so I expected them to take full responsibility for her. Please don’t go and harass me for saying this. I just got my own life and now I’m expected to help my mom with hers.

She was mad, and we finished our call with cold goodbyes. She said she’d text me when she needs help but I haven’t had any texts yet. I don’t regret what I said. So AM I THE ASSHOLE? It’s up to you to decide.

Commenters were flabbergasted by his mother’s bizarre request.

LOLOLOL! No. You don’t have to turn your life upside-down because of a decision your parents made. That you’re willing to help is amazing but it’s only what you are willing to give. They can ask, demand, tantrum, whatever all they like but in the end, it’s up to you to decide if, when, how you help. Your choice.

You laid down a boundary. Stick to it or she’ll think you didn’t mean it.

VERY MUCH NTA. But the nerve of your mother, how is she not embarrassed? (IamIrene)


Some commenters wondered whether the parents had always expected their son to step into a surrogate parenting role at some stage given their age.


Your Mom is going to be 70 when this baby graduates from high school.  She may as well get used to being tired now.

If you move in, Mom will expect you to be a third parent to this kid.  Go live your own life instead. (teresajs)

NTA at all. It’s downright terrible that you are just beginning your foray into responsible, independent adulthood and they are asking you to give that up for a decision THEY made, the consequences of which (parenting is hard) were 100% foreseeable. (JeepersCreepers74)

This is my thinking. There is a chance the baby will outlive OP’s parents. OP, are you expected to be the legal guardian should something happen? Did your parents discuss this with you? (Tall_Confection_960)

Commenters were very clear in letting the young man know that he does not owe his parents any help with the baby that they decided to have.

NTA and even if you refused to help, you still wouldn’t be. You are 23 and have your own life to start out. Your parents made the choice to have a kid at their age…they have to accept responsibility for that. Each kid is different, so expecting a new baby to be easy after 23 years is wild. They were ignorant and are now trying to drag you into their choice. (Giantbrownguy)


For others, the irony of wanting a do-over at parenting and then expecting the first child that they didn’t parent very well to pick up the slack with the second child was not lost.

NTA, Your parents wanted a do over after being crappy parents and expect you to do the heavy lifting. Oh the irony. This is a no. Tell her you’ll babysit on X days if you want to but don’t under any circumstances feel guilty about not being the unpaid help. (Hadtosignupforthis)

NTA. Your mother and father, both in their 50s, decided it would be fun to have another baby.

Now, they get to take care of all things that come with being parents of a new born all over again. I am in my late 30s. My youngest is almost 9, and just thinking of starting over again is CRAZY! (Emotional_Fan_7011)

As one savvy commenter pointed out, there is a reason why women’s bodies become less fertile as we age.

There is a reason God created menopause. It’s because little babies are a ton of work and the older you get the more easily you tire. Ask all the grandmas in their 50’s. They go over and help for a week when the baby is born and then go home and pass out. What on earth were your parents thinking????? NTA (1Preschoolteacher)


What do you think? Would you have the energy to be a new mum in your 50’s? Or are you looking forward to being a grandparent in your 50’s and giving them back when you’ve had your fill?

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Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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