This past Monday was the first day of school for many people I know and the news completely consumed my Facebook news feed. Photos of students of all ages covered every inch of update space and I suddenly realized just how many of my friends have kids already. Usually there is a point each year that seems to be like announcement season when my news feed is flooded by information about engagements, weddings, and babies but I never really cross referenced them all. Then the first day of school rolls around and suddenly I am very aware of all of my friend’s adorable children.
When did I become the old maid out of the group that is childless? Was there a national notice sent out that women’s childbearing years cease at 30 so everyone better hop to it before that year rolls around? Clearly I missed the window. I know I have blogged in the past about feeling the pressure to excel in the workplace before turning 30 and then the additional pressure to have kids between 30 and 35, but I didn’t realize that everyone was getting such a huge jump on the process.
There are too many articles and new discoveries every year that point to the risks involved with trying to have children once you get into the later years of your 30s as a female. However, I must have not realized that everyone else voted 25 to be the new acceptable age for producing their next generation. I’ve noticed that it seems like people I know are getting married even younger and younger, so I guess it makes sense that by 25 they are ready to have kids but I can’t help but feel like we are progressing backwards in cultural acceptance. Back in the day, and I’m talking about much earlier than any of our parents can refer to, it was totally acceptable to marry off your teenage daughter and for her to have children before she turned 20. However, over the generations things have changed and for a few years it seemed acceptable for women to push hard in the workplace until they hit 30 and decided to have kids.
Looking at everyone’s status updates I am starting to believe we are slowly slipping back in time. Gals I know are having kids by 25 because they have already been married for five years. Good golly! Stop making me look like such an old hag ladies! I’ve given up on keeping up, but I am starting to wonder if I am one of the few that feels this way. Gals seem to be in such a rush to create their ideal familial image that it makes me wonder if they have really set themself up for success or disappointment. I know that since my 30th birthday is right around the corner I will have another influx of baby announcements from those that are actually my age, but it’s just so hard to believe that all these yoots are ahead of us. Was there some sort of handbook that was given to the generation after me explaining why this is necessary or is this just a cultural trend that is making a comeback?