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Ask Grandma Maggie

Parenting & Childcare Advice
Peggy Moss (1933-2014), also known as Grandma Maggie, penned a parenting column on this site for many years. Back by popular demand, we are republishing the column, sharing with you the best of Grandma Maggie’s parenting and childcare advice.
Unfortunately Grandma Maggie is no longer able to take questions.

Should I have a baby in my twenties?
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Hi Grandma,

I actually have a few questions. First is about age. I am 22 and I want to have a kid, but I’m not sure that I’m ready for one just yet. However, I don’t want to be “old” when I have one. Most people laugh at me when I say that. But that’s honestly how I feel. I want to be young and still be able to crawl around on the floor with my kid as she/he grows. So I was wondering, Would it be a bad idea to have a kid now at the age of 22 or should I wait?

My other question is about trying to conceive. I’ve looked at many different web sites and talked to many different people about this. I honestly just don’t understand. How do I know when is a good time to conceive? My period cycle is never the same, so I can’t track it like a lot of web sites say to do. Sometimes I’ll get my period and it will last like 2 weeks, and then I might not get it again for another month or maybe even 2 sometimes. There’s also times where I will get my period and it will only last a few days. I’ve also had problems where I get my period and it will last about a week or a little more, and then like 3-5 days later I get it again for like 2-3 days. So can you tell me why it does that and what I should do about trying to conceive?

Thanks for Your Time,

Dear Friend,

I suggest you see your doctor about regulating your period. There are pills for that, which make conception easier. Also, your doctor may be able to rule out/treat any reasons for the dysregulation.

I also think you should wait to have kids. Kids born to older parents (say between the ages of 28 and 32) and into a stable family situation when the parents have finished their education have a much better chance of succeeding in life. Here’s some good news. You will still be able to crawl around on the floor throughout your thirties and if you take care of yourself, maybe even into your forties. Who knows?

Good luck,

Grandma Maggie