Do children of parents who were close to or over 40 when they were born wish they had younger parents?
Answered by: David Wilson,Father of two
I don’t. I can’t speak for others. My father was 42 and my mother 39 when I was born, in 1970. That was pretty uncommon. Most of my friends at primary school had parents in their 20s. My parents were very fit and active. They also looked quite youthful so no-one actually thought they were older than other parents. They were also pretty well established with their lives. Dad was a partner at a major international accounting firm. My mother taught at the university. They could afford stuff that most others couldn’t. We travelled a lot, never wanted for anything and got financial support when we needed it. They encouraged their children to do well at whatever we wanted to do. I didn’t really appreciate as teenager that they would back us to the hilt, even if we’d done something wrong.
Here they are in a recent photo.
I’m also lucky that my parents have been very long-lived. Dad is now 93 and Mum is 90. They live at home, still drive and look after themselves. My father stopped skiing aged 85. My mother helped my son load a furniture truck a couple of years ago. They recently stopped delivering meals to “old people”, who were usually younger than them.
It’s great that they are still around and they have seen their grandchildren grow up. I know that their time is limited now but I wouldn’t change anything. My parents grew up in the Great Depression and WW2. They are stoic, self-reliant, community spirited, unafraid to speak up, thrifty and really good at recycling. Some of these things brushed off on me and I think I’ve passed them on to my children. Good job mum and dad!
EDIT: thank you for all the kind comments. I, too, hope my parents have many more years left. They come from long-lived families. All of my mother’s siblings lived well into their 90s (well, the ones who survived WW2 anyway). Most of my father’s siblings are still going strong too.