A woman who has been criticised online for having a child at 45 following fertility problems has hit back
Patty Avery Schmidt, from New Jersey, had her daughter, her fourth child, but she has faced harsh criticism on social media that she is too old to be a mother.
Patty, who had three sons before experiencing fertility issues, faced the trolls on TikTok who told her she would be 60 by the time her daughter was 20 and that it was so sad.
Instead of getting angry, Patty took to her social media account to answer the criticism and explain her reasons for having a child.
In a video, Patty explained that there were many misconceptions about having a child in their 40s.
She said: “I want to address some of the common criticisms that older mums sometimes get.
“First of all, women having children in their 40s is not a new thing. Childbearing years span decades, so why this is shocking is beyond me.”
Another criticism she faced was that she would not have as much time with her daughter as mothers who are younger.
She responded, “The truth is, nobody knows how much time we have left.
“But let’s say, for the sake of argument, that we all get the same number of years and expire on the same day. Does that mean we owe it to the next generation to have them as young as possible?”
She said it might not be possible for women to have children in their 20s as they might not have found the right partner or be financially stable.
She said: “It’s also really common for people to experience infertility, or in my experience, secondary infertility.
“I planned on having my last child in my 30s but suffered miscarriages.
“The most carefully made plans can be completely out of control, and it’s mindboggling to me that anyone could think that a child has a more or less right to exist based on the age of their mother.”
She next addressed the point that she could have had a child with Down’s Syndrome.
She said: “The increased risk of chromosomal abnormalities with advancing maternal age.
“The numbers vary a little, but according to a source, a recent one that I read said that at the age of 30, a pregnant woman has a 0.1 per cent chance of having a baby with Down’s Syndrome. Then, by 40, the chance increases to one per cent.
“By the time I conceived my daughter at age 44, I had about 2.5 per cent of having a baby with Down’s Syndrome.
The final thing she addressed was older mothers having less energy.
She said, “I believe that while there are genetic factors that are out of our control, our overall fitness and lifestyle choices have more to do with our mental and physical health than our age.”
After she responded, Patty was inundated with support from women who had mothers who were born in their late 30s or early 40s.
One wrote, “My mum had me at 39. I’m 26; my mother is 66 now, and we’re best friends. We’ve been to seven countries together, and next year, we are going to Alaska.”
Another wrote, “My Grandma had my mum at 41 without complications. My mum is 53, and my Grandma is 94.”
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