Over the past few decades, the average age when a woman has her first child, has steadily increased. The rise of feminism, the implementation of anti-discriminatory laws, and the various technological advances in the reproductive field all have contributed to making many young women feel empowered about making choices about when or if to have kids, rather than just... ya know... having them because "that's what you do." Instead, they are pursuing higher education, taking the workplace by storm, and establishing themselves in the career world. While having a kid if you're under 30 doesn't exactly make you a freak show, in ever-more social circles, anyone who decides to procreate in their 20s (especially their early 20s) is increasingly kind of an oddity.
I was 23 when I got pregnant with my first child. Personally, I think this hardly qualifies me for a Guinness World Record, but the reactions I have received over the years might lead one to believe otherwise. My graduate school professors were shocked, my peers were astonished, and my own family was mystified by the fact that I would intentionally try for a baby at such a “young” age. And that was just the response from people who knew me. When I was pregnant, strangers would look on me with pitying eyes. Later, when I had my son, people would often initially assume I was his nanny. If you’re a young mom, or even a youngish-looking mom, you’ve probably been subjected to some of the following ridiculous assumptions too.