"I Can't Imagine Being A New Mom Now": Older Moms Are Sharing How Motherhood Has Changed In The Last 30 Years, And It's Eye-Opening

Happy Mother's Day, everyone! We recently asked older moms in the BuzzFeed Community to share how motherhood has changed in the last 30 years.

Two characters from 'This Is Us' share a comforting embrace

Here are their most fascinating responses:

1."I had my first child in 1993. In the grand scheme of things, that's really not that long ago, but I'm so jealous of parents now who can capture moments so much easier than I could. When my babies were little, I still had to take photos with actual film and wait for processing to see if any of the photos were good enough."

"I spent so much money on photos at mall photo studios just so I could guarantee getting good ones. Now, parents can take as many photos as they want and delete the bad ones without paying for them first. As a mom with memory issues, I’m sure there are moments I’ve forgotten about because I wasn’t able to capture them."


2."I had the joy of raising my child without parenting blogs and mom-influencers. It allowed me to tune into my unique child, listen to my own intuition, be less competitive with other mothers, and allow my child to have more freedom, downtime, and unsupervised, creative play."

Woman and child making a video with a ring light and smartphone

3."As a child who NEEDED mental health help in the '90s but couldn't get it because it wasn't widely offered or even noticed in children, I'm just happy I now have the ability to help my daughter not suffer from the same issues I suffered from; she's learning how to use them as advantages."

Adrienne C. 

4."Motherhood has become more individually centered. While in the past, mothers could receive support from their own mothers, it is now a solo act. Help in raising children could be sought from extended families, friends, and neighbors, but today, finding any help is problematic and highly costly. We are recreating our own sense of mothering in a highly volatile and ever-changing social and cultural landscape."


5."I was 22 when I had my eldest child. Thirty years ago, I had the choice of being a mother or not. Abortion was easily accessible."


6."The financial demands placed on parents now are absolutely unacceptable. We barely made ends meet 30 years ago. Today, it seems almost impossible for myself and our adult kids."

"I have a four-year degree and chose to be a working mother out of necessity (with my husband 100% sharing the workloads in and out of the house) over a demanding high-salary career that would have required us to use daycare. I now work a low-wage job that allows me to help care for grandkids during the mornings. I don't know how families are supposed to thrive in this economy."


7."Between my oldest and my youngest, one wonderful thing that changed is that many more men's restrooms got changing tables in them."

Wall-mounted baby changing station open in a public restroom

8."I had my kids in the late '90s, before social media. You had to follow your instincts and learn on the job. It was glorious. I can't imagine being a new mom now. It must cause so much anxiety."


9."No one talked about postpartum anxiety. I didn't know the things I was doing (not sleeping so I could watch her, not letting other people watch her because they could not do it as well as I could, etc.) were actually my post-postpartum anxiety. My doctor told me how common it is now and how it wasn't talked about before. I talked to my own mom about it, and she had no idea what I was talking about. She said that everyone did stuff like that."


10."Middle school teacher and mom (62) of three grown kids. Social media has transformed so much, and not in a good way. Kids (and many parents) are now addicted to their phones."


11."I had my first and only child at 42 after I got sober and began working on my mental health. I was extremely open about my past struggles with mental health and how scared I was of postpartum issues that might arise. My doctors, nurses, boomer parents, and in-laws were all so kind and receptive to my concerns. I was supported, and still am, as my son has grown and is in the toddler years now. I know that support wasn't there for a lot of moms who struggled with similar issues years ago."


12."I would just like to point out the wonderful invention of the tankini. I remember my poor mother having to help me in the pool restroom because I could NOT get my one-piece back up when it was wet. LOL. Now, my daughter wears tankinis, and she can handle all that herself, even when she was little. Why we couldn't figure that one out sooner, I don't know."


And finally...

13."Not me, but a comment my grandmother made. She had nine kids in the '50s and '60s. When I started bringing my babies to visit, she happily remarked how comfortable they have made things for babies since hers were little. She specifically mentioned high chairs. She told me that she always felt so bad for them sitting in that hard wooden chair and worried about them banging their head on the back that she would stuff pillows around them."


How do you think motherhood has changed in the last 30 years? Let us know in the comments below.