My 48 year old friend has had another baby

Dear Patricia Marie,

My best friend has just had a baby at the age of 48. Both of us have grown up children and have shared so much together. However, the thoughts of going through the baby years again with her fills me with horror, and would make me feel I would be going backwards, not forwards with our friendship. Indeed, our adult children now have their own lives and are trying for babies themselves.

I have met up with my friend a handful of times and I am ashamed to say, I couldn’t wait to get away from the baby crying and demanding all of my friend’s attention. I am getting no pleasure from visiting her now, and find we have little, if anything, in common. I try to keep in contact by telephone, rather than endure the baby dominated visits, but it is becoming increasingly difficult to engage in conversation with her as she is constantly pre-occupied with the baby. Do you think I am being selfish and unreasonable?

 Patricia Marie says...

Friends who are alongside us during our life stages are special to us because we share valuable experiences together, which become a huge part of our memories, and that applies whether we are young carefree students, newly married, and if we have babies, young children or teenagers. We support each other through all the stress, pain, heartache, celebrations and happiness life can bring. Once your own children grow up, you don't want to be having a meaningful conversation interrupted by a baby, so I can understand your feelings of frustration and impatience with your friend. Nevertheless, it seems sad to turn your back on decades of friendship because of this.

Whilst we can feel comfortable having friends with the same interests and goals, it can also bring some freshness, intrigue and excitement to a friendship when two people have different things going on in their lives. Could you suggest to your friend that you meet when the baby can be looked after?  I'm sure she would appreciate some quality time out, and cherish a welcome relief from baby talk, but if she does want to boast about her new born, compromise and be ready to listen, as this will help re-establish the bond. Do also remember that one day soon, you may have a grandchild, and your friend could be the best possible person to have on call.

Patricia Marie, our Agony Aunt, wants to hear your problems, dilemmas, and quarrels. Just email them to