Geezer Dad: How the Challenges of Being an Older Parent Worked Out Well in the End

Feb 8, 2016

Tom LaMarr became a dad when he was 48 years old.  Parenting an infant at that age brings with it a host of challenges.  This hour, Charity Nebbe speaks with LaMarr, author of the new book, "Geezer Dad: How I Survived Infertility Clinics, Fatherhood Jitters, Adoption Wait Lingo and Things That Go 'Waaa' in the Night."  LaMarr, a Dubuque native, is a graduate of the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop and now lives in Colorado.

LaMarr told Charity about how he and Sam were unable to conceive: "All the choice are difficult, there's no denying that.  My wife always wanted to have an infant and so that ruled out adoption.  Just like adopting, there are so many people who are in situations like this, and they don't talk about it until you're there too."

But Tom and Sam did eventually decide to adopt and the cute baby girl that was given to them is now 14 years old.  As far as being an older dad, Tom told Charity that it's amazing "to witness the reserves your body has."  He feels we're programmed to be parents and the little sleep he and his wife got the first few years didn't manage to kill them.   Because, he says, since we're a little more set in our ways at the half-century mark, raising a child then makes for "a little more role conflict with the child fitting into your life than if you had a child earlier on."  But I think it's safe to say that to Tom and Sam, it was all very much worth it.

Later in the hour, to add some perspective to the topic of the challenges facing older parents and kids, Charity speaks with Thomas Schofield, Assistant Professor of Human Development and Family Studies at Iowa State University.  He's read the current studies and tells us how becoming parents at an older age is becoming more and more common.