{YML Voices} You Will Appreciate Your “Baby Face” When You Get Older


By Shelly Ismail

I can remember my teenage years so well.

I was always the smallest of my peers weighing no more than 92 pounds in my senior year. It bothered me that no matter how much I would eat, I still looked scrawny. Even worse than being so small was the fact that adults often thought I was 12. That used to make me so angry to the point of tears. I remember when everyone thought my younger sister was older than me. Talk about devastation!

I was 20 when I was pregnant with my first daughter. I remember the stares I received from people and often heard them say “babies having babies.” I was married and old enough to have a child, yet people still assumed I was 14.

I hated looking so young. When would anyone take me seriously?

For years after, folks would ask if my daughters were my younger sisters or if I was the babysitter. I was always the “young mom” at the girls’ elementary and middle school. I felt so left out. Years later I come to find out that a lot of those moms were very close to my age and some were even younger!

Fast forward to the present… I am 39 years old and I thoroughly enjoy when nobody believes that I have three kids and the fact that two of them are teens!

I have to tell other moms I know that are going through the same thing how much they will appreciate being “too youthful looking” when they get older. So now my 18 year old daughter is going through the same thing I did. Most people think she is 14 and gets mistaken as the younger sister to her little sister. I keep telling her that it is a good thing to look so young. She hates it. In due time she will learn.

Shelly is the mastermind behind MomFiles.com. This post was reposted with permission.


  1. I can relate to this so much! People have often assumed my son was my little brother and such, I don’t know why I let it bother me so much but I do!

    I’m sure that one day I will appreciate it, but at 22 it’s still not today. ; )