A man said he has no regrets over becoming a father aged 62 – even though he gets mistaken for his son’s grandfather.
Phillip Smith, who lives in Jacksonville, Florida, was apprehensive when he found out his wife Hasina, 41, was expecting a child in May 2022.
The couple had been trying for a baby for five years but had given up hope following a miscarriage at five months pregnant.
Family members told Phillip – who has three grown up sons aged 38, 37 and 36 – he should be “getting ready to retire” instead, the 62-year-old claimed.
And he was told people would mistake him for his son’s granddad when he picks him up from school, he said.
Phillip Smith has no regrets over becoming a father aged 62 (pictured with wife Hasina, 42, and their newborn son in 2022)
But despite this – and their 20-year age gap – Phillip and Hasina couldn’t be happier as parents to son Prince Phillip, born on 16 November 2022.
Phillip, a contractor from Florida, explained: ‘People say I’m old to have a baby.
‘People ask “Is this your grandson?”
‘I say “No, it’s my son”.
‘People are shocked. I don’t shy away from it at all.
‘I don’t regret it.
‘I want to give him as much of me as I can.’
Hasina, a hairdresser, fat said: ‘My husband is literally in love with our son.
‘People felt like why would he be starting over – and said “shouldn’t you be getting ready to retire?”
‘Now Prince is here – we’re totally ecstatic about it.’
Hasina and Phillip met after he reached out to her on Facebook and the pair hit it off and started dating in April 2016.
Hasina said: ‘I used to work at a hair salon. He used to come and talk to the barbers around football season.
The couple had been trying for a baby for five years but had given up hope following a miscarriage at five months pregnant
Family members told Phillip – who has three grown up sons aged 38, 37 and 36 – he should be “getting ready to retire” instead
Despite their 20-year age gap, Phillip and Hasina couldn’t be happier as parents to son Prince Phillip
‘I remembered his name and face.
‘He reached out ten years later.’
Although Hasina wasn’t expecting to fall in love with someone 20 years her senior, she and her family were never bothered by the age gap.
She explained: ‘I felt I wanted to be with someone mature and someone older.
‘I didn’t think it would be 20 years.’
The pair started trying for a baby in 2016 and got married on 19 May 2018.
They struggled to conceive and lost a baby girl at five months in January 2021.
But in May 2022, Hasina was surprised to find out she was three months pregnant.
She said: ‘We ended up pregnant with Prince. We were both surprised.
‘I was in shock.
‘I thought I was going into early menopause.
‘I definitely still wanted to have a baby.’
Phillip added: ‘I didn’t want to have a child and not be there for it.
‘I was still uncertain when Hasina was pregnant.
‘I wasn’t certain about my future and how I’d financially support them.’
Prince was born on 16 November 2022, weighing 5lbs 4oz
Hasina was surprised to discover she was three months pregnant but she said she ‘definitely still wanted to have a baby’
‘The timing is perfect. He came when he was needed,’ she continued
Hasina had to have an operation at 18 weeks pregnant to stitch up her cervix when it started to open up – and was put on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy.
She said: ‘My body is not the same having a baby in your 40s.’
Hasina also struggled with hyperemesis gravidarum – an extreme morning sickness- but managed to hold Prince in 34 weeks.
She was rushed to UF Health Shands Hospital, Florida, when her water broke at 33 weeks and induced a week later. Her son was born weighing 5lbs 4oz.
Hasina stated: ‘His eyes were open.
‘He’s very observant.
‘We were all crying.
‘It’s a dream come true.’
The 62-year-old contractor added: ‘It was very exciting for me [the birth].
‘I was a nervous wreck.
‘I held him for the first time – and thought “I have got a son”.
‘He has so many of my features.’
Now 11-months-old, Prince is a “sweetheart” and very loved by his parents – and Hasina said Phillip is very hands on with him
The couple has discussed Phillip not being around for all of Prince’s life, but said it isn’t a problem
Now 11-months-old, Prince is a “sweetheart” and very loved by his parents – and Hasina said Phillip is very hands on with him.
Hasina said: ‘He’s amazing. He’s a royal baby. Everyone adores him.
‘He acts like a prince.
‘I’m very grateful that I have him now.
‘I feel when you’re in your 20s mentally you’re still a child.
‘I have had all my 20s and 30s to have all of the fun.
‘I can still do things but do them with my son.’
Phillip says being a dad this time round feels “different”.
He explained: ‘Now at my age I know how important time is and to give more of yourself.
‘Before it was all work, work, work. Now it’s work a little, support a lot.
‘I can give the best I have left of me – give him all of me.
‘One day I’ll be gone, and I hope he’ll know his daddy and what he stood for.’
The couple has discussed Phillip not being around for all of Prince’s life.
Hasina said: ‘I don’t think it’s a problem for me.
‘The time that he has with him – we’ll make sure our son is a great person.
‘We’re older parents – he’ll gain a lot of wisdom.
‘He can become a leader not a follower.
‘The timing is perfect. He came when he was needed.’