32 Female - Too late to start?

So okay I have been here for sometime now on and off and please I need your honest advice. I am a 32 years old female with two young children who has never worked in IT before.

I have been a receptionist since my teenage years and have been unemployed for the past 4 years. I have no college degree and well while I was working I never really enjoyed working as a reciptionist

Recently I have been reading a lot about coding and how it’s a great career. I have played with bit of HTML and CSS in my spare time on site and that’s about it which I have to say I seem to be enjoying it thou I am finding CSS to be hard to grasp some concepts especially when it comes to page layout. Anyway long story short. Does my age, background etc matter in securing a job as a front end developer or I shouldnt really waste my time?

Any advice will be highly appreciated and sorry for my rambling.



This topic comes up a lot, here on the forums and just about anywhere there’s people learning to code. There is no reason for you to quit programming if you enjoy doing it. No one here can guarantee that you’ll get a job, but there are plenty of women developers as well as developers getting their first job after 30.


I am finding CSS to be hard

Ohhh. Just ask yourself: this is what you want, your lifestyle, your life goal? Because you need to learn the TONS of things MUCH harder than CSS, I’ll be honest with you.

If you can fight for the career and learn a lot, there’s no matter 30 or 40.

Many peoples created the same posts with “I’m 40” and “I’m 50”.


I read an article a while back about a lady who was like 80 and having never used a computer learned that and programming to build some application.

You’re never too old to learn new things or do something physically active. The Bible for instance tells the story of Moses who on the day of his death climbed a mountain when he was around 80.

You are capable of great thing’s. It just takes one step at a time.


Hey there! I’m 35 if it makes you feel any better :smile:

Although I’ve been messing around with html and css for over a decade now, I only feel semi-confident with them hahah. It’s been enough that I’ve done some freelance website gigs. I fell in love with working with WordPress which helped but all my client projects started out as just plain old html/css prototypes.

The great part is there’s so much to learn and if that excites you, that’s a huge plus. I have to agree with @paulcarroty though, there are harder things out there beyond html/css, but it all depends on what you want to do. If it’s making websites, then for example you’ll more than likely be dealing with Javascript. Which is what I’ve been trying to learn over the past few months. It’s been…tricky :laughing: to say the least.

Lots of breakthroughs, lots of pitfalls to overcome (some I’m still overcoming) but that’s kinda a key aspect you’ll have to have if you’re going to pursue this. And that’s a drive to keep going in the face of determent. Which I know sounds obvious but if you can push through something you’re having trouble with, you’ll fair way better. And that doesn’t mean doing it all alone. There’s nothing wrong with looking things up and asking for help on forums like these.

But is age a factor? Nah. The real factors will be in your work, skills, and your personal traits, that’s what will put you above the rest no matter what age you are.


Thank you guys. Your reply made me feel a little better to keep going and put more serious effort.
I am looking to get into front end development (eventually) and apart from HTML , CSS AND Javascript. Are there any other recommended technologies that I need up my skills before I can be job ready?

Thank you again


There really isn’t anything to learn on the front-end other than HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Once you learn the basics, then you just learn the frameworks/libraries. Once you learn a framework, then you learn design patterns. For an entry-level front-end job, those three should be all you need, but take my opinion with a grain of salt.


Girl, it is NEVER too late to start. And YOU ARE SO YOUNG!!! :star_struck:
It will take dedication to struggle through some of the more complex aspects (especially once you hit JavaScript), but you can do it. I’m 42, and I’ve worked with computers most of my life, but hadn’t really gotten down to fully studying any programming until about 7 or 8 months ago (I was pretty good with basic back in the 80s though!). I don’t have any degrees either, and I’m the unofficial IT specialist at a public library (unofficial meaning I don’t actually get IT pay :sweat: ).

I fully admit I’m struggling with certain things (more so than I think I should be!!), but with some persistence, time, and effort I’m pushing through them.


hey let me tell you something; raising and educating your kids is harder than coding.

No it doesn’t matter at all. also if your kids are old enough start putting them in coding even for a few minutes a day, if they learn to code they can help u if you decide to start a home business.

I am 13 I already finished HTML, CSS, Bootstrap, and Java script. I started programming at 9(because my mom made me to) and I hated it, it was like learning Chinese to me. I stopped for 1 1/2 years then when I was 11 at the end of the year my mom told me that u are not going to write any code just watch videos. I accepted and she brought me to a website called Tuts +, I used to watch the guy code websites, portfolios, and many other stuff. After like half a year I felt way more comfortable with coding, I decided to give it a shot again. At that time the only website I knew about was at khan academy,( I guess after a few months I got brave enough to try again) and I found it wasn’t too hard and scary. After a couple months I realized that all of my hard work wasn’t going to count in my education, and I asked my mom if thee was any other websites that have a certificate or any form of recognition, and after a but of research she found out about free code camp, and I discovered it was a million times better than khan academy, because of the step by step challenges and the forum. I then became dedicated to free code camp trying to do at least 2 hours a day I wish I could do more, but with a crap ton of things going on and other stuff it just isn’t possible. I wrote all of this as an inspiration for all of you guys or gals out there who are feeling enveloped and overcome by all of this programming stuff. And for all of the older guys who are feeling discouraged by their age I know someone who was 62 when he started and now he works at a major gaming company my point here is that it is never too late or too early to learn.


Do you want to make a career out of programming, and be employed by a company?

Then just plow through the course. Some areas will be tougher than others. But nothing is impossible.

or do you just want to make some online income? work-at-home, etc.

There’s blogging and youtube-ing to generate content (maybe in a subject area that interest you or you know about… or heck, maybe blog and create YT videos about you learning HTML/CSS/JS/FCC coursework and target other people/demographics just like you.) I’m sure there’s a niche audience there, just like yourself. Run Google Ads, Amazon affiliate links (books, products, computers, hardware), etc.

Interview other female developers and ask for their advice for people like you wanting to start in coding, etc. You’ll be building a network, that who knows may recommend you or point you to future job openings.

It will be hard work, and a long journey but could become lucrative in the long run. Of course, somewhere down the road you’ll eventually know html/css/making websites, and maybe you can even offer your web design services to other women-owned small businesses, etc. Some businesses may be more comfortable working with a female developer.

or maybe make websites for Instagram “influencers” and that will be your market-niche. Offer photo editing, video editing, writing content for their websites… have several Instagram clients that pay you a monthly retainer and you could be making some recurring monthly income.

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This is a decent guide for Front-End resources. It’s not exhaustive but worth a read.

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I always say this same thing when I read this question from anyone.

My old man never touched a computer until he was 26. He had me in his thirties and since then he has gained a masters in Information Systems Engineering. He has been a lecturer and technical author for some big companies.

30 however is STILL young!! I am 26 and still changing careers from an operations manager in construction to web development! I decided I just wanted to actually enjoy my job… that is the most worthwhile thing.

A word of advice:
If you are enjoying it… great! Keep at it!
If you are not enjoying it and finding it a slog, and only doing so due to the fact you think it makes a great career then maybe look at something else.

I only say this because we all know how hard it is, and how hard it is to change careers. This stuff is tricky when you are learning full-time let alone holding down a full-time job as well as looking after your kids.

Consistency is the key, and a strict schedule of learning. If you can devote an hour a day to learning, then do so and do it well. My piano teacher always used to tell me to practice a set amount, so that you were enthusiastic next time you came back. For me that is the same with learning development. I could go through the design aspect of creating a website all day, but I find between an hour-two hours a day is the most I can learn without my brain starting to switch off :joy:

If you are serious about making this a career, then start building projects. This will be more valuable for job hunting than certificates you can earn from places like this. By all means learn with this website, however employers don’t necessarily know what a freecodecamp front-end certificate is, and want to see examples of your work.

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If you’re motivated enough you can do it!
I’m 29, also have no degree, I have a 3 year old daughter and another coming up, and have no work experience in the IT field. A little more than a year ago I vaguely heard of HTML.
So I had my ups and downs with motivation and hopes, but decided that for me and my situation it was best to throw my goals to become a full stack web developer very soon in the trash and just to start having fun while learning. Whenever I average JS I still don’t get half of it. But when I want something to work I’ll figure it out.
Just the last weeks things are starting to roll, I feel like I’m getting a grasp the balance of family life and coding. (BTW it’s 3 a.m. right now and my daughter will waked me at 7, so not fully balanced…).
So what I can basically tell you now is to that it might help to stay in the moment, not getting scared that it’ll take years and you’ll be to old for this sh*t. Just have fun and tell people about it. Things will start rolling sooner or later.
It would’ve helped me several times in the past year.


Say it takes you a year or two to become skilled enough to land a developer job.

You’re going to be 34 either way. Would you rather be a 34 year old web developer/employed in IT or 34 and unemployed/receptionist?

Also, CSS can be pretty difficult. Honestly, I often find the visual aspects of CSS harder than the logical aspects of programming just because it’s not my strength. I’d highly encourage you to push through.


Thank you guys so much for all your replies and insightful advice. Very much appreciated.
You have really helped me to not feel too scared of continuing. I now just have to focus more and be more persistent as I have been lacking there.

Thank you. Will definitely check it out!

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My goal or rather a dream is to one day be hired as a front-end developer but would also like to have some side income on top of that working from home like doing part-time web design freelancing or blogging. You have got some pretty good idea’s there especially about targeting certain niche

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You’re only 32! Other people your age who started right out of college might have 10 years of experience, but if you start working now you could still have 30 years ahead of you! Since you’re not going school the most important thing you can do is create a portfolio and keep practicing. With a great portfolio and examples of your work that prove you are a capable developer you should be able to get either an entry level position or you could get your foot in the door with freelancing. Good luck! P.S. For what it’s worth I’m 34 and am considering a career change too. :slight_smile:

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You’re never too old. The difficult thing I’ve found is learning on top of work and life commitments. That’s the biggest hurdle adults face in learning new things.

Everything else is just dedication and steady, consistent practice. Every time I’ve told myself I can’t do something, I usually end up proving myself wrong after a bit of hair pulling and frustration.

I’m now working on chilling the f**k out and allowing myself to take my time without kicking myself constantly. It takes as long as it takes to learn each concept, and patience is the key.

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It is absolutely not too late. I started a couple of years ago and I’m 42.