Social norms powerfully shape what is viewed as acceptable throughout various life-stages and the transition to parenthood has long been a powerful collective cultural symbol, providing a gendered identity and normalcy status central to adult roles (McQuillan et al., 2012; Dykstra & Hagestad, 2007). In contemporary Australia, where the socio-political milieu encourages fertility and promotes the family (Rich, Taket, Graham & Shelley, 2011; Gray, Qu & Weston, 2008), achieving parenthood is a social norm expected of both men and women. For women in particular, gender identity is linked to becoming a mother (Loftus & Androit, 2012; Thompson, 2005; Letherby, 2002). Female gender identity is defined and performed through socially prescribed concepts of femininity that govern bodily attributes and behaviours, which include expectations of motherhood (Van Den Wijngaard, 1997; Moi, 1989). The desire to have children remains high among the majority of Australian men and women across all ages (Holton, Fisher & Rowe, 2011; Thompson & Lee, 2011; Holden et al., 2005; Weston, Qu, Parker & Alexander, 2004) despite the growing tendency to delay childbearing.