The trade‐off between the allocation of resources toward somatic maintenance or reproduction is one of the fundamentals of life history theory and predicts that females invest in offspring at the expense of their longevity or vice versa. Mate quality may also affect life history trade‐offs through mechanisms of sexual conflict; however, few studies have examined the interaction between mate quality and age at first mating in reproductive decisions. Using house crickets ( Acheta domesticus), this study examines how survival and reproductive trade‐offs change based on females’ age at first reproduction and exposure to males of varying size. Females were exposed to either a large (presumably high‐quality) or small male at an early (young), middle (intermediate), or advanced (old) age, and longevity and reproductive investment were subsequently tracked. Females mated at a young age had the largest number of eggs but the shortest total lifespans while females mated at older ages produced fewer eggs but had longer total lifespans. The trade‐off between age at first mating and eggs laid appears to be mediated through higher egg‐laying rates and shorter postmating lifespans in females mated later in life. Exposure to small males resulted in shorter lifespans and higher egg‐laying rates for all females indicating that male manipulation of females, presumably through spermatophore contents, varies with male size in this species. Together, these data strongly support a trade‐off between age at first reproduction and lifespan and support the role of sexual conflict in shaping patterns of reproduction.