According to new data, women in Taiwan are increasingly freezing their eggs at fertility clinics as they postpone motherhood and marriage for their careers. Taiwan has the third highest population of women in the workforce among 14 countries in Asia. This has resulted in the uptick in egg freezing and moving the East Asian countries’ average marriage age to 30. In the 1980s the average was 24.
But this isn’t only happening in Taiwan. According to USA Today, the trend of women freezing their eggs (dubbed “social freezing”) so they can have babies after they have made their career the main focus, is growing in popularity in the U.S.
In October of 2012 the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) stopped calling the freezing process experimental, citing success rates comparable to those of in vitro fertilization. Between 1,000 and 2,000 babies have been born worldwide from frozen eggs that were later fertilized with sperm and 1,000 of those were from the past five years.
Many of you can relate to being ambitious when it comes to your career. How many of you are in the headspace of thinking about a family even if you are in a serious relationship? But do you ever worry that you may wake up one day in a place where you are ready to have a family, but may not be in your child-bearing prime? Would you ever consider freezing your eggs?
According to a study done by Edinburgh University and the University of St Andrews, women lose 90% of their eggs by the time they turn 30. The likelihood of a woman conceiving naturally after the age of 35 gets harder with every year that passes. By the time a woman is 40 she only has about 3% of her eggs left.
For some women, this option provides a way to take control of your biological clock. It literally gives you power over Mother Nature. It is the freedom to plan your life the way you want. It could be looked at as having it all, on your own timeline.
But to some, freezing your eggs means giving up on having children naturally. Some people also criticize the procedure because it is for privileged women (it costs about $10,000 to do it) and can encourage women to be older mothers, which is not always the best for children.
Would you consider ever freezing your eggs? Do you think it is a good option for women or a negative one? Does it encourage the stereotype of the selfish career woman putting herself first?
Tell us your thoughts on egg freezing in the comments!
Ask Tiffany Dufu, Chief Leadership Officer at Levo League, about how she balances “leaning in” with being a mom!