shortage of educated men unveiling compelling reasons behind women opting for egg freezing and its daunting costs 384

Science and Technology

Shortage of Educated Men: Unveiling Compelling Reasons Behind Women Opting for Egg Freezing, and Its Daunting Costs


Robert Tavares

May 3, 2024 - 09:00 am


The Legal Landscape of Reproductive Rights

As legal disputes over reproductive rights intensify throughout the United States, one aspect facing potential impact is egg freezing.

Alabama Supreme Court Ruling on Embryos

In February, the Alabama state Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling declaring all embryos produced through in vitro fertilization as legally recognized children. This ruling has substantial implications, potentially leading to civil and criminal liabilities for both fertility clinics and their patients. With over a million frozen eggs and embryos stored across the country, according to biotech fertility company TMRW Life Sciences, the legal ramifications are significant.

The Journey of Egg Freezing

Women who opt for reproductive technology procedures like egg freezing encounter a complex journey filled with various challenges. Here, we delve into the motivations driving egg freezing decisions and explore the financial, social, and emotional costs involved, drawing insights from women across the nation.

The Mating Gap:

A prevailing notion suggests that women delay motherhood to prioritize other life aspects, such as career advancement. However, recent trends indicate a different reality, as highlighted by Marcia Inhorn, a Yale University professor specializing in medical anthropology.

Inhorn emphasizes that a significant proportion of women freeze their eggs due to the absence of suitable partners. She terms this phenomenon the "mating gap" — a shortage of eligible, educated, and compatible partners. This issue arises from the fact that women are now surpassing men in higher education attainment in many countries, including the United States, where there's a notable 27% more women than men in higher education.

Empowerment and Egg Freezing

Apart from the "mating gap," another driving force behind egg freezing is the empowerment it offers. Inhorn notes that egg freezing provides women with a sense of freedom and additional time, a sentiment echoed by reproductive endocrinologists and fertility specialists Drs. Nicole Noyes and Aimee Eyvazzadeh.

The Shift in Age and Attitudes

Dr. Noyes, with over two decades of experience in the fertility field, observes a shift in patient demographics and attitudes towards egg freezing. Initially considered a last resort for older women, the procedure now attracts younger women, some in their late twenties. This trend is also noted by Dr. Eyvazzadeh, indicating a growing preference for freezing eggs at peak viability.

Personal Experiences and Perspectives

Social media influencer Serena Kerrigan, aged 30, shares her egg freezing journey, highlighting the procedure's role in providing women with control over their lives. Kerrigan's openness about her experience aims to destigmatize egg freezing, viewing it as a scientific advancement empowering women.

The High Costs

While egg freezing offers substantial benefits, it comes with significant financial burdens. The average cost of a single egg freezing cycle in the U.S. stands at $11,000, excluding additional expenses like hormone medications and annual storage fees.

Personal Sacrifices

Jenny Hayes Edwards, a nutrition health coach, recounts her decision to freeze eggs in 2010 at age 34. Despite financial challenges post-2008 economic downturn, Hayes Edwards pursued egg freezing, driven by the opportunity it presented for future family planning.

Employer Benefits and Egg Freezing

Recent years have seen the emergence of egg freezing, fertility, and family planning services as employer benefits, particularly in tech companies. A study from Mercer reveals a growing trend of companies offering such benefits, with Michelle Parsons sharing her experience of utilizing employer-sponsored.

Innovations and Challenges

Michelle Parsons' journey not only highlights the financial incentives of employer-sponsored egg freezing but also touches upon the challenges and innovations associated with the process. Frozen embryos, with their higher viability rates, offer an alternative route, albeit with its own set of complexities.

Professional and Personal Impact

Despite the benefits, egg freezing takes a toll on individuals, both professionally and personally. Evelyn Gosnell's experience sheds light on the emotional rollercoaster and uncertainties associated with multiple egg retrieval cycles.

Navigating the Unpredictability

Evelyn Gosnell's story underscores the unpredictability of egg freezing outcomes, emphasizing the need for realistic expectations and support throughout the process.

Conclusion In conclusion, this presents a complex landscape, influenced by societal dynamics, personal motivations, financial considerations, and technological advancements. While it offers opportunities for empowerment and family planning, navigating its challenges requires a nuanced understanding of its implications on individuals' lives.