Check out our featured post in WiLab!
FREEZE THOSE EGGS! A NEW BENEFIT PERK?
In the Silicon Valley arms race to lure the top talent with the best benefits and attract more women to their staff , Facebook and Apple are offering to pay for the egg freezing procedure for women who choose it to delay childbearing.
With this latest announcement, comes a flurry of opinions on the matter. Does this benefit really help women in their careers take the pressure off?
Having a high-powered career and children is still a very hard thing to do,” said Brigitte Adams, an egg-freezing advocate and founder of the patient forum Eggsurance.com. By offering this benefit, companies are investing in women, she said, and supporting them in carving out the lives they want.
This latest NBC article makes some very interesting points; although I wish they had actually interviewed potential candidates for this new benefit and gotten their take on the topic. Will people really utilize this benefit? How does this benefit change family planning / career plans? Would you consider freezing your eggs in hopes to get ahead in your career, to avoid the dreadful biological clock that most women fear? Will the process work when you are actually ready to have children? Is the process painful? What are the risks that it all together will not work?
With the great pressures on women and career, this benefit will most likely come at an important time in bringing more women into the workforce, and assisting them to reach top level executive opportunities.
From a business perspective, most want to know…will this perk pay off?
“The attitude toward egg freezing is very different,” and more positive, than just a few years ago, said Christy Jones, founder of Extend Fertility, a company that offers and promotes egg freezing across the country. Women are making the proactive decision to freeze their eggs at a younger age, and the choice is “more one of empowerment than, this is my last chance”
Will the perk pay off for companies? The benefit will likely encourage women to stay with their employer longer, cutting down on recruiting and hiring costs. And practically speaking, when women freeze their eggs early, firms may save on pregnancy costs in the long run, said Westphal. A woman could avoid paying to use a donor egg down the road, for example, or undergoing more intensive fertility treatments when she’s ready to have a baby.
But the emotional and cultural payoff may be more valuable, said Jones: Offering this benefit “can help women be more productive human beings.”
This last statement makes me cringe “help women be more productive human beings” REALLY? I didn’t realize we were all so unproductive. Regardless of your organization’s standpoint, the companies that offer these benefits, and the companies that SELL these benefits; like Extend Fertility & Eggsurance….The choice is YOURS. The choice that you make regarding your career and family planning is up to YOU and your FAMILY. Try to block out the demanding voices all around you and even in your head. When the time is right (it may never feel like the right time if you have a demanding career), but when you are ready to have a little mini you in the back of your car, sharing the joys of life – you will find a way to make it work. And for those who struggle TTC or if you fear TTC later in life, by all means freeze those eggs!
We found the following articles published on Bloomberg Business Week by Emma Rosenblum to be more thought out, better presented and factual if you are looking for additional information; check out these two stories.
Given a choice, every woman I spoke to would prefer to have had children earlier and naturally. The hindrance in most cases was their not having found the right partner at the right time. Sure, most were working hard in their careers; this was part of why, they felt, they hadn’t settled down. Not one of the women I interviewed took egg-freezing lightly. They didn’t want to have to do it. While it’s nice to have the option, I doubt that droves of young women in Silicon Valley will be lining up to collect that money.
Like many others who’ve frozen their eggs, Emily uses the word “empowered” to describe the experience. She thinks it will allow her to date without radiating the desperation of someone who has to have a baby right this very second. And now she doesn’t feel as guilty about dedicating most of her time to work. “It’s like, thank God, I don’t have to focus on having kids quite yet. I’m not in a real panic anymore,” she says. Her mother, however, would still like her to get on with it. “She said to me, only half-jokingly, ‘I’m glad you went to business school and work 100 hours a week—and don’t have time to meet anyone—so you can afford to freeze your eggs.’ Thanks, Mom.”