Egg Freezing and Dating
When it comes to dating, there are a lot of variables to consider: common interests, likes, dislikes, compatibility, life goals, family values, personal values, and so on. Now, with more and more women freezing their eggs than ever before, the topic of egg freezing, for some, inevitably makes its way into the conversation … at some point at least. And with that, more and more women are seeking advice about egg freezing and dating. They seek advice about if they should bring up the topic and, if so, how to initiate the conversation about their decision to freeze. One Shady Grove Fertility egg freezing patient, Jenn, asked the following question:
To find the answer, we asked women who are also considering freezing, as well as women who have frozen their eggs. We found that 60 percent of women bring up egg freezing on dates. Here are some of their responses.
How do you bring up your decision to freeze?
- I wait until the person brings up the topic of having children before I share that I froze my eggs.
- I abstained from alcohol, caffeine, and sex during and between cycles; the men I dated would notice and then ask why, which would lead into the conversation.
- I bring it up only with people I see a future with and mention that I did it to preserve my fertility.
Do you find that the people you have dated or the person you are currently dating is open to your decision to freeze?
- Everyone I dated has been extremely supportive.
- Some say it is a smart decision, others are indifferent, and some it requires a little more explanation.
- I’m dating someone younger and he is surprisingly supportive; although he often doesn’t know what to say or have much to add to the subject.
- Every man I dated while freezing my eggs thought that it was awesome and empowering. It made them like me more, and it took any pretense of pressure/biological clocks/timelines completely out of the picture from the start. I found these conversations both encouraging and liberating.
What advice would you share with other women who are either considering freezing, or who have frozen their eggs, about dating?
- Well, I guess that whomever you are dating has to be comfortable with it, if it’s something that’s important to you. Just like anything else that’s important to you. So why not bring it up to judge their reactions for yourself, as part of your criteria for whether or not the person is a good fit for you.
- I would suggest not telling the person you are dating until you two are in a serious committed relationship. This is my experience; others may have a different experience. My decision to tell men when I first start dating has back-fired or they are not supportive. I suggest waiting until a commitment has been made on both ends.
- Own it. Honest confidence is what you deserve, and men find it incredibly attractive. Love yourself.
In addition to surveying women, we asked a panel of our social work experts for their advice and what they have learned from women they have counseled. Here is some of their advice:
- Because egg freezing isn’t necessarily a guarantee of a future family or children, it is a subject that is best suited for a time when the relationship becomes a little more serious and the person is ready and prepared to listen to the details.
- Egg freezing shouldn’t be something women feel compelled to bring up with someone they are dating (at least for awhile) because dating is one of the reasons they decided to freeze—to take the pressure away from having to immediately start thinking about having children when they first start dating someone.
- Women generally get a lot of support from friends and family when making the decision to freeze. In fact, some say it is their family who encourages them to freeze (because they are thinking about grandchildren) and sometimes the parents even help fund the process.
Overall, when it comes to egg freezing and dating, if you bring up your decision to freeze, many will show support and even encouragement. However, share only when and if you’re ready. It’s your decision, own it and be proud.