You’ve probably heard the news that Facebook and Apple are now offering to pay for an egg freezing procedure for their female employees. Essentially, this policy was put in place to help women free up time to focus on their careers… without the stress of declining fertility and the pressure to have a child stat. You can read more details about their new free egg freezing policies in Bloomberg Business Week’s thorough article: Later, Baby: Will Freezing Your Eggs Free Your Career?
The procedure costs anywhere from $7,000 to $12,000 plus storage fees, which run about $1,000 yearly. The majority of insurers do not cover this procedure.
I’m all for women having flexibility and choice when it comes to deciding when to have children. As someone who’s nearly 33 years old, I know firsthand the stress of wanting to have children but also wanting to get further in my career; It feels like this heavy invisible weight I carry around, knowing I have to make this very important decision soon. For me, egg freezing is not an option, mainly because I don’t have $10,000 to spare. If it were free, I would probably get my eggs frozen. So I’m thrilled that companies like Apple and Facebook are paying for their employees to have extended time to make what is likely the most important decision of their lives.
That said, I’m unsettled thinking that only these elite Silicon Valley companies are offering this ‘perk’- (I have about a .01% hope that bigger, more ‘corporate’ companies will offer this anytime in the next five years). These large companies are the same ones that offer perks like free candy bars with frozen yogurt/ unlimited sweet goodies (Facebook), on-site barber shops (Facebook), Shuttle bus services (Apple), and many more freebies I can only dream of.
The idealist in me wants every woman to have an egg-freezing option, not only women that can afford it, or women that work for one-of-a-kind silicon valley companies who *may* be offering this as a general PR play or HR recruiting tactic.