Women have one major concern when it comes to being single: motherhood. The peer pressure females everywhere are subjected to and fear of their own biological clocks is unbearable. Most of us at one point of our lives rushed ourselves into relationships that had no potential because what if we wait and never find the one or have children?
Most of my close girlfriends are over 30 and I’ve been noticing a trend in Egypt lately: women’s acceptance of egg freezing (human oocyte cryopreservation). This procedure has been around for years, yet only recently I’ve started hearing stories about young women in Egypt who are actually going through with it.
To put it very simply, this is what happens: In the prime years – the 20s and 30s – of a woman’s reproductive system, females without a partner might choose to undergo the procedure, which starts with two to four weeks of self-administered hormone injections and birth pills, followed by 10-14 days of hormone injections to ripen the eggs.
Once ready, the egg is extracted through the vagina under sedation and frozen, then thawed, fertilized and transferred to the woman’s uterus as an embryo when the time is right. Some studies claim that eggs can be frozen up to 10 years. Studies haven’t shown any increased birth defects when compared to the general population.
We asked 18 Egyptian women how they felt about freezing their eggs and this is what they told us:
“God Gave intelligence, science and technology and we are obliged to make use of it for a better living. We should not have to give up on the chance to have kids just because we haven’t met the right one.” – S.H.
“At 35, my plan was to get my eggs frozen after I lost hope of finding someone before my 40s. Sadly, when I started looking into details and realized how expensive the whole procedure is, I changed my mind. I’m already single, I wouldn’t want to risk not being able to support myself as well.” – D.H.
“No, I wouldn’t want to take any precautions instead of facing my reality. I will accept the natural sequence of my life events even if that means missing the opportunity of bearing a child.” – M.F.
“Yes, I would definitely go for it. I would like to have that choice.” – T.N.
“My plan if I’m without kids or a husband in my 30s is to adopt. As much as I love the idea of having mini mes, there are already so many children that need a sense of home, family and love. I know adoption is not the easiest thing to do in the Middle East, especially as a single woman, but it’s always been a part of the plan.” – S.M.
“I would rather adopt. There are too many kids in the world.” – S.K.
“I am not pro-intervening with God’s will.” – D.S
“It will finally help me sleep at night, knowing that I don’t have to force myself into a marriage just because my biological clock is ticking.” – S.L.
“Of course I’ll do it. I am dying to have children, but I am already 33 and single. What if I meet someone in four years and it’s already too late for my body?” – G.T.
“If I don’t have a baby when I’m young and healthy, it would be selfish of me to bear a child when I’m incapable of raising one. It’s not just the quality of eggs that deteriorates with age, your whole body changes, so I don’t think pregnancy would be a choice. I shouldn’t bring a child to this world in my 40s if I’m not ready for it.” – W.F.
“Its not about a chance, its about a bigger plan. Why not accept that I might not be meant to have kids? Why should I push it? Why would I have a kid when my body can’t have him? Why have a kid when I can’t play with him like his friends’ parents do? Just to fulfill the need of having a baby? To have someone around when I age? Then what about the kid himself?” – S.S.
“It’s something on my urgently-to-do list. As for women who think you can’t bear a child over 40, I’d like to remind them of all the women who struggled to get pregnant for years in their marriage, only to finally succeed in late 30s and they’re doing great.” – F.A.
“No, I wouldn’t consider it unless it’s a medical recommendation due to illness.” – O.L.
“It’s not about being physically capable or not, I’m against creating the circumstances for something that might or might not have happened. Imposing anything is a no. I’d play it by ear; if I get married and have kids, great. If I get married and not have kids, fine. If I don’t get married and never have kids, then this is God’s plan for me and I wouldnt want to interfere.” – D.R.
“There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a plan B. Getting married is by no means easy in Egypt and if it is not 7aram or dangerous, then why miss the chance to have a child?” – B.N.
“I would definitely do it. Women are usually concerned about going against nature and God’s timing, but why not consider it God’s timing that you decided to freeze them? And in all cases, if God hasn’t planned motherhood for you, it’s not going to happen whether you freeze your eggs or not.” – S.L.
“I have always wanted to do it, but honestly it’s a very expensive procedure, so I decided to take my chances and wait for ebn el7alal.” – D.H.
“The problem is not only single women, you can struggle to get pregnant for years as a married woman, too. This would be a perfect backup plan.” – Q.A.
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