A 34-year-old who froze her eggs said it transformed her dating life for the better
- Sarah Richards, a journalist and author, made the decision to freeze her eggs at age 34.
- She said the experience relieved a lot of the pressure that can come with dating in your 30s, like the "do you think he'd want kids" conversation.
- Richards appeared on an episode of "Pregnantish," a new podcast hosted by Andrea Syrtash that features people who have had "unconventional paths to parenthood," to speak about her experience.
- For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.
The urgency to find a partner as the "biological clock" ticks is a real pressure for people who want to carry children.
But as more fertility preservation options become available, people are making medical decisions to curb this stress - and it's shaping the modern landscape of dating and family planning.
When Sarah Richards went through the process of freezing her eggs at 32-years-old, she said it changed her dating life for the better.
She appeared on this week's episode of "Pregnantish," a new podcast hosted by Andrea Syrtash that focuses on the stories of people who have had "unconventional paths to parenthood," to discuss her experience with egg-freezing and how it positively changed her dating life as a single woman.
"You're not trying to divine what's gonna happen with this person and make all these big assumptions or evaluate him and think, 'Where is he in his life? Do you think he'd want kids or more kids?" And so you're just like, okay I'm here on a date,'" said Richards, a journalist and author of "Motherhood Rescheduled: The New Frontier of Egg Freezing and the Women Who Tried It."
Richards said freezing her eggs took off the pressure to find a life partner
As a woman dating in her early 30s, Richards said she remembers the stress of family planning looming over her during first dates.
"I remember sitting at Starbucks with this little index card and like trying to make this timeline," Richards said. "I knew all the stats and it's really crazy-making."
Eventually, it was this pressure, along with the research she did to write her book on egg-freezing, that convinced her to move forward with the process.
"You feel a tremendous relief," Richards said.
Richards said the women she interviewed for her book felt a sense of relief on their dating lives after freezing their eggs.
When Richards first became interested in the topic of egg-freezing, she realised that there wasn't a directory of women who had been through the process or a way for people to find advice - so she decided to make her own.
"There were no big sisters that we could ask what would happen if I froze? What would happen? What would I tell dates? What would my mom think about it? All the questions that women have when they start thinking about this," Richards said. "So what I did is actually found this first wave of women who had frozen."
Richards said that just in the last 10 years, the options for fertility preservation treatments like egg-freezing have become increasingly accessible, meaning that many of the women she interviewed were in the beginning or middle stages of pregnancy when she spoke to them.
Richard said she found that the women she spoke too felt a similar sense of relief on their dating lives after freezing their eggs as she did.
"It was amazing just to see how they approached their life after they took that pressure off [dating] through freezing," Richards said.
Egg freezing and other procedures like it are changing the way people date and plan families
As treatments like egg-freezing and in-vitro fertilisation become more common, Richards said she thinks the process will impact the way people date and family plan overall.
Richards said egg-freezing was a "game-changer" because it allows people to have children later in life than ever before.
"It's not a big deal at 47 to have a baby anymore. So imagine how that translates into the window of how you can find a partner or plan out your life or however you decide that you want to look like," Richards said. "It just opens up the world in just this very positive transformative way."
For more details, subscribe to the "Pregnantish" podcast, with new episodes available on Tuesdays.
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