egg freezing

Save It For The Judge…..

 

iStock-472711356 copy.jpgI recently had someone challenge me, in an email exchange, about the expectations that we have of the men we work with at Linx and how we hold them accountable.

 

It is a great and fair question – but the answer is not so straightforward.  An equally great and fair question should be about the expectations we have of the women we work with at Linx and how we hold them accountable.

 

In this blog entry, I hope I can begin to answer these questions and illustrate that it really does go both ways and that the reality of passing judgment on people (whether men on women or women on men) may not always be pleasant, but is a fundamental truth in the human nature of long term romantic relationships.

 

During the Linx client intake process, there are a variety of questions I ask of the prospect and the type of match (s)he seeks. My primary goal at this early stage is to hone in on the more “scientific” part of the search, as I gather objective data regarding the type of match someone desires. These metrics are powerful, in that they allow me, the expert matchmaker, to create a solid and plausible foundation for a long-term match.

 

Naturally, some of the questions I ask can be a little hair-raising for some clients – for example, when I am asking a female prospect about her dress size and weight or if she has taken fertility measures to preserve her eggs (see more about this toward the end of the blog), some do not appreciate these blunt intrusions into sensitive subjects, while others go through the process with absolutely no objections.

 

A great prospective client I encountered shared, “I would hate to think in the end women are being judged one dimensionally in this process. While I appreciate everyone has preferences I would not be a match with a man that over indexes on a female’s looks and a particular dress size.”

 

I responded and told her that men are wired completely differently than us women. It is a universal and biological fact that men are extremely visual and generally fall in love with their eyes, whereas women appear to fall in love with their ears. The metrics and science of what someone desires is a relatively big part of this equation to find the right match. Every man I encounter has his own stated preferences and desires. From a physical stand point, some guys want Chinese, others East Asian, some Caucasian, no one over 5’5”, no one under 5’5”, long hair, short hair, light eyes, tan skin, no freckles, sexy in her style, or conservative style, light on the make-up, or dolls herself up all the time.

 

The data I gather is a completely eye-opening, scattergram of chaos. To add another layer of complexity, we then dive into a match’s personality, religion, lifestyle, career choice, marital background, hobbies, etc. It goes on and on and on. And this same principle of everyone having his/her own objective desires in a match applies equally to women. Women are just as harsh critics as the men are in what they need in a mate (from height, to hair, to personality, to income, to background, to lifestyle). The overarching conclusion is that even the most angelic people judge others. It’s life. We all secretly like what we like and don’t like what we don’t like. We don’t want to admit that human beings discriminate on a wide range of metrics but it is a fact that everyone I have ever encountered in my 16 years of running Linx has their own stated preferences and deal breakers in a potential match and if they state that they do not, they are, at least to some extent, lying to themselves and to me.

 

Another hot button topic for some women is when I ask whether she’s taken any fertility measures in her personal life to preserve her eggs. Egg freezing has become so popular as the tech giants like Facebook and Google often offer to pay for these incredibly pricey insurance policies. Take it or leave it but the fertility question in the intake is a big one. Not only am I asking women if they have thought about this, or if perhaps have already done multiple rounds of egg freezing, but the men on many occasions lecture me when they come in for their initial in-person meet and greets about a female’s biology and youth optimum IF the male prospect is wishing to have children in his personal life. Of course, there are a ton of men who either have kids, do not want kids, or have kids and do not wish for more. Again, everyone has their own stated ideals.

 

It is fair that fertility should even be a factor in the selection of a mate? Shouldn’t a female be chosen for her brain, heart and soul? Yes, actually I do believe that. But when I look to match, I align core value sets from a foundational standpoint and fertility is a large part of this equation if both parties want the option of having a child or children one day. Women, rest assured, that men are just not looking for a hot female who has ripe juicy eggs. Thank goodness. They actually are not as pigheaded as folklore goes. It is universally true that the types of men Linx Dating work with do “want it all”, just as the females that come into Linx want a man who “has it all” as well. It’s holistic, not just one-dimensional. Men need to be attracted first and foremost and then everything else hopefully aligns – brains, personality, and balance. Women seek financial stability, someone who has a healthy dose of EQ/IQ, and attraction is part of the picture too.

 

Making sure each party has a solid foundation and the match is a long-term match, not some short-term play, is critical. The couples I match enter serious relationships. I am an a bonafide expert and work with my clients to remove the chaos that can envelop mate selection when they are working on their own and “dating in the wild.”

 

No matter how you look at it, people select mates for a variety of reasons and no matter the approach, whether it be meeting someone serendipitously, via online/app dating, through Linx, or at work, we all are built to thin-slice (a la Malcolm Gladwell’s classic book “Blink”) and we do it consciously and unconsciously on a daily basis. Human beings are judgmental and if we if didn’t judge and thin-slice, we wouldn’t be able to create order and make sense of all the information around us.

 

Egg Freezing : Is it for you?

Thinking

We wanted to present our readers with a very relevant topic and offer you a two part series about egg freezing. In this particular blog entry, you will read about egg freezing from a scientific and data driven perspective and in the second follow-up blog, we will discuss how egg freezing can impact dating and relationships for better or for worse. With so many women discussing the most private aspects of their lives with Linx, often the topic of egg preservation comes up.

Since the invention of birth control almost 60 years ago, no medical advancement has empowered women more than egg freezing. Birth control gave women the freedom to delay conception and decide with whom they would like to procreate, and egg freezing can give women freedom from their biological clocks.

Egg freezing began as a procedure for cancer patients who wanted to preserve eggs before undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatment. But over the past 10 years, egg freezing has become a hot topic for single women who don’t want to settle for the wrong guy just to have children while they are still fertile and for those who want to achieve certain professional goals before having children.

The recent popularity of egg freezing has spiked as a result of the marketing efforts of companies like Eggbanxx, a network of egg freezing doctors that attract new patients through egg freezing parties in New York City. Similar to Uber or Airbnb, many view egg freezing as a disruptive technology that can give women more control over their bodies.

Women start out with over a million eggs at birth, that number is down to 300,000 by the time they hit puberty, and it continues to dwindle every month until they are no longer fertile. Especially if they live in large cities, women are having children later in life, and egg freezing can give this option to women who have put off having children for one reason or another.

EggBanxx estimates that 76,000 women worldwide will be freezing their eggs by 2018. Successful pregnancy rates fluctuate greatly based on the woman’s age when she froze her eggs, how many there were, how they were frozen, how fertile she was to begin with, and which doctor did the procedure.

As the technology improves, more women have decided to freeze their eggs, and companies like Facebook, Apple, Citigroup and JP Morgan offer egg freezing to female employees as part of their benefits package. These cushy “insurance policies” are wonderful options for women as long as the companies also provide great benefits and support to women who choose to take time off to have children earlier their careers. In a 2013 New York University study of 183 women who had frozen their eggs, 19% said they might have had a child earlier if their workplace had been more flexible.

The New York Times just released that The Pentagon plans to roll out a pilot program offering military troops medical benefits for freezing eggs and storing sperm. This large scale program takes reproductive health to a national scale and recognizes the importance of giving troops important options.

Similar to cutting edge companies who are paying for egg freezing, celebrities have also brought the procedure into the spotlight. Diana Hayden (42), the winner of the Miss World pageant in 1997, gave birth to a beautiful baby from one of her frozen eggs, and Whitney Cummings (33), actress and comedian, often talks about how freezing her eggs gave her more freedom and less pressure to find the one as soon as possible.

Australian sexologist and author, Dr. Nikki Goldstein (30), also recently froze her eggs and videotaped the experience – from the shots, to the emotions, to the pain. During the process, Dr. Goldstein realized how deeply she wanted children and how important it was for her to have time to find the right partner.

You may want to consider freezing your eggs if:

  • You are in your mid-30s and single or not interested in having kids in the next few years
  • You are single and in your mid-30s to mid-40s and would regret never having a biological child
  • You are willing to research egg freezing and understand that there is not a 100% guarantee that you will be able to conceive a child from your frozen eggs in the future
  • You wouldn’t notice the $10-$15k egg freezing cost missing from your bank account (if your company doesn’t pay for it)
  • You understand the costs of extracting, freezing, storing and replanting your eggs, which can cost upwards of $50k total
  • You are committed to injecting yourself with hormones and are okay with being extremely bloated and in abdominal pain for a month before the doctor extracts the eggs
  • You realize that you may have to go through the egg extraction process 2 or 3 times if not enough good eggs are collected the first time
  • It is 100% your decision. Egg freezing brokers are popping up all the time to capitalize on women’s insecurities of ending up alone and childless. Do not get pressured into freezing your eggs – do it because it makes sense for you.
  • You want to take the pressure off finding the future father of your children on every first date.
  • You have been strategic about every decision in your life – where to go to school, which job to take, where to live, etc. – and you want to decide when and with whom you would like to have children
  • You have found a good doctor that you trust to perform the procedure
  • You have no religious issues with the concept of egg freezing
  • You live in or frequently travel to South America and don’t want to have children until the Zika virus has been wiped out

With only 2,000 births worldwide from egg freezing so far, the success rates are difficult to predict, but one thing is certain – egg freezing provides a groundbreaking opportunity for women to live their ideal lives on their own terms and timeline free from biological constraints.