The New Frontier of Egg Freezing and the Women Who Tried It
By Sarah Elizabeth Richards
(Simon & Schuster, Hardcover, 9781416567028, 304pp.)
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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How would you live your life if you could stop your biological clock? If you could be free of the "baby panic" that has tormented an entire generation of women who postponed motherhood to pursue careers or find the right mate? Would you date better? Marry later? Relax more? In Motherhood, Rescheduled, journalist Sarah Elizabeth Richards tells the stories of four women—including herself—who attempt to turn back time by freezing their eggs and chart a new course through their thirties and forties. Their journeys are bumpy, hilarious, sometimes heartbreaking, but always rewarding.
Just a decade ago, the idea of women freezing their eggs seemed futile or dangerous. But with new advances in medicine, women who choose this route face no higher risk of birth defects in their babies than other women, and pregnancy rates using frozen eggs are approaching those using fresh eggs. At a time when one in five American women between the ages of forty and forty-four is childless and half of those women say they wish they could have children, Richards offers a hopeful message: women approaching the end of their babymaking days do not need to settle, and even twentysomethings who want to prolong their dating years do not need to fret.
Richards tells the history of this controversial science, from its moments of premature enthusiasm to the exciting race that led to the big breakthroughs. She also explores the hard facts of egg freezing—from the cost and practical obstacles to the probabilities of success. Above all, she shares the stories of these women, and especially her own, with emotional honesty and compassion, and makes the journey for all ultimately redeeming.
Sarah Elizabeth Richards is an award-winning journalist specializing in health and science, psychology, and social issues and has written for more than two dozen newspapers, magazines, and websites, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Financial Times, Elle, Marie Claire, Slate, and Salon. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and holds master's degrees from the Graduate School of Journalism and the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. She lives in Manhattan.
"A fascinating, well-researched account of uncharted medical advances poised to turn the dating landscape upside down, Motherhood, Rescheduled reads like a page-turner novel full of suspense, plot twists, humor, and heartbreak. What’s amazing is that it’s real. I cheered, I cried, and stayed up way too late wondering what would become of these women, then stayed up even later pondering the provocative questions their stories raise."
-Lori Gottlieb, author of The New York Times bestseller Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough
"Motherhood, Rescheduled is exactly the book my generation of women has needed. The option to delay parenthood is fantastically liberating, but with freedom comes the paradox of choice. With refreshing clarity and grace, Sarah Elizabeth Richards completely demystifies the social, emotional, and scientific complexities of egg freezing, arming the rest of us with the information we need to better plot our own lives. I only wish it had come along sooner."
-Kate Bolick, contributing editor for The Atlantic
"Sarah captures the anxiety of a generation of women caught between unparalleled opportunity and the limits of their own biology. Pausing the biological clock with egg freezing could be as important to this generation as the birth control pill was to the last. She makes a compelling case for using the technology as an acceptable and affirming family planning choice."
-Rachel Lehmann-Haupt, author of In Her Own Sweet Time: Unexpected Adventures in Finding Love, Commitment, and Motherhood
“Intriguing (and often funny)…. A thought-provoking, well-written story for women who worry about their declining fertility.”
“[Richards] writes movingly about the vicissitudes of online dating and the pain of the breakup of a loving relationship with an ambivalent partner, as well as the anguish many women feel when contemplating a childless future….A page-turner in which each of the stories is different but compelling.”