The Kardashians may not be America’s most fertile family, but sometimes it sure feels like it. There’s always a new pregnancy, baby, or kid-related development for the media to cover with a flashy photo spread.
The latest “news” involves Kourtney Kardashian, a mother of three who is debating whether to expand her family. But since she’s split from Scott Disick, her children’s father, Kourtney recently told her sisters, “I’ve been thinking about freezing my eggs.”
Kourtney adds, “I should just do it so I don’t have to think, ‘Is this what I want, to have kids?’ It’s like, putting too much pressure.” Her thought seems to be that freezing will buy her some time, and there’s something to that. Babies are also inherently wonderful. But before Kourtney goes down this new (to her) road, here are a few things she might want to consider.
1. Nike Knows Not Fertility
Nike’s “just do it” slogan doesn’t quite work for fertility. First, we typically have more control over physical fitness than we do over fertility. Second, there are several risk factors to consider jumping into fertility treatments. There are certainly women who find it helpful, but it is by no means a foolproof way to grow one’s family. Always do research first.
2. Let The Buyer Beware
“The data most clinics report, while detailed, is ‘primarily a professional tool’ for the industry, acknowledges Sean Tipton, spokesman for the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology. (The CDC data is similar.)” In other words, it’s not so easy to get the real deal on clinics’ actual success rates.
In “The Art of Waiting,” Belle Boggs writes about a study of fertility clinics’ websites: “79 percent of clinics featured photographs of babies on their home pages, 30 percent used the word dream on the home page, and 8.87 percent used the word miracle.” Only 27 percent of those sites even mentioned pricing.
3. Results Are Mixed
Women’s experiences vary, but “on average, a woman freezing 10 eggs at age 36 has a 30 to 60 percent chance of having a baby with them, according to published studies.”
Dr. Joseph Doyle of the mid-Atlantic’s Shady Grove Fertility advises “that women 38 to 40 should bank 30 eggs to have a 75 percent chance of giving birth to one baby.”
4. There’s Homework
Before any eggs are retrieved, there is a regimen of hormone treatments at home for about 10 days that can cost about $2,000-$4,000.
5. There are Potential Health Risks
The high doses of hormones required to produce multiple eggs can create health complications, like “Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome. . . . [which] tends to manifest as bloating and pain, like a severe nadir in a menstrual cycle . . .”
6. It’s Expensive
Egg freezing runs “$10,000 to $16,000 per retrieval cycle, plus hundreds of dollars in yearly storage fees, [for women] to put their eggs on ice.”
7. Who’s the Daddy?
People reports that “Kourtney admitted she wasn’t opposed to expanding her family with Disick, 34.” But since both Kourtney and Scott have “moved on romantically,” would Disick be the sperm donor, or would they attempt to reconcile and jointly parent all four of their children? If not, would Kourtney turn to current boyfriend, 24-year-old Younes Bendjima?
Fatherhood is important. Done right, it’s a role that lasts decades beyond conception, and if Kardashian sees a future with Bendjima, bringing Disick back into the picture seems like asking for relationship trouble. But if you’re a Kardashian, maybe a bit of drama is just the next season of your show.