Freezing embryos, delaying parenthood

The Takeaway

This story was originally reported by PRI’s The Takeaway. For more, listen to the audio above.

Gillian and Paul St. Lawrence have been married for 10 years, but they’re not quite ready to have children. “We wanted to wait to the point where we were read to give children the time we wanted to give them,” Gillian St. Lawrence told PRI’s The Takeaway, “but also have the financial resources that would enable us to do that and enable us to give a child everything we want to give them.”

Instead of simply waiting to have children, the couple decided to freeze embryos now, to use them at a later date to have children. According to Ms. St. Lawrence, they decided it was “the ideal time to take our genetic material and freeze it, and then use it later for the ideal time for us to be parents.” They estimate they’ll be ready in about 10 years.

The In Vitro Fertilization method they used by the St. Lawrences is often used to overcome fertility issues. The couple, however, is using it for timing and convenience.

The procedure will cost some 20,000 dollars for fertilization, doctors and other expenses. Considering the higher likelihood of complications involved with pregnancies among older people, Ms. St. Lawrence believes freezing the embryos now could actually be cheaper. She added, “It’s not like having children is cheap by any mean.”

Ms. St Lawrence says that she and her husband are simply doing what’s best for themselves and their future children. She told The Takeaway:

We’re trying to control the things we can control, like finances and the time you have available to give a child. You control that part, and then you have the freedom to enjoy a child and the freedom to let a child enjoy their life. Without those stresses there, then you can take on the chaos that obviously a child would bring into your life. And then it’s going to be more enjoyable for everyone involved.

“The Takeaway” is a national morning news program, delivering the news and analysis you need to catch up, start your day, and prepare for what’s ahead. The show is a co-production of WNYC and PRI, in editorial collaboration with the BBC, The New York Times Radio, and WGBH. More at

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