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In an era where women are increasingly taking control of their reproductive futures, egg freezing has grown in popularity, with a 30% increase in egg-freezing cycles from 2021 to 2022 alone!  But as with many aspects of modern relationships, this scientific advancement has given rise to new and complex questions. One we hear often: Should your partner contribute financially to your egg freezing journey?

This question, unimaginable just a generation ago, is now a reality for many couples navigating the intersection of love, career, and family planning. It touches on deeply personal issues of autonomy, commitment, fairness, and shared futures, all against the backdrop of what can be a significant financial investment. In this article, we’ll share some of our learnings about paying for egg freezing from our members.

How much does egg freezing cost?

The cost of egg freezing, which can range from $10,000 to $20,000 per cycle (not including storage fees), is substantial. For many egg freezers, it represents a significant portion of their savings or might require taking on debt. In this context, the idea of sharing the cost with a partner can seem appealing, even logical. But it's far from straightforward.

A relationship litmus test

This decision to share the cost of egg freezing is as much about your relationship as it is about fertility. It requires couples to have honest conversations about their future together, their financial situations, and their views on family planning.

Indeed, the question of whether a partner should contribute to egg freezing costs is a litmus test for many aspects of a relationship. It forces couples to confront their level of commitment, their financial compatibility, and their visions for the future.

For Sarah* (names have been changed), a real estate executive in New York, the decision to ask her boyfriend of five years to share the cost of her egg freezing was natural. "We've talked about having kids someday, but we're both focused on our careers right now," she explains. "It felt like an investment in our shared future." Her partner agreed, viewing it as a way to support Sarah's choices while keeping their options open.

But not all couples find the decision so straightforward. Lauren, a startup marketer in San Francisco, grappled with whether to even bring up the topic with her partner. "I worry that asking him to contribute financially might put too much pressure on our relationship," she confides. "Would he expect me to freeze embryos? What if we break up?"

There’s a lot to think through. Should you freeze eggs or embryos? If a relationship ends, what happens to the eggs? Do you need to have a contract? Could contributing to egg freezing create a sense of obligation or expectation that might not otherwise exist? 

The decision to share the cost of egg freezing also intersects with broader questions of gender equality and financial independence. In a world where women still earn less on average than men, is it fair to expect women to shoulder the entire cost of fertility preservation? Or does asking a partner to contribute reinforce outdated notions of male financial responsibility?

Sarah Elizabeth Richards, author of Motherhood, Rescheduled, shared with NPR, "I do think there's a place to say, 'There's a cost to me for staying in this relationship, and it's fair if you help me absorb it.'” 

What matters most is that you feel empowered to make an informed choice that's right for you, whether that means paying for it entirely yourself or seeing it as a shared investment in a future family.

Key conversations to have with your partner

If you're considering asking your partner to contribute to your egg freezing, here are some key points to discuss:

  • Your individual and shared visions for the future
  • Your current financial situations and how this expense fits in
  • How you typically handle shared expenses and major financial decisions
  • Your feelings about fertility, family planning, and personal autonomy
  • If you plan to freeze eggs or embryos
  • What would happen if you were to break up
  • Your understanding of the medical process and its potential outcomes

Remember, there's no universally right or wrong answer. Only the answer that works best for you. We’ve seen it all. The key is to approach the conversation with honesty, empathy, and a willingness to listen to each other's perspectives.

Read more in How to Talk to Your Partner About Freezing Your Eggs

A new approach to funding egg freezing

Cofertility is a human-first, tech-enabled fertility ecosystem that provides people agency over if, how, and when they have babies — today or someday. We have two programs for potential egg freezers:

Our Split program offers women a chance to freeze their eggs for free when donating half of the eggs retrieved to a family who cannot otherwise conceive. If you qualify for the program and decide to donate half of your retrieved eggs, every expense associated with the egg freezing procedure —  medications, supplements, travel if necessary, insurance, and 10 years of storage — are completely free of charge. We don’t even need a payment or credit card up front, as the family you match with covers all the expenses.

Our self-pay Keep program allows women to freeze their eggs and keep them all for their future use. Through Keep, we offer our members partnerships and discounts to lighten the financial load of egg freezing, as well as access to our member community.

Ready to learn about more affordable (even free!) egg freezing with Cofertility? Fill out this quick quiz to learn about our accessible egg freezing options and see if you qualify for our programs — it only takes one minute.