Yeah, I know it’s not even close to Easter and I’m pulling out the corny egg puns. But I wanted to lead with a joke.
Like this one:
Did you hear about the company that pays women employees so they can freeze their eggs?
That almost sounds like the start of a sexist joke. What it purports to be, though, is monetary support for women in the workplace. Last week, Apple and Facebook offered their female employees coverage if they chose to freeze their eggs, so they don’t miss out on motherhood.
It seems so considerate, especially for a corporate giant. So thoughtful that they realized that their women employees’ biological clocks were ticking rather rapidly. It is couched in feminist ideology, seeming to give the woman a choice about when she chooses to conceive.
But, really, who are we kidding? It’s nothing but a thinly-veiled bribe. The company is, in essence, saying ‘Work your behind off for us NOW” with the implicit tagline, “Having a baby is going to screw up your dreams.” Or more to the point: “Having a baby is going to screw with our bottom line.” Paying for maternity leave, finding a temp, the likelihood of mommy not returning to work – those are probably not what HR departments of Facebook or Apple look forward to.
But it should also come with warning labels.
Warning: You will be applying the same technology to your future baby as was used on cattle in the 50s.
Warning: Your energy levels are likely to plummet as you get older. Especially if you’ve worked your behind off for the last decade for a demanding tech giant.
Warning: It may not work. Then what?
Warning: Remember, God makes babies. Not us.
Warning: As you get older, you get more redundant in a trendy workplace filled with recent grads. Wait just until you are more disposable to us.
I don’t believe egg freezing is evil. But corporations intervening in a personal choice under the pretext of leveling the playing field? Now that just makes me plain uncomfortable.
You can’t put babies on hold till it’s convenient. Babies are cute and cuddly – but never convenient. Glass ceilings may be shattered as you work your way to the top, but so may dreams of mommyhood.