Educated Women Are Freezing Eggs Because Of “Missing Men”
Women with master’s degrees and doctorates are freezing their eggs because there are not enough educated men in the world, according to a new study.
Researchers interviewed 150 women who were having their eggs frozen at eight clinics in the US and Israel between June 2014 and August 2016. More than 80 percent of participants had college degrees.
Of the 114 US participants, 47 percent had a master’s degree and 34 percent had an MD, PhD or the equivalent. The findings were recently presented at the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology conference in Geneva. They have not yet been submitted to an academic journal.
“There is a major gap — they are literally missing men,” Marcia Inhorn, lead author of the study and a professor at Yale, said at the conference. “There are not enough college graduates for them. In simple terms, this is about an oversupply of educated women.”
The term “missing men” was adopted from China’s “leftover women” — single women over the age of 27 who are considered by Chinese society to have missed their shot at marriage. Except that “missing men” refers to the lack of men with a college or higher degree.
Inhorn said their findings challenge the idea that women are freezing their eggs merely to prioritize their careers. Many of the women told researchers that the men they’d met were too intimidated by their success, uneducated or were not interested in starting a family.