Most people think of IVF as being a medical technique, which uses assisted reproductive technology to help them to have a baby. However, IVF has a very interesting relationship with time as well.
For some couples, IVF helps them to telescope time. Fertile couples have a 20% chance of having a baby in their bedroom if they try on their own. However, if they use IVF technology, they can bump this up to 60% in one cycle ! This is because IVF allows us to grow multiple eggs in one cycle, which means instead of waiting for just one egg to mature every month, IVF allows us to collapse time , and improve their reproductive efficiency. This allows them to achieve their optimal family size when they're young, so they can enjoy parenting more; and also move on with their life more quickly.
IVF also allows us to pause time . Thus, an infertile couple can freeze their supernumerary embryos, and come back and use them even after 10 years .Those embryos will still remain young and fresh , because freezing allows us to suspend all their metabolic activity. An IVF lab serves as Prince Charming , and can wake up Sleeping Beauty when she is ready to get up !
Finally, IVF allows us to expand time horizons as well. Thus, if a young woman wants to pursue a career, it's possible for her to freeze her eggs , so we can put her reproductive options on hold. She than has the additional luxury of waiting , until she reaches her desired status in her professional career ; or finds Mr Right, before starting her family, without having to worry about the ominous ticking of her biological clock or her inexorably declining ovarian reserve.
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