By Meghan Daum
Los Angeles Times.
Here are three things you can always count on: death, taxes and that anything related to motherhood or women’s reproductive choices will stir up enough cultural debate to make everyone forget about death and taxes for a news cycle or two.
And so it’s gone with the Great Egg-Freezing Debate, prompted by Apple’s announcement last week that it would begin covering the cost for its female employees (as well as the female partners of employees) to have their eggs preserved for use at a later date.
Facebook has been offering the same benefit since the start of this year.
On one side, there are the cheerleaders, who see this development as an extension of reproductive freedom for women. On the other side are the alarmists, who see it as subtle corporate control at best and, at worst, the first step along a dangerous and dystopian reproductive path.
Those in the middle have mostly been making the point that if companies are so worried about their workers leaving their jobs or reducing their hours after they have children, maybe they should direct more resources toward things like on-site day care.
For what it’s worth, Facebook is famous for having some of the most family-friendly benefits in Silicon Valley. It doesn’t have day care, at least not for children (it soon will have it for dogs), but like a lot of tech companies, it has enviable perks for employees who add children to their families.
In fact, the egg-freezing benefit was rolled out as part of a larger plan that included things like surrogacy costs and legal fees for single men and LGBT employees seeking to build families through nontraditional means.
If anything, it seems as though Facebook has baby fever _ which kind of makes sense, given that it thrives on parents obsessively posting photos of their kids.