Tamara Bugembe
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Pediatrician, Tamara Bugembe, 36, from Bromley in Kent is amongst the growing number of women choosing to freeze their eggs.

The hours and commitment needed to become a paediatrician isn’t conducive to finding Mr Right. When I approached 35 and hadn’t met ‘the one’, rather than make a rash decision driven by my ticking clock, I decided to eliminate any pressure and freeze my eggs whilst they’re healthy.

This is especially important to me, as I was born in Uganda and the number of egg donors of black African heritage is very low. Should I need fertility treatment in the future, I’d struggle to find a donor matching my ethnicity.

Once I decided to give myself more options, I saw my GP, but they couldn’t help. Being single I don’t qualify for NHS help and if I return with a partner in the future, by then I’d be too old. They didn’t seem to understand my dilemma, I felt like I should ‘make things easy and just go and meet someone.’

A friend who is a gynaecologist in medical research recommended I look at Oxford Fertility. He advised that they are forward-thinking, very proactive in researching the best new treatments. I looked into Oxford Fertility further, comparing them to other clinics and decided Oxford Fertility was by far the best clinic for me.

The team at Oxford Fertility were all extremely knowledgeable, very friendly and understood my thinking. They took the time to explain the procedure in detail, talked through alternative options to consider, such as freezing an embryo, and shared with me the results seen using the latest egg freezing technology.

I was monitored for two weeks leading up to the egg retrieval, the team watched to see how my body responded to the injections. I also liked being given a telephone number I could call at any time. This attention was especially important as I have polycystic ovaries, a condition which means I’m more likely to experience ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome (OHSS) whilst going through the treatment. In fact I did experience OHSS, but the clinic worked closely with my local hospital to treat this.

I was a little nervous about the egg retrieval procedure itself, but there was no need. It was quick and wasn’t painful. My appointment was 8:30am and I was home by 11:00am.

I am so pleased about my decision. Freezing my eggs gives me so many more options and those around me are happy for me. My parents have always been keen for me to start a family and I can see it’s helped them to relax. I’m now also dating someone and it’s really helped to take the pressure off. It’s enabling us to develop our relationship at our pace – we’re both happy that I have my eggs on ice.

I would encourage all women to talk openly about egg freezing. It needs to be normalised. It gives women more options.

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