What happens to frozen embryos that aren’t used during the in vitro fertilization process? Ford reflects on his and his wife’s experience having twins and questions about how to handle the remaining frozen embryos:

“The first option we considered with our remaining embryos was to do nothing. Just leave them on ice and make a decision later. They can stay frozen for a long time—in 2005 a child was born from an embryo frozen 13 years earlier—though our clinic recommends waiting no more than seven years. We asked, ‘What happens if we don’t pay?’ The doctor shrugged. ‘Would you destroy them?’ The doctor shook her head. In my experience fertility doctors shrug a lot. There’s a lot of guesswork. Of course they keep billing you.”