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Are You Open or Private? How Your Personality Affects How You Handle Infertility

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Infertility is an equal opportunity problem. It impacts people of all walks of life, all ethnic and religious groups, and all personality types. You can be an “open person” and encounter infertility or you can be a “private person” and be infertile. Your personality style -- especially when it comes to openness and privacy -- will surely affect your experience during infertility.

Here are some observations of the “open” and the “private” when it comes to infertility.

Open people generally value being open. They like this quality in themselves. Many have found that their openness helps connect them to other people. There’s always lots to say, lots to talk about and many opportunities for common ground. It’s all good, right?

It’s all good as long as you don’t find yourself with a Greek chorus of on-lookers, commenting on (and questioning) every detail of a fertility treatment cycle — how many follicles are growing, the date of a retrieval, the number of embryos transferred, early positive pregnancy tests.

To their surprise, “open” people often find that they have provided others with too many details. Although their friends, family and acquaintances are responding appropriately by asking questions and remaining updated, it can begin to feel like too much sharing.

Another pitfall for “open” people comes when they face information that could or should be private. Take, for example, the decision to pursue egg donation. “Open” folks sometimes get into a “tell all” mode when discussing the possibility with friends and family members. Then, when they find themselves ready to actually try egg donation, there comes an unexpected longing for some privacy. In this scenario, they may want to wait until they are holding a real, live baby in their arms before telling others of the choices they have made.

Which brings us to the “private“ people …

Private people, sometimes, are not necessarily proud of being private: They simply believe it is the way they need to be. These are the folks who see no reason for sharing personal information with others.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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