When it comes to having children, your personality may play an important part in success, according to researchers in Norway. Using data collected between 1927 and 1968, Norwegian researchers were able to pinpoint personality traits that affected fertility in both men and women. In some countries linking men to the correct number of offspring may be difficult, but in Norway detailed information on all offspring, maternity and paternity are kept.


Based on the study results, men and women who have an extraverted personality are more likely to have children, or in the case of fertility, have an increased likelihood of conception (increased fertility). Researchers also found a connection between openness, conscientiousness and fertility. Women who felt conscientious and men who were more open were less fertile. 

There is little doubt a person’s personality affects relationships and, thus, may affect the potential number of sexual partners, but what happens when a person makes an effort to change their personality? There is no data on people who were once introverted, but chose to live a more extraverted lifestyle later in life. There is also no data supporting the idea of changing your personality to improve chances of fertility. If men and women know certain personality traits may be linked with reduced fertility and they are having fertility problems could changing how you act change fertility, or is there a deeper connection between your natural personality and fertility?

Norwegian researchers went on to claim the results and/or data may be affected by couples choosing to wait until later in life to have children. With age comes decreased fertility for some couples, regardless of personality traits. 

Though the study was completed in Norway, researchers claim many findings such as these are later validated with studies in other westernized countries. 

Source: Vegard Skirbekk, Morten Blekesaune. Personality Traits Increasingly Important for Male Fertility: Evidence from Norway. Article first published online: 5 AUG 2013. DOI: 10.1002/per.1936.

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