Jennifer Aniston Opens Up About IVF And Her Fertility Struggles: 'I Don't Have Anything To Hide At This Point'
Friends actress Jennifer Aniston spoke candidly about her struggles with in vitro fertilization (IVF), saying the years of tabloid speculation while she was trying to get pregnant were "really hard" on her emotionally.
In an interview with Allure, the actress—who currently stars on Apple TV's Emmy Award-winning The Morning Show—said she feels "the best in who I am today, better than I ever did in my 20s or 30s even, or my mid-40s."
\u201cIntroducing our December cover star, #JenniferAniston. \nShe has spent most of her adult life in the spotlight, with all its glare. At 53, she opens up about her path to leaving regrets and some deeply personal pain behind. https://t.co/2x254s1EWk\u201d— Allure (@Allure) 1668000329
Aniston, 53, added that she went "through really hard s**t" during her 30s and 40s "and if it wasn’t for going through that, I would’ve never become who I was meant to be." She nonetheless noted that she feels gratitude despite the rocky experiences.
Even better: She's more comfortable in her skin.
"Otherwise, I would’ve been stuck being this person that was so fearful, so nervous, so unsure of who they were. And now, I don’t f***ing care."
Although she did not provide a timetable, Aniston revealed that she was trying to get pregnant at one point and that the process was "challenging."
"All the years and years and years of speculation … It was really hard. I was going through IVF, drinking Chinese teas, you name it."
"I was throwing everything at it. I would’ve given anything if someone had said to me, 'Freeze your eggs. Do yourself a favor.'"
"You just don’t think it. So here I am today. The ship has sailed."
On the plus side, Aniston says said she has "zero regrets" and feels "a little relief now" that she can no longer get pregnant. But she noted that tabloid speculation really impacted her life due to a "narrative that I was just selfish" that persisted during her first marriage to actor Brad Pitt and her second marriage to actor Justin Theroux.
"And God forbid a woman is successful and doesn’t have a child."
"And the reason my husband left me, why we broke up and ended our marriage, was because I wouldn’t give him a kid."
"It was absolute lies. I don’t have anything to hide at this point."
Aniston said the constant speculation and invasion of her privacy left her feeling very "frustrated" and that she "spent so many years protecting my story about IVF":
"I’m so protective of these parts because I feel like there’s so little that I get to keep to myself. The [world] creates narratives that aren’t true, so I might as well tell the truth. I feel like I’m coming out of hibernation. I don’t have anything to hide." ...
"I have had to do personal work that was long overdue, parts of me that hadn’t healed from the time I was a little kid. I’m a very independent person. Intimacy has always been a little here... I’ve realized you will always be working on stuff."
"I am a constant work in progress. Thank God. How uninteresting would life be if we all achieved enlightenment and that was it?"
She also revealed that she's ready to have a relationship with the right partner, though that would not have been possible had she not taken the time to work on herself.
And while she's not necessarily "interested" in marriage, she would "love a relationship":
"Who knows? There are moments I want to just crawl up in a ball and say, ‘I need support.’ It would be wonderful to come home and fall into somebody’s arms and say, ‘That was a tough day.’”
Many have praised Aniston for speaking so candidly and criticized societal expectations that violated her privacy.
\u201cJennifer Aniston - who the childfree community often used as a celebrity childfree example - recently revealed that she tried to have kids, but couldn\u2019t. Her personal situation is still an example of why demanding to know why a woman has no kids is invasive, rude, & crass.\u201d— ChildfreeGirls (@ChildfreeGirls) 1668002057
\u201ctabloids FOR YEARS made up that she was pregnant and after this all time she never became pregnant because she couldn\u2019t JENNIFER ANISTON DESERVES AN APOLOGY\u201d— nami :) (@nami :)) 1668007426
\u201cI genuinely love her so much, and it sucks that while she was going through this she had to watch her image being plastered all over gossip mags with headlines about being pregnant/not pregnant/etc. \n\nHot tip: women: speculating on women\u2019s fertility is a hideous thing to do.\u201d— Jess McGuire (@Jess McGuire) 1668025165
\u201cPeople called her selfish for not having children?!? The fact is, a lot of people selfishly have children so they can feel loved or to give themselves or their lives \u201cpurpose.\u201d Sometimes not having children is an incredibly unselfish act.\u201d— bexy11 (@bexy11) 1668033234
\u201cThis is why we don't ask questions of people about when they're having kids or "what they're waiting for" etc.\u201d— Mikala Jamison (@Mikala Jamison) 1668033236
\u201cNot sure why but hearing this painful and truly walls down away with the comedy side of Jennifer Aniston is really gut wrenching to me. I love you so much, Jen\ud83d\udc9c You\u2019re so beautiful and worthy inside out.\u201d— Blood Red Beats (@Blood Red Beats) 1668070392
\u201cI think it\u2019s sad that the endless speculation on Jennifer Aniston reproductive system has made her come out now.But we should be keeping our noses out of peoples wombs & private lives!!! \n https://t.co/LsKkh4s6Z9\u201d— Senator Erin McGreehan (@Senator Erin McGreehan) 1668100415
\u201cSee, this is why continuously speculating about women (esp celebs, who live in the public eye) being pregnant is such an unnecessary pressure. It fucks with our minds. No one should be allowed to dictate our bodies except for us.\n\nI pray for Jennifer Aniston\u2019s constant healing.\u201d— \u06df (@\u06df) 1668039741
\u201cI don\u2019t understand why the press are like this because it\u2019s none of their business wether she was pregnant or not. Imagine how much it hurt her to see that she was supposedly pregnant and she was struggling with fertility!\u201d— Abs \ud83d\udc99 mcfc (@Abs \ud83d\udc99 mcfc) 1668066252
\u201cAlso, re: Jennifer Aniston\n1\u20e3 Women do not owe society children. EVER. And Aniston should not have to open up about her IVF experience to justify not having children.\n2\u20e3 Stop speculating about people's fertility. IT'S NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.\nhttps://t.co/wSd5MuFyLq\u201d— Melissa Boles (@Melissa Boles) 1668024929
Aniston will next appear in The Morning Show's third season, which is slated to drop sometime this fall.
A sequel to her 2020 hit Murder Mystery—in which she co-starred with actor Adam Sandler—is currently in post-production and will hit movie theaters in February 2023.