Infertility pp 109-131 | Cite as

Causal Explanations for Infertility

Their Relation to Control Appraisals and Psychological Adjustment
  • Howard Tennen
  • Glenn Affleck
  • Richard Mendola
Part of the The Springer Series on Stress and Coping book series (SSSO)


Infertility offers an ideal opportunity to examine people’s cognitive adaptation in the face of threat. First, it is a major life event that is an impediment to a developmental milestone, the transition to parenthood (Belsky, Spanier, & Rovine, 1983; Hobbs & Cole, 1976). The magnitude of this threat is captured in the following spontaneous descriptions offered by our research participants:

I think it’s the worst experience of my life. The only other tragedy I can compare it to in my life was when my father died, out of the blue...

Devastating, frustrating, painful, rageful. As many negative adjectives I could think of to describe it. It’s not an experience I would wish on anyone.


Psychological Adjustment Causal Explanation Primary Control Causal Attribution Infertile Couple 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Howard Tennen
    • 1
  • Glenn Affleck
    • 1
  • Richard Mendola
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Connecticut School of MedicineFarmingtonUSA

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