Jennifer Aniston has opened up about the difficulties she faced while trying to get pregnant, including media scrutiny, public speculation about whether she wanted children and unsuccessful attempts at in vitro fertilization.
“It was a challenging road for me, the baby-making road,” the “Friends” icon said, according to Allure magazine’s December cover story.
Aniston, 53, told Allure that she went through some “really hard shit” trying to get pregnant in her late 30s and 40s that the public didn’t know about.
“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,” she told the magazine. “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.”
The actor, currently starring in the Apple TV+ series “The Morning Show,” described the infuriating media speculation at the time about how her body looked and what it meant. She said that frustration led her to write an opinion piece in 2016 for HuffPost slamming the media for its fixation on whether she was pregnant, and for the “objectification and scrutiny” it put women through.
“I got so frustrated. Hence that op-ed I wrote,” Aniston told Allure. “I was like, ‘I’ve just got to write this because it’s so maddening and I’m not superhuman to the point where I can’t let it penetrate and hurt.’”
She also called out the false narratives that arose about why she hadn’t had children: that she was “selfish,” that she only cared about her career.
“God forbid a woman is successful and doesn’t have a child,” Aniston said.
The actor said she spent “so many years protecting my story about IVF” 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,” she told Allure. “I feel like I’m coming out of hibernation. I don’t have anything to hide.”
Now, Aniston said, she feels better than ever, and has gratitude for the challenges she went through because “I would’ve never become who I was meant to be.”
Aniston won a Screen Actors Guild Award in 2020 for her work on “The Morning Show,” and has been nominated for eight Emmys, winning one in 2002 for “Friends.” She was married to actor Brad Pitt from 2000 to 2005, and to filmmaker Justin Theroux from 2015 to 2017.