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Objectives. The study was designed to explore whether the suggestion arising from previous research, that women experience greater distress than their partners with regard to infertility investigations and treatment, is real or illusory. It is argued that findings from previous research reflect recognized gender differences in rates of distress rather than being fertility related and that infertility-specific reactions can only be meaningfully explored with standardized measures administered in a longitudinal design. Design. Data were collected on a range of standardized measures relating to personality and psychopathology in two separate samples which were assessed longitudinally. Method. The first sample consisted of 130 couples presenting at an infertility clinic, 116 of whom completed a range of measures at the time of their initial consultation and again some 7 months later. The second sample consisted of 150 couples presenting for their first IVF treatment, they completed a comparable range of measures at the time of the first clinic consultation, some 6 weeks later and again at the completion of their first treatment cycle. Results. The anticipated gender differences on all measures for both samples were found but the scores showed few deviations from available normative data for either males or females and there was no evidence of a differential increase in infertility attributable distress scores for women over time. Indeed, scores on the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) declined between assessments with scores for women showing a greater decline over time than scores obtained by men. Conclusion. It is argued that the claim women react more adversely to infertility than their partners is overly influenced by outdated gender stereotyping and is unsupported by research data.