The personality of sperm donors

The biggest ever study on the personality of sperm donors has just been published.

Each was asked to fill out the Temperament and Character Inventory personality scale, also known as the TCI, and the results were compared to a similar group of men who hadn’t whacked off into a plastic tube for the benefit of society.

So who donates sperm?

With regard to personality, we found significant differences on the temperament dimension of harm avoidance between the sperm donors and the comparison group, with lower means for sperm donors. This indicates that the sperm donors described themselves as being less worried, uncertain, shy and less subject to fatigue

Furthermore, we also found significant differences on the character dimensions, where the sperm donors showed higher means on self-directedness. This indicates that they perceived themselves as more autonomous individuals, with a capacity for responsibility, as behaving in a more goal-directed manner, and to be more resourceful and self-acceptant than the comparison group.

The sperm donors also showed significantly higher means on cooperativeness. This means that they described themselves as being more integrated with society and having a greater capacity for identification with and acceptance of other people than the comparison group.

The personality dimensions from the Temperament and Character Inventory have been found to be among the most heavily influenced by genetics, so knowing that your average sperm donor is a generally nice chap is very useful information.

I suspect, however, that ‘not easily fatigued’ may be a selection bias due to the demands of the job.

Link to paywalled study. No chance of a donation then?

6 thoughts on “The personality of sperm donors”

  1. It’s definitely a case of money for food for a service provided senario… no specifics, although we always try to find one or two… and there will always be one or two… weird science… but it keeps us busy and on our toes…

  2. I expect on a self-assessment most men would highlight the qualities they think would show them in the best light. They’re giving sperm, after all, so wouldn’t they want to want to appear emotionally healthy and stable? “Pick me! I’ve got all the traits you want in a sperm donor!”

    I agree with Emmy. I’d like to see a follow-up study on their offspring.

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