Poly or Mono by nature?  

rm_Kallisti_5 37M
83 posts
7/19/2006 11:30 pm

Last Read:
6/6/2011 2:16 pm

Poly or Mono by nature?

From a discussion on Jazzwolfsex about if men or women are naturally polygamous or monogamous. Her friend said that men are poly, woman are mono. I suggest:

Like most armchair discussions about sex, your friend was just pulling stuff out of his butt. For one thing, it's awful advantagous for a man to say, "Oh, well, all men are polygamous! Getting lots of pussy is in our nature! No so with you womenfolk, though. They're happy with just the one dick--unless there is something wrong with them."

I think, from a scientific point of view, it's the classic false dicotomy between nature and nurture. That *either* sexuality is socially contructed or naturally sex by genetics. Rather, it seems to be pretty maleable, and has elements of both.

For one thing, ALL manner of relationship has been both practiced AND normalized through human history. We've had male harem polygamy, female harem polygamy, strict monogamy, loose monogamy, communal sex, and everything in between. Shit, even among a homogenous group like Americans, we see polyamorists, monogamists, swingers, daters, fuck buddies, gay marriage, and everything in between. Hell, here in Minnesota, the epitome of "white middle class Luthern/Catholic lights off missionary style once a week", we are having legal problems trying to figure out how to standardize the patriarchal polygamous marriage practices of our Hmong refugees.

And what have we learned? That everyhing works, and nothing works. Gay people fight. Straight people fight. Open relationships fall apart. Monogomists fall apart. It seems that the three greatest indicators, regardless of sexual style, of if an "arrangement" works is A ) Financial security B ) Education levels and C ) communication.

So our dating style is just a construct? No. It's biological, too.

Men and women, GLBTQQA, green, blue, or red cheat. And stay together. What gives? Well, again, part of it is in the genes. We can all agree that a child is most likely to live to the age of propogation (the gold standard for evolution) in a stable environment, in which a number ( two? Why not. ) of adults pool resources into raising the child. Grand. We can see why people have an intrest to find a stable mate and keep them there. But at the same time, evoltion seems to want to "hedge its bet", and get a chance on the side, probably by spreading the seed, either by fucking a strong man that is not the primary, or seeing a woman on the side. Though you are not pouring your resources into your bastard, it's still good to know you have a "plan B".

Even the physical act of sex reflects this. Intercourse, the pumping action, may work to do just that--pump, as in, some other guys cum out. Additionally, The Scientists have found that some sperm actively work to form a defensive barrier around the egg to prevent some other guys sperm from interferring.

( But, Kallisti, I hear you ask, what about the GLBTQQA community you spoke of?! Well, animals have been found to show occational homosexual activity. They assume that it helps mantain social cohession )

So, anyway, this may all be crap. But at the very least, know that there are only two things at work here: Society, which is correct so long as it gets the job done, and your own impulses. That's it, as near as I can tell.

rm_loneremily 34F
328 posts
7/20/2006 12:50 pm

Does your conscience play into your impulses?

This is a subject that, I too, take a great interest in. Unlike your partner, for a life-long match; I see myself in a more traditional sense of monogomy. Why? I pour a lot of time, energy and emotion into my lovers. This is why when one decides he wants to see enough of me to live with me, procreate, and spend MOST of his free time with me... I become territorial.

The very idea that I (moi?) can not satisfy my man has been, and will always be the greatest insult that can ever be dealt.

Do I enter his space? Constantly ask wher he's been? Who he's with? No. If he's mine it's because I trust him and feel the communication is solid.

With me, if he cheats (or just has profiles on sex sites but doesn't get any responses)... No more relationship. The trust is broken.

When I ask others how they see it--they think I'm too hard on guys. They are this way, naturally. According to psychology; the male in monogomous relationships (even those of other species, like prarie dogs) have been more inclined to practice infadelity.

This doesn't mean that ALL men are like that; but they are creatures of opportunity. If opportunity arises, they will take it.

I was moronic enough to believe a man when he said he wasn't like that (he was different from the norm in so many other ways, right?).
Very foolish of me. The feelings I had about men in high school still ring true; not to be trusted. They treat me like an object; I will treat them the same way.

rm_Kallisti_5 37M
130 posts
7/20/2006 3:38 pm

Personally, I see "conscience" to be, again, a biological (evolutionary) and sociological construct. It keeps us agents (to use the language of ethical theory) productive.

As for the concept of "satisfying" a man so he doesn't cheat, again, I think that's a falsehood. Even fully happy men (AND WOMEN) cheat. It's, as you've noted, biological. Cheating, or non-monogomous encounters, to lose the value-laden term, simply increases the chance of propogation of a genetic strain.

It is, however, a mentally chosen action to do so or not to do so, which is influenced by relationship factors ( "Honey, don't fucking screw around on me." ) or social expectations ( "Slut." ), and so, if you believe in agent morality, as we all do, sure, cheating is bad, and it sucks that it happened to you. Still, I dissapprove of the connotations in your comment. HUMANS cheat, men and women alike, and even still, only SOME men and SOME women do so. I suppose you could take the dim view, that biology will win out over personal ethics and partner requests, and the like, but I don't. Or, at the very least, I would expect you to damn people equally. Not to do so seems offensive to me, as you target men (which I am) for your mistrust and scorn.

rm_loneremily 34F
328 posts
7/20/2006 9:08 pm

It wasn't a personal insult, friend. I realize my problems lie within.

rm_Kallisti_5 37M
130 posts
7/20/2006 10:03 pm

Oh, I didn't take it personally, of course. Just as a member of a group.

And don't worry--this is all just bullshit theory anyway. The real fact is that there are all so many variables, actual behavior is both easy and impossible to predict.

rm_loneremily 34F
328 posts
7/22/2006 3:17 pm

Also--I didn't mean to discount women. In re-reading I notice it sounds that way.
I also have a profound mistrust for my own gender. That's why I am a loner.

rm_Kallisti_5 37M
130 posts
7/23/2006 2:21 pm

Well, shit, girl, you need to stop trusting yourself, too! Complete the the circle!

I never trust anything I say, nor do I take anyone's advice, including my own, just for the sake of continuity.

Of course, that could explain a lot...

rm_loneremily 34F
328 posts
7/26/2006 9:25 pm

I don't take my own advice, either. It isn't that it's bad advice--it's just that... I don't really LIKE being a loner; hence... Sometimes I have to let the guard down in order to maintain social interaction.

Because I'm not GOOD at social interaction (see above), I usually end up burning myself.

Stop playing with fire? Or watch as the flames dance accepting a charred finger for the memories... I choose memories, don't you?

complexlysimple 35M

8/16/2006 7:14 pm

Sounds like you've got an idea going there... though I think I'd change 'education level' to 'ability to adapt' if it was me, but the point is definitely made.

Although I think I remember reading about sparrows(?) that choose one mate for raising offspring and go find another to actually breed with (it's kind of sad that behaiour of other animals is the closest we can get to really scientifically observing human interaction)

rm_Kallisti_5 37M
130 posts
8/18/2006 12:44 pm

Actaully, the education level bit is true. According to some study or another, the highest correllation to success of marriage (lowest divorce rate, though not necessarily a function of monogamy) was the education level of the woman. I dropped the sex, though, to try (unverifiably) universalize it.

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