It’s Different For People

Okay, so I’m not sure how many readers got the joke in my last post. No immediate comments, so I guess people either didn’t get it, or didn’t think it was funny.

Oh, honey...It’s entirely different for people, though, isn’t it? Isn’t it? Well, my post wasn’t just a gag! The principal more serious point I was also making there is that the scientists and others have always assumed that what was clearly either a seasonal social monogamy, or in the case of some species of birds a lifetime social monogamy, automatically meant there was sexual fidelity too. Clearly, this is not the case and I wonder just how exactly it is mirrored by the behaviour of humans. Pretty closely, I’d say.

In fact, I wouldn’t be very surprised to learn that it applies to almost all superficially monogamous species on our planet. Even such animals as lions, where one male has a number of females in a harem, can’t rely on sexual faithfulness. The male lion has to continuously keep an eye on all his women and frequently has to chase a wayward lioness back into the group when she is sidling off towards distant, usually younger, males. I’ve watched this happen in the wild and seen that he even has to watch the others whilst having sex (which he has to do quite frequently). Copulation, though, doesn’t take long and is very much in the tradition of ‘wham, bam, thank you ma’am’ – where have you come across that attitude before, eh girls?

As the human race has grown to be rather more civilised, those of us who have evolved a little further than others have stopped attempting to maintain a woman’s fidelity by physical force. I’m sorry to say that’s not true of all men and certainly not all cultures by a very long way and that sort of attitude is still far too widespread, but hey, major advancement for our species can be a slow old process at the best of times. However, in many instances, we’ve (men) tried to replace force with guile and have created a culture where female fidelity is somehow seen as sacrosanct in marriage and far less so for men (the old ‘he’s only sowing wild oats’ shit). Fidelity, in evolutionary terms, is really only important to a man since he instinctively wants to spread his genes to the exclusion of others’ and women, I think, tend to want fidelity from their men for entirely different reasons.

I wonder just how much sex and love really are connected at all. They’re certainly not mutually exclusive, but I tend to think that ‘making love’ is not at all the same as having sex. Couples are indeed having sex when making love, but it’s only a component – a vehicle perhaps – for the bonding and caring that is being expressed. Great sex, though, can be wonderful, exciting and tremendously enjoyable, but you don’t have to be in love at all to experience it.

So why do we so often insist that those two individual expressions of joy have to be one and the same? They simply aren’t necessarily connected at all!

picture borrowed from picmax.com
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