I really feel that monogamy is a concept of whichever religion you were born into, but if you love and respect your partner, should you remain faithful to only them? I think that if you and your partner can agree on an open relationship, or anything of the sort, that is a wonderful thing, but if your partner isn't "down" with sharing, is it wrong to act on your sexual urges that arise outside of the relationship?
EDIT: I was totally misspelling this word lolz! But I also wanna add to this that I see love and sex having nothing to do with eachother. What is your views on the correllation between the two?
Wow, this conversation is much more fascinating than I thought it'd be when I first started looking at it.
I don't think I've ever really considered anything other than monogamy before. It just never crossed my mind that there was any alternative.
Actually, there are a number of good, practical, scientific reasons for some form of monogamy. First, our brain releases chemicals as a result of sex that cause us to bond with our partner. Second, our children need years and years of nurturing to achieve independence--especially in today's complex society. Third, having sex with other people during those years threatens the well being of the children because those brain chemicals may cause the parents to split up. Fourth, infidelity represents a threat to the genetic success of the spouse and as such arouses very strong negative emotions in the spouse, which can and often do result in violence and/or abandonment of the children.
The long and the short of it is that monogamy is meant to protect the children, which was very important in the days before birth control, i.e., most of human history.
Here is an article about the brain chemistry involved:
Polygamy could serve many of the same functions as monogamy with regard to protecting the children, but presents other problems, such as whether one father has the resources to care for all the children produced. More important, polygamy produces an underclass of angry, sexually frustrated males who can become violent. Human societies have exhibited all the different primate sexual patterns, serial monogamy, bisexuality, alpha-male polygamy, etc. So far, none of them seems to be dominant in our natures, but monogamy seems to be the most common, in part for the practical reasons I mention above.
Very good question Becky,
Go to this site -
Men are programmed to be polygamous - each one can sire thousands of children, if given the opportunity.
It's the intelligent, analytical ones that can stay monogamous, the ones that really "love" their partner, but just may lose too much if caught. Cheating has nothing to with love or whatever - in the modern world, it is all about respect.
If men, and the men on this site - were reallllyyyy honest - just scratch the surface of most men, and this is what they really think - Women are an aid to masturbation - Germaine Greer.
Certainly monogamy can work, but it is not the natural state for most men - a man will cheat if he has the opportunity and 99.99 per cent sure he won't get caught by the wife etc, a woman will cheat if her bloke is "not good enough".
It is a complicated business - if you have to get married, don't get married too early. Experience as much as you can before teaming up with somebody - and it doesn't matter how hard you try to make a 'relationship work', it could still up in a ditch. It's the kids that are hurt the most - middle class christian suburbs are the worst for bed hopping.
I agree with you, and to add a bit of pun, I wish to drill deeper.
'Because it's natural' is not an excuse for an adult rational atheist person, just like 'because I failed a test of my faith in God ' is a not an excuse for a religious person. You know damned well the premise of the relationship you are in, and if you do something against it you must face the consequences without blaming some external force. Just because you are atheist does not relieve you of the consequences of your actions even if you can prove that it is not unnatural.
This is a topic that I've discussed with freinds several times over the years. I would agree that the concept of manogamy most likely has it's roots in religion. Prior to formal religions sex was viewed as just that, sex. It was a basic instinct, urge, a want and if you will a need. I do think that for many there are practical reasons for it (manogamy) but as mentioned in the original question I also believe that if both parties of the relationship agree to that relationship being open sexually then that is ok as well. The rub in this seems to come when either one party says that they are ok with it and truely are not or when one party wants it and the other does not. What do you do about the latter? Should the perty that wants to have sex outside of the relationship be manogamist or go with their desire and just not tell? Hmmm?
I enjoy the discussion,