Do you believe that monogamy is natural or unnatural for humans?

  • Christmas shipping schedule
  • 20% OFF sitewide — Code: ENJOY20

Do you believe that monogamy is natural or unnatural for humans?

El-Jaro El-Jaro
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
Wow I don't know what to say...well I do know what I'd love to say but I can't phrase it in a way that isn't overly emotional. I still choose to believe that the people here at EF truly care about each other and that the print medium ...
OH NO!

I am so sorry! I didn't mean it that way!

I was not thinking of the unique relationship people in poly relationships have. I was thinking more of a person who would get into relationship on top of relationship and cheat on their partner(s) over and over again or just randomly hook up with strangers in the unhealthy kind of way. I've heard people say (in real life and on tv) "I would love to stay true to him/her, but I just can't help it". Ok, I paraphrased that, but that really sums up my point.

Some people can be totally happy in a poly relationship, others are best in mono relationships, and some people just aren't capable of a relationship with anyone.

I am VERY sorry my post hurt your feelings. I didn't mean to, at all. You're absolutely right though, print isn't always the best way to express certain ideas and thoughts. It's easy for things to be taken the wrong way.
08/23/2010
Miss Cinnamon Miss Cinnamon
Quote:
Originally posted by LicentiouslyYours
Setting aside the concept of biology as a defense for cheating, I think we are animals and while we certainly have many higher level abilities that make us clearly more than just animals, we do share appetites—lust, thirst, hunger—with animals and ...
I think the difference between giving into the temptation to indulge in food and drink beyond what is healthy and giving into temptation when it comes to being unfaithful to your partner(s) is how you affect other people. When a person indulges in an extra slab of chocolate cake or skips a day at the gym, she's going to suffer the consequences. Extra pounds, guilt, whatever, she will be the only one suffering from those first hand. But when a person cheats on his partner(s), he's not only getting himself in trouble, he's also hurting his partner(s) by being dishonest and, like Gunsmoke mentioned, breaking a commitment. Sure, in both cases, the people are hurting themselves, but in the latter situation, others are more likely to be hurt as well.

Whether monogamy is "natural" or not shouldn't matter. What matters is that you are honest to yourself and honest to your partner(s), and that everyone involved understands the expectations of the relationship. I think some of us confused "monogamy" with "faithfulness", which is unfortunate but not that surprising considering that the two terms were used interchangeably by teachers when I was in high school. But let's just remember that they are different things

*pronouns are randomly chosen and do not reflect my views on which genders are more likely to overindulge in which "sins". gerroff my back! jeez
08/23/2010
Gary Gary
I was watching a documentary a long time ago where they were discussing this, and the theory of the documentary was that humans males entirely as animals would stick around for about 2 years after the birth of a child. If the couple kept reproducing, it would continually extend this time frame. They also said that the female would mate with as many people as possible to ensure procreation. As an animal, our main priority beyond self preservation is preservation of the species.
08/23/2010
Gunsmoke Gunsmoke
Quote:
Originally posted by Gary
I was watching a documentary a long time ago where they were discussing this, and the theory of the documentary was that humans males entirely as animals would stick around for about 2 years after the birth of a child. If the couple kept reproducing, ...
We're not animals!

We're humans with the ability to reason and plan for the future. At 6 billion and counting I don't think preservation of the species is an issue.
08/23/2010
DONOTSHOPHERETHEOWNERISPSYCHO DONOTSHOPHERETHEOWNERISPSYCHO
Quote:
Originally posted by Gunsmoke
Yep - we're on the same page here. If monogamy is not for you - don't go down that road. But don't kid yourself into blaming it on 'nature', it's simply your chosen preference. Not good - not bad - just is.
This, exactly.

I tire of the argument that humans are not biologically wired to be monogamous. I think that's a cop out. It's an excuse people use to justify their choices, which shouldn't need justification based on other people's choices. Do what you do and be happy about it.

It doesn't have to be either or. It can be both. Just like some people are straight, some are gay, some are bi and any other classification. Some people want monogamy, some want poly, some want to swing. It's so ridiculous to classify things in absolutes.
08/23/2010
Miss Cinnamon Miss Cinnamon
Quote:
Originally posted by Gunsmoke
We're not animals!

We're humans with the ability to reason and plan for the future. At 6 billion and counting I don't think preservation of the species is an issue.
Well, by scientific definition, we are animals. And according to an article in a recent issue of Times magazine, animals aren't exactly mindless, stupid creatures, either. But that's a soapbox for another day.

What Gary is talking about is instinct, which is completely an "animal" aspect that every human being possesses. We are able to reason and plan for the future, sure, but reason must war with "irrational" instinct and desire. And I don't believe instinct makes adjustments for the knowledge that there are too many humans swarming around on the Earth, unfortunate though that may be. Of course, instinct isn't an excuse for anything, simply an observation of "this is what would happen if we didn't give a damn about anything unrelated to our survival".
08/23/2010
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by El-Jaro
OH NO!

I am so sorry! I didn't mean it that way!

I was not thinking of the unique relationship people in poly relationships have. I was thinking more of a person who would get into relationship on top of relationship and cheat on ...
I appreciate you clarifying your point JR. I agree with you 100% that some people simply can't resolve their own lives enough to have a mature relatioship, for instance my Father-in-law and some people seem outwardly to have made it and are miserable with each other like my Parents. You are absolutely right that it takes maturity and wisdom to have ANY relationship and to be ethical and safe in any sexual situation.
I knew you didn't mean to attack me personally and I didn't feel personally attacked. It was an emotional day, it just struck a nerve. Still I love you guys too much to get really pissed off!
Besides I can't be mad when I agree with you especially after you explained what you meant.
08/23/2010
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by DONOTSHOPHERETHEOWNERISPSYCHO
This, exactly.

I tire of the argument that humans are not biologically wired to be monogamous. I think that's a cop out. It's an excuse people use to justify their choices, which shouldn't need justification based on other ...
You just can't put people into a box and declare that ANYTHING is 'natural' for all of them!
Everyone knows queen cats will breed with what ever tom happens to be in the area, right? They will begin when they are first able and continue till they die or get fixed. For most of them this is absolutely true to varying degrees. I owned a cat, however, who would only breed with one specific tom, who waited until her kits were a full year old to breed again and would suckle them until they quit coming to her. She was an intact queen until she went through menopause (she was the best mouser we had on the farm) and lived to be 18 years old. The point I'm making is just because a majority of any group of individuals does something doesn't mean they will ALL do it naturally. In nature the overwhelming evidence seems to be that whatever works is what's natural.
It's a choice and it's more than that, it's a driving choice but int he end it still takes work and commitment to the choice. What's natural is what makes you happy, and keeps you healthy.
08/23/2010
PassionQT PassionQT
Quote:
Originally posted by Gary
I was watching a documentary a long time ago where they were discussing this, and the theory of the documentary was that humans males entirely as animals would stick around for about 2 years after the birth of a child. If the couple kept reproducing, ...
I would think that a male would mate with as many females as possible to ensure procreation, while the female took on the role of nurturer. There is no way I'd want to have as many babies as possible. I would gladly tell my man to procreate with another woman if it was a matter of my health and sanity!
08/23/2010
PassionQT PassionQT
Opening paragraph of the book "The Myth of Monogamy:Fidelity and Infidelity in Animals and People" (by David P. Barash, PHD and Judith Eve Lipton, MD) says:

"Anthropologist Margaret mead once suggested that monogamy is the hardest of all human marital arrangements. It is also one of the rarest. Even long-married, faithful couples are new at monogamy, whether they realize it or not"

"For many people, monogamy and morality are synonymous"... Although my husband and I are not monogamous (open here with a bi husband), we still have morals, agree not enable cheaters, and connect only with those that are on the same level as we are.

We have no problem with people that choose to be monogamous or those who don't. We do have a problem with dishonesty though. Our marriage works because we discuss everything, and I mean EVERYTHING.
08/23/2010
Victoria Victoria
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
You just can't put people into a box and declare that ANYTHING is 'natural' for all of them!
Everyone knows queen cats will breed with what ever tom happens to be in the area, right? They will begin when they are first able and ...
THIS: "What's natural is what makes you happy, and keeps you healthy."
I totally agree with that statement!
08/23/2010
Passionate Pastor Passionate Pastor
Depends what you mean by natural. As a Christian I admit that human nature is corrupted by sin but still believe God made us to be mono.
08/23/2010
DONOTSHOPHERETHEOWNERISPSYCHO DONOTSHOPHERETHEOWNERISPSYCHO
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
You just can't put people into a box and declare that ANYTHING is 'natural' for all of them!
Everyone knows queen cats will breed with what ever tom happens to be in the area, right? They will begin when they are first able and ...
"What's natural is what makes you happy, and keeps you healthy."

That's exactly what I was saying. You are what you are, and when people get so caught up in whether something is natural or normal it winds up hurting a lot of people in the process. If something gets classified as 'normal' or 'natural' that would mean that anything aside from it is abnormal and unnatural. People should spend time focusing on what makes them happy!
08/24/2010
Avant-garde Avant-garde
I think monogamy is unnatural, but what is and is not natural isn't what matters its the reasons behind them. there are many natural things out in nature that human beings reject because we are the only species capable of dictating our own laws. I am monogamous simply because 1 girl is enough, lol, I don't need to deal with more that would be too much. If other people can make other kinds of relationships outside of monogamy work good for them.
08/24/2010
Gary Gary
Quote:
Originally posted by Gunsmoke
We're not animals!

We're humans with the ability to reason and plan for the future. At 6 billion and counting I don't think preservation of the species is an issue.
Well technically we are animals... but that is not my point, and this was also not something that I researched; I was just sharing. I believe that all humans have the power to decide what is right for them and live accordingly.
08/25/2010
Gary Gary
Quote:
Originally posted by PassionQT
I would think that a male would mate with as many females as possible to ensure procreation, while the female took on the role of nurturer. There is no way I'd want to have as many babies as possible. I would gladly tell my man to procreate with ...
I am not saying that any of that is fact, I saw a documentary on the aquatic ape theory too and don't really believe any of that one. Just throwing some ideas into the discussion bowl.
08/25/2010
Darling Jen Darling Jen
I saw some posts arguing about humans being "wired" to think/do/operate in some way and some claiming "instinct". Humans don't HAVE instincts. The closest our species comes to that is the sucking reaction at birth. But that's more an involuntary action. As a species, we survive and thrive from learned behavior alone. Which is why poly can work for some people really, really well and then really poorly for others. We're emotional, intellectually-advance d creatures so it has to appeal to that part of us.

And for a good explanation to "instinct" that I was taught in high school is salmon. Yeah, the fish that swim up stream. When they're born inland in a little creek, they INSTINCTUALLY know to swim downstream to the ocean. No mommy or daddy fishes told them to. There aren't even any adults left (they die after laying eggs) to follow. They just know. And then when they've lived to adulthood and are ready to have babies, they automatically go back to the creek they themselves were born in to lay eggs. Why don't they try somewhere else? Why don't they go the easy route and lay eggs in the ocean instead? Hard-wired instinct tells them they don't have a choice.

And if nothing else, we humans are GREAT at arguing ourselves into and out of things at will.
08/25/2010
Blinker Blinker
I kind of like that humans are monogamous. Sure it brings strife but it brings love and commitment and a point to life. I hate thinking my only job on Earth is to fuck and breed with as many men as possible. I like the idea of finding that one person to share my romantic life with. It may not be reasonable or it goes against nature but lots of things go against nature. Animals get to kill each other, eat their babies, and run around naked.
08/25/2010
Hazzard Hazzard
I think it depends on the individual. Some people are more predisposed to monogamy than others, but even with predisposition, it is a choice you make for yourself.
08/26/2010
~LaUr3n~ ~LaUr3n~
This looks like a heated discussion not worth enough to get into for me. But, I will say that I do believe companionship (not just sexual) is human nature. For some this is stronger than others.
08/28/2010
Persephone's Addiction Persephone's Addiction
Quote:
Originally posted by Tori Rebel
There have been studies done and there is a large population of people who do not believe that monogamy is a natural function for humans. One of the most popular reasons given is that you very rarely see monogamy in nature and since humans are ...
I think that whatever humans do is natural for them to do. I don't think humans were "designed." Maybe I'm biased because I'm a biologist but I think that evolutionarily, I think periods of monogamy were beneficial for the species. Women are particularly vulnerable when they're pregnant, lactating or caring for a young child so it would have been a good thing to have a man around (or, heck, a couple men) to protect and provide for the woman. However, a man having multiple dependent females around wouldn't have been as good of an idea.
Having said all that, our modern social structure allows for all sorts of arrangements. As to whether or not something is "natural" for humans to do - other species aren't capable of doing "unnatural" things, so I am not convinced that humans are, either.
09/05/2010
SeXXXcapades SeXXXcapades
Quote:
Originally posted by Tori Rebel
There have been studies done and there is a large population of people who do not believe that monogamy is a natural function for humans. One of the most popular reasons given is that you very rarely see monogamy in nature and since humans are ...
It's all in how the people feel, it's not for everyone and not everyone's relationship could handle this type of Lifestyle. It takes a lot of communication, trust, and consideration to make it enjoyable for everyone.
09/08/2010
Jesyra Jesyra
If we were truly designed for monogamy we would have natural biological imperatives for BOTH genders that forced monogamy. It is found in nature, albeit rarely, that certain species cannot and will not mate again when their partner has died, or mate with multiple partners. If the human species were truly meant to be monogamous, it would not be a choice, it would be biologically programmed into us as a species.

This isn't to say that people don't have the option to choose any lifestyle they want (and I personally believe people should have the right to choose). However, if nature meant for humans as a species to be solely monogamous (which originally meant one partner, not one partner at any given time) we would have been hardwired for that lifestyle.
09/09/2010
Gunsmoke Gunsmoke
Quote:
Originally posted by Jesyra
If we were truly designed for monogamy we would have natural biological imperatives for BOTH genders that forced monogamy. It is found in nature, albeit rarely, that certain species cannot and will not mate again when their partner has died, or mate ...
OK - one more time. We're not wild animals. Natural selection hasn't been a factor in humans for thousands of years.

We are sentient human beings with the ability to choose. We don't go into 'heat' like other mammals - we choose when, where and whom to have sex with.

We are 'programmed' to choose our lifestyle and benefit or suffer the consequences.
09/09/2010
P'Gell P'Gell
People, humans, can reason. We have INTENT. We do more than just our biology tells us to, although biology plays a part. We INTERACT (most of us) not just REACT with the environment and other humans around us.

When we pair up, there is more to it than convenience or instinct, there is thought and often a Belief System.

Is Monogamy natural? I don't know. I can't answer that. Some people are monogamous, some are not. Some are at certain points in their lives and are not at other points.

I think we at least owe our sexual partners honestly, whether we have only one sex partner or many at one time.

Being capable of Polyamory is sometimes more of a Burden than a Joy, I can tell you that. Constantly fighting with what's "right" or what will keep the peace VS what I WANT at the moment. I wouldn't wish it on anybody.
09/09/2010
Owl Identified Owl Identified
I believed we are socialized, depending on the culture and/or society we participate in, to accept certain sexual behaviors as normative. To me this is a matter of fact and is inarguable.

However, is that natural or unnatural, that we are socialized in any one particular way? That's a matter of opinion. "Natural" is not an easily defined term. Some believe what it "natural" is whatever happens. Others believe that what is "natural" is what is meant to happen ideally in some particular state, and then among these there are millions of factions that differ on what that ideal state might be. The whole notion of what is "natural" has been debated for thousands of years, most recently with post-structuralism and post-modernism. And now...post-post-modern ism apparently...?

I don't know, I hate this stuff!
09/09/2010
Trashley Trashley
Biologically, it's be proven that it's advantageous to stay with one partner throughout life in order to further your offspring and the best genes you could give to them. That's not the case today, and in this world, I think its more natural to be able to get your sexual and romantic pleasure from other sources if you want. :]
09/16/2010
Riccio Riccio
Our ideas are the result of our social formation. What we think is "natural" or "unnatural" comes from our economic relations, so our emotional reaction is not a realible guide at all. If you want a better understanding of the the issue, read Frederick Engels's _Origins of the Family, Private Property, and the State_ (link)

That said, I am a one-woman man. She is gorgeous, smart, funny Marxist and loving. Who needs more than that?
09/19/2010
Gunsmoke Gunsmoke
Quote:
Originally posted by Riccio
Our ideas are the result of our social formation. What we think is "natural" or "unnatural" comes from our economic relations, so our emotional reaction is not a realible guide at all. If you want a better understanding of the the ...
Naked communist - gotta love it - even the poor Russians couldn't stand it for more than 70 years - I say we give it a try - bread lines anyone?
09/19/2010
Persephone Nightmare Persephone Nightmare
Sorry for resurrecting a somewhat dead thread, but I came across it and wanted to answer

I don't think that monogamy is unnatural, but I also don't think that poly relationships are unnatural either. I think it's either just a preference or just how people are born (I'm not sure which, or if it's both that play a factor, lol). I don't remember who said it on this thread, but I believe that both mono and poly relationships are just as natural as hetero and homosexual ones (and all the other -sexual relationships out there like pansexuality, asexuality, and etc, lol).

Personally, for me, I thrive on complete and total heterosexual monogamy with Synthetik and couldn't/wouldn't have it any other way. However, I feel that is just how I was made/my preference, and I do not condemn anyone who is otherwise. What works for Synthetik and I, may not work for others, and the reverse is also true, I'm sure
10/24/2010
Total posts: 233
Unique posters: 188