Thursday, December 10, 2009

Are Men Capable Of Monogamy?


First off, a BIG thanks to Jouda Mann for his guest post about the Tiger Woods mess. Very interesting take on it, Jouda. You understand men all too well, and I am about to respond to you in my own special way.

Here goes . . . OK, Jouda, and all you other menfolk, I know I'm making a massive generalization here, but guys . . . why can't you be faithful to just ONE woman? Yeah, I know there are women who cheat, too. But if it's such an equal playing field, why aren't they making the headlines right along with you?

This Tiger Woods debacle is just the most recent scandal. Earlier this year, there was Governor Mark Sanford, who admitted to an affair with his Argentinian "soulmate;" and let's not forget David Letterman's very public indiscretions with some of his female staff; in recent years, basketball star Kobe Bryant went to court to defend his philandering ways and presidential contender Jon Edwards cheated on his wife when she had cancer, the creep!; and then there's Sheriff Mike Carona from Orange County, former President Bill Clinton, and on and on. I've lost track of all the rich and famous athletes, entertainers and politicians who have FABULOUS wives and lives, but who have been caught with their pants down, haven't you?

I heard an interesting statistic this morning on FOX News: One in 4.6 men cheat in America. Then the expert wisecracked, "The rest cheat in Europe!" That got the news crew on the set laughing. Funny, but oh-so-TRUE!

What I don't understand is, what EXACTLY do you want from us women, guys? We give you our hearts, our bodies, our trust and our youth; some of us even allow doctors to slice into us to make our boobs bigger and our thighs thinner for you; we build our nests together, share our intelligence and humor and merge our lives with yours; we sometimes put aside our own dreams to help buoy yours; we nourish you, and comfort you and boost your egos and even clean your dirty underwear; and the most bonding and sacred thing of all is that we create LIFE together!

Is that not enough for you?

I understand how men lose all sensibility over beautiful, sexy women. Women get weak in the knees over handsome men, too. But even when men are lucky enough to get beautiful women to marry them -- in Tiger's case, a SUPERMODEL, which is like winning the marital lottery for men -- they eventually seem to lose interest in these goddesses, too.

So it doesn’t seem to be beauty or sexiness you’re after. At least not long-term, which should be a huge relief for all the women out there who are spending wads of cash and undergoing risky surgeries to attract your attention and keep you in their beds. Don’t do it, ladies! You’ll get cheated on eventually, too, especially if you’ve committed yourself to some superficial jerk who places great value in having a sexy bosom by his side.

Personally, I have some serious doubts about whether some men are capable of monogamy. And I'm not alone in my thinking, either. (Read here.) Be honest now, guys. When you stand up at that altar and make a promise to forsake all others and love and cherish only one woman, do you REALLY mean it? Or are you just playing the role that society expects of you?

Perhaps you start out with the best of intentions. Then real life takes over, years go by, stress and responsibilities creep in, passion subsides, you get older, boredom sets in. You miss the great sex. I totally get that. We miss it, too. But I think the difference between men and women is that we believe (perhaps mistakenly) that the emotional and intimate bonds, the life histories, that we have created with our men are stronger than their sexual urges for other partners. They usually are for us women, anyway.

Hey, this is a GIGANTIC topic to discuss and I can’t possibly cover every angle. But I need to know something before I wrap this up. For all you guys who cheat on your wives and significant others, I have an important question for you:

Do you do it for the thrill of the chase or for the chase of the thrill? Think about that for a minute.

Whatever your reason, please do us ALL a favor. If you know in your hearts that you can’t be faithful to one woman, only, FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, don’t marry us! Don’t have babies with us! Instead of saying, “I do,” be honest and say, “I’m sorry. I just can’t. There are too many other women I want to experience.” Think of all the time and heartache and airtime you’ll save everyone.

Or, here’s a more radical idea . . . instead of marrying a woman because she is GORGEOUS (at least in the beginning, until familiarity sets in), how about if you marry for LOVE?? Not lust, but real, true-blue, until-death-do-us-part love? And ladies, the same goes for you. Don’t marry a guy for what he makes, financially (golddigging being a big part of the problem in many cases); marry him for what he is made OF, instead.

I think if more couples married for love and scrutinized their mates for good character -- I mean if they were patient enough to wait to get married until they found partners who, in their eyes, were beautiful on the inside, as well as on the outside -- there would be far fewer public scandals, scorned women and rambling blog posts like this one.

So what do YOU think: Are men capable of monogamy?

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10 comments:

Jouda Mann said...

It's my position that yes, we are capable of monogamy, and in point of fact, I would suggest that we don't cheat all that much more than women do. I think the difference is that women are better at it than men are. Men are spur of the moment, and opportunists.
I think that if the same thing had happened to a woman as what I posited happened with Tiger in my Guest Post, the woman might also have cheated, but in a smarter, more rationalized way. She would have taken two or three weeks to set up something like a weekly yoga or cooking class. She would have done something that gave her a perfectly plausible excuse to be gone every Tuesday. She would have attended somewhat regularly, taking off every few weeks to have a fling, and then the next week she would have gone back to her classes like nothing happened, until her next itch.
Now this might look like I'm trying to shift the blame, and that's not the impression that I'm looking to make. However, I think that perhaps we should look at whether people in general can be monogamous. I'm a cynical person, so my automatic answer is "no", unless we think we're being watched.
Interesting side note: Today's CAPTCHA word (the one you have to type in order to comment) is "hedenest". While it's spelled incorrectly, it sounds very much like "hedonist", and hedonism is what we've been talking about for the last 3 posts. I find that darkly funny.

Anonymous said...

I believe men have an inclination to procreate and are easily visually stimulated by beautiful women. I adopted my wife's daughter from a previous relationship and had three more children with her over 16 years of faithfulness. Only when she became mean-spirited, verbally abusive and unkind did I look for happiness elsewhere. I did not look for physical beauty, but for a pleasant, kind spirit- she may be older than my wife, a bit heavier, and perhaps not a cover girl- (my soon to be ex-wife would be considered better looking by most)but my girlfiend (hopefully future wife) is a kinder person. I told my wife the truth before seeking out my girlfriend. It is extremely difficult to break the traditional family unit, but in fact it was already irretrievably broken. She is not totally at fault, nor am I. Somewhere along the line, we just gave up. It is not always about lust and physical beauty- emotions, caring and appreciation are more important.

Lynn said...

Jouda,

I suppose you're right, that "in general" it is both men and women who aren't capable of monogamy. We're all human, we all err, I get that. Maybe my question should have been, "Are rich and famous sports stars, movie stars, politicians and other men with gigantic egos capable of monogamy?" Because it seems that these guys get a LOT more play at this (pun intended) than their female counterparts.

I also agree with you that women are smarter and more conniving at this cheating game than men. We are SO great at multi-tasking, we could easily figure out how to lead that double life with no hiccups. And still be home in time to make dinner for the family.

That is pretty bizarre about the CAPTCHA word.

Lynn said...

Anonymous,

Thank you for your very honest and open response. I can tell you are a gentle soul, and I am sorry that you had a bad experience with your first wife. Sounds like you deserved better -- and that you were smart enough to go out and find someone else who would show you some love and respect. You were very courageous to do that. And that could be part of this whole Tiger Woods problem -- too many people who are miserable in their marriages don't have the guts to tell their spouses the honest truth. They're afraid of the fallout, what comes next, and yet, they don't seem to be too afraid of spending the rest of their lives in an unhappy situation. What's that saying? "You shouldn't be afraid of dying. You should be afraid of not living."

I'm not sure how realistic this is, but I have always favored contract marriages. I think that two people should stay married for as long as they can bring out the best in that other person and nourish each other. When things start to go sour, when someone starts to get nasty and mean-spirited, as in your case, then it's time to move on and find someone else who will be good for your soul.

But in this very traditional, Judeo-Christian society, that's practically heresy.

Setsuko said...

Men are capable of monogamy...but those who try it are the ones who end up abusive and taking their frustrations out on their wives. Men simply are not capable of love. Never has a man cared whether the woman in his life is laughing or crying outside of the extent that the noise she is making disturbs his peace. They lie and say they are because they know that is the best way to obtain a regular sexual partner without paying for a prostitute. As soon as they get bored of this woman, they move on.

They do experience lust, responsibility, and personal pride. A woman can luck out and find a man who begins the relationship out of lust, and then the responsibility kicks in when she she becomes pregnant. The happiness and well-being of his family then becomes a matter of personal pride: it reflects on his abilities as a man, and he doesn't want to be seen as a failure. In spite of this, he will still cheat, and the lucky woman will never discover it. The men lie about the affairs because they don't want the trouble of loosing their babysitter/cook/housekeeper.

My advice, like yours, is to be like Gene Simmons and Shannon Tweed and just recognize that monogamy doesn't work. They are still together, raising their children and having a fairly normal household. They maintain this by simply not asking or caring who the other person was sharing their bed with the other night. If you don't think you can not care...then don't have a relationship, because it WILL end badly for you.

Anonymous said...

In general, men are incapable of love; they can only fetishize.

--Tara

Anonymous said...

Its because high profile men have more opportunity than high profile women to cheat. Opportunity is the main determination in whether or not a person will cheat. High profile men have more of an opportunity to cheat because thousands of women will throw themselves at a rich and powerful man. Rich and powerful is hard to come by. On the other hand, men care much less about power and status and much more about physical appearances. Attractive women are much more abundant than rich and powerful men- so rich and powerful men will statistically have many more options than even very beautiful women. If the man is a movie star, not only is he rich and powerful, but he is also probably good looking as well. These men have such enormous opportunities to cheat, that it is almost impossible for them to stay faithful. It all comes down to opportunities.

Anonymous said...

Women Are Definately Capable of Monogamy.You find women who abstain from sex for decades after their husbands die or young, beautiful women who abstain from sex for several years until she feels that she has met a good man. Also women who love their husbands are usually monogamous; even if she knows he is cheating....she doesn't cheat. The Majority of Men Are Not Capable Of Monogamy At All. Men are very selfish creatures who will cheat at the drop of a hat, even if they are with a beautiful, kind, supportive woman who is great in bed. Men feel that if they can manage to snag one beautiful woman....why not try to get as many beautiful women as possible (even while they are already in a relationship). Men aren't thankful for the good woman they have. You find Men these days that get married with the Intention of cheating. These are the type of men that cheat during the engagement as well. Even if their wives are Pregnant or Terminally ill, most men will cheat because they are by nature very selfish and don't feel remorse for the things they do to the women and children they claim they love. As long as they can have the thrill of sleeping around, men don't feel guilty about cheating....and they will keep doing it. I think women need to find happiness in themselves and realize that all people have the potential of disappointing you. This way the woman is not completely devistated once the man cheats. The fact is.....that's what most men do anyway. If a woman suspects her man of cheating....she needs to make him use a condom if nothing else so he doesn't give her HIV. She shouldn't have to loose her life because of her husband's selfishness.

Anonymous said...

Men Are Bastards.....Period. There Are No Where Near As Many Women That Cheat Than There Are Men. They Lie Without A Conscious And Will Do Anything To Get Sex. That's really all men care about in the first place. Women need to learn to be better players and get what they can out of men....then move on.

Paula said...

Let's not be too quick to judge men. Don't forget virtually ALL women, including supermodels, lose interest in sex after marriage/commitment. Just because Tiger was married to a supermodel doesn't mean the supermodel was putting out or had a nice personality. It was probably a sexless marriage for many years.