Central to my views on the relationship dynamics between men and women, are our innate drives and motivations. So, allow me to build a picture for you, that you may better understand, even if just at a basic level, the data that informs my views.
We are products of evolution, and the selection pressures that have shaped men and women go far beyond just our physical traits. Our brains, and by extension, our cognition and behavior, have also been shaped by this process. Most relevant to my interests, and the things I write about, are men and women’s differing reproductive strategies. “Differing” can be an understatement though, since these strategies are oftentimes in outright conflict with each other.
In brief, men’s reproductive strategy is to inseminate as many of the most attractive females they can manage (What’s attractive to us, both men and women, are in actuality markers for biological fitness. Here’s an entertaining crash course, cut into clips. If you can find it, watch it. It’s no longer on Netflix).
When we get to women’s reproductive strategy though, it…gets a little more complicated.
Some have called women’s reproductive strategy dualistic. One side is concerned with acquiring the commitment of a competent provider (If you hadn’t noticed, even in modernity, it’s difficult for a woman to provide for herself while expecting, and then while caring for the incredibly needy child, several years after its birth), while the other side is concerned with acquiring the seed of the most attractive male around (a male that will provide her with a child that will not only have a higher likelihood of survival, but also of attracting the opposite sex and reproducing). Where most people get lost, is the part where it is stated that, often enough, this means that women are acquiring the fit seed and the provisioning from completely different men.
Don’t believe it? Well, According to the research, the human population is descended from twice as many women as men (take your pick of links, there are plenty). This means the majority of men have lived and died without successfully reproducing, and unless you believe in fairy tales, you know that human females are not parthenogenesis-capable. So how is this possible? Because, throughout our history, a minority of men have done exactly what I explained above: Inseminated as many women as they could manage. These men, however, did not provide for every child conceived…
A part I left out from my description of men’s reproductive strategy, is that it includes trying to get away with providing for as few of these children, and their mothers, as possible. Ironically, this seems to be facilitated by women. When they’re at the most fertile stages of their cycles, women are most interested in short flings with physically attractive, masculine men (men that are, conversely, the least interested in sticking around and taking on the provider role). Someone has to pay the tab at the end of the night though, and all of those men who never get to reproduce (probably ’cause they’re not the type fancied by ovulating women) are ripe for swindling! It was found that in 30% of all paternity tests, the men tested are not the biological father (here’s something fun, just for kicks). From this, it’s been extrapolated that anywhere from 10 to 40% of all children are raised by men who’ve been deceived into believing they are the fathers. Ouch!
There’s a ton more to say on this subject, but this will do for my purposes (If you like this stuff, I really recommend getting yourself Sex at Dusk). So, to review: Men’s driving motivation is to [fuck] as many of the most attractive females possible, and women’s driving motivation is to secure the commitment of the best provider and [sex] from the most attractive male possible…each being different men if need be.
…Now do you see why I’m as cynical as I am about relationships?
Stay tuned for my revamped Committed Man post[s]. Now that I have this out of the way, I’m ready to crank that out. Catch you later…
– Jack The Realist