The western society is quite adamant about monogamy. They cannot imagine themselves sexually involved with a single person only throughout their lives.
We live in a world where monogamy is considered a norm but just look around and you will see the rest of the world acting differently. Animals, for instance, are not monogamous at all. I know it’s a bad example and I shouldn’t be comparing a human being, the possessor of intellect, with an animal. Since animals are almost close to humans, it makes it easier to understand.
Some people like monogamy and it works for them too but we all know it opens doors to infidelity. Even though 90% of us consider cheating to be morally wrong, we still either think of it or end up cheating. This approach has raised the question ‘Are we really designed to be monogamous?’
A study conducted by the University of Oklahoma and published in Sexual and Relationship Therapy says older individuals who were in non-monogamous relationships were happier, healthier and sexually active than those who were in a relationship with people of similar age.
What do relationship experts have to say about monogamy?
Christopher Ryan, Ph.D. says that humans were not sexually monogamous species. We rarely have one sexual partner throughout our life. Having one partner at a time is not monogamy, it is actually polygyny. Human beings have the desire to experiment and hence they don’t limit themselves to a single sexual partner their entire lives.
Stephanie Coonz, a teacher, and an author, has different views. She says humans weren’t meant to be monogamous or polyamorous. We have the impulse towards both but our ultimate decision is dictated by our culture. The cultural standards for monogamy differ across the world. Since there are lots of opportunities for sexual or romantic relationships, different people make different choices.
David P. Brash, an author, and a university professor says human beings are not naturally inclined towards monogamy and monogamy is just a creation of the human society. There are a variety of biological reasons why both men and women are inclined to seek multiple sexual partners. It gets complicated when you are living in a society that opposes non-monogamous relationships.
What does science have to say about monogamy?
In the animal kingdom, monogamy is very rare. Most of the mammals mate and then separate from each other. Males leave the females to take care of the kids and they keep breeding.
The animal kingdom has witnessed polyandry too. One female has multiple male partners like in the case of tamarins. There is also polygyny in the Animal kingdom. One male has multiple females. There is monogamy too and gibbons are a good example of that.
In a nutshell, science says by nature, human beings are polygamous. However, one woman marrying multiple men is very rare. Marriage of one man to more than one women is widely accepted and practiced in our society today and in the past. In fact, 80% of the early human societies were polygamous.
The practice of non-monogamy in the present
It seems that young Americans have started accepting non-monogamous relationships. They are more welcoming to it than their parents who would rather use some sort of spying tool (which in the modern days we call a monitoring app such as Xnspy) to keep an eye on their partner over one late trip from work to home.
According to a poll, 5th of the people under 30 years had a sexual activity with someone other than their partner and their partner were aware of it. The results aren’t surprising at all because people under 30 are usually not married and they are still in search of a partner. The hookup culture set by dating apps like Tinder is already there to help us find temporary sexual partners and lots of people are doing it. This doesn’t make them non-monogamous since they are not in a committed relationship yet.
The truth is, 68 percent of Americans are still not ok with their partner having multiple sexual relationships. Live Science says only 5% Americans are ok with maintaining a consensually non-monogamous relationship. If there is any sexual activity conducted outside of marriage, so far it’s cheating.
Okay, monogamy is not natural, but non- monogamy is not as widely practiced as widely as it is talked about. It’s a complicated thing and you have to follow certain rules to make it work. The key components of an ethical non-monogamous relationship are trust and communication.
It is pretty easy to do something that comes naturally and so animals practice non-monogamy all the time. Perhaps that’s what makes human beings different. They have the ability to practice things that are not natural like monogamy, which is apparently a social impose culture.