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Q&A: Author Dan Bergner on What Women Want (Hint: Not Monogamy)

Q&A: Author Dan Bergner on What Women Want (Hint: Not Monogamy) via @TIMEHealthland
6:05 PM Jun 06 2013

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Wait, NOT monogamy?!

Most adults in America are in long-term monogamous relationships, and the majority do not appear to cheat, even though there is a lot of divorce.

I think we are clearly socially monogamous [meaning that we raise children with one partner, typically].  This is how many of us, me included, are driven to spend our lives. We want love and want commitment and want to know someone’s there — and again, me too.

I think the real question is what does that say about our sexuality. It doesn’t say that we are naturally made to be sexually monogamous at all, women as much as men. I strongly think that the evidence more and more supports this idea that women are no more naturally, when it comes to sex, made for monogamy than men are.

[And] what I think is really unfair [in the] prevailing vision that women are better suited to monogamy is that within monogamy, [there’s] a kind of self-blame [for women]. Why isn’t this working for me?  It’s not working sexually perfectly because you’re no more designed for this than a man is, whose other desires we all forgive and assume that they’re the norm.

What's being said is not as radical as it sounds, in my view.  He's saying this his research provides reason to question a long-held staunch belief that women's tendency to prefer monogamy is biologically-driven, since his research suggests that it may be socially-constructed, although no less strong or "real."

Makes sense that it's a social construct.

Yes, I think so too, but rather counter-intuitive for many.

Yes, because we want to believe that social constructs and biology are interconnected.

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