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Sex and attachment

Did the image above get your attention?

Male motivation is tied to sexual reproduction and men are motivated primarily by sexual urges to mate with a female, right?

Wrong… it’s more complex than that.

As far back as 1941 Scottish psychiatrist Ronald Fairbairn found that the desire for attachment in human beings, in terms of the overall psychobiological economy, is a more important necessity than the desire for sexual pleasure and reproduction.

This scientific finding, not controversial in the field of psychology, presents something of a heretical view to some of today’s Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW) who, by contrast, seem to have come in recent years to believe that males are chasing sexual reproduction only — which, oddly enough, seems similar to the stereotype of the “all men want is sex” misandrist paradigm we’ve all come to find so annoying.

Fairbairn’s proposition is now many decades old, but his findings heralded a Copernican revolution within the world of scientific research that would culminate in today’s attachment sciences; it moved the discussion beyond the reductionist sexual theories of Darwin and Freud and into new areas–more complex, more subtle, more nuanced, and ultimately more human.

The question attachment scientists explored is: why do couples continue to stay with each other years after producing offspring, and indeed sometimes for decades after all sexual activity has ceased in relationships? The answer is because human beings are pair bonders who get more out of attachment than they do out of fucking.

Since Fairbairn, studies have confirmed that humans possess an array of distinct motivational systems each in communication with the surrounding environment. Of those systems two are singled out as particularly powerful in motivating humans to form relationships – the sexual urge (eros), and -separately- the urge to attach. Of these, attachment is quite simply the most important to the continued survival of the individual. This cannot be overstated: attachment is the more important to individual survival.

As studies reveal, an absence of close and consistent human attachment causes children to literally wither and die, refusing to thrive even when being provided with clothing, food and an adequate number of toys. Children need reliable and consistent relationships in order to thrive. Likewise adults literally sicken both physically and mentally, and often commit suicide, to escape feelings of isolation and loneliness, especially after a relationship separation.

A lack of sexual contact on the contrary is not as life threatening; you will never see someone die simply because they didn’t get to fuck with the opposite sex and reproduce. I would think that seals the case about what is really important to both men and women. Survival of the species depends on sex; survival of the individual depends on the vital bonds of attachment.

What does all this mean to Men Going Their Own Way?

Well, it means that we need to evaluate separately our attachment needs and our sexual needs, and avoid the common mistake of conflating them; especially if that conflation sees us rejecting both when in fact it may be only one of these causing most of our relationship angst. It may turn out that attachment and sex both need to be rejected, however that cannot be determined until we consider each factor separately and thoroughly.

In our psychobiological economy, various desires come into conflict with one another, each jostling for momentary supremacy where one imperative will usurp the claims of another. That game has reached a problematical impasse during the last 800 years because, during that (historically relatively short) time span, human culture has thrown the weight of its patronage into developing, intensifying and enforcing sexual gamesmanship (yes, including hypergamy) to the degree that our sexual compulsions appear pumped up on steroids and taken to extremes never before seen in the human animal (myths about widespread Roman orgies notwithstanding).

If we lived back in Ancient Greece, Rome or anywhere else we would view sex as little more than a bodily function akin to eating, shitting and sleeping – a basic bodily function without the hype. After the Middle Ages however it developed into a commodity to pimp and trade, and the new cult of sexualized romance that arose resulted in a frustration of our basic need for attachment – a frustration aided and abetted by social institutions placing sexual manipulation at the centre of human interactions.

During these fairly recent centuries of increased hypergamy and sexual focus, our drive to pair-bond continues to shout its demands even while being neglected. Observe for example the not-infrequent feelings of disillusionment and loneliness of serial partner upgraders (hypergamy) or of promiscuous gamers, or consider a beautiful young woman living in her mansion with an aged but wealthy husband to whom she has little or no emotional attachment; even if she is getting sex on the side her loneliness can eat away at her sense of contentment. These examples reveal an urgency surrounding attachment when it is neglected for the sake of secondary sexual or power gains.

Like men, women desire secure attachment beyond whatever sexual advantages they can and do exploit. However their hypergamous compulsions tend to get in the way and frustrate their powerful need to pair-bond. From the Middle Ages all the way to today we read of men and women bitterly disillusioned by the interference of hypergamy in the desire to form stable pair-bonds. Read for instance the bitter, antifeminist complaints of 12th century Andreas Capellanus or those of 14th century Christine de Pizan, or the disillusionment and ultimate rejection of the benefits of hypergamy in later works like Madam Bovary. These authors knew full well that sexualized romantic love had upset the balance of attachment security for both men and women alike.

The question those of us who consider ourselves MGTOW must ask ourselves is this: can our human need for attachment be indulged without men and women succumbing to the destructive manipulations of the modern sex code? As we stand atop our MGTOW mountains of freedom, rightly rejecting women and culture as bastions of exploitation, have we intellectually thrown out the attachment baby with the exploitation bathwater?

Sexual games need not get in the way of healthy attachment, so why should we live without relationships? Well no one ever said we had to, but in recent years I’ve sensed a trend both within and without the MGTOW community (which I’ve long been part of) that foregoing “relationships” is a necessary part of the deal.

This does not seem a prudent attitude to be cultivating, especially in young men who may now be reading about MGTOW philosophy and making extreme decisions about their lives; refusing to marry, cohabit, or procreate does not require a cutting off from human society. Even if we don’t suicide from loneliness (as so many men do) we need to question if the absence of an intimate relationship in our lives can leave us limping, or somehow unfulfilled. Some will say no, and some of these naysayers may well be what are known as ‘avoidant attachers.’ Of those who would say yes, some might recommend we fill our intimacy void with friendships, which is I think a very good starting point. But this leads to a further question of whether there is an adequate formulation of friendship that can satisfy our needs in a modern context – a relationship that doesn’t rely on the usual corruption at the core of sexualized romantic love.

These questions lead to an exploration of adult human attachment, and modern studies on the subject are abundant from psychological, biological and behavioural points of view. For those interested in following this subject further the Wikipedia entry on Attachment in Adults would be a good place to start, and to branch out from there. Of particular interest is the existence of four basic attachment styles in human beings, indicating that there must also be four main ways of doing MGTOW:

secure attachment (64% of the population)
anxious–preoccupied attachment (17% of the population)
fearful–avoidant attachment (12% of the population)
dismissive–avoidant attachment (7% of the population)

 
Only one of these styles (dismissive avoidant) involves a lack of desire for emotionally close relationships (relationships with minimal emotional intimacy may be tolerable to them), while the other three involve a desire to form emotionally intimate attachments. These are biologically-based traits appearing in each man before he elects to GHOW, and they help to account for the behavioral and ideological variability we see among MGTOW – for the most part we are working creatively with what’s already in our make up rather than changing our core attachment style. Based on this taxonomy we can safely say there are four irreducible kinds of MGTOW:

Secure MGTOW
Anxious–preoccupied MGTOW
Fearful–avoidant MGTOW
Dismissive–avoidant MGTOW (‘ghosts’)

 
The four attachment styles and their implications for “ways of doing MGTOW” deserve a follow up article. While some MGTOW claim men do not need attachment at all, evidence is not in their favour. Thus, for most of us, constructing new ways to form secure relationships with our fellow humans in a rich and rewarding way is an important long-term question, even if we cannot pretend to have all the answers now; we start by knowing what we don’t want: relationships of enslavement and entrapment to the opposite sex (or anyone else for that matter) in an environment that makes healthy attachment difficult. But how do we forge a more positive model for human relationships and attachment for ourselves?

We started this essay with an important question: are sex and attachment two relatively different motivations? The answer is a resounding yes! Yes, despite all the pop culture bombardment of sex, sex, sex, the sexual shaming of men, and all the rest, the answer is yes: sex and attachment are not the same. People can live their lives avoiding sexual games but they will not end their lives happily unless they meet their attachment requirements. And while this journey will be different for each man going his own way, we must not flinch from seeing the problem for what it is: not “overcoming our urge to procreate,” but rather, how to be healthy human beings able to recognize and fulfill our natural need for human intimacy.

 
Sources
– Frederico Pereira, David E. Scharff, M. D. Fairbairn and Relational Theory (2002)
– Fairbairn, W.R.D., ‘Psychoanalytic Studies of the Personality’. (2013)
– Shaver, P.R., Handbook of attachment – Second Edition (2008)
– Shaver, P.R., Attachment in Adulthood: Structure, Dynamics and Change (2010)

About Peter Wright

Peter Wright has been a MHRA for 30 years, a Man Going His Own Way for more than 10 years, and is the creator and publisher of gynocentrism.com

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  • http://www.shrink4men.com/ Dr. Tara J. Palmatier

    Fascinating stuff, Mr. Wright!

    Attachment theory can explain a great deal about our relationships. When I did couples work, attachment style differences were a greater source of conflict than just about anything else. Want to see a really unhappy marriage — take a look at the avoidant – anxious coupling. It can be a recipe for a lifetime of misery.

    Attachment plays a big part in many personality disorders. Borderline Personality Disorder most likely stems from attachment disorder — insecure/anxious or fearful attachment. This is probably also why BPD is so damned hard to treat. A person’s attachment style tends to be stable (even if the person is unstable) throughout one’s life much like temperament, introversion vs. extroversion, etc., as it’s a core personality characteristic.

    Here are two S4M articles that discuss attachment theory in terms of abusive women and male targets of abuse (if you’re interested in the subject):

    http://www.shrink4men.com/2011/02/23/female-stalkers-part-4-attachment-style-as-a-predictor-of-who-is-more-likely-to-stalk-and-abuse-and-who-is-more-likely-to-be-stalked-and-abused/

    and this one was written by one of my forum mods:

    http://www.shrink4men.com/2012/04/27/does-your-partner-have-your-back-or-cause-you-to-watch-your-back/

    • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

      Dr. T, thanks for the links to the articles on attachment – great reading I highly recommend these to anyone who found the above topic interesting.

      The article about female stalkers is an excellent description of the unhealthy attachment styles- the avoidant and the anxious types.

      Interestingly (and this comment may be a tad unpopular) I wager that a small number of the more extreme MGTOW (the ones who prescribe radical apartheid between the sexes) are avoidant attachers by nature, and not merely men avoiding gynocentrism. These “MGTOW” may be exploiting the philosophy as a subterfuge for their apriori avoidant style, an attempt to dignify a pathology via a good social cause.

      Clearly there is a lot of clarifying needed regarding healthy vs unhealthy attachment styles and their impact on MGTOW, gynocentrism, relationships and sex.

      • http://www.avoiceformen.com August Løvenskiolds

        Sorry, not buying it – Pathologizing avoidant attachers is like pathologizing avoidant drug abusers – all the cool kidz are attaching and abusing drugs, so that must be okay, right?

        I might as well pathologize occasional hook-ups because those folks can quit anytime they want, right? – surely they won’t get a lethal dose of child support or false rape accusation along the way…

        • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

          Lol, you appear to know zilch about attachment science. First off, you have to learn the difference between avoidant attachment style that people develop from earliest childhood, wired into you, and the avoidance that is situational and a healthy response to environmental problems. I’m a situational avoider – I am MGTOW avoiding gynocentrism, and proud of it.

          I recommend you learn the difference between lifelong avoidant attachment style and situational avoidance. One is unhealthy and the other can be healthy. Conflating them in the way you are doing is unconvincing.

          People who avoid bad environmental situations are indeed “cool kids”, however avoidant attachment style is not cool. Which one are you, August? ;-)

          • http://www.avoiceformen.com August Løvenskiolds

            So, even though “A person’s attachment style tends to be stable (even if the person is unstable) throughout one’s life much like temperament, introversion vs. extroversion, etc., as it’s a core personality characteristic”, you still allow for “situational avoidance” somehow.

            I’ve never abused drugs or used an illegal drug, not even once in 54 years. Never even touched tobacco. Never even tempted to do either. Is my avoidance from my immutable attachment style, or from situational avoidance?

            In this case, anyway, the question is meaningless as the two modes of avoidance produce identical results.

            The notion of pathologizing the tendency to avoid attachment (whether situational or systemic) is a pseudoscience geared towards shaming men into attaching. One needs such attachments like one needs handcuffs.

          • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

            @August: So, even though “A person’s attachment style tends to be stable (even if the person is unstable) throughout one’s life much like temperament, introversion vs. extroversion, etc., as it’s a core personality characteristic”, you still allow for “situational avoidance” somehow.

            Somehow?

            Its not rocket science. People have a built-in tendency to be avoidant or clingy or inbetween, but can resist that tendency because the current environmental situation demands a more urgent override.

            @August: “I’ve never abused drugs or used an illegal drug, not even once in 54 years. Never even touched tobacco. Never even tempted to do either. Is my avoidance from my immutable attachment style, or from situational avoidance?”

            Well clearly it is a situational avoidance, and not avoidant attachment style which refers to human attachment – not tobacco attachment.

            @August: “The notion of pathologizing the tendency to avoid attachment (whether situational or systemic) is a pseudoscience geared towards shaming men into attaching. One needs such attachments like one needs handcuffs.”

            All I can say is that attachment has been scientifically studied for decades including the detrimental effects avoidant personality style has on biological and psychological health. Have you heard of schizoid personality disorder, for instance? I guess not, but it’s one of many variations of the avoidant style and I recommend you take a look at it. Its not a pseudoscience and I’m convinced you’ve read none of the relevant material. I’m happy to provide a reading list showing the pathological sequalae of avoidant attachment if you wish – but I wont hold my breath.

            Obviously this has touched a nerve for you beyond the simple notion of situational avoidance. You appear to want the distinction between avoidant attachment style and situational avoidance dissolved. At the end of the day that’s a personal issue for you that has nothing to do with the science.

  • Carlos

    I have been really enjoying your recent articles along these lines. I wish I could have had greater exposure to such ideas when I was younger.

  • TexasIsPangea Greg

    Some people may say that sex is healthy for attachment, even if it isn’t necessary for the individual. Sex can be akin to physical affection, and I guess that if sex is not provided, then a man can always cuddle with his partner.

    It is interesting that the human race has the word no for not consenting, and the man that receives the no automatically respects the wishes of the woman, if he does. Other animals don’t seem to have such respect for consent as far as I can see. I wonder how the female of another animal feels about not wanting sex when she knows the male very well. Does such coherency enter another animals mind? But anyways, all minds who find a hole to fuck seem to be artificial, like they just discovered what sex is. The humans especially seem artificial when “instinct” to want to is overcome with a conscience.

  • TexasIsPangea Greg

    Do people actually want to mimic the “nature” of other animals as some type of excuse? Gay people seem to show us same gender sex pictures between other animals, and want to excuse their behavior because of what the other animals do. I mean, come on, you gay people are a part of nature, even though there is this “artificial” mindset associated with being human.

  • dejour

    Good article.

  • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

    The constant conflation of intimate attachment with sex, and the presumption that sexual intercourse is the primary driver of relationships between men and women, has always made me a little crazy. It fails to explain all sorts of common behaviors found cross-culturally and even in primitive hunter/gatherer societies. People like having mates even when there is no sexual component or where the sexual component is only secondary to the long-term relationship.

    I was just talking to a man whose grandfather had recently died. Grandpa was 97. His wife had died just about 6 or 7 years ago… they’d been together all that time. And what had he done after a couple of years of grieving? He wound up with a girlfriend in her 70s.

    Whether the relationship was ever sexual isn’t relevant; what they both obviously wanted was a person they could love and relate to.

    This is normal, this is healthy, and this is something we’re rapidly losing. The idea that this form of attachment is just socially derived, just an idea that culture teaches us, makes me a bit batty. Yes, culture can amplify or diminish what’s already there but you don’t brainwash people into wanting intimacy and stable long-lasting relationships.

    • Sting Chameleon

      But you can brainwash people by telling them that the only way to get those things properly is through a legally-binding contract that enslaves one sex to the other.

      • Manalysis

        Hi,

        that’s not about brainwashing, that’s about controlling people by controlling their access to a prime resource. It’s one way for society to enforce participation in society and adherence to society’s rules. No conformity = no education = no job = no income/property = no mating chances.
        Works like an immune system, at least at the view from the top; less attractive at the level of the individual.

        M.

      • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

        You’re absolutely correct that especially in its current form marriage is arguably an immoral contract on the current terms the state typically puts it under. I myself have argued for some time that marriage licenses need to go and we should have legally enforceable contracts instead. That’s something would get great resistance but would be a very good start.

    • Manalysis

      Hi,

      it’s perfect, though. “Desire for secure attachment + hypergamy” is exactly the kind of burning ice some people have told a lot of other people comes as part of having it all and eating cake, too.

      M

  • Nightwing1029

    “(And if you have any doubts that this cult of sexualized romance is of fairly recent historical vintage, I’ll be publishing a piece on that very topic later this week here on AVfM)”
    Looking forward to the next article.
    Intriguing thoughts on this one.

    • http://gloriusbastard.com/ JJ

      I concur. I have my doubts that the differing times, if possible to be looked at next to each other beyond time would not mirror each other more than they would be different.

      I suspect that women of yesteryear, like now, had two tits, a vagina, a brain, and a vexing need to tax a man’s inner peace with incessant complaining. Though fortunately for them, and I agree with Tawil on this, we are most certainly prone to pair bonding. I just think that despite the recent romantic fantasy BS plaguing us being relatively new; I strongly disagree that we are that totally different.

      I look forward to being proven wrong. I do have an open mind. I won’t say what I feel though. I will try to play a peaceful devil’s advocate in the comments though.

      • Nightwing1029

        I don’t try playing peaceful. Rather have reality.
        I totally agree we aren’t as different as others say.
        That doesn’t mean we don’t have differences. Just that, if we really look, they probably aren’t as different as people want to believe.
        And the romantic fantasy doesn’t seem to work. Might be what is needed for the short term (propagation of the species), but completely loses everything in the long term.
        Then again, if I am proven wrong, I will admit it.

    • Manalysis

      Hi,

      AFAIK very few people had heard much about romantic love before the Troubadours of Provence and the Minnesänger of Germany.
      There are earlier tales of passion (mainly in Ovid…), but very few of those stories had a happy ending.

      M

      • Nightwing1029

        I get what you are saying, for the most part, about the timeline of romantic love.
        Have no idea what afaik is.
        My point is in current times, romantic love doesn’t really seem like anything more than short term gain.
        It might get the wheels started, but doesn’t continue into the long run. In fact, from what I have observed of most relationships and from the pickup community, it tends to fizzle out rather quick.
        But it works, sometimes, long enough for a couple nights of passion. (Good enough, in a lot of cases, for propagation of the species)
        However, it really can’t be maintained for a long period of time, in any practical manner.

  • https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Voice-for-Men/102001393188684 Paul Elam

    5 stars. Very incisive and thought provoking work.

  • Allan

    fyi, The link to:
    antifeminist complaints of 12th century Andreas Capellanus
    (http://www.avoiceformen.com/misandry/chivalry/antifeminism-12th-century-style/):

    Page not found.

    • http://www.avoiceformen.com August Løvenskiolds

      Because of scheduling issues, the article linked to has not been published on AVfM just yet – look for in on 25-Jul-2013. As a fellow time-traveler, Tawil occasionally creates temporal paradoxes like that.

  • Aimee McGee

    Yes! I’m so pleased someone is writing about this and it is a topic on the table around MGTOW/WGTOW and the MHRA.
    Beloved and I do a seriously long distance relationship. Our respective lives have not yet resolved a solution to find us both in the same country (he’s got joint custody, I’ve got a specialist career).
    People who get attachment and intimacy understand how we can manage this less than perfect situation. They just need to spend a couple of hours with us to see we are securely pair-bonded. People who conflate attachment and sex are just plain confused.
    We joke we will need an excellent calling plan or two tins on a string when we finally live together – we’ve talked so much, explored so much of our intimacy through long calls without visual reference we might find it hard to sort out stuff face to face.

    • Nightwing1029

      Aimee, while I applaud you for your commitment to your man, I do question something:
      “People who conflate attachment and sex are just plain confused.”
      As far as I am aware, physical intimacy is necessary, at least in part, for maintaining healthy relationships.
      My question is thus:
      Are you making this observation about people who base entire relationships on sex (or mainly on sex), or do you think their confusion is more about actually getting the two mixed up in their importance?

      • Aimee McGee

        I wrote that comment badly!
        I meant that people get confused about US as a couple.
        We had several quite intrusive questions last time we were together about how we coped with the lack of sex while apart.
        Beloved handled it magnificently by saying “you are assuming we are even having sex”
        Trust me, that flummoxed them even more :P

        • Nightwing1029

          That is fucking awesome!
          (Pun intended)

          • Aimee McGee

            Trust me, I had to go for a pit stop to stop myself laughing hysterically.

  • TexasIsPangea Greg

    If humans were just as instinctive as other animals are, I wonder how quickly affection would turn into sex by just courting the opposite sex? Which is almost like fucking on a first date, but not as extreme.

    Maybe the human mind has conflated behavior such as interaction and courtesy with inhibition to not have sex. I think that this is a very interesting speculation. I suppose that other animals might not be as forthright as the previous default suggests on instinct to have sex.

    It may also be true that most animals don’t have sex that often and tend to have the ideal amount of offspring as a result.

  • napocapo69

    Nice reading but I do not agree.
    Pair bonding is cultural heritage not instinctual drive. A cultural tradition produced by a business agreement lasted for centuries, called marriage.
    Boys and girls, beyond the sexual drive, mate each other just trying to emulate their parents’ trust agreement.
    If they do not have a father they will be much less prone to have a lasting realtionship. Too many opt-out options and too few opt-in reasons. Once you remove the tradition, all you get is rationality, and in business terms pair bonding it is simply not a deal anymore for men, and not a necessity for women until the State will continue to act as an hyper father. This of course until society collapses,.
    Sorry, but the theory of native drive towards pair bonding never convinced me. It is something that I would like to believe, but I can’t.
    Just wait another generation, give the single mothers’ society a try, and you’ll see that pair bonding theory will vanish.
    The attachment, or social, drive is just a manifestation of surivival instinct, the more lonely you are the more likely you will be defeated.

    • Allan

      napocapo69 , If you haven’t seen it, the recent book “Sex at Dawn” supports what you’re saying with a lot of science, that life long monogamy is rather forced for our biology. It certain shows a lot of varied mating cultures humans have developed. The paperback title is more provocative: “How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships.”

      • napocapo69

        Maybe I’ll give that book a try.

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      Evidence is humans have been pair-bonders for over a million years (possibly as much as 2.5 million years) and it has been observed in all cultures including hunter-gatherer cultures.

      Let us be clear that pair bonding and “lifetime monogamy” are not the same thing. Serial monogamy seems always to have been common. But the marital contract, such as it is, may have been more about enforcing what was already instinctual in an environment with more temptation to stray (and straying has been observed in all pairbonding species by the way) than it was some sort of modern invention; indeed, I submit that if it were really only invented a few thousand years ago it never would have worked at all. If no one was prone to cooperate it just would not have worked; the fact is that the pair-bonding instincts were already there when we came to agriculture.

      One of the main definitions of a pairbonding species is that both male and female parents invest in and nurture and protect their offspring. Evidence is that human males have been doing this for, I repeat, over a million years, and that this paternal investment (not to mention the even more extraordinary GRAND-paternal investment) is not just one of the hallmarks of Homo Sapiens, it may be the exact thing that made us human instead of still basically chimps.

      By the way, the widespread claim that only 40% of our male ancestors reproduced while 80% of our female ancestors reproduced? Debunked. It’s bullshit. MHRAs (and MGTOWs) need to stop repeating it, it’s false.

      • napocapo69

        Dean, let’s put the feet on the ground.
        We cannot have evidence of what happened the 11/9, how can we have evidences of what happened 2.5 millions years ago?
        Most of what we know is just a guess, at best.
        I do not think that men and women have always been prone to pair bonding, for the simple reason that it is a behavior and behaviors are learned by experience. And when I look at other species I do not see so much pair-bonding so I think this attitude have little to share with instincts.
        I think more in Darwin terms; men in the far far far past have learned to take care of women in order to develop huger social groups for survival reasons, since the wider the “family” the higher the potential to defend the territory from other groups.
        But when the groups grow too much, the instinct fo reproduction leads to harsh (deadly) competition among males for the females, and at the end men decided for a gentlemen agreement, every men a woman, deal done!

        • TexasIsPangea Greg

          There actually could be deviations to behavior in how a man treats the opposite sex, like just wanting a woman for sex, which would probably be taught by his peers. There also may be an instinct to disrespect women by seeing them as inferior.

          What is really interesting is that even if pair-bonding was the original to how we interact with women, it would say nothing about it necessarily being right over other interactions which we might conclude to from our own minds. That in itself sounds like a type of traditionalism.

          Someone also might want to see if the male mind can think about a woman without the inclusion of sex in today’s society with the associated force of marriage. It seems that the association of this contract comes before any actual bond which comes naturally.

        • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

          Paternal investment is simply not compatible with these theories that we are simply taught to pairbond by social convention.

          You may also find this useful reading:

          http://web.missouri.edu/~gearyd/PaternalInvest.pdf

          Confusing “lifetime exclusive monogamy” with “pairbonding” is like confusing lemonade with water.

        • Estwald

          …behaviors are learned by experience.

          …and experience is gained through behavior.

      • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

        @Dean: “Let us be clear that pair bonding and “lifetime monogamy” are not the same thing. Serial monogamy seems always to have been common.”

        Those few points, though simple, are particularly hard for some people to grasp. Attachment bonds usually endure years or decades, if not lifelong – if the circumstances are optimal. Compare this with relationships based primarily on sexual games which have a much shorter shelf-life. And its true serial monogamous attachment appears to be common in pair bonding species.

        The idea that we pair bond (at least in part) as a support system for offspring is interesting, has given me food for thought. From my perspective attachment allows couples help regulate each others’ emotions, in a good way; though for unhealthy attachment styles such emotional regulation tends to become less reciprocal, and more pathological.

        • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

          Pair-bonding was noticed in the first place when species were noticed for cooperative behavior in nurturing offspring which, in humans as well as other pair-bonding species (the fact that humans are pair-bonders is so noncontroversial in scientific circles it no longer even requires a citation it’s so well-established, it’s like saying the Earth is round) involves both male and female parent investing substantial time in the nurturing and teaching of the offspring, although in most there is a clear communal support system as well (something humans have largely done away with only in the last century or so, much to our detriment and our children’s I think).

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      You and others may find this paper interesting by the way:

      http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/05/21/1200717109.full.pdf+html

      Please note once again, “lifelong monogamy” and “pair-bonding” are separate ideas. Confusing the two is like confusing masturbation with sexual intercourse.

      If we were not a pair-bonding species, by the way, human males would have fairly little interest in their children. Your bitch takes off with the kids, so what? Go find another one to fuck and hope she pops some more out. Otherwise who cares? And why be suicidal over it anyway?

      You may find that crass but seriously, it’s what tournament maters by and large do.

      Note, by the way, that in pairbonding species, humans appear to “cheat” on their mates less often than other pairbonding species do. So the whole idea of promiscuity as proving we aren’t pairbonders is rather silly, since every pairbonding species on the planet has “cheating” in its makeup.

    • feeriker

      Too many opt-out options and too few opt-in reasons.

      LOVE THIS.

      Is this yours, or did you borrow it from somewhere?

  • anotherguy

    Attachment is very much a state where the male is primed to release resources to the female. Naturally, if women cant induce this state sufficiently in a man they get extremely frustrated.
    Women’s endless obsession about and scrutiny of “relationships” likely stems from this.
    This obsession appears like a mental disease to men.

  • Shrek6

    Thanks PW for another great and informative article.

    People see marriage as the big bad bogie man, because of what we experience today. Marriage, millenia ago, was never like it is today.
    Marriage has been twisted and contorted into a vile and ugly institution that is designed to enslaven men and to use children as a basis for currency, where their worth will shower their owner/mother with jewels and wealth beyond her imagination.

    There are many traits that seem to be genetically driven. We humans have certain ‘needs’ that we find almost impossible to live without and I agree that a fully functioning and mature attachment is one such need that is paramount to our survival.
    Does this affect our belief structure as MGTOW?
    I guess each individual must decide, but for me the answer is no.

    What my concern is, how to have this mature relationship with a woman today, when somewhere between 95 and 100% of women are not in a position to meet us in such a relationship, because they have been bred and educated to be the parasites of men and society.

    It takes a particularly strong and mature woman who can tear herself away from that modern social conditioning, where she is prepared to meet a man in the middle as a mature adult who is prepared to go into battle shoulder to shoulder and to love equally, but expect nothing from the relationship except to have her love and loyalty returned.

    Women like that are as scarce as Hen’s teeth, yet there are very many men like that. In fact, men have been used and abused precisely because of those traits.

    Loving unconditionally for no personal gain, is the only behaviour and attitude that will ensure a successful relationship, because if both parties love this way, then the personal gains to each, are double what they put in.

    For a man to be with a woman today and to be able to remain true to MGTOW, is very much a possibility, but first he must find a woman who is capable of being the mature human being who can love another person without the need to suck the life out of them.

    That kind of woman hardly exists on this planet!

    • Shrek6

      PS: By the way PW, those two sheilas in the picture who look like milkers with udders that belong in a Dairy, didn’t do anything for me, and no they didn’t really attract my attention.
      Sorry Mate, but big udders are a turn off for me. LOL

      • Kimski

        Sheilas??? Where?? Oh… :D
        I’m more of a leg man myself.

        Another home run for the team, Tawil.
        Thanks, brother. I might have to reconsider a couple of things after reading this. Not so much some of my choices, as the reasons for them. I’ve never really considered a relationship as completely out of the question. I just refuse to live with a woman on a permanent basis for obvious reasons, and so far friends with benefits has worked out fine. But it seems there’s some drastic changes in the laws on the way for all of us, so…

        • feeriker

          I just refuse to live with a woman on a permanent basis for obvious reasons, and so far friends with benefits has worked out fine. But it seems there’s some drastic changes in the laws on the way for all of us, so…

          I think you can count on that, no matter where in the “developed” world you live.

          There is NO WAY the feminist-owned governments of the world are going to allow men to live in pain and cost-free relationships.

    • feeriker

      For a man to be with a woman today and to be able to remain true to MGTOW, is very much a possibility, but first he must find a woman who is capable of being the mature human being who can love another person without the need to suck the life out of them.

      Maybe I’m misunderstanding something here, but if a man were to find that one-in-a-million woman, why would he want to remain MGTOW? (Not being MGTOW myself, I mean this as serious question.)

      • Shrek6

        Well, that’s an easy question to answer, but will never happen in today’s climate, because women today are incapable of being this way.

        You only need to go back past the time the stupid notion of romance was introduced into the relationships of men and women. Romance destroyed everything and was used to enslave men into servitude to women.

        Not sure who it was, probably the French. Mr Tarwil will be able to answer that question, cos he seems to have the historical knowledge on Sociological History.

        Prior to the time of ‘romance,’ marriages were seen as a necessity. They were necessary for procreation, for building society and holding it together. Everyone was on the same page, including the women. I think back then hypergamy was limited too, because over 90% of the population were on the same level and most women were not the parasites of their men.

        In those days, men were happily GTOW. In many cases they were away from family for long periods.
        Or they were busy building society in their own way and in the manner as expected by the social norms of their day, while women were busy holding it together.

        And I guess you could say the same about the women. They too were able to follow their path, but that would have been within the constraints of societies expectations, just as it was and has always been for men.

        Women today on the other hand, have (without permission) given themselves opportunities outside of society’s norms and have selfishly walked away from their duties of holding society together once the men have worked to create it.

        This behaviour has only seen society crumble into disarray, where all sorts of problems have occurred, the most serious being that the children are unprotected and are being abused by this behaviour, AND by this female perpetrator.

        The women have created an enemy out of thin air that never existed before and used this enemy as their excuse to break this millenia long covenant. That enemy is us….the men!

        So, if all things were equal and you had women who had the ‘ovaries’ to behave like ‘real women’ and not babies, then you would find that living with them would not destroy our sense of who we are as men.

        After all, the antithesis of MGTOW, is a man who is defined or ruled by a woman!

  • Jurgen

    It’s been fairly clear to me for a while that sex and wanting a cuddle or just wanting some female company are not one and the same thing.

    There have been times when I have been with a beautiful woman and the last thing on my mind has been sex, I have just wanted to enjoy her company and conversation.

    I think this article goes a way to show that men don’t just want to shove their dick into anything with a hole and tits – to put it crudely.

  • http://www.avoiceformen.com Dr. F (Ian Williams)

    This article is a bastard-child from parents truth and cold analysis.

    Some do not like bastard children because those are the kids that tap shoulders and nag about reason and logic. Damn them to hell!

    Some might even say, “Why can’t you all just shut up and let us work it out? No not a joke, feminists have said this before and they will say it again. Doing the opposite is the ticket and this article is doing precisely that.

    Thanks Peter.

  • alkarnur

    When shaming doesn’t succeed in getting men back on the treadmill, you try long, boring mental gymnastics.

    No, human beings are not a pair bonding species. The human female’s sexual cycle is to switch partners every 3-4 years. The human penis is shaped the way it is because of sperm competition. Evolution would not have selected for this if women were pair bonded to one man for life and not having sex with multiple men at the same time (promiscuity, not group sex) which is the case. This question has been addressed ad nauseam. It’s called female hypergamy. Women are hypergamous by nature and men are polygamous, neither is monogamous. Cuckoldry would not have survived to this day if women were pair bonded and sexually monogamous (not just socially) and didn’t look for the best possible sperm (alpha) to make a baby who will then be paid for by the best possible provider (beta).

    This so-called psychological “need” (there is no such thing as a psychological need) is called ” a healthy need for attachment” when you have the money and/or looks, but when you don’t and it’s unwelcome by the woman, it’s called “neediness” and “possessiveness”. I’d rather call it “bullshit”. Any psychologist worth his salt would tell you that it’s all about increasing the individual’s autonomy and that the worst possible thing you can do is bond with or attach yourself to toxic individuals, which is what this article is suggesting.

    I could take this article apart point-by-point, but it’s so jam-packed with fallacies and false information that I’m only going to address a few points. One such piece of misinformation (and intentional misrepresentation of MGTOWs who this article attacks) is that MGTOWs say that men chase sexual reproduction ONLY. Men chase the inflated picture of women as “kind and gentle and loving” that is hammered into their heads since childhood in movies, TV shows, books, parents, friends, their Church… all of whom either make money by selling beautiful lies (no one would go watch a movie to be bummed out by its message that love is a lie) or who don’t know any better (friends and peers of young ones) or who are utterly dependent on men staying on the treadmill (society, women, governments…). One only needs to make it to high school, let alone enter the dating market, to learn that women are none of these things.

    This need for attachment does not exist, not at the biological level. Even in the female it is a need for attachment for 3-4 years at the most. Anything above that is cultural. To suggest that it does exist and that it should be “fulfilled” or chased after by males is to promote males making concessions they don’t need to make and putting themselves in even more legally weak situations in return for fulfilling the need that does exist, i.e. sex.
    In short, where traditionalists tell men to take on all these liabilities “because man up” and feminists tell men fatherhood is worthless but then demonize them as misogynist if they don’t do fatherhood, you’re telling men to take on all those liabilities “because attachment”.

    This article amounts to little more than a libel against men and misandric bullshit stating men who aren’t attached to women are broken, “sick” and will “wither and die”. Paul Elam should be ashamed of allowing this sort of drivel on his site.

    Dear MRAs, quit sucking up to women and quit attacking MGTOWs to suck up to women, you’re not going to get the mainstream attention or acceptance you’re looking for by doing this, and you only succeed in exposing your disingenuousness and showing that you haven’t really freed yourself from a gynocentric mentality. Let male feminists be the Uncle Toms of the gender war. I held AVFM to a higher standard of integrity and dignity, apparently, I was wrong.

    Women have reduced men to second-class citizens and not just in marriage and divorce laws, but in education, work (affirmative action), health spending… and the author has so little self-respect that he turns around and says “yeah, we cool”. It’s like if someone raped you, and then asks you “we cool?” and then you tell her “oh yeah, totally, we cool”. Can you at least shed your obsequiousness and servility?

    God forbid you should come to the conclusion that you are whole and that freedom and male sovereignty is endlessly more satisfying and brings more happiness to a man than indulging suicidal fantasies of idealized shackling to a solipsistic, irrational, manipulative, immature, selfish, materialistic, fickle, immoral person whose moral character and benevolence is entirely our projection of male qualities onto her. Why is it that women run toward their freedom but we don’t want ours even if all we have to do is just grab it?

    Quit trying to make relationships and this “the sexes are compatible and complete each other” crap work on a philosophical level. It’s like trying to jam a square peg in a round hole. It doesn’t fit our male and female sexual natures and you’re only doing it because you like the idea of it.

    • Diana Davison

      @alkanur
      “The human penis is shaped the way it is because of sperm competition. Evolution would not have selected for this if women were pair bonded to one man for life and not having sex with multiple men at the same time (promiscuity, not group sex) which is the case.”

      Okay, so why isn’t the penis barbed? If what you say is true you should be calling your cock “Mr. Spiky” right now.

      You call this article “long, boring mental gymnastics.” It’s not. For most of us we can follow what was said quite easily without strenuous effort.

      What is rather Cirque do Soleil is your diatribe which asserts you have no “so-called psychological ‘need'”… which is then justified by explaining that your psychological needs have not been met, therefore they don’t exist. That’s some pretty impressive gymanastics right there.

      “‘a healthy need for attachment’ when you have the money and/or looks, but when you don’t and it’s unwelcome by the woman, it’s called ‘neediness’ and ‘possessiveness’. I’d rather call it ‘bullshit’.”

      You’ve only said that you need attachment but haven’t found anyone “healthy” to attach to. I do, however, think you unwittingly agreed with the article when you pointed out that psychologists discourage bonding to toxic people. That is exactly what this article recommends. Denying that you feel drawn to attach isn’t going to be helpful, it’s called “denial.” Best scenario is to accept and cope with the needs that actually do exist by recognizing them for what they are and dealing with them in a way of your own choosing.

      The rest of what you wrote is just a semi-crazed rant because you’re angry. Recognize it for what it is and try not to make assertions about life, the universe, and everything until you calm down.

      “God forbid you should come to the conclusion that you are whole and that freedom and male sovereignty is endlessly more satisfying and brings more happiness to a man than indulging suicidal fantasies of idealized shackling to a solipsistic, irrational, manipulative, immature, selfish, materialistic, fickle, immoral person whose moral character and benevolence is entirely our projection of male qualities onto her.”

      Why’d you have to go and invoke a non-specific deity? It’s not our conclusions that are irrational. If you read this again and combine it with the other articles the author has written you’ll see that he’s promoting approaching your relationship needs and style as a whole, informed person so that you can avoid the gynocentric traps while finding a happiness level that will reduce the chance of suicide.

      • alkarnur

        Why isn’t the human penis barbed? really? Because then it would be painful for the woman to copulate with a man with such a penis and natural selection would select against it. The way the human penis is shaped is to siphon out sperm found in a woman’s reproductive tracts that is there from previous coitus with other men.

        To further explain my thought, the “need” is not a biological need for attachment, it is a culturally created desire for an image of woman that is far more embellished than what women really are. So when men pursue this “need” (which is not a need for attachment, but rather chasing after the mirage of the noble, kind, gentle, loving, clean [insert more bullshit adjectives here] woman), if the man has money and/or looks, his drive is branded by the woman and society (incl. sites like this) as “a healthy need for attachment”, but if the man doesn’t have enough money, looks or status, than his actions and his drive are painted as him being “needy” and “possessive”.

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      No, human beings are not a pair bonding species. The human female’s sexual cycle is to switch partners every 3-4 years. The human penis is shaped the way it is because of sperm competition.

      I pretty much stopped reading at this point because it’s two aggressively ignorant statements in a row which demonstrate that you A) have only read pop-sci bullshit, B) are only passingly acquainted with terminology and you’re getting it wrong, and C) you did not really read anything here.

      One thing that may help you stop seeming like a dipshit is this:

      Pairbonding and lifetime monogamy are not the same thing. At all. Please walk away from this conversation remembering that if you remember nothing else: Pairbonding does not equal lifelong monogamy. Got it? They are not, never have been, and never will be the same thing.

      Also, in case you care, the studies on why the human penis is shaped like it is were done on models of a circumcized penis. Moronic, for reasons I shouldn’t have to explain. As it happens, an uncircumcized penis is as likely to scoop up another man’s semen and put it back as it is to push another man’s semen out. Which adds layers of complexity to human sexuality but makes it clear we’re not tournament maters, no matter how desperately some people want to believe we are.

      In skimming the rest of your piece, I see you making other horrendously misinformed statements, like suggesting that the need for attachment doesn’t exist biologically. Holy fuck. This right after being given multiple references which demonstrate conclusively that it is indeed a real biological need.

      Nothing can better demonstrate why articles like this one are necessary than responses like yours. The amount of scientific ignorance and outright pseudoscience baloney that’s floating around the manosphere is deeply disturbing.

      I don’t think young men in particular are helped by scientifically inaccurate statements. You made a minimum of three flatly and undeniably scientifically false statements before my TL;dr urge overcame my urge to help you. If you ever decide to come back and learn, asking a few questions and requesting references like a civilized human being, let us know.

      Eschewing marriage and a lifelong commitment or indeed any commitment to a woman are honorable and defensible choices, and that’s got nothing to do with what’s under discussion here.

      • alkarnur

        The human female, left to her animal sexual instinct, will switch mates every 3-4 years because that is the time after birth that she can start taking care of herself again. Don’t take my word for it, look it up. Evidence for this includes divorce peaking at four years after marriage, and the average non-married long-term relationship (i.e. discounting relationships that last less than a few months) last about that long as well.
        Here’s what a quick google search turned up:
        http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/population/mythbusters/seven-year-itch.aspx

        How conveniently you ignore the arguments I made that, if taken into account, would destroy your response and render it superfluous before it’s even made.
        I am very well aware that pair bonding and lifetime monogamy are not one and the same, thank you very much. Pair bonding is merely the basis for monogamy. Among the arguments that you so conveniently “skimmed over”, is the distinction between sexual monogamy and social monogamy, as evidenced by wives cheating and cuckoldry.
        So if monogamy is social and not sexual, what the hell use is it to a man? The only reason (bar the cultural brainwashing and deification of wedding and marriage for consumerist purposes) any man would even consider monogamy or sexual exclusivity is to increase paternity certainty. On the other hand, to suggest social monogamy has any value in and of itself, separate from sex and sexual monogamy, is to give women more value and more credit than they deserve and to tell men that they should chase after this phantom. It’s like the man paying thousands of dollars for a handful of dirt because you told him it’s actually fairy dust. If men do not get increased paternity certainty through monogamy then men have no benefit from being monogamous or getting attached to a female. That said, DNA testing has made paternity certainty through monogamy obsolete. DNA testing is a radical and certain solution, while monogamy and sexual exclusivity were, at best, rickety methods. Though the general male population needs some time to catch up on this.

        This article, as well as your response, demonstrate their gynocentric thinking by failing to ask one simple question, a question that is forbidden to be asked under gynocentrism. When a man is considering entering into a relationship or marriage with a woman, or in any way considering associating with them he should ask himself: “what’s in it for me?”. What this article, your response and your ilk are saying is he gets the “sense” of attachment. Not real attachment or security guaranteed by law, as in the current legal climate, she can walk out at any time. So you’re telling him he should spend his energy, resources, his peace of mind and alter his life course for zilch, for an illusion, for a “feeling”. A feeling, this is what I mean by gynocentric mentality. Your thinking is unconsciously feminized, where a feeling is real and as valuable as real things, such as having your child have your DNA, or not getting your home, money… taken from you.

        But let us, just for the sake of argument, suppose that you are right and pair bonding is real. Telling men it should be indulged in the current legal and cultural climate is irresponsible advice at the least and, more likely, outright vicious and vindictive. Pairbonding (presuming, as noted above, that is does exist) not lasting a lifetime is the reason we’re in this mess in the first place. Because it is finite and it has an end, when it does, men get screwed over retroactively, whether married or cohabitating (since there are many places where cohabitation becomes the same as marriage without even consulting the couple; and more places/states/countries are adopting such laws). And all men get in return is 3-4 years of having an ephemeral sense of attachment (which was never real in the first place) and mountains of liabilities, debt, stress, depression, suicide etc. It’s the old bait-and-switch, bait them with a false promise of attachment then switch and plunder them. It’s what feminists and traditionalists both do to men, and you don’t have the wisdom to be any better.

        At best, this article amounts to “how to navigate the minefields of relationships in the modern world” (a minefield that you don’t need to navigate in the first place). Any person that is even remotely compassionate towards men would suggest to stay clear from the mine field altogether, especially since there’s nothing real and tangible and worthwhile to be gained.

        I have seen some of your drivel on your YouTube channel, so this will be my last reply to you. Arguing with you is as useful as presenting rational arguments to feminists.

  • Rantandreason

    While I agree with this article in theory, I don’t find it to be the case in practice. Saying men don’t need sex to survive is like saying women could survive without having a single conversation in their life. Men and women have different needs, and while I understand and agree it is not something “necessary” to living, it absolutely is necessary.

    What also bothers me about this article is the fact that it seems to be centered on men not needing sex, but where is the equivalent “need” that women have that they can live without, and no I do not see men and women’s need for sex as equal. Women control the birth cycle, they can choose within a moments notice if they want to get laid, men need to work at it. So when women read this article and say “See, you don’t need sex so you’re not getting any” what is it that men can withhold from women to get the same effect?

    This whole article just seems like a setup so women can shove it in men’s faces.

    The VASTTTTTTT majority of married men I know of are lucky if they have sex twice a year with their wives. They are miserable, feel unloved, unwanted, their self esteem is in the toilet if they have any left at all. I see this article as completely damaging to them, because while you might not need sex to survive, you sure as shit need it to thrive.

    • Robert Crayle

      In practice I would point out only that I have not only had no sex for twenty-eight years, I’ve had no intimate relationships outside of family for that period. I have not shrivelled up like a fruit in the sun. I am not so sure I am so different from any other man. One thing that needs to die is this idea that men “need” sex and will die specifically without masturbating with a woman-sleeve (most men have never even had sex, they just think they have).

      • Rantandreason

        A: You didn’t read what I said
        B: An exception does not make the rule
        C: Most men have never had sex, they only think they have? WTF?

        • Robert Crayle

          A. I read what you said; it’s garbage.
          B. Your rant doesn’t even make coherent sense let alone a rule
          C. Typhonblue made a video about this called “the Power of Pussy”.

  • Rad

    This question of motivation for relationships is a question of values, which means it is ultimately a philosophic question, not a biological one.

    “In our psychobiological economy, various desires come into conflict with one another, each jostling for momentary supremacy where one imperative will usurp the claims of another.”

    This is what your mind is for and what philosophy is your guide to: to not be at the mercy of momentary desires, and instead plan to satisfy them with some sense of prediction. i.e., knowing your values, and taking proactive steps to achieve them.

    When you know what matters to you, and why, your focus becomes clear, and the fewer conflicting desires you have.

    While it’s a legitimate field of study, I think people who are preoccupied with finding evolutionary explanations in the behavior of human beings (“Oh, that’s why she did that!!”) are admitting a lot about where their own level of focus is in their own lives.

    Their focus should be on making better choices in the kind of values they pursue including the people they let into their lives, not on trying to compartmentalize other people’s behaviors into them “being wrong”, as to systematize expectations of the behavior of other people (or other particular groups/races/cultures of people). That pursuit can often be an excuse to avoid a need to look inward at oneself and why one seems to be living out the same old story again and again.

    In other words: Maybe it’s not the culture. Maybe it’s not biology. Maybe it’s you and your terrible radar. And maybe you have terrible radar because your values are in conflict or unclear. So the solution is not to study the “motives of others”, the solution is value clarification.

  • Matthew Lane

    “If we lived back in Ancient Greece, Rome or anywhere else we would view sex as little more than a bodily function akin to eating, shitting and sleeping”

    Um, with all due respect Peter, i’m not sure where you got that idea from, but i can assure you the discovery of Pompeii pretty much blew that concept out of the water.

    Especially given the Roman empires long & convoluted relationship with sex & prostitution.

    I get that thats not your main point, but still, its a pretty big mistake to make. My suggestion would be to find a copy of the history channels “how sex changed the world” documentary series.

    • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

      Not buying it, sorry. Naming an old town or mentioning the existence of prostitutes says nothing other than people had sex.

      People in classical times had sex and there’s plenty of artistic representation of that, but the cult of sexualised romantic love definately did not exist in classical times, not anywhere in the world.

      No mistake here. I could give you a list of books as long as my arm that mention sex as a simple bodily function in pre Middle ages cultures. However you can start with one; ‘The Nature of Love; Courtly and Romantic’ by Irving Singer. If you want more titles, feel free to ask.

      • Matthew Lane

        “Not buying it, sorry.”

        Thats good, because its not mine to sell. But my suggestion would be to do some research into any way as it is actually a really interesting era. (or just find a copy of the a forementioned documentary series just for shits and giggles, because i promise you, its hilarious)

        One of the many interesting aspects of the era is why prostitution existed legally during that time. It existed because marriages were not for love but for station, but sleeping with the wives of other men would be considered unforgivable in Roman high society, so prostitution stayed legal (mostly).

        You’d be right that you can have sex with out an emotional connection, but people needed the emotional connection & thats what prostitutes were for.

        The empires of Greece, Rome & Byzantium were significantly more complicated then i think you give them credit for being, which is a shame, because its a fascinating time in human history.

        • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

          The documentary sounds interesting Mathew. I’ll have a look around for it… perhaps there’s a copy online.

          I’m interested in how the cluster of love, sex, romance, dominance etc played out at different times and the doco might be a good one.

  • tamerlame

    *If we lived back in Ancient Greece, Rome or anywhere else we would view sex as little more than a bodily function akin to eating, shitting and sleeping – a basic bodily function without the hype. After the Middle Ages however it developed into a commodity to pimp and trade, and the new cult of sexualized romance that arose resulted in a frustration of our basic need for attachment – a frustration aided and abetted by social institutions placing sexual manipulation at the centre of human interactions. (And if you have any doubts that this cult of sexualized romance is of fairly recent historical vintage, I’ll be publishing a piece on that very topic later this week here on AVfM).*

    Bare assertion, not a great at history are you? You are trying to fit things into a historical narrative. No one should make such blunt generalized assertions about whole periods of history.

    • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

      Bare assertion? not at all. The understanding that sex pre Middle Ages was viewed as a simple bodily function like hunger and thirst is widespread. For an intellect like yours I recommend Michael Foucault’s 1984 title ‘The History of Sexuality.’ Foucault explains that in the classical world sex was indeed viewed as a simple bodily function.

      You wont find more rigorous scholarship than Foucault’s, but if you find yourself craving more let me know – there are dozens of titles confirming this fact.

  • Tim J Benham

    Sex is not the same as attachment but nor is it unrelated. Surely there are securely attached couples who have very little or no intercourse, but how many of those would remain securely attached if they discovered their partner were having intercourse with another? we instinctively appreciate the fact that attachment often follows sex.

  • ani_surfer

    Dr. Tawil, Thanks so much for this discussion. I was seriously looking for an answer to this tug-o-war between my desire to connect with good women and my desire to be free from female control. I’ve bookmarked this for all the links and readings you’ve suggested.

    In my own experience, I found that just helping people, giving to others, and being good to someone when they are good to you, is a simple strategy to have a meaningful existence. I attached a simple rule to these actions that “I will not allow myself to be abused” and that helps in avoiding being taken advantage of. IDK, if this makes sense.

    I’m fairly new in this arena. So, thanks a lot for your work.

  • Takinoxy

    Dr. Tawil, your discussion is indeed very interesting, but I differ in some of the basic points you make and take for granted as I understood them. The whole need to connect to another individual (or more than one) I very much agree, although I am not quite a male, though being mainly masculine.

    My biggest issue with your thoughts is that I disagree with that males and females.. or as you say men and women are opposite sexes. In my view they are Composite sexes. Forget the sexual binary, that does not exist, and never has. If you have opposite sex, how come I don’t? Because I have realllllly checked for all possible options and I cannot find an opposite sex for my variation. And no, am not a mistake, deffect, anomaly, and whatever similar type of word. We Intersex have always been around.

    Also, am Asexual, you likely know what that means (also I dont identify nor feel giving or recieving penetration, and no, I wasnt raped in my youth or similar, still Virgin), and every time I try to get a relationship based on affection, love and feelings I get told that it is impossible, be it with females, males, or any variation type. I always let them know that they will have to find their sexual activities away from me.. so in my experience, most (high %) of individuals in this specie prefer Sex than attachment. Every single time I get the answer “what you are looking for is not a relationship”. !! ehmmm… really?! BS. The only individuals that understand my views are highly spiritual human beings.

    So, although I tend to agree with your post I do not see it happening any sooner on a wider social scale.