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Notes on powerful men and monogamy
on Thursday, 31 October 2019
Thanks for an interesting article. I have a few notes here:
Ad powerful men always having mistresses and being polygamous. Of course many powerful men live this way. But there are examples of powerful men living monogamous or non-sexual life because of different reasons: religion (f.e. the popes – at least some of them), focus on work (Nikola Tesla), repressed sexuality (Cecil Rhodes, Adolf Hitler), introversion/awkwardness/shyness/possible autism (Bill Gates, Lionel Messi). For example, Victorian public schools trained young English men to repress their sexuality and many of otherwise hypermasculine builders of the British Empire were not sexually active. Probably some other deeply religious powerful men were disciplined enough not to live in polygamy. Etc.
I am surprised that in your comparison difference of the West and the other parts of the world you do not mention Christianity (and Judaism) as a factor of cultural dominance of monogamy. If you are practicing Christian, you are allowed to have sex only in marriage and you can marry only one woman. If you follow the rules, you have to be monogamous. Traditional Christian (or secular) Western family is based on marriage between one man and one woman who have children together. Mutual monogamy seems like natural and logical implication (or precondition) of this model. Cultural influence of the West to a big extent overlap with spread of Christianity, though in some regions there is syncretism with local cultures and therefore more visible polygamy. Moreover, if ratio of men and women in polupation is balanced, then monogamy is better since more men can have woman and their own family. It is better also for stability of society, since there are less frustrated men.
I wonder how you could have thought the way you thought if you were raised in conservative Catholic family. I have atheist background (Central-Eastern Europe) and I have always considered mutual monogamy as natural and the right model of family, while infidelity was as a bad thing (I am not Christian, so sex outside marriage is normal, as well as serial monogamy or casual sex or FWB). I have never had real desire to have multiple girlfriends at the same time or even multiple families, I found it absurd, unthinkable, not right and inconvenient. Idea of onesided monogamy is unfair to me. Since I am a rules based guy, not a wild bad boy, when I found for the first time my male friends were unfaithful to their girlfriends, I felt like „how could he possibly do that?“ and not „wow, he is a cool guy for getting laid with another woman“. Now I am more in peace with reality but still it would be uncomfortable for me to do it since it goes against my core values.
One point to one previous article. You correctly wrote that nice guys are guardians of social norms and that social norms cannot exist without people defending them. That actually implies that bad boys need and are kind of dependent on existence of nice guys. While they sometimes mock them and are arrogant to them as to people not knowing how to have fun and not being manly enough, they are exciting to women in contrast to them and their rules breaking is exciting only when other people follow the rules. When all nice guys start to behave like bad boys, this contrast disappears and social norms change or cease to be valid, so breaking them has no more effect.
In the past I wrote you about my dilemma in relation to this Indonesian girl in long-term relationship (here:
). For your information, while she is still as lovable as she used to be, recently she got married with the same guy she was dating when I met her. So even your advice could not have worked in this case. Sometimes it is hopeless since beginning.
Thanks for your reply.
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