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Study: Men Desire Relationships, Not Casual Sex

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Paul Hudson

Andrew P. Smiler, psychologist and author of Challenging Casanova: Beyond the Stereotype of the Promiscuous Young Male, believes that most men are not the man whores that they are stereotyped to be.

This “Casanova stereotype tells us that guys are emotional clods who are incapable of connecting with their partners because, hey, they’re just guys, and guys are only interested in sex… guys shouldn’t be expected to achieve any type of ‘real’ emotional intimacy with their partners.”

Through his research, Smiler found that in actuality men wanted a healthy monogamous relationship and not the believed array of one night stands.

“All of the research that we have show that it’s only a minority of guys who have multiple partners per year, and I typically talk about this as three partners a year because that’s the Casanova average. It’s actually a minority of guys who want multiple short-term partners,” Smiler tells Salon in an interview.

“The evolutionary argument basically goes that guys have the ability, theoretically, to produce hundreds of children per year, and they can never quite be 100 percent sure that any child is theirs, so they should spread their seed widely.”

But what gets left out of that is the fact that if you want your genes to go beyond that next generation — beyond your children to your grandchildren, then your odds are better if you actually stick around and help raise that kid until that kid is old enough to pass on his or her genes.”

This idea of seed-spreading “made it out of scientific circles and into popular culture in the 1980s as sociobiology, and parts of it got recreated as evolutionary psychology in the 1990s. So it’s gotten a lot of press attention as a new theory.”

In regards to the Casanova stereotype, Smiler comments that, “[t]here is a percentage of guys that do that…research typically shows about 15 percent of guys have three or more partners in any given 12-month span. If you follow those guys over time the number of guys who have three or more partners a year for as long as three years, that drops to about 5 percent.

So there are definitely some guys out there who are doing it — but it’s really a small percentage of guys. By contrast, if you look at guys who are very religious, that’s about 15 percent of guys, and most of them really are devoutly religious, really dedicated to their partner.”

Paul Hudson | Elite. 

Paul Hudson

Paul Hudson

Staff Writer

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