Monogamy & Male Nipples
We have all heard the expression “as useless as teats on a bull.” Yet have we ever looked at the male human chest and wondered exactly what those nipples are for? It seems as every other anatomical feature has a clearly defined function, but male nipples don’t really do anything but just kind of sit there.
Female nipples are an indispensable part of the reproductive process. They provide access to the digestible nutrient for the offspring’s first months of life. However, the male nipples... like I said... they just kind of sit there.
When we consider the anatomical design that has produced us, it is a marvel of efficiency. Every structure has its function. There is no surplus, no unnecessary complication. Nothing just kind of sits there.
It just so happens that male nipples are not the exception to this rule. They serve a very important anatomical function. A recent experiment transferred a gene from a monogamous male rodent into the brain of a polygamous male rodent. Once duly implanted, the polygamous rodent suddenly formed a bond with a single female and set up house in an admirable paragon of monogamy.
No, madam, this procedure has not been proven to work on humans, therefore you must resort to more conventional ways of keeping hubby from straying.
It is natural for the monogamous rodent to stay with only one mate for life. That is the role which evolution has designed for the survival of that particular species of rodent. Evolution has also chosen a route that favors the survival of the polygamous species. Although the routes differ, upon analysis of the environmental and genetic factors involved in this evolutionary process, we can agree that these monogamous rodents are better off staying with one mate and protecting the offspring, while the polygamous rodents are better off spreading their wild rodent oats all over the place and hoping that through sheer numbers of fertilizations, something survives.
Neither approach is wrong. Each is right for the particular species.
Men love to sleep around.
Come on, guys, let’s face it. As dedicated as you might be to the Mrs., if a supermodel approached you at the office, closed the door and began disrobing, chances are you wouldn’t call the police and charge her with sexual assault.
Therefore are men monogamous or polygamous? Monogamy would assume the choice of a single mate and a lifetime commitment to the protection of the offspring of that particular union. Polygamy would assume the variety of an unspecified number of mates in a social setting where parentage was indistinct at best and where the uncertainty of offspring identification made protection of your own genetic material well nigh impossible.
All men need to do is look down at their chests for the answer. Down to those useless nipples that just sit there.
Many people are not aware that if an infant suckles on the male nipple long and hard enough, it will lactate. The male will produce enough milk to keep the infant from starving.
That function is designed in the case that the mother dies or otherwise becomes incapacitated during lactation. The father can take over the mother’s role and feed the baby from his own breast.
Cats have a wide variety of abilities which humans lack, and among them is the ability of identifying their offspring by scent. In a social setting where several females have delivered many kittens from different roaming fathers, a tomcat is able to sniff the kitten and determine whether it is his or some other male cat’s.
In many cases, when it determines that the kitten is another male’s, it kills that kitten.
A rather effective, if messy, way of ensuring that your own genetic material triumphs.
People cannot identify their own offspring by smell. Therefore, the male has a failsafe mechanism built in to ensure the survival of his baby even if the mother is not able to lactate. He is able to take over the breast-feeding functions and produce milk at a rate that will keep the infant alive.
The male is only able to identify the offspring if he has been in the company of the female throughout the gestation period. If the male had been roaming, there would be no way for him to determine his genetic linkage to the baby. Thus he likely would not make the intensive commitment to hold the child at his breast long enough for him to begin lactation. The baby would die of starvation.
If the baby is born into an established relationship where sufficient commitment exists to ensure monogamous sexual behavior, then the father has sufficient assurance of his parentage to make the sacrifices necessary to keep his offspring alive. Sacrifices that he would likely not perform if it were not his child.
Since humans lack the sense of smell cats have which can identify your own offspring, then the only other solution to ensure parentage is permanence as part of a committed monogamous relationship.
The act of staying with a female throughout gestation and into the formative years of the child are the textbook definition of monogamy. This is the type of behavior that is unknown in a polygamous “hit and run” social order.
Is it human nature to be monogamous? The answer is right there on a man’s chest. The nipples to feed its baby should the mother not be able to. Nipples that have as their basic function the manifestation of the definition of monogamy: long term commitment and sacrifice for the offspring.
Humans are monogamous: This is a tenet which our culture seems to have completely forgotten in the rush to embrace our modern holy grails of electronic pornography and the allegedly “free love” granted by effective artificial methods of birth control. In a single generation we have exploded the nuclear family structure which has served our race so well for tens of thousands of years. Through our infatuation with pleasure-seeking, we have created a bizarre alternate dimension of humanity which has no comparison in history. We’re having one heck of a party, and perhaps it is due to the fact that our collective human conscience understands at some very deep level that this cycle is almost over. “Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow you may die.” Maybe Prince was only partially wrong when he sang that “Tonight we’re gonna party like it’s 1999.”
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