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Why is it that having sex with someone else is wrong?


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What is it about having sex with someone that's not your partner that is inherently wrong? What is it about sex that makes it so fundamentally different from, say, talking to someone else, or going bowling or to a movie with someone else? Why is it so devastating to us when our partner has sex with someone besides us?

 

I mean, if we asked our SO, "Hey, what'd you do tonight?" we'd have a completely different response if he or she said "Well, so and so came over and we had sex a few times.." than if they said "we went to the park ..."

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because sex is an intimate thing shared between two people... when in a relationship, sex can bring two people even closer.. hanging out in a park is quite different than having your boyfriend inside another woman...

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Because you are showing that you don't care about the relationship and the sacredness of it, if you are sleeping around. Also you can get STD's and other nasties and give it to your SO. Because you are doing something behind somebody's back.

 

OK ren, for argument's sake: would it mean that I don't care about my relationship if I went bowling with someone besides my SO? And what if it isn't done behind someone's back? In some cultures, it's common practice to sleep with as many people as possible. So why in our culture is it seen as inherently evil and wrong?

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It's just tradition, I suppose... the way a person was brought up. If you were brought up to sleep with as many people as possible, that's your own decision. But in this society, people are brought up to believe they should make a commitment to be faithful and having sex with someone is considered to break that commitment.

You actually do raise a good question though.

I suppose it all goes back to the bible and sex being sacred and meant to share with only ONE other person....

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It's Judeo-Christian tradition that has been ingrained in the minds of society for centuries. We link sex to love, and love to sex. If you have sex with someone other than the person you love, the mindset is that you are showing that you love the original person less as you are splitting your love into two, just as you are your sex life. Since it has been ingrained in our social structure, it's assumed that if you're not in a standard two-person relationship you are a deviant, and if you're not a deviant, you must be wanting the hurt the other person. The second is assumed.

 

There's probably also a biological component to it as well; the pairing instinct, where two bonded parents provide a better chance for their offspring to survive. It probably attacks our self-conscious nature; leaving the person who was "cheated on" to think why their sex wasn't good enough for the partner and why they "needed" someone else to fill the role.

 

There have been cultures where structures other than two-person pairing have taken root; just look at some of the polygamous religious sects of middle America and the concept of link removed.

 

Personally? I like having one person who's always "in my corner", so to speak. It would be a betrayal for me if they had sex with someone else without first telling me, but if they had said they wanted to beforehand, I probably wouldn't be as offended. The strength of a relationship is in communication. I'm not sure if I would want to be in a polyamorous relationship in the first place though. I think it would probably lead to feelings of confusion and doubt, and I really don't know whether I'd be able to stay happy in a situation like that.

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Yes, that's been established, but why??

 

Sex is a way of giving yourself up intimately to someone. It's meant to be a loving act, especially when you agree to commit to someone. In some ways, it's allowing someone to become a part of you, to touch your soul. And by agreeing to be in a committed relationship, you are giving up your right to do such a thing. That is why it is so wrong.

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In most relationships, the partners agree that they will not have sex with other people. In some relationships, that is not a stipulation, and the partners are free to pursue sex with others.

 

Most people are raised to think that sex is special, that it's to be shared between two people who love each other. I can honestly say that sex is at its best with a partner who you are in love with, who you have a unique and special bond with when you have sex.

 

When someone has sex with someone other than their partner, it's the breaking of the promise that is the hardest part, but it also ruins the bond that they consider so unique and special.

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Besides sex creating a bond, does anyone here think that part of it is because you can possibly make a baby with someone else? I mean speaking from a purely evolutionary perspective, if a woman's man sleeps with someone else, he can have a baby with the other partner and the woman may be left without a partner which makes her chances of survival decrease.. just a thought ... but I liked reading all of your responses. It's interesting how some of you immediately mentioned a trust/bond connection, while others focused on dishonesty and commitment

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Besides sex creating a bond, does anyone here think that part of it is because you can possibly make a baby with someone else?

 

I'm sure that is part of it. The main thing is sex between two people in love is probably the ultimate intimacy. It's not something to just share around like taking a walk in the park or going bowling for the day.

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well, in today's world, a practical consideration is always the issue of paternity... say your husband is free to have sex with anyone he wants, and fathers a child... do you want $600-$2000 or whatever going to another woman from his paycheck every month because he has fathered a child elsewhere? paternity is very easy to prove these days with genetic testing...

 

and most women do NOT separate sex and love too clearly, so someone sleeping with your husband might decide they want to steal him permanently as a partner...

 

and someone you are sleeping with, the more people you are a sleeping with, can give you an incurable and life threatening STD...

 

so it is always tradeoffs, and monogamy does have its advantages for lots of reasons... i honestly feel if a person doesn't have it in themselves to commit to that, then don't marry, and acknowledge that life may be full of an endless series of short term partnerships, and more risk of diseases, and diminishing income due to supporting children with multiple women, and less time between parents and children because they are hopping around trying to do adequate visitation...

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I think since sex seems to be the most powerful "physical" bond we can give to another human being. Thus, we link it with the most powerful "emotional" bond, love. Now say your goal in life isn't to focus on having as many relationships/sex/babies as possible (perhaps it was back in ancient times), then your priorities will be aimed more toward "building" a home, family, etc.

 

Obviously, it is much easier to achieve this on more than one income, especially with all of the prices and competition in today's world. So you make a sort of pact with another human being to do this (hoping they have your same interests in life at heart). So we solidify our pact with marriage, sex and the concept of love.

 

The reason I went through all of that is because if you cannot rely on a person's fidelity and "love" in a partnership in life, I don't believe there is anything else more powerful to hold two people together psychologically. If your partner gives up their sexual fidelity with another human being, what do you have left that only you two share together? Why does it matter? Once that action has taken place, the whole structure comes tumbling down and the victim becomes paranoid. They begin to wonder: Do I want to share my assets, goals, children, etc with someone I cannot exclusively link myself with? They are paranoid because if this person can cheat on them sexually, they can easily take anything else from their part of the bond with them and take off.

 

I guess the best way I can answer this is sex and love are the only true ways we (in our freedom based society) are able to ensure a psychological contract or bond. If that is broken, I don't think bowling is going to be an adequate supplement.

 

However if your goals aren't the norm, and you want to do the temporary thing until your demise, then this concept doesn't mean much. As well it shouldn't. A society that is based on building itself to be better than other societies and nations must have some sort of fundamental fidelity between the sexes as it's base. Otherwise you will never get past the anarchy, wild rover stage. Those that care about a society their offspring are going to live in will care about the foundation of fidelity.

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If your cheated on you understand why it's such a big deal. it is a intimate thing if you8 really care about the person that is. Granted a lot of people just do it because they are full of hormones and the drive to do it is too strong with no control.

 

You also realize just how important sex is when you don't do it for a long period of time. It sucks.

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What is it about having sex with someone that's not your partner that is inherently wrong? What is it about sex that makes it so fundamentally different from, say, talking to someone else, or going bowling or to a movie with someone else? Why is it so devastating to us when our partner has sex with someone besides us?

 

I mean, if we asked our SO, "Hey, what'd you do tonight?" we'd have a completely different response if he or she said "Well, so and so came over and we had sex a few times.." than if they said "we went to the park ..."

 

Because sex is physically and sexually intimate, and for me- and my partner - it is something you do only with someone you love and care about a great deal - so if either of us had sex with someone else that would destroy the promise to only be that intimate with each other.

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B/c it's something soo intimate and well private that only you and your partner shared if you're in a commited relationship. Now if you're talking about open relationships in other cultures, well that's another story. Sleeping aorund can get you diseases if with protection on, you're not immune 100% from STD's.

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Besides sex creating a bond, does anyone here think that part of it is because you can possibly make a baby with someone else? I mean speaking from a purely evolutionary perspective,

 

I was thinking about just this the other day - why we're so hard-wired to pair off as we do with all the associated emotional stuff, why I want to be with someone so much more than anything else right now. I know I'm getting to the stage when I actively want a partner to have children with, and there are lots of evolutionary reasons we humans value being close to each other, but I'm not certain evolution explains the desire for exclusive relationships.

 

It's fair enough that we - in a general evolutionary sense - want to reproduce. For men this is maximized by sleeping with as many women as possible, being supportive enough of the woman and child until the child is likely to survive, and keeping other males from empregnating the mates he's expending energy to support. Women, with only a few eggs compared to zilions of sperm, maximize their chances of staying in the gene pool by attracting strong mates and maintaining their interest and the well-being of their children.

 

So evolutionary psychology seems to explain a lot about our society - men's traditional focus on work and providing, women's traditional focus on the home and nurturing, why most violence is young men vs. young men, why 'girly' things include things like make-up, clothes, and long talks about feelings, the double standards for men and women sleeping around, etc., etc. etc. This all makes sense to me - but why should we want exclusivity?

 

It's probably an evolutionary benefit for women to be exclusive, but almost cetrainly not for men to be. You can say stable families have two partners, but I think, as other people have suggested, this is about Judeo-Christian ideology than about actual biological fitness. So why DO most of us value a loving monogamous relationships anyway? I think that's a really interesting question - has our culture over the past few thousand years been able to instill a 'need' that isn't biologically necessary, or even preferred?

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Insofar, are you an anthropologist my dear?

 

You sound like a fellow anthro student! Thats what I would have said!

Hehe, nope, but it makes sense. I'm a computer geek

 

If your partners okay on you sleeping around than its okay, otherwise its a betrayal of their trust. ^by the way insofar, love your signature, I'm a big Foo Fighters fan.

Yeah, I thought it was appropriate here, especially the last line. I really recommend getting Skin and Bones if you haven't yet, some great stuff there.

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