It was a ‘movie night’ at a girlfriend’s house and instead of watching the movie, we found ourselves drawn into a discussion on cheating. Yeah, it is possible to discuss this too! One of us averred that we are in the era where cheating is the rule rather than the exception. She said that in some men’s books, cheating is like a reflex action – when they get the urge fulfilled, they might not even remember it. My other girlfriend told us that the issue is not whether he will cheat; rather, it is a question of when and what she would do once she found out that he had been grazing on other pastures. Antennas went up at this point.
Before Adams accuse me of male bashing and disregard the piece all together, relax and read on. It is an open secret nowadays that what was once perceived to be the preserve of Adam; some Eves are doing with greater perfection. Fingers are no longer pointing at Adams only; Eves have been caught hipsters down and not with very convincing justification (is there any ever?). A story is told of an Eve who carried on an affair with her boyfriend’s best friend and her Adam did not get wind of the matter until a year later! You have to commend this particular Adam because this Eve left with her jaw intact (don’t they say that this is not something that Adams take lying down? – no one’s vouching for violence here)
A university in Sweden carried out a research and when it was published, Adams were perusing that site with glee! (I picked this up from a magazine so don’t ask me for the reference :)). The research concluded that a high level of a certain hormone makes men more prone to cheating. (And no, this research was not shortlisted for the Nobel Peace Prize for Science). Eves are also ‘libidinous’ beings and I am sure, there is a research attempting to explain hormone, due to its higher presence in the body, will lead some Eves to changing gear shafts. (Come on now, get curious and Google high estradiol+ side effects:)).
A while ago, one President Zuma of South Africa was accused of being promiscuous; but he defended himself by saying that he was keeping the Zulu culture alive. Many of us must have heard this story since it caused a stir in the continent and beyond. It is not easy to draw the line when a head of state thumps the ground dressed in Zulu regalia and declares he is paying dowry for his 5th wife- 5th! – then news start doing the rounds that he has sired a kid with his ally’s young daughter. Is it just me or something isn’t right? He sounds like commander in chief ‘of and for everything’!
This is probably what Sigmund Freud (the father of psychology) had in mind when he talked about responding to the ‘Id’: ‘Id’ is based on our pleasure principle. In other words, the Id wants whatever feels good at the time, with no consideration for the reality of the situation.
If Freud was right, the ‘Id’ then is a powerful force. There is something about instant gratification that is difficult to explain but so powerful, it has brought down the high and mighty and unveiled the men of cloth as well.
Back to our topic of the day. One school of thought says that it takes more than love to ‘zero graze’ – it takes respect. When two mates meet and decide to date and even get married, they are well aware that there are other attractive men and women out there, but they settle for each other and make innumerable promises. I guess this is why most affairs are clandestine. It would seem that there is a fiber somewhere which acknowledges that wandering to other pastures is not part of keeping the promise. This however does not prevent Adam and Eve from trying to explain how they landed on the wrong pasture. The most common of them being that ‘it is the way things are nowadays’ (I tripped and fell is now rather outdated).
So this movie night turned out to be quite an informative session. I do not know if it would be correct to observe that the society at large has watched the fracturing of families and relationships, because of a general acceptance that ‘this is the way it is these days’? I think many would like to get some threads of hope out there that failure to ‘zero graze’ does not have to be the norm but rather the exception?