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The Polygamous Sex
by Esther Vilar (1976)

 

This is a book about love. About what love is, what it can be, and what women have made of it.

 

 

6.   Man as the victim of his polygamy

 

6.1    THE POLYGAMOUS MAN WRONGS ONLY OTHER MEN

Women complain that men regard them as mere sex objects. This sounds like wishful thinking! In actuality, a man needs considerable imagination to see a sex object in his mate. Most women deliberately choose men to whom they feel inferior ('I must have a man I can look up to,' is the slogan). An inferior is no sex object, but a protégé — a 'child'. To see a person as a sex object, we need to be looking at someone who is physically the opposite, but intellectually our equal. Most women tend to be only the physical opposite of their partner. Stupidity is not a sex-specific trait: it is the opposite, not of masculinity, but of intelligence. It makes a woman not more feminine, as many believe, but more childish.

An inferior appeals, not to her partner's sex drive, but to his paternal instinct, thus driving him to polygamy: sex with the pseudo-child makes for a guilty conscience. He looks for another sex partner, again suffers pangs of conscience if the new partner is inferior, roams further afield to find a third, and so on. Homosexual men probably are often men who have resigned themselves to the fact that their long search for an equal sex partner among women has been in vain. They prefer equality with a partner of the same sex, rather than intellectual inferiority i.e. sex with a childish person.

Although the average polygamist actually wrongs only another man, not his wife, he is rarely aware of this: a woman who regards her husband as her father cannot be the victim of sexual infidelity. For an 'adoptee' her partner is not primarily the lover, so she is jealous only when she is threatened with losing the provider in him. She would of course prefer to be her husband's 'only child', but once there is a 'sister', she will settle for at least not having to take second place. As long as the goodies are fairly shared, and the 'father' is sufficiently well-off to provide for more than one 'child', she does not care, basically, what he does with the others.

It is not towards women, therefore, that the polygamous man should be feeling guilty, but towards men. Since the male and female populations are roughly equal in number, every man who indulges himself in having two women is taking away another man's partner. A sheikh who possesses a hundred 'sex objects' is not doing the women any harm: in his harem they are well taken care of, the sexual 'exploitation' is distributed over a large number and therefore minimal, they need not be separated from their children and they always have company. It is only the poorer men who are humiliated: ninety-nine of them are deprived of potential partners by the sheikh.

In the case of the South American form of bigamy, it is again the man, not the woman, who is loser. The real victim of machismo is always another macho, because every macho with two women is stealing another man's only woman. Since the rich macho expects from all the women he keeps just one thing in return, their fidelity, and since the young girls try to enhance their market value by holding on to their virginity, the poor macho has hardly any hope of finding free sex. The consequence is a proliferation of bordellos unmatched in the rest of the world — the many poor men must share the few women left. But the poor macho — as brainwashed as the rest — is no more aware than the rich one of the real nature of the game. He too is convinced that men oppress women, and when he has scraped together enough pesos to pay half an hour's lease on a sex partner, he feels superior to all the women on earth.

We can be certain that the poorer South American males — assuming that they might wake up out of their delusion — would forget all about their famous machismo. But the dominant female morality — the morality of the many women who want to be supported all their lives — will not give them the slightest chance to do so. Those machos who must resort to whores because they can get no other women surely do not represent the celebrated Latin American 'male society'. The women who sell themselves, as the phrase goes, are not the victims of the men who seek them out, but rather of the venality of the so-called decent women which drives these men into their arms.

 

6.2    WOMEN WANT ALTRUISTIC LOVE

Women are free to choose: they can take a man as a father or as a lover; they can arouse his compassion or his desire. As long as women play the role of children, they clearly prefer sympathy. As long as they choose to be the weaker, younger, less intelligent partner in every relationship, i.e., as long as they insist on choosing male superiors they are opting openly for altruistic love.

Women sow confusion in men's minds: they look like adults but they behave like children; they demand passion but themselves stay cool; they talk of tenderness, meaning protection. Women are to blame when both sexes have to go without adult egalitarian love — they renounce it voluntarily, and the man has to make do with what they call love. 'True love puts the partner's happiness first', is the female definition of love. The man tries to adhere to it. But every time he feels for a woman what she expects of him — putting her happiness first — he is not happy with her; every time he is happy with a woman, he has putting himself first.

We have seen that women manipulate men's instincts with ease. A woman need only be somewhat weaker, colder, and less intelligent than the man and presto, she has a provider for life. But is it right to do something just because it is easy? Is an action justified just because it results in one's advantage?

We don't have to do everything we can do, because we can do it. Civilized people do not hurt animals, even though they could. When will women become civilized enough to stop mistreating men? When will they cease from training their lovers to become providers, merely because they have the power to do so?

As long as they continue as they are, men have no alternative to polygamy. They need not torment themselves with guilt because of it. As long as women insist on simulating children, as long as they want protection whether they need it or not, men have a right to more than one woman at a time. They have a right to keep looking for a real woman, among all the little girls they encounter in the course of their lives, until they actually find one. In any case, they alone are the real victims of polygamy. Whether or not they want to victimize themselves thus, is ultimately for them to decide.

 

 

 

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