Monogamy During the 20th century there have been many changes in sexual relationship expectations in the United s. In the 1900s, two thirds of all marriages ended as a result of the death of one partner. By 1985 marriages ended in divorce more frequently than death. As a result, marriages have changed and the old concept of monogamy in relationships has also changed (Pinsof, 2002). The instructor in a sociology class asked the class if the students believed in Monogamy and the majority of students said they did, but only in a marriage relationship. She asked if they hoped to marriage a virgin and they all said no. She also asked if they ever thought about marrying a virgin and they all said no. This writer thinks we have a new era where commitments are temporary, which is a bit of an oxymoron. If you marry and a relationship does not work you change to a new commitment. Some do it in through marriages some do not bother to marry. This is creating multiple problems in our society. Nine out of ten people polled by UNICEF believe the social fabric of our culture is under threat because of family breakdown. This article says much of the break down is to be blamed on the high numbers of single parent homes and step families. Since monogamy is not longer expected children do not have the same support base in the family that they had in the past. We see a rise in crime at younger and younger ages. We see more and more children treated for depression an anxiety. Our children no longer know where they belong. It appears that when there is an abandonment of long term commitment sexually there is also no long term commitment to parenting and we see a change in the behavior of children (Daily Mail, 2007). This is of course not good for the children it is also very expensive for our society. The second problem that comes with having multiple sexual partners is the number of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) reported today. The more partners an individual has the more likely they are to contract and STD. The cost of STD treatment including HIV rises every year. In 2006, if all STD numbers were combined it reaches epidemic levels in the United States (Update to CDC’s Sexually Transmitted Diseases Treatment Guidelines). It appears to this writer that multiple sexual partner is not wise from a wellness perspective. We stop smoking because it can cause illness why would we not advocate remaining monogamous to prevent illness? This writer sees the switch to multiple sexual partners and its generally acceptance in society as a move in society toward irresponsibility. One of the very basics of societies has been the nuclear family as a means to care for and teach children, as a means of caring for our elders and as a continual means of support for each of us. It allows us to experience relationships at all stages. The early stages of relationships are very different from later stages. It is wonderful to have someone who wants to be with you even though they have seen the worst of you. It is wonderful to see your partner cherish your children as much as your do and to look for each others traits in your children’s children. It is a privilege to be part of the village it takes to raise a child together through all the generations. We lose all of those experiences when we have the majority of our children born out of wedlock, when multiple partners come and go in our children’s lives and when there are so many grandparents and step grandparents the children can not remember how many they have. Monogamy is a value that is seen in all societies, sometimes it is valued and sometimes it is not valued. It seems to this writer it is a value that should be revisited. ReferencesNine in Ten Fear for Our Future (2007). Daily Mail, 4/12/2007, 19. Pinsof, W.M. (2002). The death of ‘til Death Us Do Part: The Transformation of Pair-Bonding in the 20th Century. Family Process. 42(2), 135-123.MMWR. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. (2007). 56 (14) 332-336.
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