Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Hormones Will Fool You

Do you realize that most of our regrettable behavior comes from listening to our hormones as opposed to our heart or brain? Add to that the messages we receive from the media that sex is the end all. Even preteen girls clothes are more provocative than ever and toddlers are strutting down the runaway in outfits more appropriate for Madonna than a four year old. The basic message aimed at females is sex sells. The underlying message is it will get what you want.

 This explains the increase of STD’s among the geriatric set. Still most of the retirees haven’t experienced soley a surge in hormones, but rather loneliness. Among the elderly, the women still outnumber the men. Most senior women would prefer not to be alone. A man on their arm is as much as an accessory as it is for their younger counterparts. With the rise of erectile dysfunction drugs, it seems probable that grandpa wants to prove he still has it. Widows and widowers are casually hooking up not purely for fun, but in a desperate bid to escape their solitude. What they’ve forgotten is hormones often trick us.

  Sometimes our mind joins in this deception. If you watch the movie Catfish, or the reality based television show of the same name, you’d witness people engaged in online relationships with folks they’ve never met. The show’s originator brings the two people together on camera. The girl quivers with excitement to meet her beloved. She usually flashes a handful of photos of a gorgeous guy. The reality is the man is not movie star handsome, and sometime not even a man. The pull they called love was more a simple case of infatuation or lust based on what he looked like. The participants didn’t fall for one another’s souls.

  As I watched the show, my first reaction was contempt for the people who would post false pictures of themselves. Think about it, don’t most people try to change themselves to attract a partner. Both men and women complain that once they landed someone that person changes. What they didn’t realize is they returned to their normal everyday self, as opposed to being the sex kitten with big hair, or the debonair charmer.

  With this in mind, relationships that start out as friends or even neighbors actually have a better chance because the couple knows who the real person is. As a dating couple, they’ll notice when the other is trying a little harder because it is a change from the normal behavior. This is a definite benefit as opposed to being penalized for acting normal.

 Most relationships start out with a sexual spark.  Men often comment that they wouldn’t bother dating women they couldn’t see themselves in bed with, but women often confuse this sentiment. They understand it as if they sleep with the guy he’ll be theirs.  Men often sleep with women they don’t even like. Yep, I said it. They aren’t horrible individuals either; they just didn’t realize they didn’t like the woman. How’s this you might wonder? They never had time to get to know her before they fell onto the sheets.

When a woman approaches a man, or flirts with him, she’s giving off pheromones that let the man know she’s available. This is a natural occurrence. Add into the scenario, a steady diet of sex-obsessed media images, a provocative outfit, and alcohol and you got yourself a classic one-night stand. Only the woman doesn’t think it’s a fling, she sees a relationship, whereas the guy doesn’t, but may continue for a few miserable weeks before vanishing.

Hormones usually jump start an attraction, however if a relationship proceeds at a normal pace, then those same hormones play a minor role.  What happens is you begin to value the person for who they are as opposed to how they make you feel.  Think back to those smitten women in Catfish, their hormone level bottomed out when they caught sight of their real online love.   They never really loved the person, but rather the image.  There is a two-part lesson there. Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not, and don’t base your choices on superficial beauty.

Almost all affairs are the result of responding to hormones. Perfectly decent people in good marriages fall into affairs in a moment, as opposed to thinking it out, or getting on the Ashley Madison site. The media drives our need for novelty. That’s why so many people believe they need something extra. Do you ever see a happy marriage portrayed in the movies? I remember an old television show, Hart to Hart, where gorgeous millionaire couple solved murder with the help of their helpful butler.  You could have a happy marriage, according to the media, if you were rich, gorgeous, and had a helpful butler.

 Unfortunately, we now expect men and women to have double-digit sex partners.  Often college co-eds out from the watchful eyes of their parents engage in consensual and often non-consensual sex on campus. There is a message out there that you are supposed to be hooking up as much as you can. If you’re not, then something is wrong with you. Men often fall into this thinking with their locker room talk, but women can talk and act just as dirty.

What they don’t realize is they are setting themselves up not to have a fulfilling relationship. A union based on sex falls apart when someone more alluring shows up on the scene.  People who did not spend enough time developing a relationship before hopping into bed cannot achieve a lasting partnership. Before, whenever anything went wrong, they left and found someone else. It seemed easy enough to do.

Statistically proven, men who play around continue to play around after marriage. They are too afraid they are missing out. One man said when divorcing that he felt it was unfair to all the hot women by staying married.  If a woman did have a large number of flings, then a normal, balanced relationship will seem unexciting to her. She’ll be out seeking novelty in the form of a bad boy.

 How do you get off this hormone driven carousel? Be yourself, as opposed to a sexed up version of you. Know what you want, write it down, so you won’t drift off on a wave of pheromones. Focus on the result instead of the right now. There is nothing sadder than a sixty-year-old man with a spray on tan and too much cologne trying to pick up women in a bar. Don’t be that man, or the woman he picks up.

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