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Monogamy deconstructed

Monogamy refers to a dyadic relationship whereby an individual has one partner during their lifetime. In marriage it could imply an arrangement between adults to remain sexual partners until when one of them dies, upon the death of one partner the surviving party can choose to celibate for the remaining part of their life or choose another partner to establish another monogamous relationship.
A monogamous marriage./FILE

Since the arrival of Christian missionaries in Africa, the agenda of one man one woman has swept over the continent to erode the traditional non-monogamous relationships formerly embraced by our ancestors from as early as when the apes climbed down the woodlands of savanna to stand on two feet.

Monogamy is a fairy tale that is synonymous to Christianity and capitalist. You are likely to encounter declarations and confessions like, “I found the love of my life”, “I discovered my rib” …” since I set my eyes on her/him I knew she/he was the one”. The truth is, human beings are terrible at monogamy.

Whenever you ask a couple why they chose to be monogamous, their most probably response would be that they fell in love. However, monogamy is not synonymous to love.

Some people will mistake the two for one thing in thinking that monogamy means love and in absence of monogamy there is no love. Love is a feeling while monogamy is a rule. Monogamy requires you to have sex with one person and if you are a Christian sometimes you are required to make this rule a contract known as marriage. Breaking this rule is a crime and its consequences range from losing properties to losing lives. Why would a man invent a rule that very hard to follow? Who is benefitting from it?

The explanation to why monogamy fails according to some school of thought is that men want to be free sexually and spread their seeds around the world while women want to be very exclusive and particular to choose a provider because they are vulnerable and children need to be taken care of. In short, women trade sexual fidelity to men in exchange for goods and services so to speak. 

The reason why men do not want women to sleep around with other men is that whenever a woman gets a baby, the kid comes out of the woman’s body so it is certain that the kid belongs to the mother, there is no question about her relationship with the offspring genetically. The male on the other hand has to take woman’s word for it if he is to confirm his relationship with the kid, else they ought to perform some DNA paternity test to be sure.

In misogynistic world, males who are not pro-monogamy argue that male sperm cells are produced every time during spermatogenesis while in woman it takes almost one month to have a mature ovum ready for fertilization.

Those who believe in evolution entertain the thought that our ancestors shared almost everything, so it is possible they shared partners too. Before capitalism pandemic swept across Africa, it was believed that children belonged to everyone in the society. In some communities, if a woman is married into a certain clan, she was referred to as a woman of that clan. That to some extend could have given some men, from within the clan, that are not necessarily the husband to claim a fair share of "her cake". The upside of it was that, it was very hard for a fertile woman to go without a kid even when she is married to an impotent man.

The idea of monogamy sprouts from Western marriage. The main reason for marriages was to have in-laws who would strengthen the alliances hence increasing chances of defense should a certain family be attacked.

Making a lifetime commitment to monogamy guarantees the two families a lasting assurance of allies. It is true that females do not require males for any other thing except baby making. It is also true that no woman is created from any man’s rib. Just like farms during adequate rain seasons, a variety of seeds can grow under the right conditions, same applies to the wombs. The female just needs a viable sperm to conceive, not necessarily from a specific male.

Monogamy thrives between partners who have almost equal levels of income. When a man has a lot of wealth, they make excuses to add other partners thus having more females in their relationship. These females could be concubines, mistresses, co-wives or baby mamas. 

For women who have a larger income especially those born into wealthy families, they do not necessarily need a lifetime partner, they just choose someone to have kids with and spend the rest of their lives “single” while meeting different males for sex.

 For the churches who claim polygamy is a pagan way of life, they hypocritically tolerate the wealthy polygamous while excommunicating and condemning the poor polygamous souls in the church.

Being monogamous has nothing to do with morality. Major Abrahamic religions draw their faith from prophet Abraham (PBUH) who was polygamous. Prophet Mohamed was very polygamous also with over ten wives. It is believed that prophet Mohamed (SAW) married all those women in order to forge political alliances that in return helped him to vanquish rebels. The idea of monogamy in Christians is borrowed from teachings from Jesus when he referred his disciples to the beginning of times, Genesis that the two shall become one. However, there are no official records that Jesus was married to anyone. So did he preach water and partake wine? Some myths claim He had sired a daughter named Sarah with a local lady. Those who choose to celibate like the vicar of Christ and the Roman Catholics claim they are doing so in line of their duty. At least the founding Pope St. Cephas had a spouse.

This debate has no unanimous ending. Choosing monogamy is like becoming a vegetarian, you can eat the veggies all your life and still look healthy. However, this will not make the sweet smell of beef disappear just because you don’t like it.


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