For many of us, marriage is special. The idea of a lifelong bond between two people is accorded legal, spiritual and cultural significance throughout much of the world. Whether we are religious or secular, a permanent monogamous relationship can feel sacred.
So when we hear about animals that form lifelong bonds, our “aww” factor goes into overdrive: “How adorable! Gosh, we could all learn a thing or two from those shingleback lizards”.
But for all the romantic novels, love songs and soppy greetings cards, monogamy remains more of an ideal than a reality. Even in seemingly monogamous human societies, infidelity is common, and the same is generally true of monogamous animals. There are a few that do remain faithful, but the underlying reasons are anything but romantic…
This was a surprisingly controversial article, with a lot of people taking it as an attack on their relationships and values (which it honestly wasn’t). While I don’t consider myself a “polyamorous hipster”, I suppose I’m flattered that anyone thinks my love life is as interesting as that sounds. Anyway, please read the full article here and make your own judgement.