Monitor on Psychology - October 2011 - (Page 20)

Upfront A consequence of cuckoldry: More (and better) sex? Humans seem to have evolved to be primarily monogamous, with occasional cheating, said University of Michigan psychology professor William McKibbin, PhD, at APA’s 2011 Annual Convention. As a result, about 4 percent of children worldwide are fathered by someone other than the man who believes he is the father, according to a meta-analysis published in the Journal of Epidemiological Community Health (Vol. 59, No. 9). That tendency allows females to have more genetic variety among their offspring, but for the cuckolded male’s genes, it’s bad news. “It’s a double whammy,” McKibbin said. “Not only are you not having your own offspring, you’re devoting your time, energy and resources to another male’s offspring.” To defend against cuckoldry, men have developed a variety of behavioral and biological defenses, McKibbin said. In one study, in press in Comparative Psychology, McKibbin and his colleagues found that men at greater risk for cuckoldry (as measured by the proportion of time they’d spent away from their partners) became more interested in having sex with their partners. They also found their partners more attractive and engaged in more “mate guarding” behavior — for example, monopolizing their partners’ time at a party. This effect was independent of the amount of time since the couple last had sex, so it wasn’t just the result of built-up desire — and it was moderated by how much a man trusted his mate not to cheat, McKibbin found. This line of research is controversial but important because it may help us better understand — and prevent — sexual coercion and rape, McKibbin said. One About 4 percent of children worldwide are fathered by someone other than the such finding, in McKibbin’s Comparative man who believes he is the father, finds research. Psychology study: Men at risk for cuckoldry were later more likely to pressure their to cheat, suggest that sperm competition has been common partners into having sex. throughout human history, said McKibbin. These findings, in combination with past research showing that men at risk for cuckoldry produce more sperm, thrust “Cheating has been around for a very long time,” he said. more vigorously and are more interested in their partners’ orgasms than males whose partners’ haven’t had a chance —S. DINGFELDER 20 MONITOR ON PSYCHOLOGY • OCTOBER 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Monitor on Psychology - October 2011

Monitor on Psychology - October 2011
President’s Column
Subtle and stunning slights
From the CEO
Live science on the showroom floor
Zimbardo re-examines his landmark study
Ready, set, mentor
Attention students and ECPs: Self-care is an ‘ethical imperative’
Suicide risk is high among war veterans in college, study finds
Psychotherapy is effective and here’s why
From toilet to tap: getting people to drink recycled water
What’s ahead for psychology practice?
A push for more accountability is changing the accreditation process
Peer, parental support prove key to fighting childhood obesity
Popular media’s message to girls
Bullying may contribute to lower test scores
A consequence of cuckoldry: More (and better) sex?
Manatees’ exquisite sense of touch may lead them into dangerous waters
Building a better tomato
How will China’s only children care for their aging parents?
‘Spice’ and ‘K2’: New drugs of abuse now on the market
Many suspects don’t understand their right to remain silent
In Brief
Boosting minority achievement
Where’s the progress?
And social justice for all
Helping new Americans find their way
Segregation’s ongoing legacy
A new way to combat prejudice
Retraining the biased brain
Suppressing the ‘white bears’
How to eat better — mindlessly
Protect your aging brain
Must babies always breed marital discontent?
Outing addiction
Flourish 2051
The danger of stimulants
Keys to making integrated care work
Is technology ruining our kids?
Facebook: Friend or foe?
The promise of Web 3.0
NIMH invests in IT enhanced interventions
Science Directions
Science Directions
PsycAdvocates work to safeguard key programs
The psychology of spending cuts
APA’s strategic plan goes live
Visionary leaders
Vote on bylaws amendments

Monitor on Psychology - October 2011