Sunday, June 14, 2009

The feelings mothers employ when considering whether their daughters should have sex presently with some particular male

It's an interesting question the extent to which mothers ideally should influence daughters' mating activity. In some cultures, e.g., those with arranged marriages being the norm, the daughter has very little control over whom she will mate, while in others, the mother has very little control. But of course, no matter what the laws, the person with legal control can for all practical purposes cede it to the other merely by deferring the decision to the other. Who should have control, though an interesting question, is not quite the question that mosts interests me or what I shall discuss here. The most interesting question, it seems to me, and what I wish to elaborate upon, is that of the extent to which a young female's sexual decisions should be influenced by her mother. Moral daughters tend to be in moral families that usually behave morally, and the most important thing is that moral daughters mate reasonably (in such a way as to encourage evolution of their useful and moral traits), which in these families who defer reasonably won't much depend on whether the laws that dictate control are reasonable. As discussed in a previous post, I believe that the main influence a mother should and does have over her daughter's sexual activity is to inform the daughter of the chances that such activity would be a large mistake. In reasonable families, the main control a mother can and does have over her daughter relationship-wise is that she can make the daughter afraid of a male or more comfortable with him, depending upon whether the mother is herself afraid or comfortable with him being intimate with her daughter. When a mother protects a daughter from what she sees as a big mistake, the chances that the daughter actually by nature (as opposed to from deception or nefarious controlling influence) really wants to do what she is contemplating are fairly slim, more especially because the daughter is half from the mother after all. Thus, there is not the least reason why a mother should think that protecting her daughter from a big sexual mistake with a male or encouraging her to feel more sexually comfortable with a male is otherwise than encouraging her daughter to be true to herself (and it is important that people are true to their innate natures when they mate, lest ideal virtuous mating tendencies not be selected for by evolution) and no reason why a daughter would view respecting her mother there as disrespecting herself or being untrue to herself. Accordingly, mothers have a tendency to specialize in evaluating danger, i.e., possibilities of daughters' large mistakes—it's what is and should be most influential. More especially do they specialize thus because such specialization and influence has caused mothers to evolve to be unusually effective (compared with daughters) at such activity. What I have new to say is that there are a couple mistakes mothers tend to make.

When a mother vicariously considers whether a particular man is the right sort to be intimate with her daughter, the part of herself that she puts into the consideration is largely that part of her that deals with safety and danger. When she fantasizes about her daughter having sex with a male, the pleasure tends to go up and down depending upon her present particular intimations and impressions of how safe her daughter would be with him. Insofar as her imagination is concerned, the mother's impression of the pleasure that a male would give her daughter should the male be not very much worse than he seems is something that she should and largely will judge mostly from what she feels her daughter thinks. My impression is that mothers on occasion make the mistake of believing that their own particular mental and emotional inputs that they use when judging a male are better and more important than those that their daughters would more tend to use. Just because a mother is more mature is no reason for her to think that the thoughts and internal feelings that are in her when she judges a mate for her daughter are better than the thoughts and feelings that are in her daughter when the daughter fantasizes more directly about a male. Mature approaches are not always better; it is often highly appropriate, in fact, that immature people behave immaturely. I'm not saying it is wrong for parents to be concerned for their daughters' sexual safety to a large degree (compared with their daughters' concern), I am saying it is wrong to slight the young daughters' tendencies to possess feelings of love and pleasure that just sort of assume that the male is safe (largely to the degree her mother thinks). The mature need to be mature, and the immature need to be immature. Girls need more than to avoid big mistakes—they also need to avoid little mistakes and to obtain rewards small or great, and the possibilities of the latter is what their immature selves are good at evaluating themselves, and what they should straightforwardly be themselves in fantasizing about and evaluating. Also, love needs not only that it not be thrown away on an utter villain, but also that it be given to him who is worthy or, better yet, very worthy. Because their childrens' safety is what mothers should tend to be most concerned about, and because mothers mistakenly think the children too should share the same concern, mothers tend to overestimate the importance of safety. A mother can play an important role in making her daughter feel safe when she is sufficiently safe and scared when she is in danger, but these matters are not particularly what daughters should be much concerned about, at least if the daughters can trust their parents.

The other mistake mothers tend to make is that they misinterpret their feelings of safety. When a mother vicariously fantasizes about a male having sex with her daughter, it is hard to say exactly, but my impression is that the physical pleasure which varies depending on how comfortable she feels about the male being safe is a sort of all-over-the-skin tingly comfy feeling. That it is an all-over feeling presumably protects the mother (and it's usually mothers who think so much of safety) from thinking the fantasy is probably about wanting sex herself. I think a mother might confuse this feeling with the comfortable feelings she might have about the male's ability or desire to provide materially for his daughter, which would after all tend to make the daughter more safe (from other things, like starvation). I leave it to females to determine what exactly this latter feeling is like, but presumably it is different from a feeling that a male is safe in the sense it's not at all likely he's much worse than he appears.

This confusion, when together with the confusion of the preceding paragraph, only tends to aggravate in mothers the tendency to overestimate the importance of money, a conceit, of course, mostly held by older people. (Older people hanging around mainly older people, and older people tending to have the most money and thus the most to gain selfishly by making money seem extra-important, the tendency for old people to overestimate the importance of money would exist even without the confusions mentioned.) Also, it might make mothers overestimate the ability of a virtuous (and thus totally safe) male to be a provider, creating unrealistic expectations.

Another consideration, it occurs to me, is that a female lusting is a dangerous (though potentially quite rewarding) phenomenon to her. As females age, they have less-and-less capacity to lust, mostly because lust is not rewarding to older females as it can be to younger females (not that lust is not more dangerous for younger females, but that is besides the point) (my theory is that female lust is significant mainly because it encourages intraejaculate sperm selection after being absorbed by a male). Anyway, too often as women age they mistake their decreased desire to lust as an effect of wisdom; it has nothing to do with wisdom, just maturity. Women's bodies are such they can't select for sperm especially suited to fertilizing young females, and so largely they have no use for lusting (an important exception being if other females, and more especially other young females are also involved). There is a tendency for women to believe the widespread lies of vile males, who mostly tend like the Taliban to view female lust as evil or stupid, and to consider their decreased lust as proof that females lusting is not only immature but stupid, to be quickly dismissed away as just a kind of immature “raging hormones” or whatever. This sort of tendency goes hand in hand with their tendency to think danger too important. I strongly do not think, however, that in practice this general disrespect for lust that women have discourages mothers from wanting their daughters to lust. A woman may and often does think female lust foolish, but once she encounters a male she thinks sufficiently safe whom she knows her daughter from her own (the daughter's) nature is very much sexually in love with, all those abstract considerations get thrown out the window. A mother in a situation like that very quickly realizes her not wanting to feel lust for sex is not an effect of mature wisdom, because though she isn't much keen on lusting for own sexual activity, she definitely will emotionally appreciate the pleasure of her daughter having lust, which will make mockery of her theories about how female lust is foolish on account of it being something only immature females with their immature brains could want. Why would she want to hurt her daughter? Indeed, the extent to which a girl should lust when having sex depends heavily on how safe the sex is; if a male is virtuous, a girl should be lustful, else there is no benefit to having sex young; but if the male is a deceptive villain, her feeling lust is a disaster, and will select for the most pathetic sperm imaginable—it's way worse than randomness. What really makes a (young) girl want to feel lust for a male during sex is her impression of her sexual evaluations being safe. A mother who wants her daughter to have sex wants her daughter to feel safe and comfy (in the sense of the sex not being dangerous as opposed to the sense of feeling the male will likely be a good provider for her), because she wouldn't want her daughter to have sex if she didn't think the sex is safe. Since mothers tend to specialize in evaluating danger and this comfyness effectively, a mother soothing her daughter when the mother actually wants to the daughter to have sex goes a very major way to making the daughter feel more safe. And a particular reason a mother wants her daughter to feel sexually safe, beyond that it can make the daughter want sex, is that it can make the daughter feel the sex is safe for lust. So it's only among mothers who haven't much experienced situations in which they wonder whether their young daughters should have sex who view their incapacity to lust as just another proof that girls need safety especially much. When mothers actually encounter males they want their daughters to have sex with, the reality of their desire for their daughters to feel lust is so strong (even compared with what the daughter herself is feeling), that disillusion is likely to be more-or-less immediate and in all likelihood more than sufficient. But it is pretty unusual for a girl to meet someone she should feel so sure about that she should have sex with him presently rather than later or not-at-all, and thus for a mother to want her young daughter to have lustful sex; so unfortunately, though women's underestimation of the specialness of female lust doesn't in practice much discourage women from encouraging their daughters to take risks for the sake of lustful pleasure, yet it makes the general social climate toward girls taking risks for their sexual pleasure and more particularly the risk of girls lusting for their own sexual pleasure a much more inimical one than it should be.

One might have noticed one could argue in reverse that girls, denying their parents' modes of thinking, tend to underestimate the importance of safety. It may be true that girls tend to underestimate the importance of safety and the danger of danger, but I don't think the reasons are entirely analogous. Parents can't always be there to protect girls; girls have no choice but often to put themselves into judging whether a male is safe, which to a certain extent they should do regardless (but probably not quite to the extent they should respect their parents' views there if they respect their parents and their parents' abilities as much as they do themselves and their own abilities). Accordingly, all the aforementioned arguments apply significantly more weakly in the reverse direction. But there is another consideration. Namely, the part of a girl that she does not share with her mother wants just like the rest of the girl to be safe, but it isn't attracted to her mother's considerations on account of her mother being like her (though it might to a certain extent especially value her mother's considerations on account of her mother having less reason to want to behave selfishly toward her). On the other hand, the part of a mother distinct from a daughter shares no pleasure or pain in the daughter making a particular choice, it being unrelated to the daughter; it is at worst indifferent. And so, as I mentioned in a previous post (with perhaps too much allusion toward statistics in it, it seems to me now), girls will undesirably tend to rely on general impressions of how safe a possible relationship would be and whether such safety be important, whereas they would do better (on average) to more respect their parents' opinions and to less encourage their parents to be more normal and less weird.