It's inevitably clear that hormones profoundly influence our feelings of love and affection for others, as well as our romantic and sexual desires.
Though it's entirely apparent, there are still miles to go before we figure out exactly how those hormones impact our interactions with others.
There is a massive push in the scientific literature to bring us closer to understanding these complex physiological interactions, especially concerning the influence of Testosterone.
An article in Physiology & Behavior helps shed some light on how Testosterone influences male relationships.
One of the most notable aspects of a relationship between a man and a woman is the notion of possession. When a man and a woman are dating traditionally, both partners tend to have a desire for loyalty and faithfulness.
This recent study provides evidence that that desire for fidelity is influenced by Testosterone Levels, at least to a certain extent.
Men with elevated Testosterone Levels compared to baseline tend to put more personal energy into making sure that their lover is adequately devoted and faithful, and are more likely to respond with feelings of jealousy and competitiveness toward potential suitors.
What is Mate Retention Behavior?
Mate Retention Behaviors are any actions that a partner takes to reduce the risk of their partner going astray.
There is a wide range of these behaviors, many of which are favorable for the partner, but not all.
For example, many men like to provide gifts or do good things for their partners to keep them loyal. One study even examines men's propensity to offer oral sex as a Mate Retention Behavior (it's useful).
On the other hand, these behaviors often demonstrate the darker side of human relationships, such as stalking or threatening the partner.
Testosterone and Competition vs. Testosterone and Mate Retention
There has been a tremendous amount of attention paid to how Testosterone influences competition among males, both for mates and in the sense of athletic performance.
Testosterone is the driving factor that influences men to seek the attention of a partner. There has been much less focused research conducted about what happens after a man has found his mate.
It's evident that Testosterone still plays a substantial role, but the body of research just isn't there to explain the specifics.
Lead researcher Steven Arnocky made it his goal to study what happens to men after they have acquired their mate. Professor Arnocky teaches at Nipissing University and is the founder of the Human Evolution Laboratory.
The name of the study is “Intrasexual competition mediates the relationship between men’s testosterone and mate retention behavior.”
It's important to recognize that, even after a man has found a partner, there is still a competition going on. There is always the risk that another man can sweep a partner off his or her feet.
If a man wants to stay in a relationship, he's going to have to work for it, which is where Mate Retention Behaviors come into play. These behaviors can be divided into two classes: Benefit Provisioning and Cost Inflicting.
Benefit Provisioning Behaviors are positive things that men do to keep a relationship going. They give gifts.
They make women feel happy and comfortable. They help support a lifestyle that is congruent with a good life. Cost Inflicting Behaviors, on the other hand, are actions that serve to keep other men at bay or coerce the partner into staying in the relationship.
Confronting a man that talks to your girlfriend is a Cost Inflicting Behavior. Staying close to a partner in public situations to keep men away is another such behavior.
Two forms of Cost Inflicting Behavior that are popular in media and pop culture today are Negging and Gaslighting.
Negging is the act of making backhanded compliments and similar gestures to diminish confidence. Gaslighting refers to any psychological effort to make another person doubt their own views and perspectives as a means of control.
Why Is There So Little Research Regarding Mate Retention Behaviors?
As you might know, animal research is a huge aspect of our knowledge of the human condition. Humans are rare among mammals in that they tend to stay with their partner, often for life.
Most mammals mate and separate. The male might stay long enough to help rear the brood, but that's generally it. This study spends more time focusing on how Testosterone impacts pair bonding, and the male desire to sustain that bond.
This study investigated a group of 108 undergraduate males at Nipissing University.
Testosterone Levels were measured using saliva samples. Along with those samples, participants completed many surveys that investigated their feelings and notions regarding male competition for partners and their ideas on mate retention.
Upon data analysis, a significant link was discovered between Mate Retention Behaviors and Testosterone Levels, though this connection was indirect.
How Does Testosterone Impact Mating Behaviors in Men?
Specifically, Testosterone Levels appear to be linked to Intrasexual Competitive and Cost Inflicting Behaviors.
This means that Elevated Testosterone tends to make it harder for other men to come in a romantic contact with their partner. On the other hand, Testosterone does not appear to play a role in Benefit Provisioning.
Men with higher Testosterone are more likely to see other men as competitors and act accordingly but are not necessarily more likely to provide more for their partner than a man with lower Testosterone Levels.
While the study produced good results, there is apparently an immense amount of further investigation that needs to be done.
Future studies will likely investigate how men in committed relationships differ from single men, and how men with different Testosterone Profiles fair at mate retention.
- Testosterone Testing - May 7th, 2021
- Testosterone for Men - April 13th, 2021
- Testosterone Side Effects, Risks, Dangers and Negative Effects - March 2nd, 2021
- Testosterone Supplements: Vitamin and Amino Acid Pills Versus Real Testosterone - March 1st, 2021
- Testosterone Frequently Asked Questions - February 26th, 2021
- The Effects of Beer on Testosterone Production and Gynecomastia - January 30th, 2021
- Grumpy Old Man Syndrome – Causes and Treatments - January 22nd, 2021
- Testosterone Levels Associated with Serotonin Activity in the Brain - January 19th, 2021
- How to Administer a Testosterone Injection -- Low-T Injection Guide - January 17th, 2021
- Relieve Fatigue and Increase Energy with Testosterone Replacement Therapy - January 16th, 2021
- Is Male Menopause Real? The Science of Andropause - January 11th, 2021
- Low Testosterone Symptoms - January 7th, 2021
- 4 Foods to Boost Your Testosterone Levels - January 4th, 2021
- 12 Health Issues That Can Kill Libido and Limit Sexual Performance - January 3rd, 2021
- Limiting the Influence of Estrogen on Male Hormone Balance Through Diet - December 31st, 2020
- The Importance of Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin (SHBG) for Healthy Testosterone Levels - December 28th, 2020
- The Relationship Between Testosterone and Cortisol - December 19th, 2020
- Testosterone Promotes Bone Health and Can Help Treat Osteoporosis - December 17th, 2020
- The Role of Testosterone in Women's Health - December 7th, 2020
- The Significance of Telomeres in Stem Cell Treatments - November 27th, 2020
- Testosterone and Diet – How to Support Testosterone Levels with Healthy Eating - October 29th, 2020
- Vitamin A is Essential for Good Health - Are You Getting Enough ? - October 14th, 2020
- 7 Exercises to Elevate Testosterone Levels - October 10th, 2020
- The Effects of Testosterone on Asthma Prevalence Among Men and Women - October 6th, 2020
- Changes to LabCorp Guidelines for Low-T Diagnosis and How They Impact Your Treatment - September 22nd, 2020
- Low-T Treatment Before and After -- How Testosterone Therapy Improves Vitality - September 6th, 2020
- The Importance of Proteins, Carbs, and Fats - September 2nd, 2020
- Exercise and Mental Health - September 1st, 2020
- Sermorelin Acetate Drug Information - August 31st, 2020
- What is Erectile Dysfunction? - August 30th, 2020
- Understanding Heartburn in the 21st Century - August 28th, 2020
- The Role of Nitric Oxide in Cancer Proliferation And Prevention - August 26th, 2020
- Understanding how Muscle and Fat Impact Body Mass, Weight, and Health - August 25th, 2020
- Reexamining Bio-Identical Testosterone Therapy - August 12th, 2020
- Weight Cycling and the Problem with Crash Dieting - July 30th, 2020
- The Effect of Testosterone on Auto-Immune Function and Multiple Sclerosis - June 21st, 2020
- Does Ibuprofen Contribute to Low Testosterone? - June 20th, 2020
- The Effects of Testosterone Therapy on Male Patients -- Who Should Use Testosterone? - June 16th, 2020
- Testosterone Deficiency and Low-T at Epidemic Levels Among Men in the United States - May 17th, 2020
- The Importance of Dietary Fat for Testosterone Production - January 2nd, 2020
- Testosterone Therapy Helps Men with Low-T Ward Off Prostate Cancer - December 29th, 2019
- Types of Testosterone Products and Delivery - January 22nd, 2014
- HCG and Testosterone - January 18th, 2014
- Hormone Level Testing - January 13th, 2014
- Hormone Levels in Men - January 12th, 2014
- What Causes Low Testosterone - January 7th, 2014
- Aging and Testosterone Replacement Therapy - January 3rd, 2014
- Buy Testosterone Injections Online, Testosterone Prescription for Low T, Testosterone Replacement Therapy - January 1st, 2014
- Buy Testosterone | Types of Testosterone Replacement Therapy Programs, Injections, Cream and Gel - December 31st, 2013
- Testosterone Gel, Cream, and the Testosterone Patch - December 31st, 2013
- Testosterone Levels - December 31st, 2013
- Testosterone and Body Building - December 30th, 2013
- Testosterone Androgen - December 29th, 2013
- Testosterone for Women - December 29th, 2013
Word Count: 961