I’ve discovered a complete willingness to manipulate men into one-night stands purely to stroke my ego. (The trick is to let men feel like their own ego is in charge).
However, I experience complete moral repulsion at the idea of treating women this way.
I think my reason comes from evolutionary psychology: Women may become pregnant and therefore require support during their “down time”, the period when hunting and gathering would be difficult due to carrying a child—consequently they learned to highly value relationship stability across an evolutionary timeframe.
However, men can deliver sperm without such risk to their livelihood. Therefore they experienced less evolutionary pressure to value relationships than women. Given that I don’t want to hurt anyone, I provide far more ongoing commitment to my romantic relationships with women than men, due to the difference in evolutionary psychology between the sexes illuminated above.
Men do love, and greatly. I certainly did when I identified as one.
Moreover, I’ve realized that the manner in which I love IS very masculine (culturally), and that that is extremely unlikely to change. For example, I carry a strong “hero instinct”–want to solve problems for my beloved. I delight in the role of “pursuer”: Will combine culturally masculine flirtation technique to make my intention clear no matter how impeccably feminine I appear. I would feel shame if I couldn’t economically provide for a partner, despite the fact that times have supposedly evolved beyond that. Most significantly, I want to provide a constant beacon of (inner) strength.
Certainly, I have love-traits we could label as culturally feminine (commitment to radical kindness and collaboration). But the sum total of how I love leans strongly masculine.
And that is where things get interesting. Evokes my moral crisis:
I am a complete predator when I pursue women. Calculating. Shrewd. Persistent. Experimental. Adaptive. Creative. Subtle. Patient.
My motives prove decent but never pure. I operate by gaining the trust of women through my innate femininity (even did so back when I was “Dan”), and then later strike at opportune moment. My metaphor for this activity is “moving through the back door” when most suiters only show the wit to try the front. I suppose the redeeming feature of this maneuver is that the trust I establish is 100% genuine—as my intent always is to create a successful long term relationship (which relies firmly on trust).
So I demonstrate capacity for commitment during my pursuit. I only act this way when I’m prepared to deliver.
The other redeeming feature in this approach is that I only practice it when I’m completely besotted. Therefore the woman involved holds all the power!
The moral crisis lies in the fact that I do not like the idea of being a “predator”. But that is the correct word, so I’ve accepted it. More to the point, I’ve accepted the duality of being simultaneously predatory and noble in my pursuit, of delivering both genuine trust and absolute danger.