Monday, February 2, 2009

Intellectually Bankrupt and Oxytocin

turner, keroack, abstinence, liar, lie, lying, study, science, sex, sexism, misogyny,

So, the abstinence only crowd has found a scientific (scientists, you guys like scientists, right?) reason for abstinence: Women who have multiple sexual partners lack oxytocin, which is to emotional bonding what superglue is to physical bonding.

Unfortunately, this simply isn't true.

This post quotes a study by Eric Keroack, except Keroack didn't do the study, Rebecca Turner, a psychology professor at San Francisco's Alliant International University did. And she was appalled to see what Keroack had done with her study.

From hugthemonkey:

Dana Wilkie of Copley News Service tracked down Rebecca Turner, a psychology professor at San Francisco's Alliant International University whose paper found its way into a treatise Keroack wrote for the Abstinence Clearinghouse.

According to Wilkie, Turner found that:

When women were asked to recall memories about close relationships, whether familial or romantic, those with a tendency to be anxious about such relationships had lower oxytocin increases than those who were married, living together or dating. Hardly surprising. If oxytocin is emotional superglue, it's not shocking that women who are anxious about their relationships have low levels of oxytocin. However, Turner's research did NOT delve into why those women had low levels of oxytocin. Perhaps low levels of oxytocin cause anxiety in relationships, which destroys relationships, which forces a woman into many relationships. We don't know.

Turner was shocked and dismayed to find that her research was being misrepresented, she told Wilkie.

But here's the kicker: No matter what the level of oxytocin in women who were anxious about close relationships, Turner's paper found that oxytocin activity was “completely unrelated” to the number of previous sexual partners.

Understanding that finding doesn't require a course in logic; a simple ability to read will do. Still, Keroack somehow made the leap that sex with multiple partners inhibits the brain's ability to respond to oxytocin, and therefore the ability to bond.

During a follow-up study three years later, Turner found no links between oxytocin levels and emotional conditions, but that was after Keroack's paper came out.

So, intellectually bankrupt or just Liar for Christ(tm)?


  1. Liar for Christ, that was pretty easy to understand so he just twisted it to mean what he wanted it to mean.
    I wonder if he realizes you can't actually do that with studies, that eventually the original author will come forward. Hmmm.

  2. The worst part is, these abstinence only/gays are bad/feminists are destroying the world freaks won't bother to give you that part of it, they just post the lie over and over until people think it is true.


  3. Sure it is, it's science to a kid my daughter's age. She honestly believes if you say something enough it becomes the truth. Like "I didn't write on the wall" for instance.

  4. has she met my husband? his method of putting out kitchen fires is to scream "it's on fire!" repeatedly.

    oddly, that does not work.

  5. I don't need a scientific theory to convince me what common sense and experience already shows- that having multiple partners SCREWS women up emotionally. Men are also negatively affected however there aren't as many outward signs of damage as there are with women. Infidelity later in life is one outcome for both sexes. Not only this, but there is a tendency towards lack of trust, lack of respect, deep insecurities and loss of self esteem for either/or men and women.

  6. I would give the final honor to Keroack for putting all the pieces of the puzzle together not just part of a theory.

  7. LD- put together what? according to the research he looked at- Turner's- no such conclusion could be drawn. you can believe what you wish to believe, but the science does not support it.

    Linda- studies? science? anything other than your own experience? you want to state an opinion on this blog, be prepared to back it up.

  8. look- all you have to do is know someone who has lived a promiscuous lifestyle to see that it does affect a person emotionally and spiritually. I'm not saying there is no hope of ever forming an intimate and lasting relationship with the opposite sex but I do believe that chemically and spiritually Keroack's theory is true with respect to oxycontin and bonding. I am not a fanatic either but I do believe that God through Jesus Christ can heal anyone of any past if they have faith and believe. Any damage done can be erased through a relationship with God. So no matter what, there is hope. But there has to be a real heart change.

  9. I know people who have lived promiscuous lifestyles and been absolutely fine, no jesus necessary.

    what you are committing is called the Fallacy of Hasty Generalization. You are looking at one (or a few) examples and assuming that all people must be the same.

    For example, I met one cranky christian. therefore, all christians must be cranky.

    If you have an actual study that actually proves that your theory is correct, feel free to tell me all about it.

  10. Linda:
    anecdote DOES NOT EQUAL data.

    for instance, i have had lots of sexual partners. i am 32. and yet... despite the fact that you and yours would call me a slut, i have been in an incredibly successful and happy and productive monogomous relationship with the same guy for 5 years, and we will be getting married soon.

    you know what i think? i think that if you tell a girl often enough that the ONLY fucking worth that she has rests between her legs, and that what is between her legs is a thing that only has worth the first time she uses it, that after she has sex the first time she will consider herself worthless and will self-sabatoge every relationship because she NOW THINKS THAT SHE IS WORTHLESS.

    i think your attitude and beliefs have destroyed more lives than every war combined. i think they are continuing to do so, and they won't stop until YOU stop saying that THE ONLY WORTH A WOMAN HAS IS SEXUAL. until you stop commodifying women. until you realize that women are just as smart, just as productive, just as capable but INFINITLY more NECESSARY than men - after all, women can with todays tech reproduce without men - without SPERM, even, and MEN cannot reproduce without a woman. period.

  11. I agree with you muches, dearheart. (long story, i'll tell it to you if you want.)

    Margaret Meade wrote a fascinating book- in the 1920s!- on this exact subject, comparing women in the US to women in another country that didn't put any emphasis at all on virginity. (Supposedly this book was discredited, but it wasn't. At least not with any science or anything.)

    What she found was that in a culture where virginity and chastity are meaningless, the women had their fun, then settled into monogomous, fulfilling relationships without any problems.

    In other words, the damage of multiple sex partners isn't the sex (after all, your vagina can't tell the difference between one guy 10 times, or 10 guys once each), it's the women internalizing societal attitudes.

  12. i must have this book! Margaret Meade, really? i didn't know she wrote such a book!
    why did i wait three days to come back to this comment thread? i blame the fact that i had three papers due this week and have two mid-terms next week.

    if you want to tell me a story, i am all ears! if you want to do it privately, you can email it, or i will stop back in tomorrow or monday (probably monday, when i take a break from studying). i hope it's not a SAD story.

    and i note that Linda either did not come back, or was scared off by my yelling. if she didn't come back, oh well. but i am sorry if i SCARED her off. she was at least trying to sound reasonable. and i still hope that reasonable-sounding people can be reasoned with.

    not that i try to reason a lot, i tend to rant. you'd think, with me turning 32 on thursday, i'd be adult enough to rant. sigh. but it SERIOUSLY pisses me off. i spent a DECADE recovering from the PTSD inflicted on me by my stepfather, a decade re-learning that while sex is fun, it doesn't DEFINE me. (and yes, Pete helped. but only inasmuch as he stuck around :) he didn't "save me"; he let me save myself. which means that now i know i CAN. this is why i love Pete, and why i will marry him, even though i have issues with marriage... i like to think that *my* marriage will be subversive, you know? that people who see how we are equal and respect each other and don't try to own each other will see that they too can be real people!)

    hell, my best friend just finally moved out of the house she lived in with her abusive rapist husband. took me 4 years to get her to leave him. what she went through is one of the examples of how commodifying women is B.A.D.

    maybe Linda will come back and see THAT, and not run away again, because i wasn't yelling?

  13. just tried to look it up at the Library website (Columbus has THE best library system in the country, not counting the Library of Congress) and... i have no title, and according the library the earliest book they have by Meade is 1971. there is a book of letters that date 1925-79ish, is that it? or is it some other book entirely? I MUST HAVE THIS BOOK!

    erm. i seem to be excitable today.

  14. I have misinformed you by putting an "e" at the end of her name. Sorry about that.

    The book is Coming of Age in Somoa. Apparently, Somoans in the 1920s had a thoroughly equal society, at least as far as sexual rights between men and women. The woman is my hero. Can you imagine saying that in 1928? That's still shocking to say in 2009!

    My story is a father who wanted none of his children other than his son, who was emotionally unstable, cheated on my mother and me desperately trying to prove that I could make him love me, by using every emotionally unavailable/abusive man I could find. Then I heard this definition of insanity: trying the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

    And why did my mother stay in such a toxic relationship, to her and her children? Because children need a mommy AND a daddy. She still thinks she did the right thing. Yeah, mom, thanks for exposing me to that. It was great.


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