Jamaican men are pretty much programmed, by virtue of local tradition, to have multiple sex partners. This is the view of se.xologist, Dr Sidney McGill, who believes that cheating is essentially used as a scale by which Jamaican men measure their perceived levels of masculinity.
“Among (Jamaican) men, cheating is used as a yardstick to measure masculinity and virility. From their early upbringing, the focus is about how many women I can get into bed, how many I conquer, and how much pleasure I can give a woman,” outlined Dr McGill.
“For most men, each woman conquered is viewed as an achievement, a sort of badge or stripe earned. So when they get into a situation to settle with one partner, psychologically they are already programmed otherwise,” he added.
The sexologist said men generally try to change their ways when they meet very promising partners, but by and large, their traditional disposition continues to pose a serious challenge. He said the result in Jamaica was a preponderance of common-law relationships, instead of formal marital unions.
“Common-law relationships in Jamaica are viewed as being mainly due to economic factors, but if the truth be told, it is also a situation which gives the men some freedom, as the unions are essentially mid-stream between being single and being married,” declared Dr McGill.
He said the almost celebrated public stance on men giving ‘bun’ in Jamaica, which provides tacit approval instead of roundly condemning the practice, produces a host of ‘illegitimate’ children, “which is not good for the society”.
He said while he has his own notion, without clear data on the phenomenon, it was not prudent to suggest whether or not cheating was more prevalent in Jamaica than on the global stage.
However, he was very clear on its roots within the local setting. “It’s a human phenomenon that can be seen in its formation, development and ultimate impact through the way our girls are highly protected, while our boys are let loose to roam and become ‘men’,” outlined Dr McGill.
He said in Jamaica, like other third world societies, there has been a clear distinction between how boys and girls are raised. However, he said that scenario is slowly changing, “with people recognising that there really is no need for such great difference between how boys and girls are raised and socialised.”
A noted s3x educator, without any knowledge of Dr McGill’s perspectives, pointed to cheating as a practice that has not only been deemed acceptable in Jamaica, but which had earned the ‘thumbs up’ from “many of our leaders, who have proudly demonstrated the so-called virtues of the practice.”
She said it should be noted that when national leaders are going up for office, “there is no focus, for example, on whether or not they are wife beaters or cheats with a string of baby mothers outside the family.” In fact, she said it has become a plus for a male political candidate to be viewed as a ‘gallis’, which, strangely enough, helps to build his support base. This is while she said musical and other cultural icons are also widely demonstrating and glorifying infidelity, “with the ‘trailer load a gal’ and the ‘gal inna bungle’ lyrics readily attesting to this”.
The female s3x educator said the ‘bun’ culture continues to explode in Jamaica, and is now a way of life for many, including both men and women.
“Make no mistake about it; women also cheat in great numbers. In fact, now it is not so shameful as it once was, for a woman to be caught cheating on her steady partner or husband,” she declared.