Who do you find attractive?

What if our sexual preferences begin to form in childhood?

I don’t mean whether we are straight of gay or asexual or voracious or something in between or that encompasses it all or something completely different.

I mean what we find attractive, but within our sexuality “type.”

To keep it simple, and acknowledge the gross oversimplification of this speculation, let’s pretend that heterosexual girls begin to form their sexual attraction preferences with their fathers, at an age where they have no clue what’s happening, maybe even infancy. And that (straight) boys begin their sexual wiring based on their mothers, at the same age.

Let’s say dad is a particular body type and the relationship between father and daughter is warm, loving and nurturing. I wonder if later in life, women with that kind of dad will be sexually attracted to that shape of man. And if boys who develop in a healthy way with mom, if she is skinny or plump might direct his desire later in life.

At the same time, if Dad is harsh or scary or dismissive, I wonder if daughter will shy away from that kind of man. If mom is indifferent or unreachable or angry, if boys will subliminally look for someone who does not  look anything like her.

And here’s an odd twist: Does the preference wiring have to occur, and sometimes have to focus on adults outside the family unit, possibly those who offer a child what is emotionally needed? Or if biology requires that a model be found regardless of suitability, if sometimes that model is nurturing and sometimes debilitating?

What happens to sexuality if the model is taken from the child’s environment (death, divorce, war) before the process is done with it?

Since we are indulging in wild speculation, let’s add to the mix the social taboos about getting too close to daddy or mommy as one is forming all these brain connections. DON’T DO THAT!” What happens as the child acquires now-self-directed anxieties that were foisted upon them (us) as they (we) began to experience things they (we) could not possibly recognize, let alone understand.

I have no articles, no Freudian analyses, nor modern science to justify any of this absurd opining. As my friend Billy says, (neglected by an obese mom, only attracted to skinny women): “Just sayin…”

2 thoughts on “Who do you find attractive?

  1. Joyce

    Well, Jessica…In the for what it’s worth column……………… I married a man just like my Mother. My Father was’t a very warm person. I never remember him ever hugging me or even telling me that he loved me. He loved his three sons but he really didn’t know what to do with a daughter. I had polio when I was nine and by default I became my Mothers daughter. She was a warm terrific person and she was the best Mother in the world. I guess it was natural for me to seek the same kind of warm person to bond with later in life. My husband is a caretaker, a warm caring person and he gives me hugs all the time. I think the secret to a good relationship is that you have to want as much for the other person as you want for yourself. Did I mention he’s my best friend?

    1. Jessica Love Post author

      Joyce, this is lovely. Thank you. It speaks very strongly that you have “secure attachment,” a concept developed initially by Dr.s John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth and furthered since by many, many others. My friend Erik has written about how formation of attachments in childhood impacts our adult romantic relationships. You can see a little bit at erikdolson.com

      In my post here, I was playing around with sexual attraction and physical type. What turns your head when you see a stranger walking down the street. We all know there are some general rules, otherwise advertising would not use beauties to sell watches, chiseled chests to sell books.

      A few days ago I read an article about “dadbods” which set me thinking, and I decided to share where I went with that. Thank you for going with me.

      ~ Jessica


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