Back in the Time Before Writing relationships and dating were probably nasty, brutal and short. Alpha Male was a status that was defended and debated by spear tip. You probably kept your relationship with a woman as long as you stayed able bodied. To the victor the spoils and females more than likely just submitted to whoever won a male on male fight. You tend not to Fitness Test a male freshly covered in your prior partners blood.
At some point along the way though, the males in a tribe must have figured out that they spent so much time and effort killing or avoiding being killed by each other, that the tribe was actually weakened against outside tribes. So the men of one particular tribe made an agreement with each other. Once a man took a woman, she belonged to him and no other man would try and take her from him. Oh sure there could be intense rivalry to determine who got to have her, but once it was decided, it was decided. And if anyone broke the rules everyone would get spear practice free play on the asshole just to keep their skills up.
The men decided that the relationships between the men, were more important than a woman coming between them. This pact was called Bro’s Before Hoes… I mean Patriarchy and Marriage.
This turned out to be such a successful plan that eventually every social group was forced to either adopt Bro’s Before Hoes… I mean Patriarchy and Marriage, or get wiped out by another social group that had adopted it. See, if two neighboring tribes both had a 100 males, and one tribe had a fierce internal competition for the women and 50 of those men ended up somehow disabled or killed because of it, that only leaves 50 able bodied men to square off against 100 able bodied men in the Bro’s Before Ho’s tribe. Plus that meant a whole tribe of extra women to share out.
Let me explain… say the 50 men in the tribe that fought over women were killed by the Bro’s Before Hoes group of 100 men, for the loss of say 35, that would leave 65 men from the Bro’s Before Hoes tribe still alive. The 100 original women from the Bro’s Before Hoes tribe would still be there, plus about about 100 new women from the defeated tribe would be 200 women between 65 men. So that comes to 3 women per man, plus the chief ends up with 8 women because a few were leftover and no one had invented decimals yet. All from a single combat experience. See this is how men got so good at math.
Fast forward to today and yes indeed things are more complicated, I don’t see women as chattel or whores by default yada yada yada, but a great deal of civilization rides along on the foundation stones of Bro’s Before Hoes… I mean Patriarchy and Marriage. Without this agreement between men - you have to understand that the idea and rule of marriage came into being before women had any say in the matter – life will eventually return to being nasty, brutal and short. For everyone, but especially men.
It is extremely counter-intuitive, but I’ve said before that most men do sexually better from monogamy than not. And societies clearly do.