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Men in the heat of passion, like animals, are usually oblivious to the natural link between sex and babies. But when a child is conceived the curtain is pulled back, if only for a moment, and a man very well might find himself asking: Why did I want to have sex in the first place?
Your wife tells you the big news. It’s the kind of discovery that makes grandmothers, aunts, and mother-in-laws giddy with excitement. But for you it raises even bigger concerns, too, changes that could reshape your whole life. The intersection of babies and masculine identity is about as beautiful and thorny as a rose bush—but who gives a flying goose about rose bushes? Life as you know it is about to end.
Why do men turn to sex—of all things, sex!—to sate our longing for adventure, wholeness, possibility, completion, and immortality? What does it mean that men are sexual beings, different from women? Why are men generally more active and aggressive and eager, and women more passive and receptive and resistant? And why are babies so scary?