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Contact with dads drops when women ovulate
Date:11/29/2010

tical as they could lead to pregnancy and the long-term commitment of raising a child. For this reason, it makes sense that women would reduce their interactions with male genetic relatives, who are undesirable mates."

The reluctance to engage in conversations with fathers could not be attributed to an impulse to avoid all parental control during ovulation. In fact, the researchers found that women actually increased their phone calls to their mothers during this period of their cycle, and that this pattern was strongest for women who felt emotionally closer to their moms. At high fertility, women proved to be four times as likely to call their mothers as they were to phone their fathers, a difference that did not exist during the low fertility days. In addition, women spent an average of 4.7 minutes per day on the phone with their mothers during high fertility days, compared to 4.2 minutes per day during low-fertility.

One possible explanation is that women call their moms for relationship advice, said Elizabeth Pillsworth, who also contributed to the study.

"They might be using mothers as sounding boards for possible mating decisions they're contemplating at this time of their cycle," said Pillsworth, an assistant professor of evolutionary anthropology at California State University, Fullerton. "Moms have a lot more experience than they do. Particularly for those women who are close to their mothers, we can imagine them saying, 'Hey Mom, I just met this cute guy, what do you think?'"

Either way, the findings show that women are unconsciously driven during their most fertile periods to behavior that increases the odds of reproducing as well as potentially doing so with a genetically appropriate mate, said Haselton.

"We think of ourselves as being emancipated from the biological forces that drive animal behavior," she said. "But this suggests that our every day decisions are often still tied to ancient factors th
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Contact: Meg Sullivan
msullivan@support.ucla.edu
310-825-1046
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

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