Don’t Cry for Me…

We usually associate tears with sadness and misery, however new research has revealed that they may actually have an additional meaning. A recent study has suggested that the smell of female tears acts to lower sexual arousal in men. The discovery of this ‘chemosensory’ response and its ultimate purpose has sparked much debate in the scientific community.


A series of experiments were conducted which subjected males to a number of conditions affecting sexual arousal to varying degrees. The participants were shown a combination of erotic, neutral and sad films whilst having pads placed under their noses which contained either women’s tears, a saline solution or nothing at all. A mixture of questionnaires and brain imaging techniques (fMRI) were used to assess their levels of sexual arousal. Astoundingly, results from both the questionnaires and imaging data showed that when the men had women’s tears placed under their nose their sexual arousal decreased.

The underlying reason for this chemosensory response is now being hotly debated. Noam Sobel and his team who led the study believe this lowered arousal in males may act to lower sexual activity during menstruation, saying “We know that women tend to cry more during menstruation, when it’s not an effective time to conceive…” Others believe the response actually works to reduce aggression in emotional situations, with lowered sexual arousal being a mere side effect of this.

Tell your friends!Share on Facebook0Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Google+0Share on LinkedIn0
Discuss

Author

// Chris Brennan-Jones is a final year audiology student at Queen Margaret University

Creative Commons License Don’t Cry for Me… by Chris Brennan-Jones is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

References


Other Articles

Therapeutic pollution: a different kettle of fish

When chemicals spill out into the world around us, we need to know what consequences they will have. In general, an opinion of “what doesn’t harm is fine” holds – both for ecotoxicological tests, used to determine the adverse effects of contaminants, and in the community overall. Indeed, it is quite intuitive. But what if … More


Henrietta Lacks: An Ordinary Woman with an Extraordinary Story

Henrietta Lacks was born on August 1st 1920, the ninth child in a poor black family of tobacco farmers in Virginia, USA. At the age of 30, Henrietta developed extremely aggressive cervical cancer. During her treatment she unknowingly donated her cancer cells, which are still growing to this day in laboratories worldwide. Henrietta never knew, … More


Magpies Don’t Favour Shiny Objects

Magpies like to steal shiny, metallic objects to make their nests, right? That’s how the age-old story goes. Rossini even penned an opera on the subject. The birds, part of the crow family, are often celebrated for their intelligence. Magpies are capable of storing food over winter and remembering its location, even remembering which other … More


Quantum Pigeonholes

Here’s a simple idea: You have three pigeons and only two pigeonholes. If you put the pigeons in the pigeonholes you’ll end up with at least one hole that contains two pigeons. Right? Now let’s consider quantum particles. What if you have three quantum particles and two boxes and you try the same thing? Well, … More


Discussion

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Fields marked with an * are required. By commenting you consent to us placing cookies on your computer.





You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>