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Old 05 January 2019, 11:16 PM
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thorny locust thorny locust is offline
Join Date: 27 April 2007
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 9,901

Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
I always got the impression that evolution thinks a woman is only good for having babies and menopause is its way of saying you can die anytime now.
I think evolution's primarily or only interested in the next generation as far as any gender is concerned; even if the 'next generation' is nieces/nephews/etc (or, if we're going to expand beyond humans, e.g. the potential next queen raised by non-reproducing worker ants).

The interesting thing about menopause evolutionarily is actually the reverse -- why are humans capable of living so long after menopause? Members of most species don't survive very long, if at all, after they're no longer capable of reproducing. Human women can survive even significantly after their youngest offspring reaches adulthood, so it's not just that we have to live long enough for the youngest kid to have a chance of living. Greater survival rate of the grandchildren, maybe?

Last edited by thorny locust; 05 January 2019 at 11:18 PM. Reason: because 'youngest' is not 'oldest'
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