Did you know that about 90 percent of all couples fantasize about someone else while having sex with a partner? What does this tell us about human sexuality and perhaps more important, intimacy and love?
It is important to understand that sexual fantasies are just that — fantasy. Just because you’ve fantasized about it doesn’t mean you want to engage in it in reality. In fact, most fantasies are simply about our curiosity. Let’s look at a few of the most common sex fantasies, their underlying meaning and what they suggest about us, intimately.
Dominance and submission
Though some men fantasize about submission, surveys suggest this fantasy is more prevalent amongst women. Indeed 4 out of 10 women apparently fantasize about “forced, dominant sex,” wherein a “faceless intruder overpowers” her, because she is the object of his uncontainable desire. Clearly, this is more about being wanted than overpowered, and a means to indulge a taboo without guilt. By the same token, a straight person might have a same-sex fantasy featuring dominance, which of course makes it involuntary and lets them out of any possible gay guilt.
Another loosely related fantasy among women is imagining sex from the vantage point of a man. This offers 1) the opportunity to experience what it must be like to make love to herself, and 2) empowerment as the penetrating aggressor in control of her own pleasure. Likewise, fantasies offer role reversal. It is fairly common for more powerful, dominant, and successful individuals in real life, to have fantasies of being submissive. Life is much about finding balance, after all.
The one night stand
Both men and women fantasize about sex with complete strangers. Besides the idea of really great sex with an attractive, mysterious partner, these fantasies are fueled by the anonymity of the scenario. The ultimate in no-strings attached satisfaction. This type of fantasy is very auto-erotic in nature. That is to say, the focus is purely on satisfying our own personal desires. Sexual dysfunction in a relationship is often rooted in past experience, present insecurity, and future expectation. So if you remove these pressures, what you have left is an intensely satisfying sexual fantasy.
Group sex fantasies
Again, men and women both experience erotic fantasies about group sex. Interestingly, research suggests that the orgy fantasies are not so much about having sex with multiple partners, but more about the sensation of human contact, many hands caressing the body, as well as exhibitionism.
Another popular fantasy among men and women is public sex. The thrill behind sex in public places is often associated with the consequence of getting caught. The heightened awareness that emerges from this fear produces quick, intense arousal and orgasms, all within the safety of our own mind of course. There is also an empowering discovery that goes along with imagining others admiring our body and technique from afar. We all like to feel desired and appreciated after all, and this fantasy serves as a big ego boost.
I kissed a girl, and I liked it
Like the popular song by Katy Perry, many men and women fantasize about experiencing intimacy with a member of the same-sex. Such fantasies are often believed to be associated with homoerotic tendencies. But most psychologists agree that this is not really the case. Human sexuality is not that black and white, there are varying degrees of heterosexuality. No one is either completely straight or completely gay, so when we fantasize about same-sex partners, it is more a statement about exploring our curiosity and breaking our own taboos than sexual preference.
No two fantasies are alike, and despite their often embarrassing, risky, taboo-busting nature, our sexual imagination is about curiosity and intimacy, not our actual sexual desires per se. A rich fantasy life, with no guilt, myths or stereotypes helps us be more open and honest with ourselves. And the freedom to decipher, explore and discuss the key underlying messages in our fantasies also enables us to share more intimacy with our partners.
Fantasies aren’t just about sex, but about intimacy in an open, trusting relationship between two people.