If you ask women about their most erotic fantasies, sex expert Dr. Laura Schlessinger says most of us won't fess up. Typical responses range from, "Oh, I don't have them. That would be rude." Or, "I can't talk about them. They're really sick." And even, "What difference does it make? He would never do them."
Sick or rude? How can using our sexuality in a consentual, healthy, empowering way elicit such shyness, embarrassment and shame? It's like saying good girls don't think that way or do those things. But as anyone who has been in a long-term relationships knows, sometimes monogamy equals monotony. That's when Dr. Laura says fantasies can spice things up:
"There's a lot of angst surrounding sexual fantasies. They're basically erotic thoughts that make you feel sexier. They're arousing and add to the "moment." Research shows most people wish to fantasize, but have sex in the context of the person they love and feel most comfortable with. In other words, they use fantasy as an aphrodisiac. The people who report the highest sexual satisfaction tend to be those who have fantasies, because they fuel arousal, particularly when things start to get a little 'everydayish'."
And if you don't think your partner will be totally psyched when you say, "Honey, let's try something different tonight", when you whip out that cheerleader costume or hop on the bathroom counter, chances are you're wrong. I can't think of a single man who would turn down an offer like that.
Speaking of partners, you don't even have to be with the same person - in your mind, that is. Dr. Laura gives us permission to pretend you're in bed (or on the kitchen table or public beach) with someone else:
"In general, the most common fantasies for both men and women are those that relive an exciting sexual experience, or those that imagine sex with a current or different partner. It doesn't mean you don't love your spouse, but it means sometimes you need a jumpstart to make yourself feel sexy and not make sex feel so mundane."
After pretending he's Bradley Cooper, Jake Gyllenhaal or your neighbor across the street, the most common fantasies involve oral sex, sex in a romantic location, heightened sexual power or irresistibility, and (believe it or not), for most women, forced sex. Wait, what?
Yes, we fantasize about forced sex, but not by being raped or beaten. Instead, it's about being swept off our feet, with reckless abandon and totally enjoying the abdication. Remember the shower scene in How Stella Got Her Groove Back? It's that.