Fantasies are a normal and healthy part of life, in fact typically occurring most often in people with the highest satisfaction and fewest issues in the bedroom. They allow us to enjoy things we might never be able to experience, and to explore hidden desires. Communicating and acting out fantasies with your significant other can help to inject some passion back into your relationship and keep things interesting, no matter how long you've been together.
Studies have shown that 95% of people admit to indulging in raunchy fantasies. 54% of men and 19% of women think about sex at least once a day, with their first fantasies happening between the ages of 11 and 13. Men usually dream of doing sexually explicit things to their partner, having multiple partners or being dominant. Women, on the other hand, focus on the more romantic side of things, with fantasies featuring them being saved from danger or being intimate with their loved one in an unusual setting. The following is a list of the most common scenarios lusted after by both genders.
Exhibitionism is all about being watched by others. It’s not just practised by football-pitch streakers or trench-coat-wearing flashers – it encompasses everything from stripping to sex tapes. Though not everyone would be comfortable taking part in a homemade movie (which is oh-so-easily uploaded to the internet when things go wrong in your relationship), 19% of people fantasise about being watched during sex, and 5% fantasise about taking their clothes off in public. A tamer way to act out this fantasy would be to give your partner a striptease at home, or leave the curtains open in your bedroom when you get it on.
Voyeurs aren’t all Peeping Toms hiding in bushes with binoculars. Anyone who enjoys watching adult content knows the vicarious thrill of watching other people making love. Voyeurism is a common fantasy for both men and women, and can include anything from spying on people having sex in a public place to peeking at skinny-dippers without their knowledge. Ways to make this fantasy come true without getting arrested comprise going to a nude beach or a burlesque show.
Having power is exhilarating, so it’s no surprise that people dream of dominating their partner in the bedroom. Though this fantasy is more common amongst men, it is also present among women, who don't like being passive and prefer to take control. Domination fantasies may involve spanking, role play, costumes, and dirty talk. Couples may also add props such as whips, handcuffs, and sex toys to the mix. Just make sure you have a safe word!
7 Being Dominated
This turn-on is more common amongst women than men, though the prevalence of BDSM clubs and parties demonstrates its popularity with both sexes. Askmen.com suggests that for females, the fantasy stems from the advent of the metrosexual – i.e. that occasionally women are fed up with sensitive lovers and want a big strong man to show them who’s boss. While it’s fun to play the damsel in distress sometimes, domination should only happen with permission, and should not extend into other areas of life.
6 Force Fantasies
Force fantasies involve a man or woman being handled roughly and forced or coerced into activity. They are surprisingly common – surveys have shown that around 40% of women admit to having them. A 1980 study showed that 45.8% of men have fantasised about scenes in which they had “the impression of being (sexually dominated against their will) by a woman”, while 44.7% imagined encounters in which a seduced woman pretends to resist their advances. Psychologists have suggested that these fantasies allow women in particular to enjoy intercourse without suffering from guilt as a result. Be extremely careful, though – not all women are secretly sex fiends, despite what Robin Thicke would have you believe. This fantasy should, obviously, only be played out after being discussed in advance.
5 Teacher and Student
According to askmen.com, the student/teacher fantasy is one of women’s favourites. This involves one partner playing a naughty student who needs to be disciplined by his or her strict teacher – usually with a good spanking. This is similar to the employee/boss fantasy in terms of power play and the element of forbidden desire, but acted out between two consenting adults.
4 Sex in a Public Place
According to Men’s Health, 64% of women dream of doing it outside the home, whether that be on the beach, in a field, under a waterfall, or somewhere not quite so romantic, like a public toilet or an elevator. This fantasy links into that of exhibitionism: though the novelty of having sex somewhere unorthodox is a major draw, it’s the risk of getting caught that makes it so hot. A large proportion of people have given in to their urges, too – 57% of Americans have had sex outdoors or in a public place.
3 Sex with a Stranger
For many people, the allure of going home with a stranger is irresistible. There’s something exciting and mysterious about no-strings-attached with someone whose surname you’re not quite sure of. There’s less pressure to impress than there would be with someone you’ve liked for ages, and it doesn’t matter as much if things go wrong because you’ll probably never see them again, so you're not afraid to try new things. Recent surveys have found that one night stands are on the increase – over 58% of people in the USA have had one. Compared to some other fantasies, this one is pretty easy to make into a reality.
2 Sex with the Boss
Getting it on with a co-worker, especially a boss, is a daring move. Not only could it cause tension in the office and make things uncomfortable for other employees, but it may even lead to sexual harassment claims and either or both parties being fired. On the other hand, the power dynamics of sleeping with a boss or employee are a major turn on for many people, as is the thrill of sneaking around. The risk of getting caught making out on the photocopier or grinding against the water cooler is clearly very appealing - 56% of women and 61% of men have fantasies about going to bed with someone they work with.
A few decades ago, threesomes were something of a taboo subject in polite company. They were seen as something practised mainly by wanton hippies, the sexually depraved and the French, not by your average Joe and plain Jane. These days, it’s a whole other story. Threesomes are more popular than ever, thanks in part to their growing presence in the media and the ease of arranging hook-ups online.
Despite the awkwardness and jealousy they can cause, many couples see the act as a means of bringing the spice back into their relationships, while others just love the idea of getting jiggy with hot strangers. According to the Metropolitan Report of December 2013, 20% of men and women have taken part in a ménage à trois (an increase of 6% since 2004). 33% of men named having a threesome as their number one sexual fantasy, citing heightened sensation and the excitement of seeing their partner with someone else as appealing factors.