What gets you turned on during sex?
If you consult a sex therapist psychotherapist, chances are you are going to get that question asked. It might seem intrusive, intimidating, uncomfortable to answer this to someone you have barely known for a couple of hours. A lot of the times, we aren’t quite sure what to answer or know what is the « right » answer that our sex therapist wants to hear to be considered normal.
It is often what I hear in my office: « Well..euh! Not abnormal..euh. You know the traditional, typical things, but nothing too boring. » Afraid of being judged about our sexual fantasies and preferences is a common thing in individuals. We fear what others might think about what gets us turned on.
Why even ask the question?
Sexual preferences say quite a lot about a person and their sexuality. It shows how you love and want to be loved. It gives a peek at some of your insecurities and emotional scars. It demonstrates your strengths and your difficulties in your sexuality as well as resistances. It gives hints on the sexual education you received while growing up.
Everything that would put a person at ease to answer the question..right? Obviously, it is not meant to judge negatively a person but to point out where they might need help to have a more fulfilling sex life.
» Tell me how you make love and I will tell you how you were loved! »
By itself, a sexual fantasy doesn’t say much about a person. What is significant is how you contextualize the situation and what gets you specifically turned on. The sex therapist psychotherapist will give remarks and reflect certain observations that could potentially be detrimental to your sexual pleasure and satisfaction. Sexual fantasies and preferences are constructed with our sexual experiences and relationship dynamics we’ve had in the past. We tend to erotize our emotional wounds and triumphs.
Our sexual imagination is an area where we have total control over and get to freely explore all of our sexuality, without danger. A space that no one has access to unless we give it to them.
Should we share our sexual fantasies with our partner?
Even among sex therapist, we don’t all agree on the answer to that question. Some will suggest keeping it a secret to instill mystery into the relationship. Others will suggest to only divulge the ones we are comfortable with our partner knowing. Which brings the following questions into play:
- Can we really be honest and fully authentic if we refuse to disclose our sexual fantasies to our partner?
- Can we really say that our partner truly knows us sexually if we hide or refrain from showing parts of our sexuality?
- What purpose does keeping these sexual fantasies to ourselves really do?
- Could we potentially harm a relationship and our sex life if we do divulge the precious information?
« A person who fully accepts and can assert freely their sexuality in all of its forms will prefer to be rejected than to live a life without being truly known »
It is quite obvious that divulging our sexual fantasies can bring about a bundle of emotions as previously mentioned. Human beings have 2 fundamental desires that are opposites. We want to be known and share our most inner thoughts and feelings but we also want to be accepted and part of a group. Both of these desires can be congruent in certain aspects, but a lot of the times especially with fantasies it comes with a risk of not being accepted and loved. We want so much to share with our spouse who we are, but the risk of rejection is too great.
Intimacy at is most profound
Sharing a sexual fantasy is a moment of intimacy. Intimacy here is defined as person self-disclosing to a sexual partner and discovers a new information about us. When we disclose, we are always taking a risk that the other will appreciate us less, will reject us or refuse to accept this part of us. A person who fully accepts and can assert freely their sexuality in all of its forms will prefer to be rejected than to live a life without being truly known!
The image about ourselves that we project onto others
To feel accepted, we filter information that we offer to be seen in a positive light. We hide our faults or parts of our sexuality that create shame. We give more value to other peoples opinions about our personal worth than our own perception of our sexual fantasies and preferences. An intimacy that is validated by others forces us to share only the things that will be accepted and loved. This stagnates our sexuality as we are contrived by these false limitations we impose on ourselves and accept boundaries that hinder our pleasure.
Vomiting our intimacy
Sharing an intimate moment and being fully authentic isn’t disclosing everything all at once to be accepted. That is what I call vomiting your intimacy rather than sharing yourself with someone. There are advantages to not sharing everything all at once, as it allows to maintain an aura of mystery and newness about our sexuality in a long-term relationship with a partner. Behind vomiting our intimacy, there is a hidden objective to be fully and completely accepted immediately from the other person. This allows avoiding committing and getting attached to someone who will reject us in the future.
Sharing a sexual fantasy should be seen as a moment of vulnerability where it will not necessarily be a safe space. Our partner can react joyfully about your sexual preference or they may not. You will only know if you take the risk to be known by them. We also have to understand that our partner’s reaction to our sexual fantasies speaks more about them than our self-worth. It will speak more about there own sexual issues and blockage.
So what do you like in bed?
Next time someone asks you the question, how will you answer? Will you be able to appreciate your sexuality enough to feel completely free to divulge the most intimate parts of your sexuality? Will you continue to filter information to avoid rejection and try to maintain the image that others accept more easily?