Sleeping with One Eye Open

Thursday, April 02, 2015


Dear Patrick: I asked my girlfriend to tell me about her sexual fantasies. Frankly, I was doing this for her benefit, hoping that we could spice up our sex life. At first she told me that she didn’t really have any. But I kept asking. After a few conversations about this, she confessed that she has a fantasy about wearing a strap-on and fucking a man. Since I am the man she is living with at the moment, I assume that means she wants to do this to me. But this is not one of my fantasies. In fact, it is something I have never heard of. Why would a woman want to pretend she has a penis? I have gay friends but I don’t ask them about their sex lives, and I have to admit I don’t understand how anybody could enjoy taking it up the butt. She seemed really disappointed when I told her she was looking at the wrong guy to help her out with this dream, which seems more like a nightmare to me. I am—Sleeping with One Eye Open


Dear Sleeping with One Eye Open: Oh my God, you guys who pressure your wives or girlfriends into talking about their sexual fantasies then freak out if it isn’t about what you expect! Let me guess—you wanted her to tell you that she has always wanted to do it with another chick, right? So that maybe you could invite the neighbor’s Swedish au pair to join you in bed one night? Hmmm? Uh huh. And when you say you don’t see how “anybody” could enjoy taking it up the butt, does that include your girlfriend? I am willing to bet cash money that you have a few fantasies about anal sex that involve her. If she asked you to do her from behind and slip your cock into her ass, would you say no? Right. I thought so. Dude, you have to relax about all of this. For all you know, she just got tired of being harassed about her fantasies, and decided to lay a story on you that would freak you out. This may not be one of her real sexual fantasies at all. Even if it was, you can learn a little something from the whole experience. For one thing, you can learn how it feels to be told your partner wants to do something that you find inexplicable or repugnant. You may have put the woman in your life in that position a time or two. Remember what it feels like to genuinely not understand why somebody would want to do something, and yet this is a person you know and love. Now you have a choice. Are you going to continue to dither in a state of insomnia and homophobia, or are you going to find out whether this is real or not? Talk to her and see if you can discover whether she is pulling your leg or not. If it is genuine, remember that strap-on play is not how it begins. Being able to take it up the ass begins with a single lubricated finger, perhaps during a blowjob. If the thought of even that little bit of anal play gives you a rash, then your girlfriend is out of luck. She will have to save this fantasy for mental gratification or masturbation purposes only. And that’s what most of us do with most of our fantasies. We don’t necessarily get to act them out, unless we make them a priority and arrange our lives in such a way that we are actively pursuing erotic adventure. That takes courage (and sacrifices that not everybody can make). Even hard-core sex radicals would probably tell you they have sexual fantasies they don’t think they will try to act out in real life. Part of the advantage of fantasy is that you don’t have to worry about how to make it happen, whether your partner will be attractive or talk too much, what will go on afterward, where to do it, how to get the equipment together, whether everyone is healthy, and a dozen other important factors. It happens seamlessly, without effort, and there are no consequences. No one cries or loses the lubricant. Every phallic object fits every orifice without a hitch. There are no hemorrhoids or periods. Nobody’s neighbor complains about the noise, and you don’t need to do any courtship or aftercare. You can just focus on the good parts. Fantasies usually involve things that we have not already experienced. Straight people fantasize about gay sex, and vice versa. Faithful wives fantasize about orgies. Ordinary people focus on movie stars. Women who are coming out have romantic fantasies about kissing other girls that are intense enough to qualify as erotic stimulation. (And, of course, there are some people who don’t fantasize at all.) Sometimes the content of fantasy is based on a glimpse of sexually-explicit material. If you haven’t seen much porn, the cover of a naughty book or a brief clip of an adult video can be enough to inspire years of self-pleasuring. There are many more sources of fantasy, and many more uses for it, than, “This is what I plan to do to my old man if he sleeps too soundly. Now, what should I put on that grocery list?”Sometimes we simply reverse what we know and turn that into a fantasy. I can see why a woman who is used to being receptive during intercourse might start to wonder what it would be like to have a cock and penetrate her partner. After a few years of being responsive to the feeling of being filled and taken, I think there is an obvious, potential script for stepping in and fulfilling the role of the one who does the fucking. Some of this might be inspired by the desire to be an equal, to “give as good as one gets,” so that both partners are in a sense queer even if one is male and the other is female. I think it takes a fear of penetration to see it as a revenge fantasy. There isn’t necessarily a desire to hurt or harm the receptive male partner. Usually the fantasy is more about driving him crazy with pleasure and seeing him lose control because he loves being possessed. You say you never ask your gay friends about their sex lives, but in order to understand strap-on play or anal sex in general, and not be afraid of it, I think you have to understand that it makes physiological sense. It is in no way “contrary to biology.” The pecan-sized prostate gland, which can be felt a few inches inside the rectum and toward the belly button, can function as an erogenous zone similar to the G spot in women. The prostate helps to manufacture the ingredients that make up an ejaculation. If you spend enough time to relax the series of sphincters that keep the anus closed, the fullness and movement of a cock or a dildo feels good because it is stimulating nerve endings inside the ass that are connected to the prostate and cock. Of course, if you are an inconsiderate top, and enter too quickly, there can be intense pain. The sensation of rectal trauma is what many men fear when they imagine being penetrated themselves. But if you can’t trust another person to be gentle with your body, can you ask another person to trust YOU to top them, to penetrate them with enough consideration to make it a pleasurable experience for both of you? I think it’s fascinating that this whole topic came up in your relationship. It raises, or could raise, a lot of interesting things to talk about between you and your girlfriend, if you could stop squeezing your legs together. Share this column with her and see if she has anything to tell you. It might open your relationship up to exploring all kinds of new ways to be together, even if it’s not strap-on play.

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