These Are The 7 Most Popular Sexual Fantasies, According To 4,000 Americans

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Even if you're not used to talking about it, having sexual fantasies is a totally normal part of your sexuality. A lot of people might still think there's still a taboo around fantasies, but the truth is they're completely healthy, whether you're single or in a relationship.

“It’s completely normal and healthy for couples to have fantasies,” Sarah Watson, LPC and Sex Therapist tells Bustle. “To share them with your partner can create another level of intimacy and closeness. It can improve communication as well. Some fantasies aren't going to be played out in real life, that is OK. When sharing your fantasies with your partner it is important to share what you already enjoy about your sexual relationship together.” And who knows? You may find that you both can get on board with what the other has been fantasizing about.

But what if you're not sure what's on your partner's mind? Well, a new book, Tell Me What You Want: The Science of Sexual Desire and How It Can Help You Improve Your Sex Life by Dr. Justin Lehmiller, Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute, looked into what fantasies are brewing in most of our thoughts. According to The Wall Street Journal, Dr. Lehmiller surveyed over 4,000 Americans, asking them over 369 questions about their personalities, sexual histories, and all about their fantasies. The surveyed covered not only ages 18 to 87, but also a huge range of races, religions, and socio-economic backgrounds. And 97 percent of those who replied said that they had sexual fantasies — so it really is nothing to be embarrassed about.

Interestingly, though there were huge variation in fantasies, Dr. Lehmiller found that many of them fell into seven major categories, though there were three more prominent ones. Here's what we're fantasizing about.

The Three Major Categories

There were three major categories — and apparently most people think about at least one of them, from time to time. Here's what they were.

Multi-Partner Sex

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Threesomes, orgies — a lot of us were imaging what life would be like if it took more than two to tango.

Control/Rough Sex

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This is fairly broad category. It includes everything from some light bondage play to full-on S&M.

Novelty, Adventure, And Variety

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Mixing things up definitely has some appeal to people, whether it's having sex somewhere new, trying a new position, a new toy, or maybe just a new partner.

The Remaining Categories:

While those three categories were on most of our minds, there were four remaining categories that were also really popular, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Taboo And Forbidden Sex

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Under this category they included voyeurism and exhibitionism, as well as fetishes.


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Yup — it turns out that many of us in monogamous relationships fantasized about someone else from time-to-time.

Passion And Romance

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Both men and women sometimes fantasize about the more emotional sides of sex — feeling loved, content, and appreciated.

Erotic Flexibility

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Erotic flexibility includes same-sex eroticism (as in people who don't identify as already queer, presumably) and gender-bending. Considering that even women who identify as straight love lesbian porn, the popularity of this may not surprise you.

With sexual fantasies being the norm, it's definitely time to start exploring if you have one.

“I suggest take it slow and start with a mild version of the fantasy,” Dr. Dawn Michael, certified clinical sexologist, sexuality counselor, and author of My Husband Wont Have Sex With Me tells Bustle. “Perhaps a guy has always wanted his wife to control him in bed, [so] maybe they start out with her telling him a few things that she wants him to do to her or vice versa.”

Whatever your fantasy is, you can ease your way into it. Chances are, your partner has something they'd like to try, too.