My partner and I have been together for a few years. Recently, during sex, he has asked me to talk about having sex with other “more attractive” men and, in the heat of the moment, says he wants to watch me with someone else. He says it gives him security if he feels inferior and that I am in charge. I don’t understand how it could make him feel secure if I cheated. I don’t want anyone else and would feel heartbroken if he were to want someone else. Does he really want this, or is it just fantasy?
It is most likely to be fantasy – especially if he only brings it up “in the heat of the moment”. If he were to discuss it at times other than when he is highly aroused during sex, you could consider it a more serious proposal. I would not take this at face value; most people fantasise about things they would never dream of doing in reality. Anyway, he is less aroused by the idea that you would be with other men than by the notion of your being sexually powerful in controlling the scene, and there are many other ways you could take charge. He is obviously aroused by erotic conversation so, if you are able to feel less threatened by these erotic notions, you could consider joining in the conversation. Accepting an erotic challenge often leads to elevated pleasure. If he should persist in a quest to make fantasy a reality, you have a right to set boundaries. Unless you are extremely cautious, and engage in careful negotiation with all parties, acting out a fantasy of adding partners in real life courts relationship strife.
• Pamela Stephenson Connolly is a US-based psychotherapist who specialises in treating sexual disorders.
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