You’re in a bath with McDreamy and he’s softly kissing your neck and you … wake up! Today we’re asking what role does fantasy play in a healthy sex life?

Why do we fantasise?

The brain is our most important sexual organ. If it’s not happening between the ears, it’s not happening down below. The sexual response is one of the human body’s most fragile systems. The slightest negative emotion, woe, or stress can shut it off (as can a few drinks too many!).

Most people don’t realise that our brain is the essential element that keeps our sexual bodies humming. Our sexual brain is not only ‘on’ when we are turned on during the middle of bed-sheet ruffling loveplay; it is constantly processing stimulants and desires – including when we sleep.

Our fantasies and dreams can occur both consciously (we can conjure them up to suit a particular mood, or enhance a sexual situation) and unconsciously in our dreams. In fact, sexual symbols in dreams include:snakes, tigers, horses, birds, cats, deserts, oceans, and forests. We fantasise about thousands of different images for erotic stimulation.

Men and women are imaginative, creative creatures and our fantasy sex life is often more varied than our ‘real’ sex life. We can fantasise about having sex with people, and in ways, we would never wish to in our ‘real’ lives, and this is not only common, but healthy. Fantasies are a healthy expression of our desires and feelings, but most fantasies are not meant for actual enactment.

Female fantasies

Female fantasies tend to focus on personal partners, and people women know. It is very common for women to fantasise about other women, but this does not automatically mean a woman is gay or bisexual. In fact, lesbians can fantasise about men, and this does not mean they have suddenly turned

Most female fantasies are heavy on the sensual, and on desire and lust, while light on violence. However, a great many women have fantasies about dominance and control. Being raped is a frequent female fantasy. It *never* means a woman desires to be raped. Rape fantasies are more commonly about wanting to feel unbridled passion and lust, to feel dominated and out of control.

Fantasies are a liberating and creative way for us to express our complex sexuality. Most subjects – whether it is making love with the woman across the road, or off the silver screen – are not reliable signs of what we would actually like to do in our ‘real’ lives. They are sexual charges; sparks to keep our passions burning. So whether you get your sexual rush from fantasising about the guy in the Diet Coke ad, or Drew Barrymore, you’re a normal hot-blooded woman.

Top three most fantasised about women

Angelina Jolie
Halle Berry
Britney Spears

Top five most fantasised about men

Brad Pitt
George Clooney
Johnny Depp

Results compiled from a recent SheSaid promotion. Edited extract Dr Gabrielle Morrissey’s book URGE.

So do you agree with the list? Did we leave anyone off?

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