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Fantasy, Masturbation, and Sexual Attitudes

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Although the spread is narrowing, there are some basic sexual differences between men and women that make it very hard for women to understand men and sex and vice versa. Fantasy and different attitudes about sex are two sexual differences between genders. Another sexual inconsistency: Men can divorce sex and love and have sex for the sake of sex alone; women can rarely divorce sex and love.

Bearing in mind there is always that scope for individual variety, here are some almost universal truths about men that women most often fail to understand:

  • Men daydream about sex with various partners and in various situations.
  • Men masturbate while indulging these fantasies.
  • Men add spice to lovemaking by fantasizing about someone other than the current sexual partner.
  • The same men who use sex to express love can and will use sex manipulatively and for no other reason than for sex itself.
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Most men have times when they just want sex for the physical sake of sex itself without the entanglement of a relationship. Sometimes a man just wants a woman's body. She can be asleep or drunk or even watching television; he doesn't even care.

There was an expression during World War II that explains this thought process: "Throw a flag over her face and do it for Old Glory!"

Women often wonder, "Why would a man pay for sex when it is easily obtained for free in our society?" The fact is that the man will pay because he is only interested in "getting in and getting out," quickly, and without any other involvement. This way of thinking is practically incomprehensible to a woman.

But even more incomprehensible to a woman is that a man can have sex with a woman he does not love at noon and then expect sex from a woman he does love in the same afternoon. Women can not understand this total separation and then total merger of sex and love.

There is another reason men can divorce sex and love. Males reach the peak of their sexual energy in their teens.

This means males seek sex long before they are mature enough for any enduring intimacy or relationship to form. Thereafter, for many years, or at least until a man's sexual vigor wanes with age, this high sexual energy threatens to disrupt any relationship that does form.

A Good Book

His Secret Life - What Men Won't Tell You but Women Need to Know If you're looking for a great book on male sexual fantasies, I suggest Bob Berkowitz's "His Secret Life: What Men Won't Tell You but Women Need to Know." In His Secret Life, the former host of CNBC's call-in sex show Real Personal gets men to divulge their most private sexual fantasies--shattering misconceptions about men and sexuality that have endured for generations.

A diverse group of men candidly sharing their sexual fantasies, with TV personality Berkowitz moderating and commenting gives a new twist to his old theme: the secret desires and needs that men are reluctant to talk about. Since they won't tell women directly, he argues, women need to read their secret fantasies in their "sign'' language: "The fantasy is like a postcard a man sends to himself. It says, 'Wish you were here.' "

The book is divided into four parts. "Control'' covers fantasies involving the sexually confident woman. Power sharing, Berkowitz asserts, is the name of the game, although some will question the control allowed women in some of these fantasies. "Taboo Breaking" indicates that the classic m'nage a trois ranks as men's favorite fantasy. Group sex fantasies amusingly reveal egotism, as in this comment: "I am the star, and they all want me." But such ego reinforcement, according to Berkowitz, is not purchased at someone else's expense and acts as a comfort in this "harsh and unforgiving'' world. "Beyond Ground Zero'' addresses oral sex and male masturbation, which, as many will suspect, is how fantasies often end. Berkowitz casts aside his tone of detachment for one of caution and responsibility in the final section, "Other Options,'' on S&M and cybersex.

Here's what some of our visitors have to say about male sexual fantasies.

(For a look at women's sexual fantasies, see My Secret Garden by Nancy Friday.)

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