January 1963

Women's Fantasies During Sexual Intercourse

Author Affiliations

Professor and Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, State University of New York, Upstate Medical Center, and Director, Syracuse Psychiatric Hospital.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1963;8(1):86-90. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1963.01720070088011

The woman who uses imagery or fantasy during sexual intercourse and the actress on the stage have much in common. Both remove themselves from life as it is lived while indulging in make-believe. By so doing, it is possible for them to experience and enjoy emotions which otherwise might be precluded.

Fantasy, in a sense, is a private showing of a play. Unlike the actress, the woman who uses fantasy not only occupies the center of the stage but is also the playwright, producer, director and audience. To some extent, too, she portrays more than one role.

It is well-known that fantasy may remove a person from a difficult or disagreeable situation as well as provide for gratification which could not be attained in other ways. A special condition obtains, however, when fantasy is used during sexual intercourse. A physical encounter with another person is converted into a

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