We all have ’em — but it turns out that our raciest, steamiest dreams might not have that much to do with sex after all.
There you are — under the covers, disrobed, fooling around with some sexy mystery hunk. Suddenly, you catch a glimpse of his face and … it’s your old third-grade math teacher?
That’s when you wake up.
Yep, you were having a sex dream, and that doesn’t mean you’re weird or have a raving sex drive. On the contrary, research shows that most Americans dream about sex often: About 8 percent of nighttime reveries involve some sort of sexual activity, according to a University of Montreal study, with women getting it on in dreamland just as frequently as men.
But just why do we have sex dreams? And what does it mean when the other person involved is your boss, your best friend, a young Ringo Starr — or even all three at the same time?
“All dreams, even sex dreams, can be easily connected to things going on in your life,” says Ian Wallace, a dream psychologist and author of The Top 100 Dreams: The Dreams That We All Have and What They Really Mean. “And every character in your dream represents a small snippet of your own personality.”
Wallace explains it like this: When someone pops up in your sex dream, it doesn’t necessarily imply you want to be intimate with this person. Instead, he or she probably possesses some admirable personality trait (such as leadership skills, kindness, or a flair for fashion) that you recognize in yourself but haven’t yet fully developed. “Showing off your talents and traits requires that you open up and become vulnerable and exposed,” says Wallace — just like sex (which is why your snoozing psyche converts it into this extremely intimate act).
Psychologist Gillian Holloway, PhD, agrees: On her dream interpretation Web site, she explains that while some sex dreams may simply be “wish fulfillment” (you probably won’t be able to score with this person in real life, so you resort to your dreams), sex dreams are usually more complex, reflecting your own personal desires and fears.