Almost every time I'm doing online or phone counseling, I run across a man looking for advice whose first question looks something like this:
"I want to see my wife with another man. Is there something wrong with me?"
Many people have probably heard of swinging — the idea of a couple sexually interacting with other couples (usually), in a friendly or party context without deep emotional ties. But a very specific form of it is gaining in popularity: the man who specifically wants to watch his wife with another man.
The fantasy genre is called "cuckolding," after a very old English term originally borrowed from the French, for a man whose wife is unfaithful. In modern terms, cuckold fetish involves a man getting stimulation from the idea or sight of his wife being with another man, and sometimes feeling humiliated by the perceived superiority of the other man. This last part isn't always present, though: sometimes it's about competition, or even a secret desire on the husband's part for another man.
Competition: Sperm Smackdown
If you read any evolutionary biology, or especially Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha's wonderful book, Sex At Dawn, then you'll know about a phenomenon called sperm competition. The long and short of it — so to speak — is that when our species was more tribal in our hunter/gatherer days, women would sleep with a multitude of men. As the mechanism of impregnation was poorly understood, knowing who the father was was less important. In some cultures, there was even the notion that a child could have multiple fathers, and qualities of each man a woman slept with would appear in the child. All of this is acted out in miniature in the form of sperm competition. When there's sperm from more than one man inside a woman, they will compete to reach the egg first. Evolutionarily, then, men adapted to compete for women's attention, though over time, this evolved culturally into other, more sublimated competitions, like sports.
For some men, then, seeing their wives with another woman is just about the testosterone spike they get when "their woman" isn't really theirs. For a lot of men, this is a major turn-on, and can help their sexual performance. Think about how much hotter men tend to be early in relationships, when things are less certain. Now think about how they can often cool down once they're married, and their wife is a "sure thing." Some men may respond to this by looking at — or sleeping with — other women. But others can re-stoke the fires by having their wives take other lovers — and afterward, taking back what's "theirs."
Humiliation: The Pleasure of Pain
For some men, humiliation is the draw. It's especially important to these men that the other man in question be bigger, stronger, have a bigger penis, and so on. For these men, watching their wives with this "better man" makes them feel inadequate, unwanted, and strangely, aroused.
This relates back to other forms of BDSM, and can be considered a type of submission: the man gets off on feeling inferior, and on being in the presence of a rawer, more powerful sexuality. There may also be an element of pride present: the man, who feels unworthy, nonetheless has a beautiful, desirable wife who other men are happy to have vigorous sex with.
This form of cuckolding can be emotionally dangerous, for obvious reasons: the woman may indeed grow to like the other man better, the husband may find the fantasy has gone too far, and once a couple goes down this road, they can't ever go back to where they were. So if this fantasy is of interest to you, approach cautiously, and contact someone who can help you determine whether your relationship is strong enough to survive it.
The Closet: Desiring Another Man
In a few cases, a man's desire to see his wife with another man has to do with his buried desire to see the other man himself. This doesn't necessarily mean he's gay; he may be bisexual, or even, to use a more recent term, heteroflexible. Being able to watch another man get naked and have sex may be a long-standing fantasy, and having the other man have sex with his wife may be a way of substituting his wife for himself. After all, such a husband figures, I'm giving my wife pleasure and myself pleasure into the bargain. This also likely feels a lot safer to the man than actually having sex with a man would, and allows him to indulge his homoerotic desires in a way that involves his wife.
If you're one of these men, don't worry too much. Most people are not a perfect Kinsey 0 or 6; that is, most people are at least a little bit bisexual. And sexual curiosity about your own gender is natural, even if you never pursue it completely: it's a part of looking at our own selves and finding them beautiful and desirable.
It may help, though, to be honest about it if you're going to ask your wife to do this. She may be excited about the prospect, but she may also be suspicious if you say something like, "I just want you to be happy." Just as men are often aroused by seeing two women together, some women like to see two men together, and if your wife is open-minded enough to cuckold you, she's probably open-minded enough to accept that you might find watching another man sexy.
So What Do I Do Now?
If you think you have these desires, talk to your wife about it. Pick a time when you're relaxed and happy together: right after sex, or over wine in the evening. If you present it like a fantasy at first, she may be more easily responsive: it'll be easy to see whether she's open to it or not. Once you gauge her interest, be bold and raise it as a real possibility. As with so many fantasies and desires, open communication is the best policy.
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