'50 Shades Of Grey': Why We Love Erotic Power Play

'50 Shades Of Grey': Why We Love Erotic Power Play [EXPERT]

E.L. James' novel, 50 Shades of Grey, which explicitly describes a passionate relationship involving sexual power play, has become so popular that it has attracted mega media buzz. It has also brought up the idea that perhaps many more people than expected are into these forms of
"rough sex," as some call it.

Have you, too, found yourself aroused by the love scenes in this provocative book? Or, do you sometimes fantasize about these forms of possession and surrender? Or do you yourself occasionally engages in them and have some feelings of shame or confusion about why you're enjoying them? Or, conversely, are you wondering why anyone would want to engage in such potentially dangerous practices as spanking, handcuffing, rope bondage, etc.? 50 Shades Of Grey: Do You Like It Rough?

Whatever your reaction to this form of lovemaking, I hope my interviews with three couples — who regularly engage in erotic power play — will help you reach a greater understanding of such desires and give you full acceptance of your own similar yearnings. The six men and women who explain their proclivities below graciously agreed to do so when I interviewed them for my book The Fine Art of Erotic Talk.

You'll notice that in the first pair, the woman takes the dominant role and in the second and third, it's the man. In some cases, lovers have been known to switch roles so that each partner experiences being dominant and submissive. However, in the case of the couples I interviewed, each preferred to stay in the role that gave him or her the deepest satisfaction. Here's how each of them described what they most enjoy about playing with erotic power. Sex Video: How To Tell Your Partner About Your Sexual Fantasies

1. Dwight (submissive): "I really get turned on when Sonya demands that I strip for her, remove her shoes, brush her hair, kiss her feet, look into her eyes and carry out any of her sexual whims. My sexual submissiveness to Sonya is in sharp contrast to the amount of command and control I have at work. As CEO for a large corporation, I wield a lot of power and have enormous responsibilities. I feel such a sense of relief when I can surrender that power to Sonya. It's intensified our passion and brought us to deeper levels of emotional honesty."

Sonya says that although she enjoys the sense of power she feels in the dominatrix role with Dwight, her biggest satisfaction is, "being able to strip away his external defenses and watch him open up to me in ways he has never done with anyone before. It makes me feel very hot, very loving and profoundly connected to him."

2. Carol and Robert: In contrast to Dwight and Sonya, Carol and Robert find the greatest satisfaction in their love making when he dominates and she surrenders. Carol, a writer and sex educator, beautifully describes her experiences, which she calls her "ritualized games of belonging" thus:

"Helplessly bound and taken, I feel at the height of my erotic power (which may sound paradoxical), but one measure of my power is how vulnerable and receptive I can be; how much passionate and masterful attention I can receive." She adds, "Our sexual power play allows me to start out feeling thrillingly afraid and end up feeling safe and loved." Bring More Heart Into Your Sex Life!

Robert, a doctor of chiropractic medicine, relishes being in control of Carol's sexual and emotional responses. He experiences enormous waves of loving energy when he can bring her to a place of profound physical and emotional trust. But he emphasizes that, "even when I'm dominating and Carol is submitting, a feeling of mutual respect for each other is always present. In fact, if either of us feels threatened in the middle of one of these fantasy scenes, we can call for time out and ask for care and support." The Power Of Pillow Talk

3. Ted and Vanessa: This couple I interviewed emphasized the spiritual dimension that this form of sexual contact arouses in them. Ted explains that he is often overcome with a sense of reverential awe when Vanessa allows him to take complete possession of her through their handcuff, bondage and light discipline rituals.

As Vanessa describes it from her vantage point, "When Ted ties me to the bed, dominates me and tells me he is taking possession of my body and soul, I move into this state of devotional surrender. He is my God, or the vehicle through which I experience my connection to a universal divine energy." 3 Ways To Squeeze In More Sex

You can learn more about how other couples engage in fantasy sexual power play games in my chapter, "Words of Dominance and Surrender" in my Random House book The Fine Art of Erotifc Talk. You can also find tips on how to share your own sexual  fantasies and desires with your partner on my Words for Lovers blog post, "Sharing Erotic Fantasies."

YourTango may earn an affiliate commission if you buy something through links featured in this article.