You’re having wild, passionate sex with your hubby, but he’s not even on your mind. Instead, steamy fantasies involving another man play out in your head. You're happily married and you love your husband, so you shouldn't be thinking about someone else during sex. . . right? 

They’re more common than you would think; Singapore clinical sexologist
Martha Lee gives her expert opinion on sexual fantasies. Image: Corbis

We sum up what we’ve heard from clinical sexologist Martha Lee on sexual fantasies, while quizzing some Singapore women about how they've dealt with theirs.

1. SEXUAL FANTASIES ARE NORMAL
These fantasies are signs of “a healthy imagination”, says Martha. They are not uncommon and there's generally no harm in such occasional mental indulgences. Among the 30 Singapore women that we polled, 25 of them fantasise about other men during sex.

Martha adds that “a fantasy is exactly that: a fantasy”, and we shouldn't lose sleep over them. Many of these women polled have given such free reign to their imagination by thinking about their favourite celebrities during sex: these include Johnny Depp, Hugh Jackman and David Beckham.

2. FANTASIES CAN HELP IMPROVE YOUR SEX LIFE
Desire doesn't always occur spontaneously. If you're tired or stressed, make the best use of such sexual imagination to let loose or get yourself into the mood for love. Designer Jennifer Lim, 31, says her naughty fantasies about Japanese actor Takeshi Kaneshiro have helped release her inhibitions and her sex life is “better for it”. Minda*, 31, a lawyer, agrees. Her husband thinks that “he is the world's best lover” when she secretly channels her celebrity crushes during sex.

Corporate communications manager, Carolyn*, 30, strategises when it comes to such fantasies. She says that she fantasises abut Avatar star Sam Worthington when her husband isn't quite turning her on. She finds it a win-win situation: her husband is none the wiser about his downtimes and she is also able to enjoy the sex better.

3. THERE’S SUCH A THING AS OVERSHARING
Still, it's probably not a good idea to come clean with your husband about these secret fantasies. Marketing manager Cheryl*, 34, shares how her frequent fantasies about a popular Taiwanese singer nearly ruined her marriage. During sex, she had blurted out the singer's name. While her husband overlooked the first instance, he got upset when it happened a few more times.

Martha advises that women should keep mum and not feel the need to share their fantasies with their partners. If you know that your husband will not be receptive to such revelations, “what goes on in your mind should stay there”.

Melissa*, 35, a manager, decided to keep her sexual fantasies a secret for such reasons. She feels that her husband “will be devastated” if he knew that she was thinking about his best friend Marcus when the couple are having sex. She doesn't want to hurt him with the truth; she knows that he would be affected by the thought that she found Marcus “even remotely sexually attractive”.

4. TOO MUCH FANTASISING IS NO GOOD
These fantasises may do wonders for your sex life. But do watch out if you're finding yourself fantasising about another guy all the time, or if the fantasies are the only way you can feel sexually aroused or satisfied with your spouse. Martha warns that “it might be something bigger than sexual fantasy”. These are signs that there is some deeper problems that create such a need for sexual fantasies; other emotional or intimacy issues may be at play.

*Names have been changed.

Dr Martha Lee is a sexologist and founder of Eros Coaching, a sexuality and intimacy coaching company. To find out more about the services offered by Eros Coaching, visit her website at www.eroscoaching.com or email her at drmarthalee@eroscoaching.com.

This article was originally published in SimplyHer November 2010.