Thursday, December 08, 2005

Sexual Fantasy Healing

All my life I’ve been accused of having a powerful imagination, but I hope the subject of this entry is not something completely unique to me. Perhaps you have experienced it too.

Over the years I’ve found myself occasionally turning to my imagination to cope with discomfort, pain, stress and anxiety. More specifically, I’ll evoke the person of some “imaginary friend”...but not just any friend: someone with erotic appeal. For as Marvin Gaye once claimed in song, sex can have a healing affect. In fact, even imaginary sex can. Hence the title of this entry: Sexual Fantasy Healing.

I’m not talking about using the imagination to cure cancer or even a cold, but rather to ease both mind and body, to relieve discomfort, to lift emotional burdens, and such. Think of the imagined person as a sort of shaman, a mysterious medicine man who uses his powers to heal. In this case his powers are not so much magical as they are psychological, but the archetype still fits. By surrendering to this shaman figure and his sexual power, I’m lifted out of my circumstances and distracted from my cares.

And where do I come up with this shaman guy, and what does he do? Obviously an example is worth a thousand words here.

Sometimes when I go to bed at night I may be fretting about a problem in my life. I know I can’t do anything about it, I know I need to not let it spoil my rest, but sometimes it’s not easy to let go. So I’ll seek out some help in the figure of a person I find particularly compelling or attractive.

By way of illustration, I’ll offer Peter Sarsgaard. I greatly admire the acting talents of this man, but that aside, he has certain qualities that qualify him for playing this part in my imagination. Although his characters often have a quiet, gentle demeanor, they also present a subtle kind of erotic power. Peter is soft spoken but there is something alluring in his voice. And while he is not the in-your-face kind of gorgeous, he has beautiful bedroom eyes that seem to beckon you, and sensuous lips that suggest erotic pleasure even when that is the furthest thing from the matter at hand.

My imaginary Peter has the wonderful gift of being able to seize all my attention immediately. He is such a sexual presence to me, I respond instantly in the way the female typically does when aroused: I submit and surrender. Therefore I become very suggestible, and however he advises me, be it to forget my problems or to relax or to ignore my discomfort, I obey him. Tension flees, stress-inducing distractions disappear. And his unique demeanor is the perfect combination of arousing and soothing: I feel attracted to him but not in a tense or frustrating way.

It’s easy to forget your cares when those eyes are looking into yours, those lips are beckoning to be kissed, and that voice is urging to you to surrender. Suddenly all the world retreats and nothing is left but Peter, and nothing matters but how he’s making you feel. Sexual fantasy healing, there it is.

I’ve used this approach to everything from insomnia to stomach cramps to enduring unpleasant medical procedures. Not always Peter, of course--the list of fantasy figures who have helped me out is dozens long. And although to some this may seem downright weird, I was relieved some years back when I did extensive study of Carl Jung’s theories of psychoanalysis that Dr. Jung actually explained the phenomenon.

If anyone out there has experienced anything similar, please do post if you’re willing. And those who have not, I hope you’ll give it a try sometime.

And actually, it’s kind of fun to do even when you’re feeling just fine. :-)


Con said...

Well, how can I remain silent when this subject is so close to my heart!
I have been "healed" may times by my Animus, fantasy man, Alan Rickman. It is amazing how this works and I thank you, Diana for explaining it so well.
The beauty of a fantasy person coming to your aid when you are hurting is also their power to bring with them a reflection of yourself, you would ordinaraly not recognize. In the arms of this Archetype, you are younger, beautiful, free and sexually uninhibited. You not only let go of your worries when you are with this magical being, but you let go of yourself (the greatst obstacle to most of our happiness, I believe). You see yourself through their eyes and they, God-like as mine was, reflected back all that was good in me. I had an experience about 4 years ago, where this fantasy life crossed the threshold , into reality. No, I am not saying that I had Alan Rickman at my side or I, magically became beautiful and powerful. What I am saying is that I carried him with me into my daily life and I saw myself, felt myself to be all that I was in my fantasy. This experience greatly influenced my life and my husband and people around me commented on my new found confidence and spunk. My sexuality got a complete make-over. I was reborn! Halleluya!
The psyche is a strange and wonderful thing and it is only in the writings of Carl Jung, that I can begin to understand some of it. It is implied that sometimes, the psyche knows that one is in a rut, needing a "rebirth" and it knows that for some of us, falling in love is the catalyst. So, it sets up the conditions. Since the change needed is internal, maybe it is through the internal world, the imagination that this takes place. At least that is my experience.

Erica said...

As always Diana you hit the nail on the head with your blog and particularly with this paragraph:

"It’s easy to forget your cares when those eyes are looking into yours, those lips are beckoning to be kissed, and that voice is urging to you to surrender. Suddenly all the world retreats and nothing is left but Peter, and nothing matters but how he’s making you feel. Sexual fantasy healing, there it is."

Ok Diana, I'm beginnging to think you're reading my mind. I can't count the number of times I've done this with my fantasy guy... Hayden. He's my escape, my rescue, my sexual healing fantasy in the flesh. I really enjoyed reading this entry and being reassured yet again that all of the intense feelings I have for Hayden are normal and healthy. Thank you Diana.

Oh and I hope you don't mind the parade of fellow Hayden addicts I've sent your way. We chat a lot on the boards, and I told them all about you. I want them to benefit from your fountain of knowledge and learn to use their obsession to their advantage just as I have, and all because of your book.

You are just too fantastic.

Mel said...

I've been using 'sexual fantasy healing' since my teens - although I didn't know it for what it was back then. I've fantasised about real people, fictitious characters and constructs of my own imagination. The stories that play out in my mind have helped me calm my anxieties, lulled me to sleep and provided simple escapism throughout the years. Best of all, it's lots of fun!

Diana Laurence said...

Hey, thanks to all three of you for your input. I imagine this phenomonon is way more common than we think! Pretty cool.