You may not be aware of it, but you’re playing a role right now. A role, as defined by social scientists, is a set of behaviors, rights, obligations, and beliefs that a person takes on in a certain social situation. Employee is a role. So are father, husband, friend, and teammate. We all play different roles in our lives, because our behaviors and obligations change depending on the situations we’re in.
Roles help us navigate the world, but they can also be taxing. Playing multiple roles at once often creates conflict, and the overall constraints and responsibilities we deal with as part of our roles can lead to stress and boredom. There are ways to break out of these roles, though. Holidays are one way. Hobbies are another. A third is—you guessed it—erotic role-play. This sexy kind of recreation allows us to go beyond our normal roles to take on ones that are completely foreign, and it also allows us to engage hidden or long-lost versions of ourselves.
I’m a big fan of erotic role-play, but I find most people have the wrong idea about it. The phrase often conjures up a scenario seen in sitcoms and corny movies: a long-married husband and wife trying to spice up their sex life by dressing in campy outfits. The scene is always played for laughs and usually ends in spectacular failure. Role-play can certainly be fun or funny, and it can absolutely add variety to sex, but it’s about a whole lot more than wearing a slutty maid uniform because you’re bored of lights-out missionary-style sex. And it doesn’t have to be a failure of hilarious proportions!
In this series, I’ll be looking beyond the sitcom stereotype to explore the many kinds of erotic role-play, the varied reasons people engage in them, and ways in which to do so safely and successfully. If you’ve never understood why people do this sort of thing, you might want to keep reading and find out what you’re missing. If you’re the kind of person who loves role-play like I do but can’t figure out why, you should also follow along. And if you’re a veteran player who’s getting tired of the same-old scenario, stick with this series for plenty of creative suggestions!
Read the other articles in this installment series: