How to roleplay without feeling like an idiot

It’s a fact that we’re all far more sexually adventurous in our heads than in our beds.

Why not take it though to real life? Because we don’t want to look ridiculous in front of our partner.

Seriously, most of us would rather put up with boring, routine sex than risk losing face! Now, that’s silly!

This is the first in a three-part series on conquering your fears and enjoying the three sex acts lots of people find the most challenging.

The first? Roleplay of course!


“I’d rather wash my eyeballs in bleach,” is the type of reaction I get when I suggest couples roleplay their fantasies. “I’d wet myself laughing and totally ruin the mood,” is another standard answer.

My reply is always, ‘So what if you do? Sex is supposed to be fun and laughing is all part of it!”

Roleplay is also a fantastic way to get long-term couples out of the desire dampening familiarity where they feel like friends rather than lovers.

It transforms John who takes the bins out into John the handsome physio who wants to do more than fix that dodgy back.

Role-playing fantasies is a great way to get the kick of something ‘out there’ without any of the malevolent misfires sometimes experienced by taking them through to real life.

Here’s how to do it embarrassment free.

Choose a fantasy that appeals to both of you. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You might be a nurse that delivers more than aspirin while he’s recovering in hospital. Or a university student hell bent on seducing her professor. Quite obviously, this is not the time to be ‘woke’. The whole point of most fantasies is that they are things we wouldn’t dream of doing in real life. So park the guilt and don’t be judgemental of what your partner suggests, either.

You don’t need expensive props. It’s the dressing up part that most people find cringey. Skip the ready to wear ‘costumes’: acting out a fantasy doesn’t have to be a literal translation. Symbolism is often all that’s needed. Got a threesome fantasy? Take a vibrator to bed with you. Fancy being ravaged by a hot workman? Get your partner to strip down to a pair of jeans and no shirt (add a tool belt, if he has one).

Work out the scenario together first. How’s it going to work? Some couples take it very seriously and meet, in character, outside the house. Others decide on the scenario (doctor/patient, shoplifter/security guard, speeding driver/cop who’s open to being talked out of a ticket, boss/employee, sleeping beauty/hot intruder), decide on a few moves then let their imagination take over.

Get aroused first. The more turned on you are, the more likely you are to enter into the spirit of things. Roleplay is a bit like porn: the minute you’ve both had an orgasm, you’ll want to stop immediately.

If you laugh make it part of the scenario. “You think this is funny, do you?’, says the cop who’s just ‘arrested’ you. “How about this!’, as he pulls out some handcuffs and attaches you to the bed.

Have a ‘stop now’ signal. Give it a chance but if you honestly can’t take it seriously and know it’s not going to work for you, speak up. Also say something if it’s starting to feel creepy or making you feel anxious or threatened. A good ‘stop word’ is something that isn’t ever going to be used as part of the role-play. ‘Purple’ is better than ‘more’ for obvious reasons.

Do it in a hotel room. Not just because you won’t be interrupted by dogs wanting walkies, kids wanting biscuits or flatmates looking for their charger. Role-playing in familiar surroundings can feel fake. Far easier to reinvent yourselves in a hotel room, particularly knowing lots of strangers have had sex there before you.