IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

This Halloween, explore your inner fantasies

For mischievous adults, Halloween is more than just a chance to trick-or-treat, it’s an opportunity to take a walk on the wild side of the street and let our inner fantasies come to life.
/ Source: TODAY contributor

The midnight moon of All Hallows Eve is upon us, which means an eye-popping pageant of wanton witches, naughty nurses, seductive superheroes and racy wraiths. (And this year, Halloween also happens to provide us with the perfect date night by falling on a Friday.) 

For mischievous adults, Halloween is more than just a chance to trick-or-treat, it’s an opportunity to take a walk on the wild side of the street and let our inner fantasies come to life. Each of us has a unique “love map,” a term first coined in 1980 by Dr. John Money of Johns Hopkins University, which refers to “the sexual template expressed in every individual’s erotic fantasies and practices.” Our love maps are our own unique sexual fingerprints. In other words, these “maps” represent the blueprint of our erotic desires and help to explain everything from why we gravitate to a particular physical type to what feeds our private fantasies and actual practices.

So where can our love maps take us? Really, anywhere that tickles your fancy — and your fantasies. And Halloween is a great opportunity to jump-start the journey. As Kaye Wellings, a respected British sociobiologist and author, explains in her book “First Love, First Sex,” “Fantasies perform a valuable function. Most of us, most of the time, behave conservatively, sexually and otherwise. Our erotic experiences represent only the tip of the iceberg in terms of possibilities. Many possibilities only see the light of day through fantasies or dreams, seldom as reality.”

Halloween gives us a chance to explore our love maps and navigate the four “poles of desire”: voyeurism, exhibitionism, domination and submission. It’s a chance to watch and be watched, to celebrate our naughtiness with a childlike innocence and take solace in knowing that we’re not alone. Halloween also offers stimuli and novelty and an opportunity to indulge ourselves in a natural neurochemical cocktail that fuels excitement, arousal and desire.

So if your sex life needs a spark, then light up the ol’ jack-o’-lantern and head out into the night. Or just throw yourselves a costume party for two. Here are some sexy Halloween tips:

  • Use Halloween as a chance to explore a different sex type. Maybe you generally think of yourself as the girl next door or someone who follows your partner’s lead. Or maybe you’re always the aggressor. Halloween is a great chance to give yourself permission to enjoy a new sex type. It can be as simple as putting on a wig, adding a flair to your lingerie, or going the whole nine yards and letting loose your inner Wonder Woman.
  • Use Halloween as a chance to fantasize with your spouse. Maybe you and your spouse went out trick-or-treating with the kids as pirates or secret agents. Use your costume as a starting point to concoct a fantasy and maybe even do a little role-playing. Rare is the opportunity to expand our “naughty zone” without blushing, and you don’t even have to stay in costume (in fact, the whole point is ultimately to get out of it), but you can stay in character.
  • Get the kids done early and plan a Halloween date night for just you and your spouse.  And if costumes really just aren’t your thing, you can still go out and take in the sights. Or, if you’re up for some masquerade mischief but your partner isn’t, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go for it. You can dress up, and provide your partner with something simple and laid-back, like a Zorro mask.

This Halloween, a little extra sexiness may be just the trick, and treat, you need.

is a sex therapist, relationship counselor and New York Times best-selling author of numerous books, including "She Comes First" and the soon-to-be-published "Love in the Time of Colic: the New Parents' Guide to Getting it On Again." He was born and raised in New York City, where he lives with his wife and two sons. He can be reached at