Silly is the New Sexy!

By Monika Sharma, Psy.D.

Whether you want to call it “a romp in the hay,” “hanky panky,” “feeling frisky,” or “getting jiggy with it,” there is much fun to be had with sex! The best sex is often when both partners feel psychologically and physically relaxed…and what better way to experience these things than by adding some silliness to your sex “play”!

Perhaps as a result of hot and heavy depictions of sex in the media, the demands of real life, or insecurities in the relationship, sex between two partners can often become serious or routine over time.  The danger in this is that when feeling stressed, insecure, distracted, or anxious, we tend to withdraw from others and close off opportunities for sexual and emotional intimacy.

In contrast, there are many benefits of inviting silliness and humor into your “sexperiences”…. Laughter has much in common biologically with sex: they both cause a surge of endorphins while lowering stress hormones like cortisone and adrenaline; they both strengthen the immune system and cardio-vascular system; they both ease physical pain; and they both lead to a profound sense of relaxation after the event is over.  In fact, many women report experiencing something that resembles an orgasm when laughing hard.

Other benefits of inviting silliness to your “sexcapades”….  Humor has a direct impact on our feelings, thoughts, behaviors, and relationships.  When we experience laughter and play with another person, we want to spend more time with that person.  Humor brings people together, building new relationships and strengthening bonds in existing relationships.  It also fosters listening in the other person.  When fun is part of the sexual experience, each person is fully engaged in the moment, not distracted by thoughts in their head.  When we experience silliness and laughter, it is hard to simultaneously feel anxious, angry, or depressed.  In moments of laughter, other feelings dissolve.  This can be important when a partner has feelings of anxiety over his/her physical looks or sexual performance.  Play and silliness can ease self-consciousness and the pressure to execute an Oscar-worthy show.

Silliness can also affect our thoughts and behaviors.  The way we perceive events affects how we act, and when we perceive experiences as fun with our partners, we tend to want to create more of these experiences.  Humor can lead two partners to seek each other out more for connection, try new things, take risks, and be open to possibilities.

Of course, humor can do more harm than good if you are laughing at the expense of your partner.  You are better off genuinely laughing at yourself as a way to ease any seriousness in the room.  Laughter is often said to be the best medicine (and aphrodisiac in this case), so go ahead and play some games, tell some jokes, and have a good laugh next time you and your partner are “making whoopee”!


Monika Sharma