Sexual roleplaying is the sexual behaviour of playing some kind of character during a sexual encounter, in order to evoke a sexual fantasy in oneself and/or one's partner.
Sexual roles can be very general designations of power position, sometimes abstracted to "top" and "bottom," or very specific, detailed fantasies. Nearly any role could become the base material for an erotic experience, but certain scenarios are typical in pornography and probably in real life as well, though it is difficult to collect empirical data on such things. Many of the most common sexual roleplays, such as Doctor/Nurse, Guard/Prisoner and Teacher/Student, involve a power differential. These roleplays are often, but certainly not always, carried out in the context of a BDSM encounter. See power exchange for more on power relationships and sex.
Roleplay can be totally without props, or using various props such as uniforms.
Often, and especially in cybersex, sexual roleplaying is used to act out a sexual act that would otherwise be taboo or forbidden.
Some common character couplings in sexual roleplaying include:
- Captain/First mate
- Doctor/Nurse, Doctor/Patient, Nurse/Patient (see medical fetishism and naughty nurse])
- Dominant girlfriend
- Farmer/Pig (or other animal)
- Jailer/Prisoner, Prisoner/Prisoner
- Knight/Damsel in Distress
- Magician/Magician's assistant
- Personal trainer/client
- Police Officer/Civilian, Police Officer/Suspect
- Priest/Altar Boy, Priest/Confessionalist, Priest/Nun
- Rapist/Victim, Molester/Victim
- Historical Couples
Sometimes roleplaying may occur where one party remains as "his/herself" while the other takes on the persona of a celebrity or a fictional character:
- Common celebrity types
- Pop singers
- Porn Stars
- Politicans/World Leaders
- Fictional characters
- Capt. James T. Kirk
- Animal transformation fantasy
- Collar and lead play
- Role reversal
- Second Life A virtual world often used for roleplay