I am a cis woman. Due to my menstrual cycle, I go from sex-repulsed to neutral to sometimes positive. That’s when I’d indulge in sexual fantasies. Those sexual fantasies would lead to arousal if properly envisioned, allowing me to masturbate with a higher chance of orgasm.
In my daydreams, I fantasize (a better version of) myself having sexual intercourse with someone, real or not. It’s often a slow process, and it can take hours or even a couple days before I feel aroused enough to take a step further.
But once I start masturbating, all fantasies evaporate. I just cannot concentrate on the daydream and what I’m doing and feeling at the same time. It also doesn’t add up. In my fantasies, I do things to someone else and that someone do things to me (consensually), but there, I’m alone. Those are my own hands touching my own body, therefore it’s like breaking the fourth wall and my suspension of disbelief just dissipates.
I tried to hold onto my daydreams but it takes too much of my mind and makes the process of masturbating laborious. At times, for a fraction of second, I can imagine that those are my fantasy partner’s hands and it boosts my arousal, but it never last.
So there it is for me: sexual fantasies are to trigger my arousal before masturbating. And while I masturbate it’s just me, what I do and what I feel.