Have you ever wondered what really goes on in the life of a sex worker? It can be a common sight on some streets and while some countries legalise prostitution, most find it an unnecessary underground line of work.
But why do some people choose to be a sex worker and how did they get into it? Is it really for the money or are there deeper issues going on?
Here are some personal sharings from sex workers willing to give their story.
Why did you become a prostitute?
“Being a prostitute is amazing, to be quite frank about it. The money is amazing. The money is why I did it, and would do it again. The feeling of power I got, from making several hundred dollars with only an hour of work, was unlike anything I’ve ever felt before. The idea that I can cover my expenses with only a few clients let me relax so much. I could focus on other things, my art, for instance.”
“Let me preface this by saying I grew up in a well-to-do family. I had more opportunity and privilege than most, but the divorce of my parents in my first year of university ultimately drove me to completely check out of society. In the beginning of my crack addiction I always swore to myself and to anyone who brought up the subject that I would never sell sex for money. Unfortunately, I was very naive and uninformed about the progression of addiction and I ended up getting into sex work once I felt desperate to feed my increasing drug habit.”
What’s it like being a prostitute?
“It’s a job..It’s flexible, it’s sometimes funny. You do meet lots of quirky folk. As for the danger of the job, I can honestly say, I’ve been in more dangerous situations due to ‘normal life’ than ‘work’. There are some crank girls, as with all walks of life, but through work I have met some of the most genuine, logical, hilarious, open, warm, and friendly, strong females out there.”
“To be honest I’ve become quite numb from it all. I do it for money and that’s all. I get all kinds of men visiting me who I find repulsive but I just switch off and go through the motions. I barely remember what happened afterwards.”
Do your family, friends or partners know about your line of work?
“There are some very “out” and proud prostitutes, while others have been outed against their will. Lying is both exhausting and something that doesn’t come easily. I gloss over discussions of work with my family and steer conversation ASAP toward my hobbies: volunteering, pop culture consumption, and inquiries about other family members.”
“When it comes to dating, I’ve disclosed to several men that I stripped (and even met some at the clubs), but I never disclosed being an escort to any guy. Not getting really serious with guys is a defence mechanism; I fear domestic violence or retribution like online shaming. On a day to day basis, I’m always fudging my work situation a bit, sometimes in front of people who know the truth.”
Do you worry about how people perceive you?
“I’m not fame-obsessed like most Americans. I don’t care about celebrities and I don’t care to become one. However, now that I’ve worked — not only as a stripper, but as a full-blown hooker — I’m terrified of becoming a successful writer or public figure. I’m worried that a single Tweet or viral blog post could put me under the microscope and do me in.”
How do you find society treats you?
“You’ve noticed what a trendy topic sex trafficking (modern slavery) is, right? It’s really hit the mainstream, but feminists, law enforcement, and federal lawmakers don’t have a damn clue how to actually distinguish voluntary sex workers from exploited trafficking victims. Instead, they’re letting the bad apples make it harder for the rest of us to do things such as bank and avoid housing discrimination.”
What positives come from being a sex worker?
“You might think that because my clients pay for my companionship, I might not enjoy sex with them as much as I would with a romantic partner. But I have met many wonderful, exciting, interesting, passionate people through my work.”
“I have always been pretty confident in my sexuality, but I’d never really seen myself as sexy. Having clients show me the value of my sexiness in quantifiable terms has helped me wipe the dust off the mirror, and realise that I’m one helluva sexy beast. I’ll always know that now, even once I retire.”
It seems sex work is a complicated issue. While many do it for money, personal and emotional problems and drug addiction, some genuinely love the work they do. A different perspective on this taboo line of work?
Featured photo credit: freestocks.org via pexels.com
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