Okay here is the mush I didn’t post yesterday. The following is a question from a new acquaintance followed by my response. I changed one detail from her email to avoid outing her. Besides which her question is one that I get fairly often from people so she shouldn’t take the hit for it:
“I don’t know you that well, but obviously you are a highly intelligent and reasonable woman who has done a significant amount of work as a pro dom, and I wanted to ask your opinion on, well, my opinion. :)
I’m going to summarize something I wrote in a recently: While I greatly respect sex workers, and I think that prostitution should be legal (not that you are or ever have been a prostitute), and that the stigma against sex workers and their clients is bullshit, I can understand why someone wouldn’t want to pay for sex or domination. My feeling is that, yes, she may be enjoying the activities on some level, but the fact of the matter is that if she weren’t being paid, she probably wouldn’t be there. That’s certainly not my kink.
Since I am somewhat ignorant about how the pro dom industry works, I’m wondering if you think I am missing something here. Thanks in advance.”
I’ve got to dash here soon to get ready for the Paddles event. But I wanted to address your question.
First, if you’d have doubts about someone wanting to play with you just ‘cus instead of because you are paying them…you probably shouldn’t see a professional. Keep in mind though that we all pay, one way or another. Sometimes we pay by switching, or by offering mutual sexual interaction, or with love, or friendship, or commitment and all the little gifts and gestures that go along with that, or even just dinner and drinks. Most relationships, sexual or platonic, are based on a barter system. It just doesn’t get as much media attention as what I do.
Secondly, as to what’s going on in the mind of a sex worker(and yes I use that term to define myself even though my girly bits are never involved in my play), I can only speak for me as each one is different. But I do know a number of women in many branches of the industry that feel similar to myself.
I love what I do. I love my clients. Doing what I do allows me to access a segment of the kink community that do to their relationships, career, and/or life choices makes it impossible or impractical for them to interact with others in our community. Should they be forced to go without? Should they simply suffer in silence, stuck within the walls of the vanilla world they have built between them and a part of their sexuality? Think about the folks who finally find places like the Center for Sex Positive Culture and get to meet and know the support of others in their community. Think how meaningful that is for them.
I am able to take the place of that step for those who can’t do so more publicly. I represent that community, provide them support, counsel, education, empathy and then I let them play.
I charge for my work just like the Center charges for membership, admittance and workshop fees. Those fees makes sure the doors stay open, the insurance gets paid, that a staff is organized, equipment is provided and maintained, presenters are compensated. Yes, I charge more, but though I face similar expenses, I am only one person. I am also here to cater specifically to their individual needs and schedules which can not be said of the Center or most of its members and volunteers.
Ultimately I do this because I love kink so much the idea of someone who is as kinky as me having to live their life without it makes my heart ache. I fully believe this is the work I am called to do. So yes, I am there because I want to be. Getting paid just means that I am able to be there when I am needed.
Hope this helps.