Here’s another collection of #MeToo stories of the sex trade that we’ve received through our Share Your Story feature. This provides a space for women to tell their own accounts in their own words. We do not necessarily agree with all the views expressed.
“Prostitution is insidious, it is cruel on both sides. Some argue it is the men who exploit the women, but some of the men are just as fragile. They become entangled in their own emotional pain and trauma. The whole industry is based on lies and deception (as well as the invasion of our precious sacred selves).”
Okay wasn’t gonna tell mine as even though it’s been 23 years, I’m still ashamed of myself. But fuck it, here goes. I grew up being both emotionally and physically abused daily off my parents, I thought it was normal. One time got caught smoking. She beat me so was off school and had to pretend I was in a car accident. Took forever for the bruises to heal. Another time she threw a dartboard at me. Luckily I ducked and it smashed through the window – so she grabbed the darts and used me as a human dartboard. The list is endless. I tried killing myself three times before the age of 15. Eventually I ran away.
Soon found myself trying to navigate and survive street life, sleeping in bus shelters, only going into to school for my free meal. Then back out again.
Remember my first perv really well. It was cold and he just looked like an ordinary guy. He was delivering takeaway food and said I could sit in his car while he worked. I was glad because it was a cold December night. Within five minutes of me getting into the car, he drove to a graveyard and pulled his dick out, grabs my ponytail, physically forced me do a blowjob. As soon as he was done, I jumped out and ran.
Another night I’d walked around and couldn’t find anywhere to sleep. I bumped into an older group and went to a party. I had sex with an older man – just so I had somewhere to sleep. That was how I lost my virginity. Next morning he was gone and I ended up doing a threesome for a bit of breakfast, and then got kicked out.
Fell in with two older women drug users. They weren’t sex workers but said if I got into it, they would give me their spare bedroom. It had no carpet and a manky mattress but it was better than nothing. In hindsight there was bit of coercion and exploitation but I was desperate and started working the streets. I was still sexually inexperienced and had no idea what I was doing. I never even had condoms. I started popping pills, beforehand. It was a scary place to be every time you got in a car. I wished it would be over. It’s amazing how many pervs out there like young girls. Though I was 15, I looked so much younger. I was surprised at the type of men that picked me up. They never looked the type to do that.
After two weeks, the police picked me up for soliciting. My two so-called friends always held my cash for me. I got lifted and dragged down to the cop shop. I was processed, strip searched and charged, and put in the cells with men’s fluids over me and pubic hair in my mouth. I also had conjunctivitis in both eyes. I felt numb, like a disgusting, worthless, piece of shit. I woke up next morning in a kids’ home. I still need to disclose it to future employers. So it’s just as well I got my ass to college. I done hairdressing, beauty, make up, the lot. I got myself a skill set.
I’m self employed now and doing good for myself. However I never trusted anyone, especially men. To be honest, I’m still a bit on the fucked up side, but I’ve gone on to have some of the most wondering magical beautiful experiences.
Life swings both way, ladies.
I thought I would share my personal prostitution story here, after leaving the industry. I was a sex worker for roughly 8 years. The journey has left me with deep emotional scars.
The sad reality of this too is that I look to the world to be a perfectly happy ‘married’ woman. Due to financial pressures, as well as my own lack of self esteem, I decided to pursue sex work because it enabled me to remain at home, work shorter hours and earn far greater pay.
The financial gain was enormous, but the emotional scars were something I will carry forever.
Most men believed they were kind, they were caring and they even ‘fell in love’ with me. Foolishly I fell in love with a client as well. My fragile sensitive nature couldn’t handle any single part of this dreadful profession, and I have been on a long road to recovery since leaving (I continue to be on this road).
I cannot give a straight-forward answer to how we can ever make changes. You quoted in one of your previous blogs that we should give money to women without strings attached. How do we do this to all the women in our world who are taught that we need to get a job just to get by? It’s far too easy for a woman to choose sex work above care work or similar. Would a woman rather wipe an old ladies behind for minimum wage, or would she decide to service a man’s sexual desire? This was a no-brainer for me. Not to mention the rising costs of living due to ‘feminism’ where the push was for ALL women to work. All I wanted to do was remain at home and be a loving housewife. Turn those clocks back and women were proud to be stay at home mums.
I have no objection to women who decide they wish to be proud of their career, but loads of girls and women are not cut out to be chief executives, etc. Do they want to sit at checkouts or do they want to be at home? This is where sex work becomes a greater temptation, and a far easier choice. These days all the ‘retirees’ are actually taking the jobs anyway. They decide they can work for ‘pocket money’ wages at their local B&Q, etc. So many problems we face that continue out of the spiral of momentum we have created. Where can we make a sudden turn-around?
We have more single mums in our current society too. How do they afford a good, decent living where they can provide for their children on minimum wages? When they are aware of what they can receive from the sex industry, it enables them to provide a better style of living.
These are just a few of the very serious issues. This is why every sex worker is standing up and ‘pretending’ they enjoy what they do. I did this myself, and now I have exited, I am struggling again to make ends meet due to the ever increasing costs of mortgage, bills and living. Fortunately, I am strong enough not to allow my shame of being out of work ever to place myself back in the hands of the men who take advantage of this fact.
Prostitution is insidious, it is cruel on both sides. Some argue it is the men who exploit the women, but some of the men are just as fragile. They become entangled in their own emotional pain and trauma. The whole industry is based on lies and deception (as well as the invasion of our precious sacred selves).
I guess I just wanted to share the story (from both sides).
I do not deny the trauma is far greater for the women. It is a downward spiral of shame and trauma. We lose our ability to feel precious and whole. I couldn’t tell if anyone loved me for who I was, or just that I was a sexy body to use?
That’s where you lose that most precious part of who you are.
Yes of course we should give money to women without strings attached, but most men would argue much the same case? I’m sure my husband would like to earn his wage without strings attached too. Or he would love to earn enough that he can support me while paying our high mortgage, and bills, and maintain our living expenses that continue to rise, rise and rise.
Where does it all end?
When the world rids itself of greed (and I can’t see that one until pigs are flying).
I was a student at University College London, and my campus was right next to Spearmint Rhino. Every day as I passed it I had to endure vile comments from the male clients. Not only that – many times I’d get approached by the personnel who worked there telling me about all the money I could make. It was horrible.
My grandmother lives in Stuttgart. They have this place called The Paradise Club. It’s a large brothel owned by two rich men. It’s famous. I’ve been in that part of the town and you get harassed there. Also – and this is the nasty bit – the men who use them are vile. If you’re blonde like I am, you get real sleezebags come on to you. Their attitude to women is appalling. They take it from the clubs and strip joints out onto the street.
Some people make out that strip joints are like Disneyland. But they’re not. You should see the state of some of the girls coming out of Spearmint Rhino. They don’t realise that they’re being chewed up and that eventually they’ll be spat out. They are being exploited.
Share your story
If you’ve been in the sex trade, or have been affected by it in other less direct ways, and would like to share your story anonymously, we’d love to hear from you.