The trouble with life isn’t that there is no answer, it’s that there are so many answers. - Ruth Benedict
As usual, we’ll close out the month with a collection to reader questions. If you have one of your own, please email it to me and I may include it in my next column.
Are you not uncomfortable with the word “whore”? I would never call my ladies such a thing! I don’t even like the word “hooker”. It has also acquired such a negative connotation. Like calling a black man a “nigger”. Just wrong. (To me, anyway). I respect the women I am with. Why would I use such nasty words on them?
A number of us have decided to appropriate the word “whore” just as homosexuals took over “queer” and “dyke” and American revolutionaries commandeered “Yankee”. IMHO black people would have been much wiser to have done the same with “nigger”. When one accepts a label it loses its power to hurt; when one avoids it one ends up being like the pathetic wimp in the schoolyard who would run away crying whenever anyone called him “fatty” or “boogers” or whatever. Here’s an early column which touches on the subject.
And beside everything else, I like “whore”. It’s a venerable word with roots going back to the ancient Indo-European language, and is related to the Persian houri, the Arabic hur and the Greek porne (from which our word “pornography” is derived); it may also be related to the Latin hora (hour) because one very ancient euphemism for whore is “lady of the hour”. It’s also honest and specific (though often misused), unlike the legalistic “prostitute” or the vague and overly-broad “sex worker”. I also like “harlot” (which is itself related to “whore”) but nowadays that sounds like an affectation. Of course, these are my personal preferences; other working girls have their own, and some of them definitely don’t like “whore” even when a sister uses it, much less when a man does. So it’s probably best you avoid it unless you know the lady you’re addressing doesn’t mind. As far as I’m concerned, though, allowing words to have power over one’s feelings is like giving everyone who can speak a baseball bat and then daring them to hit one.
You have said that you would consider working again not for money but for donations to a pro-prostitute group. Does that still constitute prostitution as you are not having sex for personal gain? And how much of a donation (pun intended) would you consider for your time?
Prostitution is defined as the exchange of sexual favors for money, but since experienced whores never actually agree to exchange sex for money cops have to resort to lies and trickery in order to arrest women for the “crime”. The result is that in prohibitionist regimes like the United States, no woman is safe from police accusations of prostitution based upon such absurd “evidence” as winking, lack of underwear, the possession of one or more condoms or wearing “revealing” clothes. Legally speaking, I’m not really sure as to whether the law would consider working for donations prostitution or not; the excuse for porn acting being legal is that a third party pays for it, so it stands to reason that if the money were paid to a third party it would be the same. However, I’ll still be extremely careful because there’s nothing to stop a cop from simply lying, just as they can about any woman. As for the amount, I would ask my old rate of $300/hour.
I’ve often wondered about the male “significant others” of sex workers. When a sex worker comes home after having had sex in some form with 5 or more men, how does she work up enough desire to make love with her sweetheart? Also I imagine that these relationships are fragile due to jealousy.
The answer is, “it depends”. That may seem evasive, but people (male and female both) are so different from one another that it’s hard to give you only one answer. First off, five clients in one day is definitely a high number for an escort, though I am told it’s not all that unusual for a brothel girl or streetwalker. In the first two years I was working I averaged 2.3 clients a day, and many independents set a limit of two (or even one) in order to prevent burnout or have more personal time. So for the sake of discussion, let’s just say “two or three” because that fits my own personal experience and is much more realistic for most escorts. Even so, two or three sessions can be rather tiring, especially if the girl specializes in energetic PSE-style performances. And in most cases, it’s the energy which matters rather than “desire”; a professional does not have sex with clients due to lust but because it’s her job, and for many of us the need for real intimacy is increased by work rather than decreased. In other words, for some women the more professional jobs they do in a day the greater the need for emotional bonding with their partners later.
Again, everyone is different. If a whore finds her work sexually satisfying (and some do), she may not be interested in more when she gets home. If she is indifferent to her work and doesn’t wear herself out, there may be no effect on her sex drive one way or the other. If she’s indifferent but is worn out (by number of clients, level of activity or difficult customers) she might be only interested in cuddling or gentle lovemaking. If she’s turned on by her work but not really satisfied, she may be even more randy when she gets home than she would be had she spent the day shopping. And if she dislikes her work, she may not want anything to do with a man when she gets home.
How the man looks at her work is also important; if he only tolerates it he might be turned off if he knows she had a number of appointments that day, but if he’s turned on by it he may be even more excited by that knowledge. His attitude is really the one that determines the answer to your second question; most self-aware men know whether they’re the jealous type or not, and those who are usually avoid entering into relationships with pros. Of course, men who lack the faculty of introspection or who are emotionally troubled may be unaware of their own jealousy or (more likely) fail to recognize that they’re falling in love until it’s too late; wise whores keep their eyes open for danger signs in regulars and hold problem cases at arm’s length because such men can easily become dangerous stalkers. Some escorts also date men nonprofessionally and hide their professional lives from their “regular” dates, but I consider this both dishonest and foolish; it’s better for everyone involved if both parties are honest with both themselves and the other person in order to avoid future emotional turmoil.
In the past, a number of people have expressed curiosity about my own husband’s feelings on the matter, so I asked him if he would consent to answer such questions from my readers and he agreed. So you may consider this an official invitation: any of you who have questions you would like to ask my husband please email them to me and I’ll pass them on to him; his answers will appear in a future column. Please try to be specific; questions such as “what’s it like to be married to a hooker?” are too broad to be easily answered.