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Posts Tagged ‘anal sex’

Beyond the Pale

Last week I saw this question linked on Twitter, and I was rather dissatisfied with the answer the advice columnist gave.  So even though it wasn’t directed at me, I am going to answer it in case any of my readers is ever in a similar situation.

My husband wanted to try anal…I let myself be talked into trying.  I hated it.  We tried again.  I hated it.  We tried with toys of slowly increasing sizes. I hated it…We try it now every few months at most…and I inevitably cry during and after…I want to never ever do this again or even hear him ask about it, suggest it, or joke about it.  He keeps saying he doesn’t want it to hurt, but thinks it’s fair for him to keep wanting it and keep asking for it…thinking of my husband as the man who sometimes pesters me to go through this kind of pain on his behalf has done a lot of damage to my enjoyment of sex and intimacy in general.  He says he needs some variety.  An open arrangement is not on the table.  Is one of us being unfair?  Are both of us?…

First of all, I really hate the word “fair”, and this is a perfect example of why.  Reality is reality, and it doesn’t change just because one person (in this case your husband) is unhappy with the results.  It isn’t “fair” to my friends that I get to claim the front seat in every car ride where I’m not driving, but because of my severe vertigo it’s necessary unless somebody wants to clean up vomit and listen to me crying like a little girl.  It doesn’t matter whether your aversion to anal is physical, emotional or something else; the fact is that it exists, and that’s that.  You clearly want to make your husband happy, but you’ve made the effort many times with the same result, and he needs to accept that; now it’s his turn to make you happy by giving up this butt obsession before it utterly destroys your sex life and possibly your relationship.  You say you don’t want an open relationship, and given his inability to respect boundaries I think that’s wise; however, please recognize that if he’s as obsessed by this as it seems, he may go behind your back anyway, and if that happens you will need to decide if you’re willing to continue trusting him.  In any case, stop trying to do something that distresses you so; set a firm boundary and tell him you are done even talking about it.

For the husband:   Dude, WTF?  I understand you’ve got a fetish for anal, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  But there’s plenty wrong with your insistence on repeatedly violating your wife’s consent.  It was fine for you to ask her once, and even to wheedle her a bit if she was reluctant.  But to continue insisting, begging, haranguing or whatever else you’ve been doing to get her to try something she obviously hates over and over and over is sadistic, and I don’t mean that in a good way.  You are harming both her and your relationship, and for what?  If you absolutely must experience this, do what ethical men have done since time immemorial and go hire a sex worker who is open to this activity.  Do not try to pick up some amateur in a bar, or go on some dumb dating site, unless you actually want to destroy your marriage; find a discreet professional who offers this service and see her as needed.  Do not just pick an escort at random and assume Greek is on the menu, because not everyone offers it (and the ones who do may not offer it to everyone, or not on the first date, or some other stipulation) and it requires special preparation (which, judging by your wife’s letter, you seem not to comprehend).  And if you do go that route, please be discreet yourself; it’s OK to get your needs met, but it’s not OK to hurt your wife because you’re too damned selfish to think with the big head.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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Only Time

I’ve heard of escorts pricing individual acts, but have no idea how the prices are communicated to the client without possibly exposing yourself in front of an undercover cop.  I don’t think a handjob should be priced the same as anal considering the disparity in risk and effort between the two.

In general, it’s a really bad idea for an escort to charge for anything other than time, though most escorts have a lower social rate for dates without private time (in other words conducted completely in public such as dinner or drinks).  It’s true that BDSM and fetish are generally priced a little lower than full service, which I personally think is stupid; dommes take a long time to learn their craft and they need to invest a great deal more energy and imagination in a session than GFE escorts like me have to.  Furthermore, they need a lot of expensive specialized equipment in addition to the lingerie, makeup, beauty costs, condoms, lube, etc that escorts need.  So they should charge more than regular escorts, not less!  But I digress; other than the disparities I mentioned, no escort I know charges a la carte, or if she does she doesn’t tell me.  Flat-rate pricing generally operates in the sex worker’s favor anyway; would you really want to have to give a refund if a client pays for full service, but then climaxes while you’re warming him up with mouth or hands?  Because I sure wouldn’t.  If you feel a particular menu item is more effort than you want to expend, either don’t offer it at all or only offer it to regulars you like.

As for cops, I’ve said this many times but it bears repeating:  You cannot actually protect yourself from a cop trying to trick you, because cops lie; if you let one in your door or go in his door, you will be arrested no matter what you say or do.  He will simply claim you said whatever the local DA requires to press charges on you.  The only way to be safe from a cop is to detect him before you meet him or even talk very much.  If you meet him, you’re going for a ride no matter what you said or didn’t say, so proper screening is your best safeguard.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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This is like consulting the school bully on how to make the schoolyard safer.  –  anonymous Toronto resident, on consulting cops about harm reduction

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

If you’re raped by a cop, accuse him of offering to pay you for sex instead; that, they’ll fire him for:

…Fairview [Tennessee] Police Chief Terry Harris and assistant chief Mark Sutton have both been suspended…after one of their officers, Ronnie Williams, was arrested by…Nashville police in a prostitution sting…Williams was allowed to resign rather than be fired, which would be notated on his post certification possibly preventing him from going to another department…

Harm Magnification

Naturally, because it’s cops’ job to cause harm, not reduce it:

When word got out in mid-December that undercover [cops] had arrested two men accessing Toronto Public Health’s (TPH) needle exchange program…TPH’s own harm reduction workers scrambled to warn the drug user community…harm reduction workers [wondered]…Were plainclothes police riding in…mobile outreach vans?  Were they present during the highly sensitive and confidential process of rapid HIV/AIDS testing?…The Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance says police participation in the program has fractured the trust the harm reduction community has cultivated over decades with street-involved people…Zoe Dodd, a long-time harm reduction worker and community activist [said] “I don’t recall drug users ever saying they wanted -police to be involved.  This really just shows me that these agencies are more committed to their relationship with police than they are to their relationship with drug users”…

Saving Them From Themselves

Apparently, this stupid pig doesn’t think a lifetime on the “sex offender” registry is a “real severe thing”:

A Three Rivers, Michigan, teenager is both the victim and perpetrator of a sex crime.  He might land on the sex offender registry, and face criminal charges, all because he took…a nude photo of himself on a girl’s cell phone.  That girl sent the picture to another girl, who sent it to another.  Preliminary charges are pending for all three—the boy was charged with manufacturing child porn, and the girls with distributing it.  A prosecutor is still weighing whether to pursue the charges.  Police Detective Mike Mohney…[bloviated] that sexting is a serious crime because it leads to “bullying,” and “real severe things like people committing suicide or violent crimes against others because they’re so embarrassed about it”…

Scapegoats

Actually, the truth is worse.  The bill doesn’t add a new sodomy law, because Michigan never repealed its old one.  Politicians are just too spineless to repeal a blatantly-unconstitutional (an therefore unenforceable) law:

The Michigan Senate just passed a bill that makes sodomy a felony, despite the U.S. Supreme Court declaring such a law unconstitutional.  The…law…makes anal sex punishable by up to 15 years in prison…[and] is directly linked to a law against bestiality…saying…it is a felony for anyone to commit “the abominable and detestable crime against nature with mankind or with any animal”…Senator Rick Jones says [changing the wording] could put the entire bill, created to protect animals, in jeopardy.  “The minute I cross that line and I start talking about the other stuff, I won’t even get another hearing.  It’ll be done…Nobody wants to touch it.  I would rather not even bring up the topic, because I know what would happen.  You’d get…a big fight that’s not needed because it’s unconstitutional.”  Jones believes that the sodomy ban can only be repealed if a bill is created to strike all unconstitutional laws from the state’s books, but he is not willing to do it at the expense of his dog bill…

Above the Law 

US cops don’t have a monopoly on raping whores:  “David Gibson…is on trial [in] Liverpool…after [raping]…a…sex worker [under threat of arrest]“…And this other arsehole was a serial offender:

A [rapist cop] has pleaded guilty to voyeurism after secretly filming himself [raping] prostitutes – but he was cleared of stalking them.  Irshad Kamal, 47, made dozens of films between 2010 and 2012 without informing the women involved.  His video library was discovered [after he attacked a sex worker]…by tearing her clothes off and grabbing her by the throat…Kamal was arrested when she posted his details on “Ugly Mugs” – a sex industry site for dangerous punters…

Naturally, neither was charged with rape.

First They Came for the Hookers…

If prohibitionists really want to “rescue” sex workers, why do they keep trying to stop us from getting other jobs?

When Cheryl’s manager discovered…[she] used to work in the sex trade…he joked that a name plate on her desk read “pubic relations.”  Kayla…was in a new job too when she says a [cop] informed a colleague she had formerly been a “prostitute and a junkie.”  She lost the job and saw no option but returning to the sex industry.  Both women encountered the degrading treatment when they attempted to leave sex work for new occupations, an obstacle that a recently published study calls the “whore stigma”…The women, whose names were changed in the study to protect their identities, reported  challenges from name calling to violence, identifying the stigma they faced as the most challenging barrier to leaving the sex trade…

Checklist

Is there any profession that the fetishists don’t think requires “signs of trafficking” training?

Cosmetologists all over Ohio have begun training to spot signs of human trafficking in their clients.  The new educational push was a requirement passed by the State Cosmetology Board for licensing…Director Christopher Logsdon said when Ohio’s more than 108,000 cosmetologists are trained; they will collectively touch tens-of-thousands of lives.  “Trafficking is a reality in Ohio and Ohio agencies are engaged to train as many as possible on identifying the signs of human trafficking,” Logsdon said. “We hope and pray that one day this Human tragedy will no longer plague our state and the nation”…

Birth of a Movement (#312)

It only starts with us:

Racial profiling, arbitrary house arrests, detentions, and deportation threats—they’re all too common in France these days as part of the “state of emergency” declared to fight terrorists.  But they’ve been familiar to France’s sex workers for quite a while, which is why they have joined those fighting to try to stop an extension of what some people have called the French “Patriot Act,” only worse…Authorities may search homes and place suspects under house arrest without a judicial warrant…and the government can set curfews and forbid large demonstrations…Morgane Merteuil…joined [a protest vs the “emergency” powers] on behalf of STRASS, France’s only sex-worker-led labor union…”The state of emergency doesn’t really change things for sex workers,” [said] Merteuil…”But it’s an extension of police practices that are already in effect for certain segments of the population, including sex workers”…

Available Weapon nuisance abatement map

Weapons forged for use against whores will work on anyone:

…The nuisance abatement law was created in the 1970’s to combat the sex industry in Times Square.  Since then, its use has been vastly expanded, commonly targeting apartments and mom-and-pop bodegas even as the city’s crime rate has reached historic lows.  The NYPD files upward of 1,000 such cases a year, nearly half of them against residences…The process has remarkably few protections for people facing the loss of their homes.  Three-quarters of the cases begin with secret court orders that lock residents out until the case is resolved.  The police need a judge’s signoff, but residents aren’t notified and thus have no chance to tell their side of the story until they’ve already been locked out for days.  And because these are civil actions, residents also have no right to an attorney…residents can be permanently barred from their homes without being convicted or even charged with a crime…

Cooties

Swedes just can’t admit that whores can do things for ourselves:

Police in Stockholm say the rise of Airbnb…has resulted in pimps booking apartments by using fake profiles…growing numbers of prostitutes [use] sublet apartments to charge for sexual services…prostitutes are active at around 200 addresses on a typical day in the city, with hotels no longer their accommodation of choice…pimps [create] fake profiles of respectable couples…

Dirty Laundry (#452)

Apparently, there’s at least one decent judge in Ireland:

A judge has rejected a State application to confiscate the “hard earned” income of two prostitutes which was stolen and later recovered.  Judge Patrick McCartan…praised the courage of the two women in attempting to stop…Mantas Grazevicius…until gardaí arrived…prosecuting counsel Tony McGillicuddy BL [had tried to steal] the € 2,675…for…the state as the proceeds of prostitution…

Fallen Idol

only three months have passed since the horrifying allegations and James Deen appears to have been welcomed back with open arms…Deen walked the red carpets of the XBIZ and AVN Awards, smiling and posing as if it were business as usual…Though Deen received a whopping 33 XBIZ nominations between him and his company, the popular porn star left without a single award.  AVN was a different story.  There, at the “Oscars of Porn,” Deen was awarded two statues as part of ensembles…While prominent companies Evil Angel and Kink were applauded for cutting ties with Deen in the wake of the sexual assault allegations, the scenes he has done for them will continue to be available for purchase…As his work continues to sell, companies will be inclined to hire him.  This is the nature of the business (and reliable male performers are hard to come by)…There is a clear divide within the industry among those who believe the allegations and those who do not, but few on either side…are willing to comment publicly, since he still carries considerable weight within porn…

The Course of a Disease (#606) 

It’s always so great to see academics stand up for us in print:

…MP Fiona Bruce published an article…urging the home affairs select committee…to criminalise the purchase of sex.  Her core argument…[is] fundamentally flawed.  The laws she so vociferously calls for are likely to have disastrous consequences for the safety of sex workers…Fueled by dogmatic radical feminists and ideologues from the religious-right, anti-prostitution sentiment transcends traditional party politics…Bruce’s piece offers an oversimplified and paternalistic argument in favour of the Swedish model.  She argues that prostitution – the sale of sex between two consenting adults – represents “sexual exploitation”.  In so doing, she dismisses a wealth of evidence that many women choose to sell sex and enjoy their sex working.  It is not uncommon for advocates of the Swedish model to argue that sex workers who claim to sell sex of their own volition suffer from “false consciousness” – they hold a distorted image of their own social situation.  They are victims without knowing it…

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I’m a widow who’s been in a relationship with a widower for two years; he has a successful business and is very well-off and very good to me, and though neither of us had a very good sex life with our deceased spouses we have really made magic together.  But for the past few months, things have cooled between us; the sex is still really good but somewhat less frequent, and his behavior has become odd.  Due to his business he’s gone for about half of every week; this never used to bother me, but while I was unpacking his case from his last trip I found a bottle of Viagra, and some of them had been used.  When I have sex with him now, he never wants anything but anal; he can’t come any other way.  He gets a lot of junk texts on his phone from gay dating websites; he just deletes them and says he doesn’t know why they’re being sent to him.  All this started after he hired a gay male friend of mine, and I have come to believe the two of them are having an affair.whispering men  I sometimes find the two of them talking in whispers, and they stop when I come into the room; one night recently I went to bed during one of the friend’s visits and awoke about three in the morning to find the two of them sitting close together in the garden, talking in hushed voices.  The next day he came by work and avoided me, rushing out without saying hello; we used to be close friends, but now he avoids making eye contact.  I want to trust my boyfriend, but it’s difficult given the circumstances.

I wish I could tell you that you’re only being paranoid, but I really don’t believe that you are.  If I were in your place, I would be just as suspicious as you are; all of these things do seem to point toward your boyfriend having an affair with your friend.  His sexual difficulties, his evasiveness, the way he and the friend seem to be sharing a secret, the fact that the friend is now uncomfortable around you, and the gay solicitations…together, they add up to something that doesn’t look good.  Despite the social gains made by gay people in recent years, there is still a great deal of stigma attached to homosexuality among older people, and even younger ones in many countries; it would therefore be no surprise for your boyfriend to be in denial about his attraction to other men.

Obviously, you’re going to have to talk to him about it somehow, but I think we both know he’s going to deny it because that’s what most men do when they’re caught.  I suggest you really think about how to confront him before actually doing it; try to plan this so you are as calm and rational as possible.  It’s almost certainly going to turn into an argument, so you need to prepare for that, but try not to let it degenerate into a screaming match; let him know how you feel, and watch how he reacts.  You will probably be able to tell by his reactions and what he says whether your suspicions are correct, even if he keeps denying it.  After that, you’ll have to make a decision based on what he says and what you discover; I can’t tell you what the “right” decision is, because you have to decide that for yourself, but one way or another this has to be resolved.  As the old song goes, “We can’t go on together with suspicious minds”; either you have to deal with the suspicion, accept the situation or move on from the relationship, because it isn’t fair to either of you for things to continue like this.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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We need to listen to [sex workers]…rather than feeling sorry for them…and then actually take what they say seriously.  –  Jeanett Bjønness

Japanese Prostitution

Japanese cops’ increasing adoption of American whore-harassing tactics is extremely troubling: “Tokyo Metropolitan Police…cracked down on a prostitution club…specializing in senior citizens…Officers arrested the 63-year-old manager of club Silk…and one other employee for dispatching a woman, 64, to…an 82-year-old man…”  That’s right, Japanese cops now think persecuting old people for consensual sex is an appropriate use of resources.pearl clutching

Welcome To Our World

Pearl-clutching, bigoted prudery is especially revolting in young men:

There’s a brand new, ultra-creepy fad in China…”Increasing numbers of adults have been hiring wet nurses so they can consume breast milk for its nutritional value”…it’s revolting.  Everything about this scenario should appall the reader, from the very idea of an adult suckling from another adult to the possibility that someone should be so desperate for money that they have to sell their services in this manner.  It’s every bit as wrong as prostitution…

Actually, I agree with his last sentence 100%; it’s exactly as wrong as prostitution, which is to say not at all.

Shifting the Blame

There was a somewhat uneven piece in the New York Times last week; on the one hand, it portrays the victims of the Long Island Killer as individual women, correctly names many of the reasons women do sex work and (best of all) recognizes that “Escorts face danger not because of the Internet but because they’re still forced to work underground.”  But on the other hand, it does not quote even a single sex worker activist, yet does refer to the questionable ideas of Scott “Women Never Lie About their Weight or Take Out Multiple Ads” Cunningham (including his stunningly stupid belief that before the internet most whores were streetwalkers, and his unsupported and false belief that there are more of us now than in the 1990s).  After I mentioned my problems with the piece on Twitter, author Robert Kolker contacted me and I expressed my concerns; it turns out he did interview several activists, but didn’t realize that not specifically quoting them would be perceived as a slight.  His publisher is also sending me an advance copy of his book about the murders, Lost Girls; I’ll let y’all know what I think about it.

Feminine Pragmatism

Wow, what a surprise!

…Jeanett Bjønness of Aarhus University…interviewed 40 Danish women who sell sex on the streets, and it turns out that the women do not regard their sex trading as the biggest problem in their lives…”Sex trading…is perceived as a solution to some problems,” says Bjønness…the people whose job it is to help sex workers…[regard] the women as victims.  This rigid view…has the consequence that the women feel walked over, because they do not see themselves as victims…[but rather] as independent women who make rational choices based on the options available to them…

See how easy it is when you actually bother to TALK to us?

Something Rotten in Sweden (July Updates, Part One)Casey the Rabbit

Wendy McElroy on the government’s attempts to exert total control by regulating even the smallest economic activity:

…[In his act] a magician named Marty Hahne…pulls a three-pound rabbit out of a top hat…“I just received an 8-page letter from the USDA, telling me that by July 29 I need to have in place a written disaster plan, detailing all the steps I would take to help get my rabbit through a disaster, such as a tornado, fire, flood, etc.”  Hahne and his wife must be specially trained to implement the rabbit plan, which USDA inspectors will review…new [EPA] regulations define ditches, gullies and other property features that catch water as part of America’s navigable waterways under the Clean Water Act…the EPA…would become the de facto  owner of people’s ditches and gullies…The Lemonade Freedom  group knows that the ridiculous regulations need to be taken seriously…the group…[protests] police actions…to close down children’s lemonade stands…

Size Matters

Yes, this is in the United States, a country which supposedly guarantees freedom of religion:

Pahokee [Florida] residents, church members, and pastors are outraged over…the…first Lake Okeechobee Summer Solstice Festival…The crowd cheered in agreement as…pastors from around the area admonished city officials for allowing festivals containing witchcraft and occult practices into the city…“We are opening ourselves up to things we should not, like belly dancing and magic spells,” said Daniel Mondragon…“God cannot heal our land if we have witches and warlocks violating our community,” said Evangelist Lillian Brown…

Schadenfreude

White saviors go on a fun trip to Asia, where they “rescue” brown urchins by teaching them to sew, wait table and draw with crayons:

Destiny Rescue, an organization whose mission is to rescue sexually exploited children…hunts through Cambodia and Thailand to find these girls…Indiana State University graduate students played with the rescued girls, visited the sex tourism capital of the world and wondered at the hope with which victims create new lives…More than 2 million children are forced into the sex trade every year, according to the 2012 United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime report…Destiny Rescue is…[addressing] the problem….by…training in jewelry making, sewing, working in a café, hair dressing or pursuing an education…Vanessa Granger-Belcher…led the girls through an art activity…in which they drew pictures of their dreams for their lives…

It may amuse you to know that most UN agencies estimate the “annual flow of trafficked people” of all ages into all industries at 0.5 – 1.9 million people, of which 2 million are supposedly “sex trafficked children”.  Perhaps the UN should start hiring people with at least 3rd-grade math skills.

Presents, Presents, Presents!

This week I received The Sexual History of London from Sasha and Radley Balko’s Rise of the Warrior Cop from Kevin Wilson.  Thank you both very much!

The Immunity Syndrome

As I’ve mentioned before, teens who make “virginity pledges” are much more likely than others to engage in anal sex in order to remain what we used to call “technical virgins”.  The hilarious Garfunkel and Oates have written a song about it; if you enjoy it, you may also like their earlier lampoon of Christian anti-sex weirdness, “Sex With Ducks”.

Subtle Pimping (TW3 #13)

In Michelle Visage’s Hooker Makeover, a judge from RuPaul’s Drag Race and her drag queen sidekick turn ordinary women into cartoonish streetwalker stereotypes.  Visage was at first defensive when confronted with this on Twitter last Sunday, but within hours she issued a public apology and announced that the show would be cancelled.  It’s good to know that at least some people really are listening.

Ruined Maids

Regular reader Isolde Holland discovered this poem and shared it with me:

“An Old Whorehouse” by Mary Oliver (born 1935)

We climbed through a broken window,
walked through every room.

Out of business for years,
the mattresses held only

rainwater, and one
woman’s black shoe. Downstairs

spiders had wrapped up
the crystal chandelier.

A cracked cup lay in the sink.
But we were fourteen,

and no way dust could hide
the expected glamour from us,

or teach us anything.
We whispered, we imagined.

It would be years before
we’d learn how effortlessly

sin blooms, then softens,
like any bed of flowers.

Little Boxes

A Chinese court has declared that “happy endings” aren’t prostitution:

…in July 2011…a massage parlour owner and two associates were arrested…for “organising prostitution”…and…handed a five-year sentence…But [in] appeal…the defendants were found “not criminally responsible” and…acquitted due to “unclear facts and improper application of the law”.  The court said manual stimulation did not belong in the realm of prostitution…

Naked Truth
Unsurprisingly, the cops insist that they know the law better than judges.

First They Came for the Hookers

Dr. Marty Klein’s review of Dr. Judith Hanna’s book Naked Truth: Strip Clubs, Democracy, And A Christian Right discusses the war against strip clubs we’ve mentioned so many times before, and the book itself debunks the usual mythology about “negative secondary effects”, “sex trafficking”, etc. I do have to wonder if Hanna ignores the neofeminist contribution as Klein does in his book, though.

Check Your Premises (TW3 #26)

Ohio wants to criminalize obtaining clear consent:

…the Ohio House of Representatives unanimously approved a bill ostensibly aimed at fighting “human trafficking” that makes it a crime to “solicit” a legal act:  sex with someone who is 16 or 17 years old.  The age of consent in Ohio is 16.  Yet under H.B. 130, a 20-year-old who asks a 16-year-old to have sex with him, or a 21-year-old who does the same with a 17-year-old, thereby commits a…felony…and…has to register as a sex offender.  But if the teenager broaches the subject, or if the sex proceeds without any explicit verbal reference to it, no crime has been committed…Having sex is fine, as long as you don’t talk about it beforehand… Legislators already define “human trafficking” broadly enough to include consensual sex…Now Ohio is poised to [add] merely talking about consensual sex…

Only Rights Can Stop the Wrongs (TW3 #27)

Another small country stands up to American bullying:  “Cambodia…lashed out at the U.S. State Department for downgrading the country’s ranking in its annual report on human trafficking, saying cultural barriers were hampering government efforts to combat the problem…

Celebrities (TW3 #31)Anwar Al-Awlaki

The fact that the FBI thought a dude paying for sex was somehow noteworthy says a lot about the FBI.  The fact that CNN misunderstands what the newsworthy aspect of this is says even more about CNN.

In the months after the 9/11 terror attacks in 2001, FBI agents conducted surveillance of…Anwar al-Awlaki and uncovered detailed information about his…use of prostitutes…Al-Awlaki lived in a Washington suburb at the time…he visited prostitutes at least seven times and paid up to $400 for sex…[for] a total of $2,320 …agents interviewed the escorts, obtained detailed information about the encounters, and…even reviewed the possible legal charges that might be brought against him…

Gorged With Meaning (TW3 #49)

This article is a few months old, but its hysterical pearl-clutching is so hilarious I just had to share it:

If you think the wait to find out if your kids got the…results needed to get into uni is stressful, dream on…It’s what happens next that you REALLY should be worrying about…Darling Daughter could easily end up hawking her body to keep her university finances afloat…poverty is pushing students to sell their souls and get jobs in the sex trade.  Six per cent could be working as lap-dancers, strippers, escorts or prostitutes to pay their way through studies.  Yet more could be manning sex chat-lines…the sex industry is a dark, grubby scene that irrevocably changes people on the inside…No degree is worth it…

So either Jo Davison is speaking from personal experience, or she’s a bigoted ignoramus.  Which is it, Jo?  Do tell.

Uncharted Seas (TW3 #316)

Another mainstream pro-polygamy article, in The Economist no less:

…DOMA was struck down in no small part because it picks out a certain class of people and, by denying them recognition of their marriages, denies their families equal freedom and dignity.  Can it be denied that polygamous families, whose marital arrangements are illegal, much less unrecognized, are denied equal liberty and are made to suffer the indignity [of] active discrimination?…If the state lacks a legitimate rationale for imposing on Americans a heterosexual definition of marriage, it seems pretty likely that it likewise lacks a legitimate rationale for imposing on Americans a monogamous definition of marriage…

True Colors (TW3 #323)

Activist Ye Haiyan…was released from 13 days of detention on June 12 after she scared off three trespassers to her home…Ye first became famous in 2005, when she posted a nude photo of herself online. Under the pen name Hooligan Swallow, Ye raised eyebrows with her bold articles on sex.  But she really caught the public’s attention in 2010 when the…NGO she set up…[called] for the legalisation of prostitution…”Pushing for [this]…contradicts the government’s ideology,” she said. “The government does not wish to see this topic being promoted and the mainland media are banned from discussing it”…

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Twice and thrice over, as they say, good is it to repeat and review what is good.  –  Plato

All of today’s questions and answers appeared previously in comment threads, and I’ve linked the originals; I thought it best to repeat them in-column not only to ensure that everyone gets to see them, but also so that they can be referenced in “Previously Asked Questions”.  If you have a question of your own, please check that page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.

Venus At Her Mirror by Peter Paul Rubens (1615)Is there a market for escorts who are in their 40s and chubby or who are obviously mothers?  If so what could such a woman expect to earn?

There is a market for “BBW” (Big Beautiful Woman) escorts, and definitely for mature ones, and for the combination as well.  The most important thing for mature ladies is personality; gentlemen who see older escorts usually want an interesting companion as much as or more than they want sex.  As for income, you’ll have to check your local escort boards, but I expect it isn’t much different from other women in your area.

What advice could you give to a smaller-than-average man married to a larger-than-average woman?  Between oral, manual and toys, we can satisfy each other, but I sometimes wish we could make good old-fashioned penetration work for us.

Woman on top is good for men with smaller penises, and also allows for manual clitoral stimulation; if your wife is fairly flexible, she can also lie on her back with her knees pulled all the way up until they’re alongside her tits.  Rear-entry (“doggie style”) also shortens and tightens the vagina, but it won’t work well if the woman is generously endowed in the derriere; this can be mitigated somewhat if she is flexible and can get on her knees while pressing her bosom as flat against the mattress as she can (it also helps if the man crouches to penetrate instead of getting on his knees). And of course, there’s also anal sex; a smaller penis is actually an advantage for that activity.

What screening process do P411 and Date Check use to insure that providers are legitimate and not planted by law enforcement?

P411 requires that girls have several reviews, and I think they also need a vouch from a client or already-approved girl but I’m not sure of that.  I don’t know about Date Check personally, but Aspasia wrote that she had to be vouched for by established escorts and email them a photocopy of her ID.

Is there a length or thickness of penis beyond which most escorts would not have sex?

woman with tape measureI never encountered one I could not accept because of thickness, and I honestly don’t think very many other escorts have, either; the vagina is elastic enough to allow a baby’s head through, and there’s no penis remotely close to that in diameter. There is a common male myth that a lot of sex can make a woman loose, but this is pure, unadulterated nonsense; only childbirth can do that.  Excessive length is a problem because it can “bottom out” against the cervix, but in that case a thin penis is worse than a thick one because it allows the head to ram harder against the sensitive tissues, whereas a thick one will be slowed down by friction.  To a degree we deal with that by choosing positions which don’t allow deep penetration, but I have heard of some ladies who specify that they won’t see men over a certain length.

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When you’re less popular than cockroaches, Genghis Khan, traffic jams, and…even Nickelback…it might be time to reevaluate.  –  Tom Jensen

As if to make up for the holiday lull, this was an astonishingly busy week for links; besides having a record number of them (56 plus the two videos) and a record number of different contributors (17), the average number of links contributed (1.88) was quite high.  The top supplier was Radley Balko, who provided everything down to the first video plus the second and third parts of the first one below it; the first part of that one was provided by Grace, who also contributed “25%”, “David Frum” and “new trial”.  In the first video (via the Free Speech Coalition) a former gay porn star helpfully explains that anal sex causes the recipient to give birth to demons from his anus; by contrast, the second is an intentional parody from the TV series Robot Chicken, written by Rachel Bloom  and performed by pop star Kesha.  The links between the two were contributed by Marc Randazza (“catheter”); Aspasia (“Vestal Virgins” and “criminal cat”);  Franklin Harris (“looking gay” and “dinosaur meat”); Kevin Wilson (“delicate creatures”); Cthulhuchick (“Satanists”); Walter Olson (“vegetarianism”); Satoshi Kanazawa (“wrinkled fingers”); Antonio Lorusso (“orange cup” and link above it); Nun Ya (“Lego”); Jesse Walker (“Mother Goose” and “militia”); Popehat  (both RPG-related links); the Cato Institute (“libertarian test”); and Paul Reinerfelt (“handy words”).  I saw that last when it came out, but since I wasn’t doing links columns yet Paul gets credit for calling it back to my attention.

 

From the Archives

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To really ask is to open the door to the whirlwind.  ―  Anne Rice, The Vampire Lestat

Because I’ve done so many Q & A columns, I’m starting to see some repetition in the questions readers ask.  This isn’t exactly surprising, considering that there are over 900 daily columns now and even a person who’s good at using indexes and searches might not phrase the question in the same way as the original questioner.  So, I’ve decided to publish this linked list of all the questions I’ve answered so far, rephrased for simplicity and clarity; within the next few days it will be duplicated in a static page that will grow as I answer new questions, and that I can then link in each new Q & A column.

General Sex Questions

Vargas Fleurs du Mal

General Sex Work Questions

Questions About Whores

La Belle Esclave by Henri Tanoux

Questions About Clients

Mentoring Questions

Requests for Advice

Personal Questions

Illustration from Guy de Maupassant's La Maison Tellier by Edgar Degas (1881)

Blogging

Miscellaneous

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Prostitution has a social value, and it’s necessary in a city.  –  Daniël Termont

Without Let or Hindrance

Those who have dealt with “Child Protective Services” know that they are granted powers of which the Inquisition would have been envious.  They routinely abduct people’s children on the flimsiest of pretexts, often on hearsay and without even a warrant, and once this happens parents may never regain custody; if they do it is after years of jumping through ridiculous and ever-changing hoops, playing endless games of “Mother May I?” with power-mad bureaucrats, submission to outlandish violations of their rights and privacy, hundreds of hours in court and total financial ruin…and that’s not even counting the emotional damage to the children.  On Wednesday, an activist named Kathi Duran began a hunger strike on the steps of the California state capitol to call attention to these abuses; as expected, she was arrested almost immediately.  She asked me to call attention to her protest and share this press release, and I’m happy to do so and will provide updates as I get them.

Updates

License To Rape

This result doesn’t happen nearly often enough:

An ex-Houston police officer [named Abraham Joseph]…was sentenced to life in prison…for raping a waitress…Joseph could have received as little as five years…but jurors chose the maximum sentence instead.

News articles always refer to criminal cops as “ex-cops”, implying they had already been fired when they committed the crimes.

Lack of Evidence

The San Francisco Police Department announced…that [it] will [temporarily] stop using condoms as evidence in prostitution cases…Under current city policy, police cannot confiscate condoms…But…police sometimes broke the policy…A July report from Human Rights Watch criticized San Francisco, along with New York, Washington, DC and Los Angeles, for [the practice]…

Spam received by a reader; if this isn’t a hoax, the cops, voyeurs or pimp wannabes who set it up labor under truly mythic levels of ignorance and disinformation.

December Q & A

Sex educator Debby Herbenick on the need for more research on anal sex:  “…In an incredibly short period of time, anal sex has become a common part of Americans’ sex lives.  As of the 1990s, only about one-quarter to one-third of young [Americans]…had tried anal sex at least once.  Less than 20 years later, my research team’s 2009 National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior found that as many as 40-45 percent…in some age groups had…[yet] taboos persist and…the list of what we don’t know about anal sex is far longer than the list of what we do.  This makes it difficult for sex educators to feel truly confident in answering people’s very real and important questions…

Backwards into the Future

Add Malawi to the list of countries whose legal experts understand human rights better than those in the US; one of them said thatDespite the fact that Malawi has not outlawed sex work…police officers on night patrols pounce on sex workers and…charge…[them] with rogue and vagabond…This is a clear violation of rights of sex workers…”  He also commented on the unsanctioned compulsory HIV testing I reported in TW3 (#24), stating that it “is not recommended by…UNAIDS” and “it is impractical and unworkable and more effective results can be reached by supporting sex workers’…access [to] testing, prevention, and support…

Housewife Harlotry

No, marriage isn’t prostitution; not at all:

…Several [New York] attorneys have shared the craziest [prenuptial agreements] they’ve penned…[including] items like “no piano playing while the husband is home”, cash bonuses…if either is caught cheating and an agreement to terminate a pregnancy if one should occur…[some include]a weight clause…[another] said [the wife] would never wear green and if she did, her husband [could]…destroy the item…One husband demanded “wife not allowed to cut her hair”…

The article also mentions the wives’ demands, including husbands being home by a certain time and (surprise!) being paid for sex.

Saving Them From Themselves

Amanda Hess adds to our list of good articles about “sexting” hysteria:

When Polaroid inventor Edwin Land introduced the first commercial instant camera…in 1948, he ushered in what Christopher Bonanos …in The Atlantic calls a “magnificent new era” in photography…for “instant, shareable nudie pics”…The new…format for…nude photographs—sexting—[is]…basically the same:  instant explicit photographs, taken under the radar, shared between lovers and friends.  In a recent report on a new study of teen sexting…dating “expert” Dr. Wendy Walsh favored terms like “embarrassment,” “shame,” “risky,” and “pressure” to describe the photographic form.  And negative terms like those permeate the…discussion around teen photo sharing, though for years research has shown that the media-wide concern-trolling is overblown…

Tyranny By Consensus

On November 6th Los Angeles county will decide whether to impose AHF’s “condoms in porn” measure; this video explains the real motive behind the whole thing:

Uncommon Sense

…In Ghent’s red-light district, as in many other cities, prostitutes sit in windows to attract potential clients.  According to the new law in Ghent, women must wear something in addition to lingerie and may not dance or make suggestive gestures…[Mayor Daniël] Termont…stressed that the measures were intended to reduce the nuisance caused by customers…rather than to victimise the workers.

Saint Death

This US Army report on the Santa Muerte belief refers to it as a “death cult” (technically true, but the phrase has false and pejorative connotations), declares that it isn’t a “true” religion and states that “Although not all members of the cult are criminals, all live an existence that is dominated by crime.”  I’m sure that bartenders, taxi drivers and prostitutes (who are not criminalized in Mexico) might disagree that their lives are “dominated by crime”, though cops (another large segment of her devotees) probably wouldn’t.

Umpteen Thousand People Can’t Be Wrong

It’s good to see some journalists finally starting to listen to us:

…Backpage’s critics say they are facilitating sex slavery…[but] all the figures quoted in the media come from a single source, a consultancy called AIM Group…[whose] methodology is shaky at best…they ignore major adult ad networks and mainstream ad networks that accept adult ads…and traffic, revenue and share-of-market numbers, even accurate ones, are no indication of how many…ads…actually convert into…transaction[s]…nor what subset of those…are with a minor or…coerced [person]…Backpage publishes about 3.2 million…ads a month…about 11 percent…are listed in…Adult Services…Backpage removes over a million ads a month…[mostly] for spam and fraud…Only 1.6 percent of the [removed] ads…are from the Adult Category…Only 2 percent of that 1.6 percent, or about 400…a month, are suspected of advertising a minor.  Backpage reports those…immediately (and under no legal obligation) to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).  In other words, about 1/25 of 1 percent (.04 percent) of the ads Backpage removes…are suspected of advertising a minor for sexual services, a number that represents 1/100 of one percent (.01 percent) of its…ad volume…

Instead of the usual prohibitionists, the article interviewed folks like researcher Ron Weitzer and Kate D’Adamo of SWOP.

The More the Better

Diary of a Rookie Phone Sex Floozie…Lucinda Latimer…whose real name is Jan…was…broke, isolated and almost suicidal…  she had sold her car and had no idea where her next penny was coming from when she saw a documentary on former career women who turned to the sex industry to make a living.  Previously, she had [earned] up to £1000 a night as a graphologist…but ill health and the break-up of her marriage forced her back to Perthshire…[she now does phone sex work and] what has struck her about the men is how normal and pleasant most are and how well educated…Trying to hide her work would have made it shameful and sordid…[so] Jan decided to speak out…she has written…The Diary of a Rookie Phone Sex Floozie, and is about to launch volume two…

The Rape Question

Jezebel’s “sex advice” columnist gives a reader advice on how to shove her finger up a guy’s arse without his consent because she wants “to massage someone’s prostate goddamnit!”.  Take note of the tepid protests to the columnist’s suggestions on how to trick and bully him into it, then imagine the firestorm if a male writer gave a man advice on how to pressure a woman into something because he wants “to fuck some chick in the arse goddamnit!

Change of Heart

I’m never happy to see a sister pilloried, but I suspect the police decision to expose her customers is going to backfire so badly that this may have some positive results in the long run:

[Alexis Wright has]…been charged with running a prostitution business out of her Zumba dance studio [in Kennebunk, Maine] and secretly videotaping her encounters…Police have begun issuing summons to Wright’s customers and will release the names in the weeks ahead.  Townspeople say they’ve heard that lawyers, doctors, law enforcement officials, a television personality and other well-known people in town are included in a detailed clientele list police found.  A lot of people would rather not see the names made public because it will hurt families, children and careers…

So Close and Yet So Far

Another would-be ally undermines her own case by accepting the false claims of prohibitionists:

…In the Netherlands, prostitution is legal.  Nonetheless, over 60% of the women involved in prostitution are involved in the sex trade illegally.  The Mayor [of Amsterdam] and others refer to these as ‘trafficked’ – either because they are exploited and involved in the sex trade against their will…or because they are illegal workers brought to the country to work voluntarily in conditions different from those they expect…the argument for legalization included belief that it would…decrease trafficking, it has had the opposite effect…prostitution has gone from a predominantly home-grown industry to one very heavily dependent on illegal foreign workers…a [recent law criminalizes hiring]…a prostitute who is not registered with the government…But…this…means that…[the] information must be public so that…[clients] can verify that the sex worker is…licensed…[this] invades the privacy of both…prostitutes and…customers…

Prohibitionists intentionally confuse legalization and decriminalization, ignore the bottleneck effect of registration, pretend that correlation equals causation and conflate “unregistered” with “trafficked”, and the author, Dr. Nancy Darling, fails to question any of it.

Metaupdates

See No Evil in TW3 (#24)

Ilfracombe, the English town which claims to be unique in the world by being absolutely whore-free, proves it can be as prudish about lumps of bronze as anyplace in the Bible Belt:  “Damien Hirst refers to ‘Verity’ as a ‘modern-day allegory for truth and justice’…[but hundreds of local residents and law officials]…call the 66-foot bronze statue of a half-exposed pregnant woman ‘soft porn masqueraded as art’…

Down Under in TW3 (#40)

Australian sex worker activist Christian Vega has more to say on that “end demand” story from St. Kilda:

…As I read through [the article] the stench of bovine excrement almost made my eyes water…street sex work doesn’t relocate itself to another suburb on the other side of town…there is not an itinerant population of these workers who move en masse from one place to the next like migrating wildebeest across the African savannah…It’s more comfortable for people to think that sex work doesn’t happen in their community…and…that street sex workers must board a shuttle from planet Whore to our neighbourhoods under the cover of darkness before disappearing as the sun rises…

I think I like that imagery at least as much as my own.

This Week in 2010 and 2011

A federal judge enjoyed pleasures he persecuted others for and escaped with a slap on the wrist because officials always have different rules for their own class than for others; they’re also hilariously clueless about sex work and are only beginning to realize what a scam the “anti-trafficking” industry is.  I discussed America’s weird love-hate relationship with prostitutes, what a 1947 sci-fi story can teach us about the nanny state, how sex workers arrive at our prices and how prostitution is a much older profession than most people think, and I related the story of a famous whore-obsessed preacher, told some hooker jokes, shared my answers to some amazingly stupid prohibitionist statements and presented two spooky stories for the Halloween season.

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One can never read all the books in the world, nor travel all its roads.  –  Anonymous

In “Presents, Presents, Presents!” I mentioned a few books readers sent me for my birthday and Christmas, and despite being frightfully busy for the past couple of months I’ve managed to read four of them so far.  Also, Dr. Sadie Allison sent me a copy of her new “how to” on anal sex and asked if I’d let her know what I thought, so I figured now was as good a time as any for a new book review column.

All or Nothing:  A Short History of Abstinence in America by Jessica Warner

Throughout history there have been those who abstained from one vice or another, and religious devotees who abstained from all or most of them.  But Protestant reformers like Martin Luther rejected the concept that anything should be abstained from completely as some Catholic religious orders practiced; instead, they preached the virtue of moderation.  But less than two generations after Luther abstinence was back in fashion among the Puritans, and by the 18th century it became an inextricable part of evangelical Protestantism.  Warner traces the development of the notion that moderation is undesirable, which caught on in America as it never could have in Europe because it was based in the sort of misguided optimism we’ve discussed before, the notion that man is perfectible.  She shows how in the late 19th century abstinence went from a personal choice to a thing to be imposed upon society by force (i.e. prohibitionism), and how it eventually permeated  American culture in general and led to modern excesses such as anti-sex laws, dietary fascism and the “War on Drugs”.

Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

Though I had heard about this book before, I became interested in reading it through Satoshi Kanazawa’s discussion of the epilogue to its sequel; I really wanted to read Superfreakonomics, but it seemed silly not to read the first one first so that’s what I did, and I found it fascinating.  Levitt is an economist who isn’t good at math and isn’t interested in analyzing the things one generally associates with economics, but instead wants to explore “the hidden side of everything”.  What that “everything” entails is most easily demonstrated by telling you the names of the book’s six chapters:  “What Do Schoolteachers and Sumo Wrestlers Have In Common?”, “How is the Ku Klux Klan Like a Group of Real-Estate Agents?”, “Why Do Drug Dealers Still Live With Their Moms?”, “Where Have All the Criminals Gone?”, “What Makes a Perfect Parent?” and “Perfect Parenting Part II; or: Would a Roshanda By Any Other Name Smell As Sweet?”  Need a bit more enticement?  The star of chapter 3 is Sudhir Venkatesh, the answer to the title of chapter 4 is “Roe vs. Wade”, and chapter 2 (in combination with material from All or Nothing) provided the inspiration for “Circle”.

Harmful To Minors:  The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex by Judith Levine

There is almost nothing in this book that will be new to regular readers; Levine’s position is essentially identical to my own.  She points out that only in America is sex in general and sex among legal minors in particular treated as pathological; that sexuality starts at an early age, surges at adolescence and develops throughout the teens rather than springing into existence at midnight on a person’s 18th birthday; that the suppression of teen sexuality is far more harmful than teen sex itself; that keeping kids in ignorance creates a whole host of problems which only barely exist in Europe; that the “predator panic” has caused grievous harm to society in general and kids in particular; that sexuality is natural and involuntary, and that sexual impulses cannot merely be ignored; that normal childhood behaviors, especially in boys, are now pathologized and even criminalized; etc, etc, etc.  What makes the book worth reading is Levine’s backing up her points with exhaustive research, and providing numerous examples which you can be sure I’ll employ in future columns on the subject.  As so often happens with books on sexual topics, the few negative reviews on Amazon actually serve as positive reviews to those who recognize them for what they are.

Tickle My Tush by Sadie Allison

Dr. Sadie has released several previous manuals (covering subjects ranging from sex positions to toys) through her own imprint, Tickle Kitty, and in this new book promises “Mild-to-Wild Analplay Adventures for Everybody.”  I must admit I had a little anxiety about reading it; though I have no hang-ups about my own bottom, “pegging” and prostate massage are just not my cup of tea.  I needn’t have worried; though there’s plenty of information here, Dr. Sadie’s playful, light style presented it in a way calculated to reduce the squick-out factor to approximately nought.  The book is a quick read, divided into chapters and short “subchapters” of two pages or less each, with plenty of illustrations; it’s designed to be perused by couples together, and to be easily consultable later.  After a general overview she moves on to discuss safety, hygiene and anatomy before proceeding to topics arranged in order of increasing “wildness”, starting with massage of the butt cheeks and ending up with positions.  One especially clever feature of the book is two different “FAQ” chapters, one at the beginning (the sort of questions asked by total neophytes) and the other at the end (the sort asked after reading the book or enjoying some experience with analplay).  The only thing I didn’t care for was her use of “cute” words for the body parts and activities, but that’s just me; I totally understand that she was trying to avoid being clinical, and I think most readers will probably be much more comfortable with, for example, “o-ring” rather than “sphincter”.

A Vindication of the Rights of Whores edited by Gail Pheterson

This volume, published in 1989, provides a snapshot of the whores’ rights movement of a quarter-century ago through essays from a number of different writers and almost five dozen contributors, including a number whose names you already know (such as Annie Sprinkle, Margo St. James and Norma Jean Almodovar).  The second part of the book is comprised of a series of transcripts from the first and second World Whores’ Congresses (in 1985 and 1986), including the World Charter for Prostitutes’ Rights.  I found the book especially interesting in two ways:  First, it gives a window onto the very beginnings of “Third Wave” feminism by raising the issue of sexual self-determination and presenting a series of statements from feminists who attended the Second Congress and became convinced that their previous belief in prostitution as “exploitation” or “violence against women” was ignorant and incorrect.  Second, it contains what may be the earliest published statement against “trafficking” mythology, considering that few people outside activism or feminism even knew what the term meant until a decade later: “The ICPR objects to policies which give women the status of children and which assume migration through prostitution among women to be always the result of force or deceit…

One Year Ago Today

A Foregone Conclusion” is the story of the short, failed career of Markus, the “prostidude” of the Shady Lady Ranch in Nevada.

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