I recently had a conversation with a very good friend of mine about dating as a sex worker/kinky person. Something as simple as getting to know someone and beginning a relationship with them is a totally different ballgame for SWs, and in this blog, I will attempt to examine why that is!
So, this friend has recently started seeing someone new. So exciting in the beginning, isn’t it?! The thrill every time you see their name pop up on the phone, going out on dates, finding out commonalities and differences and wondering if this person could become someone important in your life.
My friend and I were discussing the inevitable question – when do you tell someone you’re seeing that you are a sex worker?
There are several situations in relation to which we discussed this question, so I shall attempt to go through each of them. First of all, let’s assume that the person I am seeing is not in the industry at all. Has no knowledge of my job, my life, and the things I am into and have done. At what point is it right or fair to let somebody know what I do for a living?
My last long-term relationship was with a guy who was not in the industry. He was a “vanilla” guy and I initially told him when we first met that I just did a bit of modelling and stuff. I was deliberately vague because I really liked this guy and didn’t want to put him off. Also, being a sex worker has made me very wary of men and their intentions in general – I have heard awful stories of what other SWs have suffered when they disclosed their job to others. Judgement, bullying, harassment, violence. Stigma kills. It’s a situation that could have potentially been dangerous, so I also felt that being vague and not disclosing immediately would keep me safe from potential harm in the short term.
I would like to add, for context, that this was nearly seven years ago and I was not quite as confident or comfortable in my own skin as I am now. I didn’t fill him in fully on my job and the type of work that I had done and still did until maybe a month or so into the relationship. I don’t like being dishonest, it doesn’t sit well with me (I am a terrible liar), so I felt I had to tell him sooner rather than later. By this point I didn’t think I was at any risk of harm from him. I mention this because I guess even though evasion is similar to outright dishonesty, I was only doing it to keep myself safe.
Initially he took it very well, and was in fact very supportive in the beginning. However, once the relationship had started to sour, he would bring it up in every argument – that I had lied to him, kept things from him, tricked him into falling for me so that he was already smitten when I told him about being a sex worker, and how could he possibly trust me?! I was a lying prossie who should be grateful he deigned to be with me. (Erm, get tae fuck, sunshine?!)
As it turned out he had even bigger and badder secrets he had kept from me, that could potentially have put in me in danger, but I will not dwell on that other than to point out that my being evasive and unclear in the beginning, not only became a tool for him to absolve himself of his own shitty behaviour and attempt to make me feel bad, but was warranted all along because the details he neglected to tell me about himself in the beginning actively put me in harm’s way.
So, these days, I tell people right away. Sometimes this means that I never hear from that person again – this has happened more times than I care to count. It stings a bit, and I used to take it way more personally in the beginning, but I am now at a point in life where I don’t care. Some will, some won’t, so what, move on. I don’t have time to waste on other people’s whorephobia, misogyny and self -loathing – deal with that on your own time buddy! I have had more people ghost me upon them finding out what I do for a living than you’ve had hot dinners. And I am glad, because they were clearly not people I wanted to get to know anyway! Sex workers are some of the strongest, realest, most wonderful people I’ve ever come across so anyone who’s not willing to continue talking to me because I am one – is clearly not for me!
At this point in the conversation my friend and I then wondered about the merits of dating within the scene. It’s not something I’ve ever done, but of course I do know and socialise with people in the industry, and there is certainly a lot to be said for this as an option.
Meeting someone within the scene eliminates that entire conversation about “so what do you do for a living?” because they already know. That is a huge deal – I wouldn’t have to explain who I am, what I do, the things I get up to, and so on and so forth because they are in that world too. That is massively appealing, and well worth consideration! I’ve had a couple of small-scale dalliances with guys that I’ve met in the biz – and knowing that I didn’t have to worry about The Big Reveal with regards to my livelihood was such a weight off my shoulders. They already knew who I was and what I do – and still wanted to get to know me on a personal level. There was none of the jealousy I’ve experienced from vanilla guys when I explain that I deal with naked men in my line of work. That was also a huge bonus for me – petty, pointless jealousy from an insecure man-baby is not something I find remotely attractive, or want to deal with in my personal life – I get enough of that in my various inboxes!
However, I do have reservations about being involved with someone within the scene, because the scene is small. There are very few degrees of separation between us kinksters, and I am a fiercely private person – I don’t like strangers knowing my business or who I’m seeing, and news travels very fast indeed in the Femdom world. I would be concerned about my private business becoming a topic of conversation (not because I think I’m super interesting and everybody talks about me, but because this kind of news does get around and I am not up for being part of that particular circus). I would also be concerned about meeting someone who couldn’t separate my public persona from my personal one. I have no desire to be anyone’s 24/7 pet Domme who is “on” all the time. I am wild and changeable and even I don’t know what I’m going to be in the mood for day to day, so anyone expecting a 24/7 high protocol FLR with me is going to be very disappointed. This is the other side of that particular coin – they may be totally cool with what you do, but expect you to want to do it all the time, to them, for free – NOPE.
In the end my friend and I couldn’t decide on a definitive answer to the question – “When do you tell someone you’re dating that you’re a sex worker?”. It depends on the individual circumstances, and as with a lot of the things we do as SWs, keeping it to ourselves in the initial stages is usually a way protect ourselves from harm. Being dishonest can bring its own kind of harm, as evidenced by the douchebag I used to share my life with – used it as a weapon against me without considering why I did it in the first place.
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