Rant,  Sexuality

Whore-phobia – Waving the red flag.

I’ve been through a really emotionally draining yet uplifting weekend. However something I came across through my travels that made me sit up and get a bit cranky was this belief that sex workers, hookers, whores… they are somehow less than human. What they do is degrading.. well no, it’s not actually.

Now being that I’m a slut positive and anti-shaming anything kinda gal, I decided I needed to have a rant about it.

Since I live in Australia, prostitution is legal here. Yes I thank the many gods about this fact daily too. What that means is that if I wanted, it is a viable and very profitable way to earn a living. I have friends that earn upwards of $300 an hour for their services.

I have many many friends who are sex workers. They are intelligent, funny, sassy, amazing women and men with degrees from universities all across the country. Does that they get paid hourly to fuck people somehow detract from that? Being that they spend their time being paid to supply sex, does this somehow now make them inferior? Damaged goods? Unwanted because they are used already?

A lot of this ties into slut shaming. And we all know how I feel about that – basically what it comes down to is that as humans we all love sex. Yes, even those people who have a low sex drive and enjoy maybe once every 6 months to those like me who would be having sex every minute of every hour if I could except Cern may just override that and tie me up in a corner to make sure I die from the horny while he tortures me a bit more by sexually frustrating me. Yes I whine, but secretly I love it.

That’s beside the point however.

The point I’m trying to make here is that just because someone has chosen to do sex work doesn’t mean that they are doing it because they have a drug habit, or are sold off in the sex trade, or forced into prostitution. Don’t get me wrong, these things do happen and they are a blight upon sex workers all over the world. It’s unjust, inhumane and shouldn’t be tolerated at all. However, on the flip side, there are also a lot of sex workers in Australia who chose this job for a myriad of reasons which are positive.

I’ve heard some people say that they would never date a sex worker. I never understood this concept. Maybe because the way I view sex and intimacy is really rather different to everyone else. I mean you can totally have sex with someone without caring deeply for them. There doesn’t have to be a connection of any kind apart from the physical act of shagging each other. And when I talk to my friends about their personal relationships with others I came to the realisation that just because they get paid to have sex with people, doesn’t mean that at home they can’t have a fulfilling and loving relationship with someone else. Sex doesn’t equate to love. A loving sexual relationship is so much more. Yet when my friends take on a client that is one of their regulars there’s a level of intimacy there, yet it’s still professional and its still work.

I think sex workers get such a bad rap because people believe that somehow sex makes you dirty. If you’ve been with a lot of people or you take payment for sex then it means you’re tainted goods. I blame the men who wrote those stupid religious texts for these misconceptions and the belief that somehow working as a sex worker is a bad thing.

I once applied and nearly worked at a brothel. Granted it wasn’t a full service house, it was part service or what I like to call a “rub and tug”. You got dressed up in pretty lingerie and massaged people with a happy ending included. No penetration. Only they wanted me to take out all my piercings to work there so I said no. As they say, don’t get between a girl and her piercings man. Which is a shame really, because I think I would have had a ball at the rub and tug.

Basically, I think, it all comes down to sex workers just being like the rest of us. Some have families that they are supporting by being sex workers, other’s are putting themselves through university or just earning a living. Thankfully we live in a country where brothel’s have stringent rules and regulations for all workers including safe sex practices and regular testing and checks.

Maybe I’m just a bit weird but I honestly don’t get the anti-whore-ism that seems to be prevalent in society. Sex workers are amazing people who contribute something amazing to the community, even if you don’t agree with it, it’s an important service that other’s do appreciate and do support.

Myself included.

So when I read or hear anything anti-sex workers I take a stand. I have marched with Scarlet Alliance for worker rights, acceptance and to stop the government from deregulating the sex work industry. I’ve put my hat in the bag and supported friends and other’s I deem family in what they do, their right to do it and the fact that it doesn’t make them less of a person or unable to be a loving partner.

So where do you stand on dating a sex worker? Does it bother you? Would it bother you? Why?

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Sex worker positive sites that have some interesting information and links:

SWOP – Sex Workers Outreach Project
Scarlet Alliance – Australian Sex Workers Association

 

31 Comments

  • xs2rahulz

    I am not sure that I took a stand or not but I am a supporter of Human Rights and I feel Sex workers are just human , so all we deserve is deserved by them as well.
    Its just insane that just because of the job they do , people tend to treat them differently.

    • Sharn

      Very much so Maggie.

      We obviously have some regulation where a brothel isn’t allowed to open near schools etc. But legal means safer all around for everybody!

      • simim23

        I, personally, feel that brothels won’t ultimately help. While it may be an option for someone, I feel that legalizing brothels alone will only serve to drive price competition to the point where there’s no longer any profit in sex work. Instead, I feel we also need to legalize independent sex work so that sex workers can choose to operate independently if they desire.

          • simim23

            Nifty. Lol at the same time I advocate independent sex work, I realize that it might leave room open for “pimps” to step in, which I’m very much against.

            Are there regulations which keep brothels from price competition, or is it something you feel just isn’t an issue?

          • Sharn

            Because our sex work is legalised and has rules and regulations they have to abide by. Feel free to look at the links at the bottom of my article. They refer to our sex worker organisations that help write regulations and fight for rights.

            Independent workers here don’t have pimps. Some work for escort services. But pretty much it’s all set price depending on the service. Higher end girls and guys charge more. It doesn’t change pricing.

  • Just Plain Ol' Vic

    Oldest profession in the world, why deny the truth?

    I personally never understood the “taboo-ness” of this since having intercourse is an instinct/urge that is part of our DNA. Unfortunately it is Western Religion’s conservative attitude (especially in the United States) that has vilified sex and made it a “sin.” Many Eastern religions view this as a natural act.

    Can’t fight Mother Nature, ultimately she will always win!

    • Sharn

      I totally agree Vic.

      I love the geisha stories! But i think making sex work legal is the first step in ensuring a safe environment for all.

      I could never understand why the states just won’t legalise it. All those gaol cells going to waste on sex workers.

        • Sharn

          Very much so. It’s peace of mind knowing that all the girls and boys are regularly tested and do not participate in sexual relations without protection.

          I think there’s a whole host of reasons for why it should be legalised around the world to be honest. That’s just one of the important ones.

  • GratuitousRex

    Dating a sex worker? I agree that it should be legal, but I still wouldn’t date a prostitute. Besides an incredible physical act, sex is also an expression of love, intimacy and yes, without proper protection, creates other people. Even if there’s protection, I wouldn’t want a woman I’m dating to be having that experience with other men.

    • Sharn

      Sex doesn’t always have to be about love, intimacy or having children. And to be honest, after having seen friends in action I can honestly say that there’s a very real difference between sex work and having an intimate moment with your partner.

      So I find your stance intriguing.

      When you say you don’t want to date a woman that has had that experience with other men are you saying you’ll only date virgins?

      What about women that have had other lovers? Just because they aren’t getting paid for it doesn’t make the fact that they’ve fucked them any less real.

      Sorry I don’t mean to come across as anything but curious. I don’t understand your reasoning 🙂

        • Sharn

          No, I realise what you said, I was trying to clarify if the sleeping with other men was something that affected your reasoning or not. Obviously not though!! 🙂

          I don’t think I would say no to dating someone just because they were a sex worker though. Possibly because I know and respect a lot of sex workers. Work is work after all.

          • GratuitousRex

            Right. I’m not in that school of thought. It’s the type of work that I also do with her that to me is more meaningful. You said “date” after all, which to me implies pursuing a relationship. A one nighter or some short term fun, then i think I’d be a yes

          • Sharn

            No no, I did mean date.

            I just think there’s a marked difference in the types of sex happening when working as opposed to what happens at home with someone you love.

        • Tam

          Just out of curiosity, do you only ever have monogamous relationships? I’m wondering if your objection is just to someone you’re dating having sex with anyone else, regardless of the circumstances, or if it’s specifically about sex work?

          • Sharn

            Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

            That explains a whole lot! I didn’t assume you were engaging with me from a monogamous point of view 🙂

            I was going from an open relationship point of view where I couldn’t fathom why you were so against any partner being a sex worker. But if it’s a closed relationship then it makes perfect sense!

            Even if I don’t agree with your stance, it is your choice and you’re more than entitled to it.

            I had a similar discussion with Cern last night. He said that he didn’t think he’d be ok with me getting paid for sex. I asked him then why he is ok for me to give it away for free since we’re in an open relationship and not as work. He thinks it comes down to thinking that being a sex worker wouldn’t make me happy and he wants me to be happy.

            I think there’s a lot of deeper emotions that it brings out – especially in men – than you lot give credit for and thank you, for letting me poke you a bit to try to understand you 🙂

  • Tam

    I’ve never understood the disgust/disdain in which sex workers are held, even when I was a kid and first learned what a “prostitute” was, I remember not understanding my mothers attitude that they were “dirty and disgusting”… It just didn’t make sense, and still doesn’t… wanting to have sex is a natural human urge, how awesome is it that there are people who provide that service for others who for whatever reason aren’t in a relationship where sex is available? Sex-workers rock!

    • Sharn

      I totally agree Tam.

      I think they rock too and I’m all for supporting it.

      I’m not sure I get the whole dirty and disgusting thing either. I’ve always been sex positive, even if it’s paid work or free…

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