Hey Lola! You should write a self-help book for clients.
"Dear Lola —
You wrote a self-help book for sex workers —that’s so great! Your next one should be a self-help book for clients."
I’ve been getting some version of this for the past several months in various forms, along with invitations to turn my attention to clients: “Read my blog about life as a hobbyist.” “There are a lot of guys out there who would marry an escort in a heartbeat if they only knew how.” “If you need a longtime client to interview, I’m available.” I’m not mad as I’m writing this, because I’m accepting these suggestions in the spirit I’m assuming they were made: as a compliment to my talents as a writer, in recognition of my expertise stemming from my sex work experience.
However, my answer to all of this is a resounding no. My reasons are twofold. The first is, while I’ve certainly paid for sexuality in my time, patronizing strip clubs and hiring the occasional pro domme for me and my partner to play with, I am best, a dabbler. After all my years in the biz, any pay-for-play exchange is nothing more than old home week for me.
Far more important than my slanted perspective is this: The sex industry rakes in many, many billions of dollars each year. Which means there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of women, men, trans* folk, (and lamentably, children,) whose livelihoods depend on determining what clients want and how to give it to them. Sex workers think about clients all damned day. And if you want to read what they’re thinking, you can read about it all day —Twitter, Tumblr, blogs, Facebook —all out there for free. Still curious? There are hundreds of documentaries, articles, books, and movies on sex workers and the industry. Academics have been studying them since forever. Clients in the public eye, however? Yeah… not so much.
The supply side constitutes quite literally the face of the industry. The demand side keeps itself tucked away in the shadows, content to let workers bear the entire brunt of the public eye while advocating for humane laws and safe working conditions. I am in no mood to hear that sex workers in their spare time should tell clients’ stories, counseling them to help manage the emotions they experience patronizing sex workers, all the while enabling their closeted lives.
Notably, there was no book deal offered along with any of these proposals, strongly suggesting that these requests are part and parcel of the foundational quest at the heart of the entire enterprise: Reveal me to myself. Tell me what I need to know, make me feel what I want to feel. And I’m a nice guy, why not do it for free?
The whole world ogles sex workers; sex workers’ attention is glued to their clients; clients take everything in, revealing nothing. It’s about time clients step out into the light, take full responsibility for themselves, and write their own damned books.
Until next time-- be sweet to yourself.
Love-- Lola D.
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