Confessions of a Working Girl

I finished this memoir this past weekend, and it was overall a good read. Not super well written, but the content was full of interesting and entertaining bits. I love sex work memoirs and this one definitely filled the need of mine to read a good one. So, thank you Miss S for sharing your story!

I started my new job today, and it didn’t take long to have an interesting conversation with my supervisor about strippers and sex work. No one at my new job knows about my dancing experience, so having this conversation was weird for me. I was talking with all of this authority and insight, but had zero intentions of explaining how I could. My supervisor wanted to know what I thought about the difference between sex trafficking and sex work was, and whether sex work in which a woman has a “pimp” could still be empowering and free of violence.

Here are some various comments from the both of us (I don’t remember the entire conversation or flow, but thought they might be interesting to share nonetheless):

My supervisor: “My daughter came home and was sort of processing the fact that she has a lot of friends who are dancers. She was particularly worried about one who was sort of going down a path toward prostitution.”

Me: “I think sex work probably falls along a continuum. It’s very gray. There could be one woman who has a pimp and finds a lot of benefits to it, while another could feel extremely controlled and manipulated and stuck working at a brothel with a madam.”

Me: “Sex trafficking is different than sex workers who choose to profit from sex in some way.”

My supervisor: “Yeah, what about a woman whose partner doesn’t let her work and doesn’t give her any money [constituting financial abuse] and forces her to have sex? Is this sex trafficking?”

I am so excited to be working in another open-minded and social justice oriented program, and one in which I will still be able to be involved with our local sex worker outreach coalition (now professionally instead of in a volunteer role!) More to come I am sure 🙂

redumbrellas

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