Ben Leander Willgruber | Visual Designer and Writer

Some Thoughts on Sex Work

There are these kinds of nights where I’m hanging out with friends, chilling (probably stoned) and someone starts asking morally ambiguous questions, like ‘Would you watch a politician having sex with a pig on TV like in Black Mirror?’ or ‘What would it take for you to eat human flesh?’. Might sound macabre but for some reason, there’s something intriguing pontificating about the dark side of humanity. During one of these nights, somebody asked the question that sparked this blog post…

What would it take for you to prostitute yourself?

Besides people who already work in the sex industry, this is probably not an easy question to answer. There are many forms of sex work, and different people might consider different things prostitution. It’s probably easier to slip into becoming a stripper or a webcam model than working the block.

I don’t think I’ll ever do any kind of sex work, but if all would go wrong in a majorly way I cannot even imagine and all my skills would become useless for the rest of time, sex work wouldn’t be off the table. I guess in matters of life and death, you may not always have any other choice.

What if you were in debt majorly?
Let’s say you’ve lost all your cash and loan sharks are hunting you down?
What if you could somehow save a loved one by doing so?

Or, a little more realistic, let’s say you’re living a regular single life. In a bar, you meet a sexy guy or girl you feel attracted to. You hit it off and after a couple of drinks, you decide to go with him or her to their hotel room and spend the night. When you wake up in the morning, he or she has already left. On the counter, there’s an envelope, written on it ‘Thanks’, inside there’s cash. The guy/girl thought you were a prostitute and you’ll likely never see him or her again. Do you take the envelope?

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What about finding a sugar daddy or momma?

Have you ever heard of services like Seeking Arrangement? On there, sugar daddies and mommas can find sugar babies to spoil. Most sugar daddies/mommas are busy in their careers and make good money. On the side, they don’t have time for a regular relationship but sometimes look for a companion. Sugar babies are mostly asked for a specific kind of service, The Girlfriend/Boyfriend Experience, where for the time being together they’re acting as if they were in a relationship.

The terms are completely up to you, sex is on the table but doesn’t have to be; what kind of arrangement would you be willing to participate in? And would you consider it prostitution?

Aren’t you already prostituting yourself a little bit?

I know, I do. The freelance work I do includes making on- and offline PR for myself. The works I do very often makes me feel like giving away a tiny part of myself. I know it’s not considered prostitution as I’m not doing anything physical. But isn’t giving away emotional parts just as valuable? And don’t all jobs make you sacrifice some of your sanity from time to time?

I know this post was quite long and I compiled a variety of thoughts into it. Still, I would love to hear your opinions. Whichever of my questions you may wanna answer, I look forward to hearing new perspectives!

xoxo2

Ben

9 thoughts on “Some Thoughts on Sex Work

  1. I agree that there are different levels of “prostituting” oneself. But I think they all stem for the low regard/high judgment nature of society’s views on sex work. For me – as a Portland resident where it’s not uncommon to have a naked body within arms reach of your cocktail – stripping is not what I would call true sex work. It’s sexually suggestive work, but I think true sex work – even though I know a few strippers who would disagree – should be considered work involving the commission of sexual acts in exchange for money. That’s just my two-cents, which won’t even get me a second look from a sex worker…but I think starting with a broad use of a definition makes any future legalization of sex work harder to legislate.

    1. I have to agree that it’s important for the law to have a clearer definition of sex work. I always forget that prostitution is not allowed in the US, or is it? That seems like an outdated law to me.
      I can live with prostitution of a spectrum as well, saying that sleeping with someone is ‘more’ prostitution than becoming a webcam model… I just know I’ve had the feeling in the past that I’ve just prostituted myself a little bit^^

      1. Hehe. “A little bit”. As most have, I’m sure. It’s the self-awareness to acknowledge it that I think is missing in most.

        But, yeah, the oldest profession is only legal in Nevada here in the states. It’s weird. Maybe there’s a correction course possibility now that marijuana is finally becoming legal.

  2. I often thought about that actually. Some areas of “sex work” really appeal to me. Like nude modeling a la Suicide Girls or camgirl work – those sound fun and one can make a nice buck on the side doing that. I know that modeling and gaining a following is not “easy” per se, but if I had the looks for it, I probably would have tried doing one or the other already. Alas, I do not. So I doubt I’ll ever swim down that particular river. I think doing any kind of consentual sex work is A-ok though. If it works for someone – I’m not judging. Now would I sleep with someone for money? Of course it would depend a lot on the situation and the other person involved, but… I can totally see it happening. Can’t be worse than my ex, right? 😛

    1. Glad to hear, I’m not the only one thinking about things like that! Your train of thought sounds very familiar to mine and you’re right, I don’t think that sex work is a particular easy way to get money because you have to build a following, etc. etc.
      As for the other questions, it would totally depend on the situation but I also have a couple of (very unrealistic) scenarios in my head where I could see that happen.

      Lastly, I just have to ask (mostly because of your last sentence^^), is it possible you are a Mila I know personally? 😉

      1. I am indeed a Mila you know personally although that was more of a general statement regarding exes. I didn’t have anyone specific in mind. 🙂

  3. To me, prostitution is exchanging favors for cash (or other valuable commodity). It doesn’t necessarily have to be sexual favors and the valuable commodity isn’t always cash. Casting a vote for a particular draft of legislation in exchange for a comfortable diplomatic posting is a form of prostitution. It all depends on the situation. Would I ever do it? I believe I already have done so. Naked hugs!

    1. It’s cool to see people reflecting about things in a similar way as I do. Politics is a perfect example where I believe a lot of borderline-porstitution happens if you wanna make it big. Thanks for the feedback! 🙂

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