Being Friends with your Escort
I can’t speak for anyone else, but personally I have found that my life as an escort has included a few distinct stages.
The first stage – when I started working in the industry – was one of fascination. I found the sex industry an exotic and exciting place. Everything was new and it was thrilling to become part of something that seems mysterious to most people. I found it a bit of a turn on! Secondly, I began to realise what a fantastic, empowering job escorting can be. I couldn’t wait to tell everyone about it. I was passionate about my job and believed (as I still believe) that sex work is not only important but crucial for society to function smoothly. The opportunity to help others was a big self-esteem boost for me.
The third stage – sex work is work. I value myself as a businesswoman. I admit I might have taken myself just a little too seriously during this stage, but so do a lot of people in business! Making a living and growing my client base became a really big deal. It was also important to provide myself with time outside of work to develop my other interests, to stay happy and keep enjoying my job.
I feel that my life as an escort has paralleled my life in general. As I’ve gotten older, I value relationships more. My social network plays an integral part in my identity. I value the people around me much more than in the past. Being young is all about going on grand adventures but as I’ve matured, my interest in my relationships with others has deepened. As with life, in escorting there are some things you come to know over years rather than months or working. Learning to appreciate the relationships you build is one of these things. I now have some clients whom I have seen for literally years, and also some I don’t see any more but with whom I am in regular contact. These people have contributed to my life’s journey, and I have contributed to theirs. They have become a valuable part of my experience.
I’m writing this blog today to talk about those relationships. I feel that for many guys who see escorts regularly, becoming ‘friends’ with an escort is seen as the ultimate goal. To receive unpaid time from an escort, or to have privileges that other guys don’t get, makes them feel like they are special and genuinely cared for. Here is a hard truth: having a genuine friendship with someone you pay for sex takes a long time and isn’t something that you can cultivate by ‘trying’. It just happens – years of time and conversation result in both of you having memories and experiences together that aren’t shared by anyone else.
The escort/client relationship is unique. It doesn’t replace that of a partner, or family. It doesn’t replace that of ‘real-life’ friends and acquaintances. It exists in its own little space – that of the hotel room, brothel or bedroom. It will probably never leave that space. But it’s no less genuine. I value sex work as a great channel for guys who may not have the chance to get to know women socially in other spaces. However friendship also happens for regular guys, who may have many friends and lovers outside our special space. It’s about the person and how well we get along.
Attachment to clients (and escorts) is a tricky topic. In popular culture there isn’t much room left for ‘feelings’ outside monogamous relationships. There’s also no room for shades of grey. We talk about romantic love a lot, but we don’t talk about the affection you feel for a favourite teacher, attraction to a casual lover or friendship for a regular customer. We don’t’ talk about sexual attraction without love and commitment, and we don’t talk about commitment outside of monogamous love – the commitments we make to friends, to our community and to our customers. The shades of grey are many and everyone has a different experience. Yet I would argue that all those emotions are there is our work – attachment, commitment, affection and regard – in varying degrees.
Becoming a more experienced escort has taught me the value of these many facets. My friendships are important. I don’t give ‘special favours’ or unpaid time to my long-standing clients, but I feel that we have an understanding. And that’s a more valuable thing than I can explain, unless you are lucky enough to experience it with someone.