Brothel Life: Managing Emotional Crisis Through Sex Work

So, despite my inglorious exit from the brothel I lived and worked at recently, I overall have had positive changes in my personhood from the experience of directly selling my body and sexuality. Screw that guy, I've got thousand dollar pussy

When I first arrived at the brothel I was in the "fuck it, I don't know what I'm doing," stage of a particularly devastating breakup. Around then I had been on the road for about a month, reviewing sex toy stores, strip clubs, and other sexy attractions (plus the occasional sketchy truck stop). I had just started realizing maybe the breakup really was forever, and not sure how on earth I was ever going to love (or lust) again.

My first day on the floor, my ex and I had a really heart-wrenching conversation/argument, leading to him insisting we not talk for a week. I was heartbroken. I wasn't sure how to feel sexy or sexual for *anyone* let alone for complete strangers, and after a night of weeping (often in public places because I'm a sad eater and we're not supposed to have food in our rooms), I decided to double down.

I started confiding in my sisters-in-arms about the romantic situation, and was immediately met with affirmations. "Screw that guy," one girl said, "you've got thousand dollar pussy." That became my slogan for the breakup process, I adopted a fake-it-till-you-make-it attitude embracing the inherent value of my sexuality. I've got thousand dollar pussy, I am worth it.

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Like Inpatient, But Sexy

I had been so depressed that I almost considered checking myself in to inpatient therapy, but hadn't been able to afford it. I found myself in a similarly restricted environment: food was brought in, 14 hour shifts meant going anywhere in my off time was pretty difficult to manage, I had a room with regular wake up calls and constant presence from management checking in with how I was doing. I told the bartenders on day one that I was too depressed to drink and until further notice wanted to be on the no drink list, so my options for self medicating were limited (I don't generally have an issue with alcohol, but if I'm sad sometimes make stupid choices). I was surrounded by supportive, encouraging women quick to


jump on the butt of any guy that was making me feel bad, and remind me that I deserve better. My sexuality was restricted with my coworkers (we could have sex among us girls, but not with staff), and I was too busy to form outside attachments *not* for money.

Management also kept an eye on budding friendships and relationships, in one situation (which I will elaborate on in a later post) arranging scheduling in such a way that I avoided my rebound relationship after the breakup becoming something potentially much more toxic.

Ironically, a lot of the restrictions that ultimately ended up making me feel confined and frustrated with the work were *extremely* healing at the time. I should put the caveat that I happened to arrive right before a multi-month period of peace and harmony in the house: there were no hard drugs flying around, the girls in house were all cooperative and kind to one another, and it was overall a very positive place. The mood of a house can change rapidly with the constant influx of new people.

But what am I worth, really?

Directly converting my sexual and emotional energy into financial value was educational to say the least. Given some of the ways I had been using my sexuality to seek affirmation, a sense of self worth, and a sense of security in a relationship, I had a pretty distorted perception of my inherent value as a person. A small nagging voice in my head worried that perhaps sex work would further strengthen this idea I had, that in order to be valuable I needed to also be sexy and sexual.

I personally had the opposite experience. For me, monetizing my time allowed me to place


my sexuality at a premium. I quickly became comfortable telling men I'd be happy to give them a massage, or sit at the bar and chat with them for what they were offering, but my sexuality is a special and sacred place to me and I want to be appropriately compensated for sharing such a valuable part of myself. And, much to my surprise, this became one of my post *popular* parties. Instead of feeling like my sexuality was the only thing of value about me, I started realizing that's icing on the cake: I am pretty valuable in and of myself, people want to talk to me and hear my opinions about things, and find me someone worth supporting even if all we are doing is having a brain-connecting dynamic. Wow!

This has, obviously, had some lasting impact on how I make my for-free sexual decisions. I'm less than a week out from the ranches but I can feel myself happier and more confident, and also being much more selective in how, when and why I have sex. I'll have more thoughts on this topic moving forward!