I'm a sex worker -- My handle is EmpressxAllison, but you can call me Alli. Many people have misconceptions, a lot of which are negative, about the people who do adult work. You don't often hear the positive side, the good parts about the amazing community, and the way we support one another. So today, I'll be touching on my own personal experiences as a sex worker, the ways it has benefitted my life.

Remember, these are solely my own takeaways and do not reflect on others ... 

Allowing Me To Work Around My Mental Health

First and foremost, you may be surprised to hear that sex work has helped me manage my mental health. Yes, that's right. Not to say that this industry doesn't have its challenges. Sometimes those challenges can even add to my mental stress. However, I live a freelance lifestyle. This means I'm my own boss, I make my own schedule, and I am the only one who holds myself accountable for my productivity or income. 

Girl holding American Dollar Bills

Alexander Mils/Unsplash

Every night, a pimp counts my cash, but it's cool cause that pimp is me

While it can be a challenge to push myself when I don't have rules or a guideline to follow, it can also be a blessing. I can work around my state of mind, which is a privilege poorly neglected if you have a nine-to-five. As many can now attest, working from home, even with responsibilities, can be a lot less stressful than having to show up to an office and present your best day after day. If I have a bad day, I can choose to relax, sleep as much as I can, and do whatever I need to do in order to make the next day better.

Currently, I work in a gentlemen's lounge. Every club is different, but mine is quite laid back. Once a girl is approved by management for hire, they can come in whenever they like. Some girls may disappear and pop back up months later; no explanation needed.

You can work once and choose to never come back if you prefer. The amount of money a dancer can make in one night means a girl only needs to work about one or two times a week to see a lucrative outcome. Because of this, the downtime I have is often spent making content for my online adult work, enjoying self-care, or spending time with family and friends. The sense of freedom that comes with this job is unlike any other I've experienced. It doesn't just give me financial freedom but also mental freedom.

Reading People And Social Skills

Speaking of mental health, I used to suffer from severe social anxiety, something you may not expect from a sex worker. At one point, it was so bad, I was nothing more than a wallflower. When I started dancing, it had been something I was working through for a while, but it still took all my nerve to apply for the job. Surprisingly, working in a club helped me climb out of my shell.

Sandro Botticelli, The Birth of Venus

Botticelli

Especially during that one act, where you climb out of an actual shell. 

The fact is, in this environment, if you don't put yourself out there, you simply won't make any money. The competition is fierce. I'm still not competitive and never beg for attention, but I learned how to sell myself. I can now approach any man or woman, make good conversation and most importantly (in this context), make them spend money for my time. It certainly improved my social skills, and my confidence has risen through the roof.

I realized the trickiest part of the job for me was telling whether someone was open to an interaction or not. You may think that any customer in a club would be interested, but you would be wrong. Some are there just to hang with friends, just to grab a drink after work, or they simply may not be attracted to you. Then again, they could just be broke or have already spent their money on other girls for the night.

Buffet

Ye Chen/Unsplash 

Maybe they came just for the buffet. That guy's a true weirdo; go nowhere near him. 

Regardless, I learned quickly that you shouldn't spend too much time bothering with someone who doesn't want to engage, and that translates outside of the club as well. I recognized not to take things personally. Where I used to wallow in self-doubt and deprecation, I now understand that it's just part of life; not everyone is meant to jive together. Remembering this makes me less afraid of rejection. In any context, the fear has been taken away.

Value, Self-Worth, And Confidence

The money I started seeing gave me a sense of value. When I was a hostess, I sold my soul working every day, hours on my feet, and was lucky if I made anything over two hundred a week. Now, not only am I in control of my own time, but I am in control of how much that time and attention is worth. I realized it wasn't worth so much of my energy for such little compensation. This soon translated into my dating life as well. I am able to leverage my job, where I mingle with wealthy businessmen, into upper-class dating. Now, my standards are higher than they had ever been, and I only accept the best treatment.

Stripper dollar on ground

Dellboyy Art

When men literally throw money at your feet, you stop doubting yourself. 

Your value isn't just what you put in for others or what others put into you. It's about what you put back into you. So for work, I take my time pampering myself. I like to go into a zone of relaxation before the hectic hustle of my job. I take a hot bath, do my hair and dress up as if I'm getting ready for a date. I tend to go for a sultry look since it's what makes me feel the most sensual and confident. Now my body and mind are ready for the challenge. 

How To Manage My Money And Go After What I Want

This life can be a little tricky because the money comes in handfuls, and if this isn't someone's endgame, it can be hard to move back to pennies on the hour. So the key is to have long-term goals and manage your money. The best advice I heard was from a YouTuber by the handle Being Christina. In her video Setting Financial Goals As A Strippershe says you need a daily financial goal when you show up to work. The idea is simple: no goal gives you nothing to push for

Ice hockey

Markus Spiske/Unsplash

There's this version of hockey with no goals. No one ever scores, they just hit each other with sticks. 

The best part is, you won't need to go in blind. Calculate how many dances it will take to hit your mark, then take the appropriate action to achieve it. For example: Five dances = $100, 1 room = $250. Whatever that equation looks like, you can make the small steps so that the larger number doesn't overwhelm you. I go in with this mindset every time, and it never fails me. You can do this with anything. Through my job, I discovered that money management comes down to simple math and the willpower to avoid temptation. 

strip club exterior

littleonix/Pixabay

Also, customers with no simple math or willpower to avoid temptation. 

Our biggest downfall can be getting trapped in a cycle of living lavishly but somehow paycheck to paycheck. The money can come so quickly that it's easy to think it will be replaced automatically (like the classic Jordan Belford scheme). However, nothing is guaranteed, and there's no 401k for us, so thinking ahead is vital. Fortunately, there are financial workshops specifically for sex works and apps to help keep track of industry earnings, such as "Secure The Bag" by @worship_nova. Ironically, even though this job fed my shopping habit at first, it eventually led to my ability to restrain myself and dream bigger than bags. 

An Outlet For Creativity And Activism

This career has given me mental healing, financial freedom, confidence in my worth, and social skills. Aside from this being a great way to express myself through visual content, I also get my hand at activism. Now I am using my new abilities to try and help others feel comfortable and safe doing what we do by being the mouthpiece for those who can't speak.

laptop

Glenn Carstens-Peters/Unsplash

Hopefully, anyone Googling "sex mouthpiece" will land on this article by mistake and learn something. 

But I am not the only one speaking out about our industry, and nor should I be. This conversation is bigger than me and bigger than one or two articles. I suggest looking up Alice Little if you are also interested in this movement to free sex workers from stigma and restrictive laws.

Sex work is more than a last resort for people. It's a lifestyle, a mindset, a community, and a career option that requires talent and persistence like any other industry. It has helped me find my purpose on this earth, and I intend to stay here by choice. 

To support and get to know ALL of me *cough cough* just click my link!

Top Image: Dellboyy Art

 

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