Saturday, May 31, 2008

Paying for Sex

In my previous post I mentioned the fact that “I have always considered paying for the services of one (professional dominatrix) to be on the same level of paying for sex.” By inference I am certain that readers were led to surmise I viewed that to be a negative thing. As a result two readers posed the same question in comments on the article, “What is wrong with the idea of paying for sex?”

First I wasn’t making a moral judgment about those who do pay for sex or those who offer sexual services for a fee. What consenting adults do that results in no harm to anyone should be no one’s business but that of the individuals involved. Certainly I have neither the right nor inclination to sit in judgment of them. In fact in my twenties I paid for sex a number of times simply because I wanted to have sex and there were times when that was the most utilitarian means of obtaining it. In part, those experiences are responsible for why I do view paying for sex in a somewhat negative sense for me as an individual. For me sex has always been much more than simply inserting tab A into tab B. Sex far transcends the simple notion of genital focused pleasure. In addition to the arousal and desire I also feel the need for connectedness and intimacy. Having sex with someone who makes herself available for it solely on the basis of turning a profit simply doesn’t offer the connectedness and intimacy of which I speak. It is a rather pale substitute for having sex with a woman who herself is also sharing with you the arousal and desire and is allowing you to share her body and passion because she feels attracted to you and wants to have sex with you.

Beyond those reasons, there are a few others that come to mind in response to the question, “What is wrong with the idea of paying for sex?” As we all learned from the recent highly publicized story of “Client 9” and “Kristen”, not all prostitutes are streetwalkers trolling dark corners for $20 encounters. Some very intelligent women choose this life and even find it empowering in some way. They surely knew what they are doing and are happy to rake in big bucks by spending time with and providing sex to wealthy, powerful men. They are classy, independent women, not victims of brutalizing pimps who drug them, rape and beat them, indeed, who own them. Surely the glamorous women sent to the best hotels in New York, Paris, and London or wherever their fat-wallet clientele travels, are nothing like those destitute girls from starving, distant villages sold by their families or lured by promises of a better life in America only to find themselves sex slaves.

Still if you followed the story at all that I mentioned above, you learned that from all available evidence, “Kristen” was abused in her youth, quit high school before her junior year, fled her troubled family, used drugs and spent time on the streets without a home. She fits the profile of any class of hooker, from streetwalker to high priced call girl. Abused as a child, homeless, undereducated and destitute, she was not an exception but actually quite typical. Given this I have to conclude that when a man pays a woman for sex he is in a very real sense trafficking in human misery for personal gratification and that is something in good conscience I could not do.

Another issue is the fact that when you pay money for sex, the woman is sexually objectified. If you doubt that clients willing and able to pay $5,000 for an hour of sex don't turn those women into objects, too, consider the marketing techniques employed by one well known high-priced call girl provider. Their web site rated the women they employed from one to seven diamonds, charging from $1,000 to $5,500 per hour according to rank. When men called in, one of the club's bookers asked what body type they preferred, the model look or a little curvier; a brunette or a blond. I suppose the rationale being that it makes perfect sense if you're paying for sex to select your favorite fantasy, right? It's like picking out a car or a suit. Women have been subjected to objectification for far too long and I for one am just not comfortable with extending the practice to any woman because it is just plain wrong.

"Women engaged in prostitution face the most dangerous occupational environment in the United States,'' concluded a study of prostitutes in Colorado Springs, Colorado, published in 2004 in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Prostitutes are far more likely to die at an early age than the average woman, mostly from drugs or violence. The average age a girl enters prostitution is 14. Not surprisingly, prostitutes are more prone to suicide. Even if he's not paying to ruin a teenager, to support a pimp who enslaved a drug addict, or to snatch a girl away from her family, a john is supporting the system that encourages all of that, and more.

So those are just a few reasons why I feel that the idea of paying for sex is wrong. As mentioned in the earlier post, I only see some slight similarities with the ideas of engaging a prostitute and paying a professional dominatrix, who are not prostitutes. Much of the negativity I feel is inherent in prostitution is of course not applicable to the pro domme – client relationship. Still I do have pause for thought when it comes to how meaningful I would find submitting to a woman who was accepting my submission from a purely economic motive. But recently I have read a good deal of information that suggests that even though professional dommes are paid for their services, many of them do in fact seem to genuinely understand and appreciate male submission and profit is not their only motive for offering the services that they do. This is primarily why I am attempting to evaluate the potential of this when I have been unwilling to do so in the past.


Anonymous said...

Well stated and you make some very valid points from your POV.


Anonymous said...

You have pretty much summed up many of the factors that make me feel icky about prostitution. In theory, I don't see anything wrong with it, but in practice, a lot of awful stuff goes on.

Anonymous said...

Pro Dommes are not prostitutes. We do not provide oral or vaginal intercourse. We pay lots of money for our clothes, toys, ads and furnishings. We take classes, attend seminars, share technical secrets with like minded individuals who are lifestyle and pro. We do not work for brothels, we do not have pimps and we certainly do not walk the streets. When our clients call, they do not ask our measurements and favorite positions, rather, the good pro Domme has provided her client with a menu of things that She enjoys. Because we are rare and well equipped, we play a lot. That experience alone is well worth the fee. Most of us have a keen eye and create a themed enviornment. It takes us hours to dress, craft activities, set up space...

I think that your comments may apply to the average prostitute or street walker. And I personally think that prostitution should be legalized and managed. It's odd that it is legal to sell your mind and even your body if you sell it to do some technical skill like lifting, drilling, diving and the like yet you cannot sell your body if your skill is sexual. However, the things that you said just do not relate to pro Dommes. While I cannot say why pro Dommes enter the scene, perhaps some do begin working as Dommes because of abuse, what I can say is that many women in all fields of work were abused. And many chose their line of work because of past abuse including cops, soldiers, guards, lawyers, judges, social workers... Some of the things that you said are to far fetched to apply to this situation, for instance, it would be rare to find a 14 year old pro Domme. If you did, though She may be "objectified" by your terms, She probably would not be in any physical danger.

I have been a pro Domme since 1991. I have had nothing but safe encounters and decent to wonderful clients. Perhaps I should count My blessings. In any instance, I would suggest seeing a pro Domme if you are curious as we are often salvation to submissive men who are married with partners who are not into the scene, to men who are to busy to seek out relations, and many others including couples and those who have a hard time asking those that they love for the things that they desire. Many times we are more therapists than Dommes and often times good friends.