Escort Industry Stigma

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On twitter you often see someone complaining about escort stigma

One standout tweet for me was from a blurred face girl charging $600 per hour complaining how hard it is being a stigmatised sexworker

Stigma doesn’t affect just sex workers, it affects many people in society for circumstances they find themselves in and/or various choices they have made past or present

There is stigma being a Mcdonald’s worker making $12 an hour;  there is stigma attached to a person’s sexual orientation, background; schooling … the list is endless

Sexwork will never be a mainstream job. It will always have people debating if it’s right or wrong. People have opinions and most people don’t feel sorry for escorts raking in big amounts of cash especially when they themselves are doing 50hrs a week in a shitty job to feed their family

An office worker may have to get up to go to work at 6am and many not return home until 6pm.  This 12hrs a day, 5 days a week brings them in a whopping great $700 a week after tax. I know many escorts who make that in an hour or 2

Sexworkers can earn more than lawyers who endure years at university so they can be treated like a dog in a law firm for 10 years before they start earning over $100,000pa

Sex work has flexible hours and generally has much higher rates of pay than most work

Sex work is work – yes that is very true and and sometimes it’s not very nice work and while it may be socially unacceptable to many, it pays incredibly well.  Personally I would prefer the $600 an hour with some stigma to a McDonalds job any day

I am not trying to downplay how much stigma hurts, I have been there, I have copped it, It’s brutal and very upsetting

When I was an escort I told a close friend I was escorting. She was so shocked and disgusted that to this day she has never spoken to me

A friend’s friend found my photo on the internet. He cornered me at a party and assumed I would shag him. It was degrading, he called me a filthy whore & said that he was hotter than “the desperate old dudes” I did for cash. He thought I was was a gold digger, low life, human garbage

That’s just 2 examples and trust me there is plenty more times that I copped stigma and hate for my choice to be an escort

I was a computer professional working at a big firm in the City (London) when I started escorting at age 28. People ask how I got started & why and how Atlantic came about

My initial start wasn’t the best; I trusted a girl who told me she was a high class escort in New York.  I had a break up and was feeling low so she said I should come visit her in NYC.  I said I couldn’t afford it & she told me she could get me some work like she did to help pay for me to visit her in NYC.  I thought what an exciting adventure; a secret life experience for a week.

When I got to NYC she dumped me in an illegal brothel where I spent my first night scared, alone, crying my eyes out and annoyed at myself for being so naive.

It turned out fine, I did 2 weeks in NYC then I went back to London and that’s where I joined a top reviewed UK agency and met my amazing Mentor, Victoria. Victoria took me under her wing and helped me become a credible and sought after London Escort

Escorting made me feel like a superhero.  The normal me was shy and a bit awkward but the escort me was fucking fantastic. The sexy, saucy, naughty person I would have been if I wasn’t shy and awkward lol

I tried doing some independent work but found I preferred being with an agency.  I wasn’t prepared (nor had the time) for the number of calls, SMS, timewasters and admin. I enjoyed being an escort but I already did 40hrs a week at my day job so it suited me better to have someone handle all my escort arrangements

My rates started at £300 for an hour of which I happily paid 30% to my agency. The agency answered all my calls, recommended me to their clients and paid for my photos, ads etc.  It worked perfectly for me, I had discretion and work/life harmony

In time I ended up doing my own website & use my IT skill to travel the globe as an International touring escort (way before it was a ‘thing’ that everyone did). Back then there wasn’t many advertising sites nor social media so it was fun to use my IT skills to create something that helped me travel for free

I started Atlantic using my IT background and all I had learnt from my London agent, my mentor, chats with clients, chats with other escorts and working myself as an independent escort

I love running Atlantic, I am proud of what I have created and I get joy from the happiness my work gives to others.  Happy Escorts and Happy Clients :)

Since moving to Australia in 2013 I have worked very hard to get established in a country where agencies cop a lot of hate.  Historically agencies were pretty low-grade, many treated their ladies very poorly but I am not that type of person and Atlantic isn’t that type of Agency

Once again I am stigmatised but now it comes from the industry; sex workers, clients and anyone involved in the SW industry think it’s ok to call me names and perpetuate untruths

People who have never met me, worked with me, know anyone who has worked with me or have any knowledge whatsoever of the job I do 70hrs a week seem to think it’s OK to stigmatise me because the business I created and am proud of has the name ‘Agency’ in the title

As I refer to Atlantic as an agency I am banned from some of the well known advertising sites for ‘marketing reasons’.  However, I am allowed to advertises on this sites if I choose to be dishonest.  I need to take down the agency website and give each escort a different phone number for me to manage as a PA.  Go figure…. Dishonesty is being rewarded and honesty is not allowed

As I am involved in ‘management’ I cannot be involved in any discussions about sex workers or sex workers rights or be accepted as part of the sex work community

Part of my job is I help ladies keep sane, safe & happy in an industry that can be unfriendly and hurtful but I am not allowed to attend Sex Worker Forums or be part of any sex worker groups

I have been in the escort industry for 18 years, I escorted as well as ran Atlantic for many of those years but in Australia I am referred to as a pimp or madam, words used to demean my work & make my legal business sound dodgy, dishonest and potentially dangerous.

I was a stigmatised sex worker & now by moving countries I am now a stigmatised business owner

My work isn’t seen as work, I am accused of using women and taking their money which is definitely not the case.  I spend my days doing jobs I enjoy and making other people happy.  I love my job and won’t be giving up anytime soon.  I just wish that rather than call me names people would ask what I do & maybe learn a little more than just assume I am some filthy pimp type character

My job is 95% admin, Atlantic is a pty ltd company paying both GST and taxes and I receive a modest salary.  Not very dodgy….  But ho-hum

I would love my work to be seen as work in the Australian escort community but I doubt that will ever happen

So Stigma – whatever;  I have a salary and a superannuation plan and spend my days doing a job I love so it’s not so bad really