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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » Eww...

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Author Topic: Eww...
000
Activist
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I find this disturbing:

http://www.sexwork.com/Intimacy/GFE.html

Apparently, some guys think they're not getting their money's worth if the girl doesn't act like she's enjoying herself and there's a real connection there. There's also some allusion to guys thinking that acting like she's enjoying herself often means the girl is enjoying herself, and that prostitution cultures in other countries are better b/c the girls are uninhibited to feel emotion.

Now, /excuse/ me? So guys don't think they're getting their money's worth unless a prostitute acts like she's not doing it for money? I mean sure it's probably better to be a prostitute when a client treats you with respect, but how far can men delude themselves about the nature of this industry?

It reminds me of a GQ article I saw about Polynesian prostitutes titled :"Guess What? They Don't Really Like It As Much As You Think They Do." I sort of wanted to gag. They couldn't sell articles like that unless someone was actually, /learning/ something from reading it, right?

Posts: 443 | Registered: Aug 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
000
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Does anybody else have the strong reaction to this I do?
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Bebop Bodhisattva
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I had a friend who did sex work, and this was a very big thread in her stories. The girls who made the most money were the ones who crafted an experience, not the ones who were willing to do anything.

This applies to any service industry. People prefer enthusiastic waiters over ones who seem like they want to die, and you spend a lot more time in the presence of a prostitute than even the most attentive waiter.

The restaraunt analogy is very good. The most expensive places aren't just charging for great food, they're also charging for the ambience. They need both, but the right atmosphere can make a good meal a great one.

Arousal is very much in the mind. For the best sex workers, it really is a form of performance art. That's what seperated the old-style courtsans and geishas from regular streetwalkers. They were skilled conversationalists and knew more than just the quickest way to give someone an orgasm.

So what if it's encouraged by money? Do you worry that a psychiatrist isn't as interested in your problems because you're paying money? Neither is genuine, but it's not about genuine. It's about hitting the right spots in your brain. Those that can do it do very well, and the ones that can't, don't.

Just like acting, writing and politics, sex work is all about suspension of disbelief. While the audience understands it's not real, they allow themselves to forget for long enough to be fully entertained. And even if they lose touch with reality, "I think this hooker really likes me..." is a much healthier delusion than "I think my senator really cares about me..." Let peoples' delusions support the local call girls, so they won't be starving for comforting lies once the politicians start spewing them.

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"This war all around us is being fought over the very meanings of words." - Chad Dumier, Deus Ex

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000
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"I think this hooker really likes me..." is a much healthier delusion than...

I guess I don't think it's a healthy delusion. I don't think it's healthy for men to believe women are objects, or to believe women should be easy to please, or any combination thereof.

I understand the performance art bit. But that doesn't mean I don't find it disturbing that clients can delude themselves this way.

With the restaurant, I think most people who go to a fancy restaurant /know/ they're paying for good service and atmosphere -they're not going to forget that, or wonder if "maybe the waiter is treating me that way b/c of what a spectacular person I am". Sex is more personal. People often bring more of themselves to the table, so to speak.

[ 10-22-2006, 05:38 PM: Message edited by: iheartdc ]

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Bebop Bodhisattva
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Of course it's an unhealthy delusion. All delusions are unhealthy. I realize I didn't make it clear in my post: I meant that in the majority of cases, people suspend disbelief for as long as needed to be entertained, but don't hold any delusions afterwards. But hey, worst case scenario, they really go on thinking the call girl really likes them, it's still a better delusion than some other ones out there.

I think the best analogy to a sex worker is a psychiatrist. You're paying someone for a degree of intimacy, either in the context of working through mental issues, or in the context of sexual entertainment. Does it matter that the shrink is getting paid to do it, and that the average person isn't going to be as willing to help you through things?

To some people, it does. Some people do end up falling in love with their analysts, for much the same reasons it happens to prostitutes. But that doesn't mean the base concept isn't worthwhile.

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"This war all around us is being fought over the very meanings of words." - Chad Dumier, Deus Ex

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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I don't want to get heavily involved in this discussion, primarily because I just don't have the proper time to devote to it, but I think Bebop, what perhaps you're overlooking (?) and what is bothering iheartdc a lot about this -- and it's something which troubles me as well -- is that that delusion, while it may or may not be unhealthy for men, may not be such a great thing for women, especially in a culture and world where so often presentations of our sexuality are scripted and produced by men.

In other words, that there are pervasive forces out there which pressure women to fake pleasure they aren't feeling already. Most of the presentation we see about women's sexuality is male-directed and seriously unrealistic per what women, as a whole, do and don't enjoy, do or don't reach orgasm from, do or do not like to be treated like.

To boot, a LOT of sex trafficking is not educated American women who have all these other options for work, blah blah blah. The vast majority of women doing sex work in the world are women who do not have other viable options, many of whom -- validly -- DESPISE their pimps and their clients. Plenty of whom would, to be blunt, like to shoot them between the eyes if they could. So, for those women, already having to do work that is often ungodly unsafe, that is emotionally debilitating and can be really damaging (let's bear in mind some of said women are 12 years old), upping the performance even more is asking an AWFUL lot, especially per the effects that can have on them being able to have any semblance of a healthy sexuality at some point in their lives, or when they are off-duty.

I don't feel like a comparison between a psychiatrist and your *average* sex worker is a sound one to make. A psychiatrist isn't at risk of HIV transmission, of being raped in her office, or not having a meal if she skips a client in a day, of being beaten by a pimp if she doesn't do well in therapy in a given day. And that's just the icing. In all honesty, I gotta say, that comparison leaves a really bad taste in my mouth.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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