Although sex work is stigmatised, advice is repeatedly sought on how one gets started in the industry. Often the person seeking does not know what job it is they are requesting. It is sex, right? I get money, right? What else is there to grasp? We all know sex work is a low skill job, right? Wrong!
This job is a customer based job and requires a stronger understanding than the above. The self-interview below is a set of questions selected or adapted from. Ask yourself these questions. Compare the information given to what you think you know. Do they match up? Is it different? Is the job role still the job you thought?
- What do you know about this industry?
What are you basing your knowledge off? The stereotype? The glamorised idea? What do you see in your area? What others say? What have you researched? The day to day running is different to having peaks into a person life. Not because its hidden but because its can be boring. Do I need to tell you that I washed the sheets and towels today for my private clients? Do you care? Probably not. Unless you had to do it yourself. That is different.
Every job has the idea of we think it is, yet the reality of day to day life.
- What job role would you prefer?
There is Web cam, Porn, Full Service, Massage, Telephone work. Have you done any independent research to understand what is involved in each? What do you really know about the sectors that you have researched yourself (not just asked someone)?
- Why do you want to work as a sex worker? What interests you about this job?
Does it seem glamorous? Is it money? Helping others? Survival? Is it so you can have your sexual needs meet? Is it something else?
- What do you think the job role entails?
If you are thinking of full service, then are you thinking of street based work? Brothel work? Private? What protection measures do you need to put in place? What effect does each have on your day or your night?
In private work, a job is never just the booking. For the half hour booking, you have to spend time setting up the room, then afterwards tidy it up. You need to dress appropriately, do your make up as needed, maybe travel to a location. The money received for the half hour, can have had you do 1–2 hrs of work.
This is not including the other unpaid work that is needed. Talking to clients, dealing with time wasters, setting up advertising or websites, travelling, follow up, banking, shopping for supplies, clothes, make up, toys. It includes, being your own secretary, setting up appointments, answering text, cleaning clothes, or beauty maintenance. There is many outlays of time and money that need to be done before you even arrive at a booking.
Having sex with someone in private is different to having sex with someone in a work setting.
- What are you hoping to get out of this job, in terms of your short and long-range objective?
If it is short-term, then what is your exit strategy and back up plan? What is your time frames? What support do you have around you? Why is this the best job to fulfil your objectives? If it is long-range, then what budget and business plans have you prepared? How will you ensure you meet theses objectives?
- Think about a time when you had a really bad day but still had to go to work. How did you get through it?
Just like in a retail job, if you are having a bad day, you still have to stay professional, and be friendly to the customers. Have you developed your professional persona from previous jobs? Are you someone who brings their home life to work? Will you want to be naked with someone who may otherwise turn you off when you have bad days? Would you be able to let someone into your personal space on a day like that?
- How do you deal with conflict? Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult person. How did you handle it?
If you live in a country were sex work is illegal, you have the greatest chance of having clients who will may be rude or even harm you. It may be half way through the booking, it may be at the start, it may be at the end and they leave without paying you.
If you are somewhere that has decriminalisation, you have the least chance of this happening but it still can happen. That is if you are in New Zealand or New South Wales, Australia.
Everywhere else has law systems that lay between those two.
Would you regret making the decision to do sex work if this happened? Could you defuses the situation? Is defusing even an option for you?
- What makes you a great problem solver? How do you respond to problems that require a quick solution?
What do you need to take into account a head of time? How can you minimise your risks? Things can change, little issues like getting someone to shower to bigger issues of payment can arise and so on. Can you negotiate and guide others to a solution?
- What skills and qualities do you think a sex worker should have? Why do you believe you are qualified for this position?
This one, I feel, is where most misconceptions sits. People seem to think they should become a sex worker to learn about or get more sex. That is why people go to one. Its client thinking, not provider thinking.
Are you able to be non judgemental? Can you be intimate with customers that hold no attraction to you? What if they are too old or too young, too tall or too short? Most people can’t look past the exterior. There is nothing wrong with that. If you want to do sex work, however you do need to be able to look past the surface looks.
Yes, you should chose who you see wisely. You need to ensure your safety. But clients are everyday people. When you next walk down the street, look at those around you. How many would fall into “I’d sleep with” category? You can say No. That is your right. It is your body but if you end up saying no to everyone, another job would be more suitable.
NB: Saying yes to an appointment does not mean a client is allowed to do what they want. They are not buying you or your body. They are purchasing your time and attention. What takes place needs consent of both parties. All businesses reserve the right to refuses service to unruly customers. You do need to put your safety and well-being first.
Are you patient, non-judgemental, confident, know how to lead and guide another? What is your business style (Dom, Girlfriend, Pornstar, one or all of them? Can you manage your time? Are you self motivated? Are you friendly? Do you like people? Can you take charge? Have a sense of humour? Do you have sales and marketing skills? Can you make judgement calls? Are you level headed? Do you have conflict resolution skills? These are not the only skills or qualities that are used in this job. If you do not have the right skills, or if you doubt yourself, this job may not be for you.
- Why do you think you will be successful in this role?
Why would a client come to see you? How would you turn a client into a return customer while maintaining healthy boundaries? What are your boundaries? How will you stick to them? What if they are broken? What will you do during quiet times in the industry? What if you have a quiet patch of a few weeks?
- What are your weaknesses? What are your strengths? (non-sexual)
Where is your self esteem level? If it is low, this job can take it lower. If it is strong, this job can make it stronger. Are you outgoing and shy? Do you know how to stand your ground, or compromise? Are you a dominate person? If so, maybe BDSM is working to your strength. Or are you laid back? Do you stress easy? Do people already take advantage of you? What could parts of your personality do you need to protect? What parts will be useful? Can you organise? What would you need to improve? Do you have phone skills? Questions here can keep going.
- What do you know about Sexual Health? The Laws that affect you? The rights you have or do not have?
If you don’t know get on Google and please learn them.
- How do you organize your day?
For one booking, it has been advised how much more is involved. Things can not be left to the last minute.
- Describe what you expect from your day to day in this position.
Knowing what you know now, compare that to what you thought before? Is the job as desirable as before?
- What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Do you take care of yourself? What would you do to ensure you don’t burnout? What do you enjoy? What friends could you open up to and hang out with? What if a boyfriend/girlfriends came onto the scene? How can you maximum your free time? How much of the free time needs to be put towards the business side of account keeping, replenishing stock, advertising,
Work does not just start and end in the booking. Especially if you are private, there are many hours of unpaid work where you need to advertising, talk to people, take phones, deal with prank calls, or time wasters, or people trying to berate you. How would you find balance?
- Be honest, do you really want this position? Why?
Do you hold the same idea of what the job role is now as you did at the start? Is this what would get you excited each day? Is there another job role, you think would be less hassle, less issues, more enjoyable for you personally? Does it still seem a ‘fit’ for you, now.
- If you could not be a sex worker, what else would you be doing?
Think about this. If the job role doesn’t suit you, what would you do instead? What would you need to do, to make that dream happen?
Whether you do or not start work as a sex worker, it your decision. This post is not designed to make that decision on your behalf. Yes, there are some resources and support around for those in the industry. But before you step in, the purpose of this post is to help you consider if it really is what you imagine. Maybe the fun bits are, but no job is just the fun bits.
This is not an interview. Your answers are for you alone.
People sometimes apply the same thinking to sex work, as they do to acting. Anyone can be an actor”. They are then shocked to find that this is not the case. The glamorised idea, of others fawning over you, is replaced by a resented reality, where you fawn over others. This can lead to a downward spiral if you are not prepared.
Maybe you are prepared and the job suits you. It is still wise to be aware of the day to day actions and potentials to mitigate your path. Talk to Sex Workers if you have started. Reddit, Here, Twitter are three places sex workers can talk to sex workers.
This is to give a general idea only of what else can come into the sex worker role. The other bits. They are the boring, tedious parts. They have high risks and low risks. Everyone experiences it differently. There are too many variables for this to cover everything. However, just take into account, there can be more involved in the job than what you expect.