How I Became A Phone Sex Worker (And Why I Love What I Do)

I wanted a career change, and a career change was what I got.

This past year left me as drained and blank as the Winter landscape. The months were filled with endless trips to the gynecologist to treat my endometriosis, and bi-weekly sessions with my therapist to speak about my resurfacing anxiety.

After a couple months spent glued to my futon binging on Netflix, I painfully acknowledged my bank account had dwindled to near empty. I had an amazing job, but the constant emotional and physical fatigue from it kept me from returning to work. Instead of berating myself for my lack of motivation, I decided to search for a new source of income.

I poured through websites offering scam careers as ‘in-home customer service representatives’ and ‘online marketing assistants’. Even reading legitimate job descriptions bored me enough that I knew I would quit within days of accepting any position.

Then, hours into my search, I came across a phone sex operator website and was surprised to find thousands of real women on its pages. I was overwhelmed, but out of sheer financial desperation decided to create my own profile.

That’s how I ended up being a phone sex worker.

I’ve always considered myself a feminist. I march in pro-choice rallies. I run social justice art making parties. I speak out about domestic violence and rape, while making space and listening to the struggles of the LGBT community. But between the feminist discussion groups and protests, I sell sexy pictures. I speak to strangers for hours about their sexual fantasies, fetishes, taboos, and every weird nook and cranny of sexuality. And occasionally I just speak to them about the weather or their fave movies.

When I first told select family and friends I was a phone sex operator, I was met with mostly outright disapproval, and the rest mumbled a passive-aggressive hesitance. Their concerns transformed into an internal dialogue that left me bewildered.

‘Is this degrading? Am I hurting the fight for women’s rights? Am I disgusting, or less than my peers who are in college? Am I selling out and supporting the patriarchy?’ I’d ask myself relentlessly.

It’s only recently I came to the conclusion it’s possible to be both a feminist and a sex worker. Here are three reasons why I love what I do…

1. Sex work can be empowering

At the surface level, my job may appear to foster blatant sexism (which is unavoidable in some aspects when you’re selling the idea of sex), but I found this is mostly only an illusion. My profile, my hours, my customers; even the content of my calls are all in my control, and my clients must respect that.

I answer calls at my own discretion; if I feel uncomfortable, I have the right to say “no” and hang up. Not to mention, there’s a droll sense of empowerment in making $2.00 a minute just to have a phone conversation.

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2. It’s my choice

I shouldn’t be ashamed about posting racy and provocative photos. My body is my own, to use and show off as I see fit. I cannot help but applaud women like Kim Kardashian for sparking public dialogue around body positivity and making us all think more about the fact that what we do with our bodies belongs to us, and only us.

More importantly, I have body autonomy in my job. Unlike revenge porn sites, or the unfortunately relevant sex trafficking business, I have a choice. Every picture posted, sold, and sent is directly uploaded and chosen by me.

3. My sex work does not make me less of a person

Women are taught the narrative at a very young age that their virginity is their sacred weapon. Girls are brainwashed with the belief that purity is the only sexuality for women in lieu of actual sex education. During many of my sex calls, I have been called a “virginal whore” or “innocent slut.” I usually laugh afterwards at these paradoxical phrases. There is nothing inherently wrong with enjoying sex as a woman, or expressing that however I may like with a consenting partner.

My time as a phone sex operator so far has left me with a new sense of empowerment. I am my own boss and I set my own schedule. I make a wage nearly twice the national average for a 20 to 24 year-old and can afford college now. I spend my free time writing, reading, exploring the national parks, and have more time than ever to devote to the social and political causes I believe in.

Some may read this and still believe I am a slut, that I am unintelligent, or do not respect myself, and that for those reasons, I cannot truly be a feminist. I will leave those readers with a final quote from musician Amanda Palmer: “Feminism isn’t about being perfect, it’s about being honest.”.

Image via weheartit.com.

Comment: Do you think it’s possible to be a feminist and a sex worker?