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Coming out to the Parents

I recently came out to my parents and siblings about my sex work career. This is what I had written to read to them. 

"I want to have a chat with you guys. It’s a bit serious, but it is time. I am fine, I am healthy, I am happy. This info might be a bit of a surprise and I would like to read something to you and have you listen to the end. I will happily then answer any questions, talk through any concerns. I understand this may take some time to sink in and so will be happy to discuss anytime in the future via text or phone or cam.

I dated a guy once for a bit who had gone through narcotics anonymous, he explained some of the steps and one of the lessons in the program was when you want to tell someone a secret/thing that is weighing heavily on you to ask why you are telling them. Are you just doing it to alleviate the weight you are carrying and therefore are transferring the weight to them. Is it better they know or not know? I have held on to this over the past 7 years as I have repeatedly debated whether or not to tell you guys more about my job.

As I have told you, I do coaching for clients to reach goals, find happiness in life. I also do some consultations and work online. All of this is true. I work online, I have many long term clients who I am actively involved in their lives in a variety of ways. I get paid for sessions with them. The details of those connections I want to explain a bit more.

I am a professional Dominatrix. This means I am paid to interact with clients, mostly men, in a way that allows them to explore their sexuality in a safe place without judgement. This can mean helping them explore pain, pleasure, life goals, how to make the most of what they are doing. I do video sessions, chat sessions, I create videos etc. Everything I do is legal. I pay taxes, and am similar to anyone else who runs a small business-except I am every department-admin, content, marketing, creative, HR, PR, accounting etc.

The main reason I have held back on sharing the details of this with you is the intense amount of stigma that comes around sex work. Stigma is real and it's huge, and possibly something that you will struggle with. There may be concerns about the possibility that people will judge you as a parent. This is a normal, valid response. We only know what the media/hollywood presents in a lot of areas of the world-gay, trans, addiction, sex work etc. They work on sensationalising things and offering a limited view often of damaged people. 

Based on this, it's quite common to feel that you don't want others to know. I have been torn up about hiding this from you guys for years. Being evasive and vague when asked about my work, avoiding family gatherings where I have to lie so much that it causes me physical pain after a while.

I have built a great career. I am successful, I am really good at the specific type of work I do and I have benefitted the lives of a lot of people. I want to dispel some of the myths/stereotypes around sex work, how the media presents us to the world and hopefully alleviate some concerns you may have. I have been quite involved in the advocacy side of this and this is a conversation I have often.

Typical assumptions about sex work-drug use, pimp pushing me into this, daddy issues, can't get any other type of work, last option, victim.

Not one single one of these are true for me. I chose this work as a part time thing to help when ****** and I had to ask our roomates to leave, I was talking to a friend about how tight money was with the 2 of us being responsible for bills that had been shared between 4 people. She told me about how she had been doing cam modelling part time and she thought that my open mindedness and ability to connect with people would make me good at that work. Had her show me the site and I was a quick learn. No one makes money off me (except the sites and their %), Dad has always been an incredible, supportive, and loving father who helped me believe I can do anything I want in this world, I have multiple diplomas on the wall and could work in a number of industries.

I choose this one because it lets me be my own boss, I have the freedom to say no to any client who doesn't treat me how I want/deserve (can't say same for retail or customer service work) I have freedom of schedule, can help my friends with their kids on short notice, or make time for people who need me since my schedule is fairly flexible, it offers me travel opportunities etc. The opportunity for growth in the work I do and money I earn is not capped.

I was part of a great video project with a group called Shift Calgary-they work with sex workers as a non exit based company. If you would like I can send it to you. It was asking sex workers questions about what they like about what they do, asking friends and family about what it was like when their person told them about their work etc. One mom had a lot of really great stuff to share about how she felt when my friend came out to her. Dealing with shock, not understanding and ultimately the shame of feeling like it was her fault.

I do a lot of life coaching, helping people accept their needs, remove the shame from their pleasure, help them to understand their body and minds in new ways to live their best lives. It is incredible to watch people grow over years and know you have helped them be so much happier and fulfilled. I also teach, civilians and other sex workers, on specifics in the BDSM world, how to play safely, to protect themselves and their clients, etc. I have blog posts on my website and hope to turn those into a book someday. There is a lot of misunderstanding about our industry and I work hard to remove some of that stigma and shame. I have participated in a number of panels at events from local theatre, to the naughty or nice trade show, to first year med students at u of c and helping them understand how their assumptions can hurt their patients, not just as sex worker patients, but as people who have problems with sex in their life and how much that affects overall quality of life. I rarely do in person work, mostly because I am super strict on what I need clients to provide for me to feel safe. I have no desire to take risks.

I am very proud of the work I do, the way I can help people in this world. I know it may be a shock but I am glad you know, I am happy to feel the weight of secrets off, but I don't want that weight transferred to you. I want you to be comfortable to ask me anything, not just go research on the internet as there is much false info. I trust that you will not hold my decisions against me, or worst case cut me out of your life-this is super common for a lot of people in this industry, the isolation is real and damaging.

I have built an incredible community of other sex work friends here, many are full service providers in Calgary, as well as a number of online providers from all over the world, most of whom I will never meet in person. They are wonderful people and it's been a real blessing to have others who understand, as I said isolation is very real.

I love you a lot, I am thankful for how you raised me to become strong and independent. I am fiery, fierce and not afraid of making waves to better our world.”

Great article about coming out that I also sent to them.

If you are interested in a coaching sessions to discuss the best way to come out to a loved one, please contact me here.

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