During the same car journey that Enid told me that she wanted to try watersports, she also told me that being a sex worker was a regular fantasy of hers. This was less of a surprise to me than the interest in watersports. Sex work covers a huge variety of acts and scenarios. Enid loves being of service, loves feeling used and loves dressing up – all things that easily tie-in to a fantasy of being paid to have sex. Enid also used to do a small bit of cam girl stuff when she was younger, and it’s something she found very sexy.
But me? I was a little less keen.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my fair share of fantasies about sex work. But I’ve always cast myself as the sex worker, and they’ve nearly always been ways for me to explore my occasional submissive side. They’re nearly always pretty filthy, with rich, faceless men using me. They are firmly in the “Fantasy Only” box for me, not something I have any interest in acting out in real life!
I wasn’t sure that role-playing a client/sex worker scene with Enid would be for me. So much of our dynamic is rooted in my ownership of her, and of how well we know each other. Although I love humiliating her, and treating her as my toy, I didn’t think it would turn me on in the same way if we were role-playing a colder, professional relationship. But it was one of the few things on the list of kinks that Enid was interested in that we hadn’t tried on some level, so I said we should give it a shot.
It was a fair time after that conversation that we got round to it though! The first time we did it, I was at work and text Enid to suggest that we did a sex worker roleplay together. We built the anticipation by getting into character early. I text her asking about her rates, availability and what services she specialised in providing. She responded in character. On my way home, I withdrew enough cash to pay her from the cashpoint. I felt nervous and excited about handing it over to her.
At home, Enid prepared by glamming up, curating a play list of music and popping a bottle of white wine in the fridge. She greeted me professionally at the door, took my coat, and we had a short chat about roles, boundaries and expectations before she led me up to the bedroom.
Entering the role of a professional service provider gave Enid the freedom to be more assertive and performative. I loved watching her ride me while, in the words of Ms Gia Gunn, “feeling her oats.”
We didn’t experiment with this dynamic again until we were handed the opportunity on a platter. Before Christmas, we were staying in hotel, visiting friends for a Christmas party and getting some time together before the business of the festive season. We’d packed very light and didn’t have any toys with us, but we ended up with a free evening with nothing to do but each other!
We went for a pretty standard narrative – Enid re-did her makeup and left the room. When I let her back in, she was Felicity, a sex worker I had called to my hotel room after a long day of “business meetings.” So far, so cliché.
It was fun to pretend to be strangers. The power imbalance was different, partly because I was out of my comfort zone, but also because it’s a complicated power exchange, isn’t it? Who really has the power in a sex/money transaction? The idea of just being able to have whatever I wanted, because I had the money to pay for it, was pretty hot. And it turned out that what I wanted, as usual, was ownership. It didn’t take long for me to start getting her to trash talk the men she’d slept with, the “daddies” that tried to spoil her that, but couldn’t satisfy her and underestimated her.
As far as content goes, we did pretty regular sex acts for us. I think this helped me to stay in role because it needed less thought! Although we didn’t have any of our fancy toys with us, I really liked the idea of pushing her past what she’d had before so that I would be the one she’d think of when she slept with other men. Fairly classic possession kink there!
The setting of a hotel room was pretty sexy too. The trappings of having her knock on the door, the big white bed and the sparse, anonymity of the décor made the scene different and exciting. It was easier to get into character than it was in our own bedroom.
I would like to state what I hope is obvious, which is that sex work is work. It is a common fantasy, it is often fetishized and degenerated, but sex workers deserve our respect. There is a wealth of experience and writing out there from people who know far more than me. I can’t recommend this TED Talk by activist and sex worker Juno Mac enough, or this Teen Vogue op-ed by Tlaleng Mofokeng, doctor and founder of Nalane for Reproductive Justice. You could also support the Red Umbrella Fund!