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How to work as an escort without shame or fear of persecution
April 11, 2014 |
It seems to me like most escorts are very private about what they do. I can understand why, it’s not like society is exactly kind to those in the sex trade or anything. I have always wondered why that is, but it remains a mystery. From my own observations, it seems like sex workers are only worthy of kindness from society if they are a victim of human trafficking, which must mean they need help of some kind.
by Ashly Lorenzana
What about those of us who make informed decisions to work in this industry? We are judged harshly most of the time and even more baffling, much of society seems to say “That’s what they get!” when a sex worker is a victim of a violent crime that would be appalling should it happen to a “normal” person.
Taking those things into consideration, it’s understandable why many men and women choose to conduct their business in the sex trade with the utmost discretion and work hard to keep their real identities private. It’s not just society that most of us have to be concerned about either, many of us have families and friends who simply would not understand and we don’t want to damage those relationships or be forced to distance ourselves from those we love.
However, I’d like to share my experience with other escorts as someone who has chosen NOT to hide this part of who I am and what I do from the world. On the contrary, I’ve actually embraced it and I chosen to present it as part of myself with no apology to anyone at all.
Obviously this comes with its own set of drawbacks, but I have worked pretty hard to find ways in which I can be zen with my role as an escort in the present, past and perhaps most importantly, the future. So if living a double life isn’t something you find easy to do and you feel as if you’re spreading yourself thin by constantly trying to cover your tracks lest someone find out, then this is for you. I hope you are able to find something in my tips that resonates with you as a human being and I invite you to use any of my suggestions to empower yourself and face the world fearlessly.
1. There is a common misconception that by being “out” as an escort, you are making yourself an easy target for law enforcement. This has not been true in my experience. In fact, it seems to have the opposite effect. I usually downplay my current activities when speaking publicly, which gives the impression that I may not be as active as I once was in the escorting scene. By being open and willing to talk about my work as an escort, I have more often been approached by the media to discuss it than I have been pursued by the cops. Besides, they can’t arrest you for something you’ve admitted you did in the past. You can tell them you used to be in the business, and there isn’t anything they can really do about that.
2. Believe it or not, as unaccepting as society may be towards escorts, they are also morbidly curious about them at the same time. Using this curiosity to my advantage, I’ve managed to turn my escorting experience into a large part of my professionalism and it has resulted in lots of news interviews and media coverage, which helps other escorts by getting the word out about what we do and why it’s okay to engage in willingly. There are many creative ways to incorporate escorting into your bio or resume in a way the world will generally find intriguing rather than simply regarding you with disapproval.
3. The way I’ve always looked at things is that if you are hiding something you do, then it gives the impression that it must be wrong and you must think it is or you wouldn’t feel the need to hide it. While it’s true that some forms of sex work are illegal in most of the United States, that does NOT mean that it’s inherently wrong for you to engage in it. When someone discovers what you’re up to and that you’ve been hiding it (assuming they are not law enforcement of any kind) then you sort of indirectly confirm that there must be something wrong enough with it that you can’t share it with the world. I try to be as transparent as possible about my role as a sex worker because I believe it just might be the key to unlocking the undeserved stigma associated with it. I figure that if no one comes out and says that they do this type of thing and they are okay with it and no one is being hurt in any way, then nothing will ever change that needs to. How can we expect others to come around and accept what we do if we can’t be proud and defend it ourselves?
4. Family and friends may not be crazy about our choice to work as an escort, but they won’t disown you if they really care about you and want you in their lives. This is tough for many and I will say that my own family certainly did not approve of my work in the sex trade. However, I came to realize that most of their disapproval was actually due to their concerns for my safety as someone they loved and cared about. I also eventually came to the conclusion that when someone close to you truly loves you, they aren’t going to abandon you or disown you for your work as an escort. They may not be supportive of it and it may be a topic that’s best to avoid when spending time with them, but usually they will love you just the same.
5. I know that a big concern that some escorts have about being “out” is their future after they retire from the business. Most companies today search your name in Google and use social media to research job candidates and the sad reality is that the majority will probably run in the other direction if they find out your past involves sex work. I say this is their loss entirely. So what can you do if you think that you might someday want to switch jobs? My advice is to make yourself a promise right now that you will always work for yourself. Who says you can’t change jobs down the road and still be working for yourself like you are as an escort? No one. I have pretty much become zen with the thought of being my own boss for the rest of my life. Who wouldn’t love to have that freedom forever?
Of course, it should probably be said that I have less to consider than many other people who escort. I don’t have children to think about and my obligations are few and far between. However, if any of my thoughts have struck a cord with you then you may want to keep them in mind should you decide to open up about your work.
About the author
Ashly has over five years of experience working as an independent escort in the Portland, OR area. She is also the author of “Sex, Drugs & Being an Escort”—a memoir about her life and various adventures.
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