"Happy endings come from happy beginnings."
Shayanne ~ Erotic Massage Therapist
Shayanne is a 42 year old twice divorced woman who works in the sex industry as an erotic massage therapist. She has been working in this sector of the adult industry for about 14 years. She originally started working at a law firm as an administrative assistant with a full time salary of $320 per week with partial benefits. And after almost 5 years, and a salary of $430 per week with full benefits, she decided to leave, knowing she would never be able to go on the extravagant vacations like her lawyer bosses, nor have her bills fully paid each and every month. So she quit. She spent 3 months studying to become a licensed massage therapist and finally got a per diem job at a few local physical therapy offices. She made $60 per 30 minute massage and did an average of 12 per week. Not bad for $720 per week. After taxes her take home pay was about $600. It seemed as if she finally was making the money she wanted to and had a job that she enjoyed, until 2 out of 3 of the P.T. offices hired in their own massage therapists and ousted their per diem workers.
Shayanne, who started going by the nickname of Shay, found herself in the same predicament. Though she had no children to support, she was used to living with a decent income and knew that she couldn’t go back to ‘trying’ to pay her bills every month, knowing that she would fail miserably. As I have stated before in my sister article, A Day in the Life of a Cam Girl, when your income goes up, so do your bills and cost of living. So Shay had to do something. She found herself looking for part time jobs in any field, just something until she found more clients. After about a year, she managed to get her own in home clients. She was charging the same fee but was paying out of pocket for all her supplies, so her take home pay was a significant amount less than she had made before. But what else could she do?
Then one day she got an offer from one of her regular clients. He basically wanted a happy ending massage. She was appalled. She was offended. She was...interested? She remembered all the things she used to say about strippers and prostitutes. The terrible names she called the woman down the street that was busted for prostitution just a month ago. She was raised in a family that was centered on religion, pride and integrity. She could not lower herself to those standards. Or could she?
Finally, she accepted the job. After all, she had to do something. So she made the call, set up the appointment and even bought some special lubes in anticipation of the appointment. There was sort of an anticipation building up, she wasn’t sure if it was because she was excited about doing something new and fantasy like, or if it was the feeling of a good, religious girl being thrown into a world full of sin by turning herself into a whore.
She remembered the massage starting, without a word other than her ‘john’ handing her the requested $200 and going in to undress and prepare himself. She went in when he rang the ‘ready bell’ and she got to work. She was massaging every inch of him completely neglecting his manhood, trying so hard to get up the courage and stop the terrible thoughts going through her head. She just kept thinking, "I am a whore, am I a slut too? What am I doing? What have I done to myself? How did I become everything I hate?"
She finally decided against running off mid-massage and just went for it. She grabbed onto his already erect member and started stroking him softly, and then picking up speed, following his breathing. She was amazed how good she was at this already. She never really had much practice with hand jobs on strangers. I guess it helped that his manhood was pretty much a one handed job. A full hand might have actually been overkill really. This really was more of a 3 finger job. She remembers throwing out her whore thoughts and centering on the fact that for such a big guy, this guy’s tiny dick was verging on humorous. And then bam, 4 minutes into the hand job, it was over. He moaned and groaned as she took a wet nap (and later a bottle of isopropyl alcohol) to her hands. He finally got up, dressed and tossed a folded piece of paper on the table which she saw a date and time written on and he left. The typical nod for a good bye, as usual.
When he left, she sat down and thought about whether this meant she was a different person now. She thought that when it was over it would be no big deal, something she could live with and move past. She just gave a hand job to a man 20 years her senior in the back room of her own home. She really wasn’t sure how she felt yet. She was more numbed by the experience than anything else. Was $200 all her integrity was worth. Or was her integrity intact and she was just a girl that performed a job, for money. It was more of a 26 minute massage and a 4 minute hand job. Was it worth it? Then she got up and went over to the paper and read what he wrote. “Busy next Thursday, can we do Wednesday at 2pm? Same price, same tip.” She wondered what he meant by tip, as she unfolded the rest of the paper. Then she found it. Another $200! She decided right then and there that it was worth it. Over the next week of thinking about it, she realized that she was still the same person, and just had a slight change of career. Now the only question she was asking herself was, should I print new business cards, or go by word of mouth?
Shayanne has come a long way since she first came into the sex industry. At the time she was very young. She was raised on so many beliefs that it made her transition and first interaction very difficult for her. As you read, the words that continued popping up were whore, slut, and loss of integrity. She has since realized that what she was raised to believe were stereotypes. Just because someone works in the sex industry does not mean that they are less of a person. They simply have a job and work. Her ex-husband used to be a construction laborer. He has pretty much ruined his body, broken bones, and turned himself into an old man far before his time. She is still happy and healthy and her body is still working the way it was meant to. So whose job is more dangerous? Whose job is killing them? Not Shay’s!
So when Shay was asked to describe her feelings on her work in 3 words, she chose these: Empowering, Productive and Easy. Her explanation was that she works less than 5 hours a week and makes more, 2 – 3 times as much as she did when she worked per diem as a basic massage therapist. Enough to pay for her children’s private schooling, her beautiful house and anything else they ever need or want. So that covers the easy and productive, now about the empowering. She took her life and fate in her own hands; she does for herself and doesn’t have to count on anyone else. And her clients treat her like a princess. They all make her feel so special. They give her gifts, flowers and proposals. They all want her. How could you ever feel bad about yourself when the people you see always want you to know how wonderful you are?
If you could say something to all the people who think your work is shameful or taboo, what would you say?
“I would tell them not to judge a book by its cover. You never know what you will be willing to do until you have to find out for real. You never know who you really are, until you are put to the test. I found out who I was and what I was willing to do for myself while I was young. Just because I work in an industry that is a little more taboo than say, working at a car wash or bagging groceries, doesn't mean I am a bad person. I am just a person with a job. Think about it; just think about the rap that defense and tax lawyers and politicians take. Just because everyone hates lawyers, doesn't mean that the lawyer is bad. They just hate what they do. Go to a place where prostitution is legal, and it is not all that big of a deal. I provide people with a release. Sex and pleasure is a basic need, we all want it. Some people just don’t have the time or ability to date. Sometimes a guy just wants to have a release and not call the next day. With me, they don’t have to. No harm, no foul. It may not be for everyone. If it isn't for you, don't do it. But don't fall into stereotyping people. That just makes you look bad."
If you could say something to all the other people who work the sex industry, what would you say?
"Just do you, that's all that matters."
Look for more articles in this new Sex Worker Appreciation series coming soon from sex workers in all sectors. Ranging from Cam Girls, to Escorts, and more!