Saving Face! by Marcelle Romaine

Three nights ago, I posted a picture of my face to my sex work profile on Twitter. The reason for my decision was basically that I want to show the world who I am. In a nutshell; I am a woman who has chosen sex work, and I refuse to either repent my choice or fall into the convenient stereotype of a drug addict, a drifter or a sex slave.

The way society has pegged sex workers and also their clients needs to change, and I believe a more honest picture from all walks of sex work can help. So here is mine.

I have been an Independent Private Escort for just over a year. My decision to try sex work was one that I did not make lightly. I left a thriving business in the fitness industry in pursuit of my lifelong dream to study fine art. Sex work has given me the opportunity to do this without being time-poor or financially stressed; an impossibility for a student trying to make ends meet in practically any other industry!

For 6 months I attempted to find real life resources and information to help me begin. I could barely find anything to go by. I managed to meet with a couple of escorts - lovely women who helped me with the basics but whose personal experience did not really resonate with me. Sex workseems to be vastly different for everyone. At first, I created an alternate persona. I thought that it would help to protect my identity. I was even careful to not wear my everyday clothing or jewelry, or talk about my interests with clients. I didn't even tell my best friend. But this double life quickly made me feel really isolated. The work wasn't the hard part. The hard part was listening to people I love make offhand jokes about 'whores,' and lying to them about why I couldn't attend events.

Recently I decided to join Twitter for advertising purposes, and read about Grace Bellavue taking her own life. I was completely horrified that such a bright spark of a woman had felt so ostracized and isolated by society, media, and even lovers; Simply by daring to reveal herself publicly as a sex worker and an intelligent human being. Privacy is something all sex workers are entitled to, but reading her story made me change my feelings about anonymity. I didn't want to feel alone amongst my inner social circle. So I worked up every ounce of courage I had and told my closest friends. Some had misgivings or questions regarding my safety, but they supported me. I also began to show my clients more of my personality, which lead to me finding a more compatible client base and good retention. I am soon scheduled to reshoot my advertising and have decided to reveal my face... Because I believe sex workers are entitled to a face, and a voice as well.