I’ve always had a weird relationship with the concept of marriage.
The raging feminist in me wants to rebel on account of traditional marriage being the product of a disempowering concept of female ownership by her family. It seemed like a waste of money and energy, all for a piece of paper. I am not a monogamous person. Weddings are awkward, full of strange outdated traditions, bad music and uncomfortable small talk. On the other hand the idea of belonging to my partner in every sense of the word has always appealed to me, and I have always sought out relationship dynamics based on trust and submission.
Yesterday I was lucky enough to be a part of one of my best friends’ wedding, and as much as I hate to admit it, it was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. I could not have been prouder to stand next to her as she recited vows and committed herself to the love of her life. There was so much joy and love in the air, it was easy to be overcome with the contagious euphoria. Even being the most antisocial awkward bastard in the room, I had a great time and was so happy for her.
I get asked quite a lot if it is hard for me to maintain relationships because of my being a sex worker, and the reactions of people when I tell them that it has never been a problem in the past is a mix of genuine surprise and a patronizing almost-pity.
“Well he mustn’t really love you then, if he allows other men to touch you.”
“Oh, you are so lucky to have such an understanding partner.”
“I don’t know how he does it.”
“I bet he fucks other women while you’re at work.”
And so on.
You know what? Fuck that. Just because I work in the adult industry doesn’t mean that I am any less deserving of love, or any less capable of having a loving and healthy relationship. In fact, being a sex worker has helped my relationships immensely; I am more aware of my personal boundaries, I am more focused on my own well-being, I have more time, I am less stressed, and I am more confidant in communicating my needs.
The partners that I have had since entering the industry have never had an problem with what I do for work, they have been as supportive and encouraging as they would be had I been in any other industry. It’s a non-issue. They aren’t some superhuman saint for dealing with the fact that I can make my own decisions, and they don’t get cookies for being bottom of the barrel decent humans.
The issues that work does bring about in my relationships are the same as most other jobs; my weird schedule, my stress levels, my income and my work-life balance all effect how I conduct myself within my relationship. For this I am grateful to have such a patient and passionate partner, who loves me and supports me even when I am stressed to shit and exhausted from night shift. I don’t believe in luck, but he makes me feel like the luckiest person in the world.
Who knows, I might even marry him.