This week I had the honour of speaking at With/out Pretend’s event, On Pleasure, where a select group of storytellers told our stories about our relationship to pleasure. This is a written version of the piece I performed.
As a sex writer and sex worker, “pleasure” is my coworker or a tool that I’ve learned how to weld. Whether it be unpacking why exactly why a dildo feels great in the contours of my vagina for a blog post or telling my camera how badly I want it to creampie me for a porn video, the concept of pleasure is something I live within every day. My professional identity is shaped by it – which you could say is pretty unique. Most jobs don’t require you to orgasm, or pretend to orgasm, for other people’s enjoyment.
My sex life (masturbation, partnered sex and all) has always been a huge part of what I perceive as pleasure. It’s why I became part of the sex industry in the first place; I fucking love fucking! So had you asked me to tell you a story three years ago about pleasure, it would have probably have been something about me loving to suck dicks (don’t get me wrong, I still love to do), but today was left wondering “what is pleasure for me?”
Kind of like how my personal is political, my personal is professional. I’ve monetized not only sex acts in front of a camera, but stories about my sex life and relationships through my blog. No joke, this morning I published a sponsored blog post about a breakup I’m going through. Not that I’m mad about that, but in the last year or so I’ve been having a hard time prioritizing sexual pleasure for me as a human vs me as a brand. Self-employed people have a bad work/life balance as it is, but then add in the idea of monetizing my masturbation, and, oh, it gets much worse. Friends, I had one of the most spectacular orgasms last week, and my first thought after I finished was “fuck, I should have got that on camera”.
It’s kind of funny, as sex workers we tell people we’re not selling our bodies, or selling ourselves. Trust, we’re not. No one is getting a piece of us – unless they’re buying, like, underwear, or cum, or something. But sometimes!! It feels like I put so much of my sexual energy or sexual pleasure, out there into the world, and I don’t really keep enough for myself. I’m selling myself, the Brand™️.
This is is the point in the piece where I need to make the disclaimer to any swerfs out there – I do not hate my job, I really love it and I get pleasure from what I do too. All jobs come with aspects you don’t enjoy, and all jobs have the ability to become all-consuming if you let them.
The hustle 24/7 lifestyle can get incredibly exhausting when my pleasure and sex, things that I used to use as downtime & activities for reenergizing, is what I’m marketing. I need to allow myself to have a sense of privacy and to enjoy my sex life without feeling the need to monetize every aspect of it. I deserve that for myself.
So when I was given the big broad topic of “pleasure” as a prompt, I made myself write down things that make me feel pleasure excitement and happiness. Some are work related, some are not but I’d like to read them to you as a way to end this lil speech.
- Getting a fresh set of nails
- The sun and hot weather
- Squirting for myself and not for a camera
- Being creampied by a stern but loving Daddy Dom
- Freshly baked cookies and freshly washed sheets. I’m starting to sound like a milfy Julie Andrews but I’ll keep going.
- Hugging my friends when I see them
- People in my community who tell me and show me they support me.
- Seeing the video sale or tip notifications from my porn sites.
- Missionary sex – fuck whoever told cis men it was boring.
- Lizzo’s new music
- YouTube drama – I can be petty
- Flirting with cute people who make me feel butterflies
- Finding a fresh new show to binge watch
- Looking in the mirror at my fat body
- Putting on makeup when I’m not in a rush
- Not wearing a goddamn bra
- My friend’s successes
- Getting to be surrounded by understanding & loving folks like you all tonight.
That felt good to say.
I love what I do, but sometimes I need to do it for myself.
If you’re in Toronto, I recommend checking out With/out Pretend’s future events, and their collective story zine, the Vault.