Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Less than human

I find it extra-ordinary than men can quite casually make use of prostitutes, many of whom are in the grip of some personal problem that can only be worsened by having to perform constant sexual acts they aren't enjoying.

They are more than likely weighed down by mental health issues, emotional problems, drug addiction or the scars of childhood sexual abuse, but these burdens are of little interest to the customers whose only goal is instant pleasure.

Clearly it's seen first and foremost as a simple financial transaction much the same as buying a loaf of bread or a bottle of shampoo, and the personal well-being of the person giving the service is of scant concern.

I really don't understand how a man can have such an impersonal and functional attitude, can so easily and callously objectify another human being.

It also amazes me that men can so happily visit prostitutes but hide it from their wife or girlfriend, knowing full well how horrified she would be if she found out. They are able to lead a kind of double life of everyday respectability alongside a seedy other self.

I've never been to a prostitute in my life. In my younger days I was totally unaware of the reality of prostitution. It was something that was joked about, Carry-On style, as if it was some sort of light-hearted frolic. At that time I wouldn't have indulged simply because it seemed a bit vulgar. Nowadays of course, having had my eyes opened, I wouldn't contemplate it because of the intrinsic dehumanising that's involved.

Also I don't have that compulsive sexual urge that men who use prostitutes claim to be in thrall to. Good grief, isn't your regular partner enough for you? I'm not sure I believe in that sexual compulsion anyway. Men love to fall back on it, but it's such a convenient excuse for bad behaviour.

The oldest profession in the world? Nothing professional about it. It's just emotional and physical abuse dressed up as human need.

29 comments:

Bijoux said...

We are pretty far removed from it here, unless driving through a bad part of an urban area or visiting Nevada!

Nick said...

Bijoux: Ha, you'd be surprised! Prostitutes turn up in the most unlikely places!

susie said...

I've lived a sheltered life... I've seen them on TV!

Wisewebwoman said...

I`ve known exited prostitutes and the stories they tell are beyond appalling.

The most dehumanizing `trade` on the planet. females as commodities to be bartered and sold with brokers (pimps) making all the money.

XO
WWW

Helen Devries said...

Have you seen news of the trial in Lille involving Strauss-Kahn?
Women refers to as the herd. the material...and treated as meat on the hoof...and he, bigwig, walks free....Such an indictment of French moneyed life...

Nick said...

Susie: You've probably seen plenty on the streets without knowing what they did for a living.

www: Indeed, commodities to be bought and sold. And nowadays often the helpless victims of sex trafficking.

Nick said...

Helen: It was Dominique Strauss-Kahn who got me thinking about the subject. He is beyond disgusting. As you say, the constant references to meat, material, livestock etc suggest utter hatred of women. As for his claim that he had no idea all the women magically at his beck and call were prostitutes - so what were they? Window cleaners?

Jenny Woolf said...

I suppose it is always difficult to know how strong other peoples urges are. I can't help feeling that if you give into them all the time, though, they just become stronger. I think the idea of self indulgence is pushed all the time by advertisers and some people seem to believe that it is in some way harmful to themselves not to reward themselves all the time or get what they want. I mean I think they really believe they SHOULD if they can.

John Gray said...

I understand prostitution......men seperate sex from other emotions to many it's a simple act, uncomplicated from morals and ethics.....
Do I agree with it?
That's a knotty question......I think the thought of an empowered woman being in charge ipf her own destiny and money within the sex worker field does occur
But I wonder how rare it is

Dave Martin said...

Never been tempted by the idea of doing it with a prostitute. Although I lack any first hand knowledge of the 'industry', I've heard enough stories about the things that go on and could never endorse it.
For me, sex has to be coupled with emotional attachment - otherwise one might just as well take matters in hand....

kylie said...

"Nothing professional about it"

You just took away their last shred of dignity. Prostitutes are like every other service provider in that they have to keep some kind of reputation....and that takes a degree of professionalism.

Nick said...

Jenny: Yes, I think a lot of men have strong sexual urges, but is that just because they're endlessly told that men are like that? And even if they do have strong sexual urges, does that entitle them to expect already traumatized women to satisfy them?

John: I think the idea of an empowered woman in charge of her own destiny is mainly just that - an idea. In reality the vast majority feel trapped and humiliated.

Nick said...

Dave: I don't think sex has to go with emotional attachment necessarily. It can be enjoyed for its own sake, even with complete strangers.

Kylie: I don't agree they're like any other service provider. This is a particularly soulless and exploitative business. It's a job inherently devoid of any dignity whatever. Trying to dignify it is like trying to dignify badger-baiting or paté de foie gras.

Dave Martin said...

Each to their own Nick - I know there must be plenty of men who're able to separate the two things, but I'm not one of them.

Nick said...

Dave: Personally, I'm not able to separate them either. I've never had casual sex with anyone.

Cheerful Monk said...

Hmm. I don't know if it exists in our small town or not. Drug use is a much bigger problem, I think.

Nick said...

Jean: And if there are any prostitutes in your town (which is likely), some of them could well be drug users funding their habit.

Keith Smith said...

Recently I saw a TV interview with a prostitute, her face blanked out of course, where the interviewer asked her why she became a "sex worker". Her reply surprised me, she said she enjoyed it and wouldn't change it for the world, and she had given up her 9-5 job to have more time for it. I have never used a prostitute, because paying for sex just doesn't seem right.

Nick said...

Keith: I find that hard to believe, but if that's what she says.... She must have somehow arranged it that she's in total control and avoids the usual humiliations.

kylie said...

i didnt say they are like every service provider, i said (in different words) give them credit for the professionalism they are obliged to display. because they do have professional standards

Nick said...

Hey Kylie, it's hard to see how the sex act could be done "professionally". Let me think. All major credit cards accepted? A wide range of fetishes catered for? A deluxe four poster bed? I know I'm being a bit facetious, but you see the point I'm making....

Rummuser said...

I am surprised that Ursula has not yet commented. Particularly so after her latest blog post on whores.

This is a sociological problem throughout the world and as long as the market exists, someone will find a way to cater to that demand. Stories like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotherham_child_sexual_exploitation_scandal can be found all over the world as traffickers know exactly how to find the raw material which is all that the girls are for them.

I don't have an answer to the problem, but it is a very serious one alright.

Nick said...

Ramana: Much more than a sociological problem, first and foremost a humanitarian problem. Unfortunately yes, as long as the market exists, there will be prostitutes. And yes also, for the men concerned the women are not much more than raw material.

I think the only ultimate answer is bringing up men to respect women and not to use them as receptacles for their sexual release. But that would be a Herculean task given the entrenched misogyny in male culture.

Liz Hinds said...

A quote from a sex worker at a recent conference.
"One man asked me if he could be violent whilst having sex. I agreed. It wasn’t mild. He battered me – I felt obliged to let him continue."

Liz Hinds said...

And in response to John Grey's comment another quote:
"I’ve never met anybody who goes into it business-minded – it’s always been because of some crisis in their life – drugs, family breakdown, homelessness."

Nick said...

Liz: Quite shocking. And then of course there's all the unasked-for violence (both physical and emotional) that you have to cope with.

The idea that it's some kind of vocational choice is absurd. As you say, it's usually some personal crisis that pushes a woman into it.

Secret Agent Woman said...

I've worked with prostitutes and strippers - they are ALL from abuse histories. And all have viewed the men who visit them with contempt. As they should.

For myself, I could never have a serious relationship with a man who had ever used a prostitute. Or gone to a strip club. It would tell me all I needed to know about how little respect he had for women.

Nick said...

Agent: Well, you ought to know, given your particular job. That confirms what I suspected - all abused and all loathing the customers.

I agree with you, I could never respect a man who goes for prostitutes or strippers. How could he possibly have a normal relationship with a woman? And even as another man, I would be disgusted.

Nick said...

Of course men who visit prostitutes usually keep it to themselves, so nobody else is aware of it. For all I know, half the men I come across are using prostitutes.