My name is Scarlet. I am 20 years old this year, Chinese and not the least conservative. My decent looking outer appearance and petite stature has deceived everyone into thinking that I am mere girl-next- door, no different from the typical college girl that you see when taking public transport.
Of course, I am all of the three, but I am also a sex worker. And a sex worker’s rights organization part timer.
You must be thinking that those are quite some roles to juggle on a daily basis huh? But perhaps like the cliché phrase that many Chinese television dramas enjoy abusing, “the world is a stage, men and women are merely players”, putting on different faces for different situations is a must.
Both my roles as a sex worker and a sex worker’s rights organization are difficult tales to disclose to people. However, mentioning the fact that I am working for a sex worker’s rights organization because of the way that people would react to my chosen occupation in this tiny and conservative country. It never fails to be a conversation starter as to why I work for Project X, the sex worker right’s organization that I work part time for. People are always curious about what a job in a Project X entails to. I would secretly laugh to myself whilst wondering how their reaction would be if I told them that I landed my job in Project X via my ex-agent after the now-defunct escort agency closed down. But after joining Project X after my not-so-short stint in the escorting scene, I genuinely find it a pity to not be able to openly disclose my sex worker identity. I feel this way because stories have power, or so I wish to believe in.
Perhaps, sharing my personal experiences as a sex worker here (albeit anonymously) would enable me to reach out to more sex workers or shed some light in people’s perception of the sex workers in hopes of gaining some form of empathy for this marginalized segment of society.
How Scarlet found the sex trade
The question of “how did you become a prostitute”, a literal question that people would not even bother to embellish with ‘sex worker’ which sounds more pleasant than ‘prostitute’; Happens in nearly every conversation that I have with someone new that I met. Hence, I thought that it would be better to pen it down so I can narrate it out loud for the next person that inquiries about my origin as a sex worker.
Every person who is in the sex industry enters the sex trade for different reasons. Similarities are not uncommon, but everyone has a story of their own when it comes down to this question.
Personally speaking, I do not come from an extremely privileged household. My background as a whole is far from perfect and my academic results are not particularly astounding either. I found myself in a huge student debt that I had to pay off on my own. And, for a nineteen-year young child with insufficient education qualifications to make ends meet and to raise enough funds to pay off the debt was quite the challenge.
The next thing I know, I found myself answering an advertisement online on a job recruitment portal. As cheesy as it might sound, it is one of the dubious and too-good-to- be true jobs that many would avoid or report. After scanning what was written on the advertisement briefly, phrases such as “fast money”, “make over thousands of dollars per night” and “fast money, flexible hours” stood out to me. It was then that I confirmed that it was what I was looking for, an escort recruitment advertisement.
Obviously, my two biggest motivations for joining the sex trade were the money that could be made and the flexible hours that the job provides. Being a student and a part time employee, these two motivations are enough for me to plunge headfirst into the sex industry.
My semi-impulsive plunge into the sex trade was both logical and an emotionally impulsive move in hopes of being able to hasten the process of raising enough money to pay for my school fees. Because of that, I managed to get in contact with the agent and he asked to meet me the day after I submitted my application to become a social escort.
To be continued…. Part two available here.
Scarlet Bunnie is a Singaporean escort and a part-time staff of Project X. She loves to sleep, make money, and explore different aspects of the sex industry. She shares her thoughts and ramblings on Twitter, and you can follow her @scarletbunnie.