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I’m honestly so broke.”In interviews, young women and men involved in sex work—not professionals forced into the life, but amateurs, kids—in Austin, New York, and Los Angeles, talked mostly about needing money.
They were squeezed by college tuition, crushed by student loans and the high cost of living.
“People don’t call it ‘prostitution’ anymore,” says Caitlin, 20, a college student in Montreal. Some girls get very rigid about it, like ‘This is a woman’s choice.’ ”“Is Prostitution Just Another Job?
They ask questions: “How do you go about getting started in sex work?
Some beat people up in professional “dungeons”; others did “scat play,” involving sex with feces.
They did what they felt they had to do to pay their bills. And no, that isn’t a rhetorical question.‘It just seemed so normal, like no big deal,” says Alisa, 21, one night at Nobu in Los Angeles, a place she’s been with her daddies.
“Now people just go on Rent Men,” says Christopher.
As the debate over whether the United States should decriminalize sex work intensifies, prostitution has quietly gone mainstream among many young people, seen as a viable option in an impossible economy and legitimized by a wave of feminism that interprets sexualization as empowering.