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January 28th, 2007

A Lackluster Coming Out

Recently I was doing some volunteer work and unexpectedly came out to one of the other volunteers. We were working together on a task and were making small talk. He was an older man and very timid. At first I thought it was me. I can at times be overly chatty. Soon I realized this was his general nature. He acted shy and slightly nervous to everyone he encountered. Ironic we were paired up for the project I mused.

I asked if he lived in the area and he said he and his wife had a house nearby. This led to conversation about his work. When people start talking about their jobs I start mentally reviewing my choices. When the conversation turns to what I do I have several answers I could go with. In the past I’ve come up with vague responses to working on the phone to being a counselor to being a relationship therapist. I try not to lie about my work and think of it as revealing parts of the truth.

I knew several other volunteers were aware I was a pso. This man did not. As I knew he would, he asked what I did. I told him. He looked at me with a blank expression. Then he asked again. I answered the same. I shrugged my shoulders and made a casual comment about setting my own hours. Then I went back to our shared task. He fumbled over some basic questions about the job and seemed genuinely confused when I explained the concept.

We didn’t dwell on the topic long and soon were engrossed about the volunteer project we were working on. He didn’t treat me different in any way. The entire encounter was casual, almost indifferent. I’m used to people expressing surprise and sometimes delight when I tell them. For those that disapprove even their reactions are animated. To have such a laissez faire reaction is new to me. In a way it was a pleasant surprise. What if one day saying “I’m a sex worker” is met with the same casual acceptance as “I’m a bus driver” or “I’m a physical therapist”. Will it mean we’ve gained widespread acceptance if people are no longer shocked by our work?

Posted by Vixen in PSO Confessions

This entry was posted on Sunday, January 28th, 2007 at 11:10 pm and is filed under PSO Confessions. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

4 Responses to “A Lackluster Coming Out”

  1. The Fury says:

    And then he’ll proposition you! LOL I think it has gained more acceptance, but he’s from the older set so he was probably too much of a gentleman to act shocked.

  2. Vixen says:

    Fury-No doubt! hehe

  3. tom paine says:

    I have found that saying as little about my private life as possible helps to keep questions to a minimum. The problem with telling folks you’re a pso is that it sets off all sorts of fantasies about you. And given your lovely avatar, who wouldn’t be salaciously aroused?

  4. Vixen says:

    Tom-Thanks, you’re a sweetie.

    As for who to tell and who not to tell that is an ongoing debate I have with myself. On one hand I like my anonymity. On the other hand, if more sex workers were out of the closet perhaps we’d get more respect. It’s a delicate balance that’s for certain.

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