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Feminspire | April 23, 2014

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Thoughts From a Craigslist Underwear Girl

Thoughts From a Craigslist Underwear Girl

Last year, I found myself unemployed and unable to pay my bills. I was going without heat in the middle of winter, was eating raw ramen so as not to raise the electricity bill by cooking, and was on the verge of losing my apartment. I couldn’t find a job, a common problem the past few years, and was quickly slipping into a deep depression. I’d been homeless before, having lived out of my car for nearly 6 months, and going back to that would have destroyed me. I was desperate for money.

During my breaks between classes at my university, I started capitalizing on the free internet by scouring Google for ideas on making money quickly. There were the obvious ones, like selling my laptop and other non-essential electronics, but those were one-time deals and I’d find myself in the same situation again shortly after, only this time with no laptop to sell.

One day, while perusing Craigslist for a job for the 500th time, I came across an ad someone had posted asking for used underwear. They were willing to pay $50 per pair. I didn’t even bother to think about it. I emailed them immediately and around 8 PM that night, I had $500 in my wallet to pay my rent with.

A year later, I finally have a job with steady income and enough money to pay my bills with, but I still sell my underwear for extra cash. I have no reason to stop. I literally have to do nothing except wear underwear and get a little wet. I sell pairs for $50 apiece and buy 5 more pairs for $20, and the thought of a stranger getting off to the smell of my underwear turns me on like you wouldn’t even believe. The best part is that I’m the boss of the deal, and I control the entire thing. I decide if we meet, when we meet, where we meet, and how many pairs they get, and if anyone tries to fuck with me I cut them off. I deal with no bullshit. It’s really empowering to me.

I love the sense of girl power that selling my underwear and being involved in the sex industry gives me. People pay me cash to embrace my sexuality. I will admit that at first I was uncomfortable getting into it; as an outsider, I’d always thought critically of raunch culture and exploitation of women in the sex industry. But gaining an insider view has opened up to me the many ways that sex work empowers us. There are, of course, still reasons to view it with a critical eye – but it is much more apparent to me now that there are huge benefits for women in the sex industry.

Our larger society tends to view sex workers in all different areas of the industry as lesser beings, as desperate whores with no skills who are going nowhere in life, mostly because we view sexuality as immoral, especially women’s sexuality. Men are expected to be sexual, even hypersexual, and are applauded for it. But when women exhibit the same sexuality, and start having sex for pleasure and not just for reproduction, it become as an offensive subject, something that should never be talked about. Twice I’ve had to defend myself against sexual assault with pepper spray, but when I approached police about the incidents, they became very quiet and told me that there was either nothing they could do, or that it was my fault for being too “suggestive” in selling my scent.

In the end, though, I see no shame in how I make my extra cash. Sexuality should not be unmentionable; it’s just basic human biology. If I can make money off of something as simple as wearing underwear, sliding down a pole, or having sex, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t if I enjoy it. People will always find a reason to judge one another, but when it comes down to it, how I pay my bills is my own business and I’m not going to stop.

Submitted by an anonymous reader