A blog for those walking away from a life of sex work and for
the families of those not fortunate enough to walk away.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

My interview with Deborah Cooper on Ask A Heartbeat Blogtalk Radio went very well. Here is the link if you would like to listen.


Friday, October 1, 2010

Tomorrow night at 7 p.m. Pacific time I'll be a guest on the talk radio show title Human Trafficking: Recognizing a Predator--Protecting Your Daughter.

Here is the URL for the site. Listen and call in. We'll be glad to hear from you.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Words Matter

Please join me in my letter writing campaign. Words do matter.

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
3000 W. Alameda Avenue
Burbank, CA 91523

Dear Jay:

I watched your show for years but I can no longer do so. Why? Because words matter, Jay. Without fail, several times a week, you refer to women in the sex industry as “whores” or “hookers.”

Jay, did you know that most women, especially in lesser-developed nations, are sold into the sex industry, often by their own relatives? Did you know that right now, in India and probably many other counties, children as young as three are gang raped for profit and infected with HIV? That in the United States, the average age of entry into prostitution is reportedly 13? That one study in Colorado found that prostitutes die at a crude mortality rate of 391 per 100,000 in comparison with non-sex workers, where the standardized mortality for the general population during this same time frame was 1.9 per 100,000? That every prostitute is someone’s son, daughter, sister, brother or mother?

Jay, using words like “hooker” and “whore” further desensitizes people who barely care when prostitutes die locked up in cages, are tortured, thrown from cars or are left dead near a river. Getting a cheap laugh at the expense of these victims, and yes, they are victims, is pathetic. I really hope you are better than that.

Please take time to educate yourself on the reality of the sex industry. If you took a few hours out of your life to learn the realities of the sex industry in this country and many others, I almost guarantee you would stop throwing those terms around. There is enough pain and suffering in the world without you casually contributing to it with your callous disregard for these victims.

Please refrain from using dehumanizing terms to refer to women and men, who by large numbers, have had few options in their lives.

Sincerely,

Watch this deeply moving video about sex trafficking in India

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Thoughtful article on unintended consequences of prostitution laws.

This article in the Vancouver Sun by Peter McKnight takes a thoughtful look at how laws aimed at eradicating prostitution often have unintended consequences.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Interventions

When is it time to intervene when your loved one is in the sex industry? Whether it is your daughter who is stripping, you suspect your sister is a "weekend warrior" earning a little extra money while still working her regular job, or another person close to you who doesn't hide the fact that he sells his body, you owe it to that person to talk to them about their choices.

I came of age in a "do your own thing" generation. I believed that prostitution was a victimless crime. This blog refuses to wade into the debate of the legal efforts to repress prostitution. But in reality, the biggest victims of the sex industry are the sex workers themselves.

There are very few interventionists available to help you. I am currently developing a list of  trained and experienced interventionists who can assist, so stop back soon. We have resources available for you. In the meantime, simply taking the time to talk to your loved one about their lifestyle may open the door to a dialogue. Denial is a powerful tool, but ultimately, talking through the lies and the denial may just save your loved one's life.



Sunday, July 18, 2010

Resource in Vancouver, BC for survivors

If you are in the Pacific Northwest, I've found a new resource, the WISH Drop In Centre Society. Visit the link here.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I apologize for my silence

I have been very busy professionally, but exciting things are afoot. Soon, Because She Matters will move to its own website. I'll continue the blog and hope to be able to devote more time to it in the near future.

I'll will be starting a meeting called Because She Matters for the families of those who are or were prostituted. There are no support groups for family members currently. For now, post a comment and I'll try to get back to you if you have questions.

In Phoenix, we have several Prostitutes Anonymous meetings. So for those of you who are trying to exit the industry or just need a place to go where others have been through what you have been through, contact us via email and we'll give you the location of these meetings. There are some meetings in different cities or you can begin one yourself.

The need for this work is tremendous. In September I'll be getting training in the intervention model in addictions. While I do not believe that prostitutes, except perhaps a few, are sex addicts, most have the issue of addiction that either preceded or came about as a result of their sex work. I know this: if my parents had the tools that parents today have with intervention models, I might have been saved from over a decade of terror. They just didn't know what to do. I know there are thousands of family members who know their loved ones are prostituting but do not know what to do to try to help. Intervention works for many, many addicts and I believe it can work for sex workers.

Keep visiting and I'll keep you up to date. Thank you to those of you who posted comments. Keep posting. I am sorry to abandon you for so long, but some other professional obligations took precedence. With recovery brings the need to make a living 9 to 5.

Have a blessed day.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Brief sabbatical

Thank you for your patience as I regroup. I am currently working on other projects, but hope to be back up and functional in a few weeks. Until then, take care.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

New support group for those with loved ones in the sex industry

In a few months, we'll be starting a support group in Phoenix to assist those who children, spouses and relatives are in the sex industry. Traditionally, there has been little support for those who struggle with the feelings surrounding watching their loved ones work in the sex industry.

Again, this blog takes no political stance on whether sex work is right or wrong or should continue to be further criminalized. We only know that many sex workers are in the industry by force and many would leave the industry if they had other ways to support themselves or could stop using drugs.

What we do here is try to provide support, not only for the sex worker who wants to leave the industry, but for the loved ones of sex workers who have few options to turn to regarding their own powerlessness and helplessness.

Check back, because we'll be posting the location in central Phoenix soon. Until then, be safe and know that you are not alone.