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My Name Is Pearl

23rd January 2022

As we drove up the hill I slid my phone out of my pocket and quietly took the battery out. I’d heard people could track your phone if there was a power source attached to it and I didn’t want my Dad to find out. I was 16 and had been picked up by a 50-something year old man in his white van, on the way to his home somewhere in the midlands, on the promise of £100 for an afternoon with me. 

It’s amazing how easy it is to get into sex work. I utilised dating websites, changed my profile bio to include ‘seeking business’ and almost immediately had offers left, right and centre from men asking me my rates and hours. As a 16 year old who’d previously only encountered pocket money, having offers of £300 for two hours of work felt mind-blowing. Sex wasn’t an issue for me – I’d long been using it to manipulate my way into various relationships – and now I was being paid to do it. I felt like I was winning. 

But as we crawled up the hill in the tired old van I felt like a little child. Heck, I was a child. What was I doing? I didn’t know this man. I’d met him online two nights before and knew only his name – if that even was his name – and now I was offering myself to him in the most vulnerable of ways. Nobody knew where I was. Nobody knew who I was with. Nobody knew if I’d make it home.

Looking back I can see how silly I was. No, not silly, darn right stupid. Fuelled by a stubbornness to make my own way in the world, and a numbness to love I was reckless and unabandoned. My sexual life up until now had been decided by others and now I was taking control of it for myself. I held the power. I had the control.  

Except I didn’t, did I. I fell from one broken sexual experience into another, but because I left the nights with cash in my hand I felt in charge. Hindsight is 20/20 and I realise now that I never was. I was still a little girl terrified of rejection and using the only power I felt I had to make myself seem more assured than I was – sex. 


What started as a dabble in the sex worker world launched me down a career path full of abuse. Rape, assault, sex rings, and grooming were all on the cards and in the next few months I want to lay it all out for you. This is the inside world of MY sex worker life - my memoirs as lady of the night. Breathe it in, let the emotions of my experience sink into your soul and then use it to see that behind every sex worker is a story. We’re more than the bodies we sell for a few coins. We are humans with emotions and struggles, women with fears and strengths, and mostly just trying to get through life the best way we know how. 

It’s been 10 years since I last swapped my body for money and I’m finally ready to share my secrets.