When I was a stripper at the ripe old age of 19, I experienced my first brush with what I would later know as whorearchy. I was in the back dressing room and I over heard a few of the other dancers discussing a new dancer that was hired. She happen to be an outdoor sex worker/escort (which means she ‘walked the streets’, literally). They were calling her names and laughing at her. I didn’t understand why these dancers thought they were better than her. Considering two of them went to Nevada regularly to work in a brothel and the other one was an outcall escort (they come to your office, home, hotel room). I guess it was because she was an outdoor worker. But didn’t they both escort? Yes, yes they did. And she was still beneath them.
Whorearchy basically is a non-existent system in which sex workers rank themselves with other sex workers according to status. I say non-existent because this is bullshit. Plain and simple. A stripper is not any better than an escort. A professional porn star (someone who is hired by major companies to produce adult films) is no better than an amateur porn star (someone who mostly created their own adult films). There is no ranking system even though there are those who would like there to be. If you are involved in selling sex appeal for money or products, you are a sex worker. An escort is not beneath a porn star. A webcam model is not better than a lingerie model. A phone sex operator is not better than a stripper. I have never seen myself better than any other worker. I live by, ‘Real Queens support other Queens’.
Sex work is already an pretty isolated profession. Most sex workers work alone and they don’t have the typical interaction with co-workers that you would get in a more conventional mainstream job. Because of this, I feel it is imperative that sex workers support one another. There is a high rate of depression, anxiety, and other mental health concerns within the sex worker community. Being able to support and uplift other SWs (sex workers) cant really make the difference in the quality of career a person has. Society, as a whole, already looks down upon SWs, we don’t need to look down on ourselves. There are so many ‘levels’ and genres of sex work and I am here to tell you that not any single one is better than another.
I am calling out all sex workers. When you see a SW shaming another sex worker, tell them to stop. Call them out and tell them this isn’t ok to do. Stand up for the SW who is being shamed. Allow them to have a voice to end it and stand in their corner.