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We have plenty of older women dating younger men, and vice versa. In others, there is a list of workers' earnings displayed for all to see, with the name of the week's highest earner placed on the top each week.

If a woman's name consistently appears on the bottom she is fired. Intended to motivate ambition in individuals in a spirit of "fair" competition, it promotes envy, suspicion and lack of confidence. Resentment among the workers in this kind of atmosphere is high, and women have pointed out that rather than a "fair" arrangement, high earning power depends on a number of factors other than an individual's ability, personality and looks.

It depends on such factors as one's shift night workers tend to do better than day workers , one's personal commitments restricting her to daytime work, the inconsistency of client turnover, and favouritism with a boss. A system intending to increase business, often actually has the reverse effect with a rapid turnover of resentful women.

Relations between workers and management varies considerably from parlour to parlour. The assumption that a female boss in a female parlour is a better arrangement than a male boss is not always correct.

Some men in charge are considerate towards their staff, and some women in charge act like tyrants. About half of the parlours are managed by men and about half by women although in many instances the owner is a man , but the problems that most often occur between a boss and a worker are more often due to poor industrial relations than unequal gender relations. There are, of course, instances where male bosses sexually harass their staff and some expect to sleep with new workers to "try them out".

But, some workers claim to prefer male bosses because they are easier to manipulate than a female boss. Most workers, though, express a preference for a female boss, regardless of how tyrannical she might be, because female bosses are more likely to have a greater concern for health and safety in the workplace. Women managers will appreciate the need for mandatory condom use in a parlour more than men in charge, who, like the client believe that condoms are a barrier to satisfactory sex.

Female bosses are also more likely to have empathy for a worker suffering menstrual tension and not assume it to be a ploy for avoiding work, as some men are likely to do. On the other hand, female bosses are more likely to detect a sham when it occurs. The crux of the tension in industrial relations in the brothel trade is linked to a conflict of interests. The boss is motivated by profit; the worker by personal feelings. Thus, the boss expects the worker to see every client, unless he is diseased or violent, and is not prepared to accept her reluctance on grounds of physical repulsion or her fatigue.

Some bosses believe their workers are basically lazy, and even rejecting a client under suspicion of infection is considered an excuse to avoid work. Seeking a second opinion on a client's state of health serves two purposes: A client sitting too long in a waiting room is assumed by some bosses to be one of the worker's boyfriends hanging around or a drug dealer. They want clients processed in a parlour like an assembly line, with their workers tirelessly doing the processing like machines.

The human factor of weariness, and inability to function varying from individual to individual after a given time, and the psychological limitations to repetition are rarely considered in the quest for profit.

When workers complain of overwork, a boss might put on more staff, which then increases competition between workers, builds up staff tensions, and contributes to resentment among workers for the inevitable lowering of income.

Unlike other industries, prostitutes have no union or industrial arbitration to turn to when they feel dealt with unfairly. Like any other work situation the presence of a boss in a parlour increases tension and decreases efficiency. Any worker who spends too long in a room with a client or appears to be too nice to a customer, is often suspected of making private arrangements either to get extra money from the client and thereby short-change the boss, or to see the client outside and thereby deprive the boss of regular income.

The problems of the brothel are often not so much related to police harassment, customer aggression or prying officials, but more usually due to the day-to-day administration of the place. The ultimate solution for most Australian prostitutes in Sydney when they feel they are being exploited, harassed and abused is to move to another parlour where the conditions are more satisfactory. But that is often impossible for the immigrant prostitute, especially if she is in this country illegally.

Most of the immigrant prostitutes are Thai, but large numbers also come from Cambodia, the Philippines or China. Even with a three or six-month visa it does not permit them to work in Australia. But many continue to stay and work in Australia after their visas expire, which means they become illegal aliens and as such are targeted by federal immigration officers. These women are often caught in an economic dilemma.

Most have borrowed heavily from opportunistic agents in their own countries to travel here. These agents are operating an illegal trafficking business and the fees they offer to accrued interest for arranging passage are highly inflated. Since many of the women come from poverty stricken families, and they believe Australians to be extremely wealthy, they grasp the opportunity to work in Australia as prostitutes in the firm belief that they will pay off the debt well before their visas expire and have ample cash to send back to their families.

Invariably, they not only fail to do so but often accrue a further debt in order to pay the first and end up on a treadmill of prostitution and debt peonage. Arrangements for a working venue are usually made in advance by the foreign agents through contacts in Australia, so that the Thai woman with no knowledge of English will be taken to a parlour soon after she arrives. Most but not all of the brothels receiving the immigrant prostitutes are the "Asian" parlours, so-called because of a decor of pagoda gables, rice-paper lanterns, Chinese screens, prints and other objects, and the Buddist shrines used as altars for prayers and offerings by the women.

Most of the clientele are South-East Asian men resident in Australia, with the occasional overseas visitor and Australian male looking for an "exotic" experience. Because most of the workers are in similar circumstances, these parlours act as a cultural refuge in an alien and sometimes hostile world beyond. Faced with the reality of a much smaller income than anticipated, many of these women are forced to work double shifts, or 16 hours a day, seven days a week, in an effort to rid themselves of their debts and send relief back to their families.

Thus, it is not whips, chains or locked rooms keeping these women tied to a ceaseless life of commercial sex but debt, poverty and a genuine fear for their safety if they return to their homelands still owing the traffickers. Very different is the situation in the bondage parlours. The women who work in these places are among the most assertive and independent in the sex industry.

As Marie put it: Few other sex workers have the same amount of control over their working environment as the bondage mistresses. Bosses often do not interfere with the way they conduct their work, because in some instances the boss does not understand sadomasochism and fantasy and feels more comfortable keeping his or her distance.

In the case of the ex-mistress who is a boss, she understands that this kind of work is a highly personal experience in which the mistress achieves the most efficient business if left to her own devices.

Experienced mistress Fatale explains her situation:. I like working in a dungeon where it is quiet and I have full control over the environment.

I put on music which I know will heighten the experience. I am conscious of every move I do, and it is an exercise in all my skills. The compatibility with her working environment can be explained as being an extension of her private preferred home environment:. I feel comfortable in the dungeon. It's like the way I live at home, in total darkness, like a cave, and this is how I am. My home is like a dungeon and a dungeon is like my home, so I am going from one comfortable environment to another as I go from home to work.

To enter a bondage parlour is like passing into another world; a world of science fiction, of fairy tale, or Disneyland, or of a Hollywood set for a Gothic horror movie.

The lighting is dim, reminding one of gaslight, and the hallway walls are festooned with chains, whips and graphic images of torture and pain. The dungeon is the centre piece of this world; a large room painted black and red, with racks, torture wheels, ceiling harnesses, a complete set of whips and canes of every imaginable type on display, and leather suits for confining movement, like the ancient straight jackets of medieval torture chambers.

But the dungeon is not the only room in the house for client fantasies. For those with transvestite fantasies there is a "tranny" room, by contrast well-lit, and decorated with fluffy, frilly ultra-feminine dresses, rows of over sized stiletto-heeled shoes, and a dressing table that would make a film star envious.

There is also a medical room, equipped with an operating table, charts and pictures of male and female anatomy on the walls, and every conceivable cutting, slicing, pulling, grasping surgical instrument available. Water sports with enemas and urinal pans are usually conducted in this room too. Then there are schoolrooms, baby rooms, kindergartens, the variation from house to house is endless.

Like most parlours, bondage houses have a "girl's room" where the women can relax between sessions, adjust make-up, hair and clothing, and chat about the last client. Where most prostitutes in other parlours change into conventional garments in this room at the start of a shift, mistresses will be stepping into rubber outfits, zipping up studded leather garments, bat-suits, nurses, teachers or infant costumes ready for a day's work.

According to brothel workers, working in a parlour has one distinct advantage over working the streets: For a lonely woman, working in a parlour can offer an opportunity for regular contact with other women and even for striking up friendships.

Cameraderies between brothel workers are not unusual because of the ample time to communicate with one another between visits by clients, especially since they have shared experiences at work, regardless of their individual backgrounds. There is less opportunity for this on the street, and whatever bonds form among streetwalkers these tend to be more often related to the after hours common experiences of scoring from the same dealers and using drugs together.

But brothel workers also express some disadvantages to working in a parlour. High among these are the restricted working hours, splitting half the takings with the house, and the imbalance of power with the boss in command dictating working conditions.

Another common complaint, especially where workers are not communicative, is boredom, sitting around waiting for the next client. Some workers blame their high level of smoking and drinking on this. For avid readers and students filling in time with an assignment, this is less of a problem, and may even be an advantage. But for some women, the parlour can be a lonely, tedious, stultifying environment relieved only by the occasional session with a client.

Where intra-staff relations or relations between staff and management are strained, the confined space of the parlour can intensify disharmony and alienation, and a petty disagreement might trigger off months of tension and exacerbate an already explosive situation. While this sort of situation can arise in any workplace, in a brothel, where there is an atmosphere of sexual tension, anxieties about clients, perhaps anxieties about one's own role, and the constant fear of public exposure, strained industrial or staff relations will exaggerate events to such a level that resolution becomes impossible.

This kind of situation can encourage an ex-streetwalker, who may have left the streets because of the daily hassles of visible prostitution, to return to the free-ranging life of street soliciting. Escort work also takes place in a brothel which offers house or hotel calls. An available brothel worker will be sent by taxi or hired driver to the place designated by the client over the phone. It works much the same way for escorts attached to an agency independent of the brothel trade.

I would phone up and tell them I would be on call that night. Then I got dressed ready to go out, and sat home waiting for the phone to ring. I would catch a cab to the hotel, meet the client in the bar, fill in the Bankcard or take the money, phone through to the office to tell them I've arrived, have a drink with the client and go out or up to his room. Most of the work was fairly chatty, chatting about his business or silly small talk, do the job in his room, and then phone through after it to let them know I've finished.

Escort work can sound glamorous and exciting, especially with a client with a high public profile. But it can also be the most dangerous of all prostitution work, as Zoe points out:. The job risk is much higher than in parlours. You are very vulnerable in the client's room and have no control over the situation, which can be pretty frightening if things get nasty. You always let the client know that you have to phone the office before and after the job so that he is aware that you are being guarded.

If you haven't phoned in an hour after you've told the office you've arrived when you are booked for an hour job, presumably they would send someone out looking for you.

But meantime you could be dead. What is referred to as "private prostitution" in Sydney is the equivalent to the work of the American "call girl". This is the most clandestine operation of the "professional" forms of prostitution. The most basic example is one or two women in a rented flat answering phone calls from clients thus, the term "call girl" and making appointments to see them in the flat.

The number of women involved in one such business can be as high as four or five. There are also situations where a person rents an apartment or house and hires a few women as "call girls". The owner-manager might take all incoming calls and arrange the appointments. Although this kind of arrangement has all the earmarks of privacy and exclusivity, and certainly no one is seen without an appointment, in structure it is more like a mini-parlour then an independent "call girl" business.

In October I estimated there were some 76 "private prostitution" businesses see p. To gain an impression of numbers of private operations the advertisements in two major weekly publishing outlets for prostitute advertisers, viz. Under the column heading of "Home Entertainments" in Naughty Sydney were 46 entries; but after eliminating all duplicate phone numbers the total left was 38 businesses. Under the column heading of "Escort Services" in Naughty Sydney were 62 entries; but after eliminating all duplicate phone numbers and the obvious parlour advertisements the total left was 44 businesses.

Under the column heading of "Personal" in Wentworth Courier were entries, but excluding those for "straight" massage, male escorts, "call boys" and obvious parlours, the total left was businesses. Consideration, however, should be given to the probability of some businesses with two or more phone numbers which are impossible to determine by looking at the entries. It is likely that, if known, the elimination of these would reduce the total quite significantly.

This estimation does not necessarily mean that the number of "call girls" has doubled, but, applying the "rule of thumb" approach of , and comparing this with the decline in numbers of parlours, there does seem to be some correlation between the decrease in one and the increase in the other. Ignoring probable discrepancies due to some businesses with two or more telephone numbers, and what appears to be a much higher ratio of single workers in than in , the calculated average of two workers per business decided on in the estimates will give us a total of women, compared to only in Since as many as 10 parlours have closed between and , it might be argued that more "call girls" in represents the shift of previous parlour workers into private operations.

Such a calculation, however, especially without knowledge of actual individuals involved in this surmised relocation, should be treated with caution, and used as a guide to possible trends only. Can this mean that "private prostitution" has become more attractive to those "professional" prostitutes as business in general declines in the sex industry? Private prostitution depends solely on advertisements for recruiting business. The amount of new business acquired through word of mouth is almost negligible and certainly not sufficient to maintain a business.

The trick to advertising prostitution is not to be blatant so as to attract the law prohibiting the advertisement of commercial sex, yet to make it obvious to the male reader what the advertiser intends. This can be done without mentioning sexual services which also contravenes the obscene publication law nor prices because the implications are potent enough for the interested parties.

Advertising prostitution is highly competitive and for the "call girl" totally dependent on it she has to offer a "personal service" in order to compete with the big parlours, and she must individualise her advertisement to attract the potential client searching for his special sexual fantasy in order to compete with other "call girls".

The result is often highly imaginative text, coupled with wit and a childish prattle which seems to accompany the fantasies of male sexuality. Some advertisements pander to male fantasies for exotica, others to coquettishness, and yet others to a kind of adolescent or infantile sex romp. A few examples of the text of these advertisements will suffice to illustrate the point:.

Oriental Delights Excitingly different International ladies of your choice. Try our new Spanish and Indonesian delight. Mediterranean Magic New to Sydney, leggy attractive lady, black hair, fair skin and very, very friendly.

Black is Beautiful So too is Santina Carribean Beauty Dark hair, dark skin with fabulous body and a soft, caring touch. Leeza is sweet and serene but will make your desires just sizzle with satisfaction. She adores dressing up and will fantasise beyond your wildest dreams.

I am a sophisticated intelligent well-bred well spoken lady offering an opportunity for discreet executive to experience The initial contact with the client is by the phone. He may be enquiring about prices, or just trying to find out if the woman on the other end sounds like his fantasy or suits his personality.

It is this moment when the "call girl" needs to exercise all her skills at salesmanship, by coming across as pleasant, sexy and nice to be with, without giving too much away.

After all, it might be a policeman on the other end and mentioning sex and prices could be construed as advertising.

The most successful "call girls" are those with a pleasant disposition on the phone, a sense of wit and alluring. While the advertisement might arouse a man's interest, the phone conversation has to make the woman irresistible because even after making an appointment some men fail to keep it.

Many clients ring a number of "call girls" and then decide which they most like the sound of. The "call girl" also needs to be skilful in evaluating her caller by his tone, expression and enquiries in case she invites a dangerous man to her place. But once this is done to her satisfaction and an appointment is made, the next step is to try to develop the new client into a regular. The business of the "call girl" turns over at a much slower rate than in a brothel, so she needs to cultivate a higher ratio of regular clientele.

Men who prefer visiting a "call girl" to visiting a brothel are usually seeking more than sex; they are often looking for a female friend, companion or mistress. The "call girl" recognises this and acts the pseudo-mistress with her regular clients, so that she might have a number of mini-relationships going at the same time.

The emotional strain of keeping such pretence going is much more draining than the brothel worker who sees her clients for the express purpose of sexually satisfying them. Although some clients in brothels do develop an attachment for certain women and this adds a strain in the relationship for the workers, the "call girl", from the first visit when the man arrives nervous and uncertain, must appear calm and amicable towards him even though she too might be secretly anxious, and thereafter as he becomes a weekly regular she has to maintain an intense level of intimacy with him.

And, while she might be the only woman he has such intimacy with, she is on the same terms with as many as a dozen or more men. The streetwalker who refers to the "call girl" as a "lazy flatbacker" obviously has never been in her situation.

There are certain distinct advantages to the working life of the "call girl". Not the least of these, so far as she is concerned, is the anonymity of the work. Whereas the streetwalker is in public view for all to see, and the brothel worker is occasionally discovered by a man known to her, or worse, a member of her close family like the Canberra parlour worker whose father walked into her workplace as a client , the "call girl" through the expediency of "sussing" a caller out on the telephone can usually detect anyone known to her.

In any case, she can always spot a man who has made an appointment through the "peep-hole" in the door. Since much of their work is carried out in the daytime, a mother of young children can work as a "call girl" between say 10 a.

She does not have to abide by a roster system. The chief disadvantage to working as an independent "call girl", especially if a woman decides to work alone, is the risk of violence. In spite of great skills at detecting a maniac on the phone a misjudgment sometimes occurs, and then the woman has to call upon all her powers of persuasion and remain calm in a potentially deadly situation if she is to escape injury. If this fails the results are sometimes fatal. The history of prostitution is filled with tragic situations when a woman is alone with a crazed misogynist, like Julie Plater, who was bashed to death on Christmas Eve, , when she saw a man alone in a parlour in Harris Park, or of the horrifying death of the Kings Cross worker who saw a man alone and died with a leg of a chair shoved into her eye and brain.

The heavy dependence upon advertisements is another distinct disadvantage of running a private operation. If a newspaper in which an advertisement appears regularly suddenly decides to cease taking advertisements from prostitutes or deletes the "personal" column a "call girl's" business is drastically affected immediately.

When the Manly Daily stopped running its "personal column" in the number of private operations on the North Shore rapidly declined almost overnight although when another printed outlet was found some re-opened. These then are the main types of prostitution carried out by "professional" prostitutes in Sydney.

As stated at the beginning of this Section they do not differ much from similar operations in other western cities, and if they do differ noticeably it is usually in degree rather than kind. The famous "window" prostitution in Amsterdam, for instance, is not unlike the east Sydney brothels, except the Dutch prostitute sits behind a house window while the Sydney worker stands in a doorway. The women's attire, the male cruising, the bargaining, and closing curtains or door when busy are basically the same; the minor differences are but variations on a theme.

Perhaps the aspect of prostitution which most fascinates many people is why women enter the sex industry in the first place. Many researchers have attempted to answer this by providing psychological motives from events in childhood or early adolescence. But as we have seen, there have been so many conflicting opinions on the subject that little has been gained in this line of investigation.

Jennifer James found early negative sexual experiences as a possible predetermining factor for her street and juvenile samples. In the previous Chapter, the present study indicates an early coital experience as a possible predisposing motive for women entering prostitution at a later date, based on a more representative sample of sex workers, and, unlike the studies of James , Mimi Silbert and Nanette Davis , these early sexual activities were little different in kind to the similar experiences of other women.

This Section, however, concerns the immediate motives for women becoming prostitutes, and attempts to reconstruct a scenario linking reasons given by the prostitute sample for entering prostitution, with the findings in the social background variables discussed in the last Chapter. Distribution of streetwalkers, brothels, strip clubs and bars in Kings Cross Distribution of streetwalkers, brothels and houses of assignation in East Sydney and Darlinghurst Brothels and streetwalkers in Sydney metropolitan area Firstly, it is useful to consider some general social perceptions on why women enter prostitution.

The two non-prostitute samples of female university students and health-workers as indicators were asked if they had ever considered taking up prostitution themselves. Keeping in mind that in the preliminary stages of this study 13 completed questionnaires from these two groups were discarded lest they biased the findings, the balance responded as shown in Figure 4.

Quite obviously prostitution is largely rejected as a job option. But in view of the high level of social resistance to the sex industry and the negative misconceptions about it, it may be surprising to find so many of the health-workers and students considered it at all, let alone nearly 9 per cent of the original number of respondents to the questionnaire who admitted to actually working as prostitutes.

Because the prostitute stereotype is a constant image of the archetypal "bad girl" in the subconscious of most women, it frequently flashes into the conscious mind whenever the individual thinks of "sin", "sexual promiscuity", "wantoness" and other concepts of negative socio-sexual behaviour. Other images, such as the nun stereotype for "purity", the temptress stereotype for "seductiveness", the virgin stereotype for "innocence", the housewife stereotype for "duty", the mother stereotype for "nurturance", also play their part of emerging from the subconscious whenever the conceptual occasion arises.

Women therefore relate to any of these at different times depending on the situation. Thus, a woman who is constantly concerned about her sexual behaviour with men may often fantasise about herself in the role of a prostitute, but she more than likely will never actually take on this role.

Many more women imagine themselves as prostitutes than actually become them. Those who do may simply be women who have put their fantasies into reality. In view of this, the imagined prostitute role will no doubt include motives for entering prostitution. The two samples of non-prostitutes responded to a question on why they thought women entered prostitution. The reasons they gave are listed in Table 4. Very clearly the non-prostitute sample imagine drug-taking and economic imperatives as the most frequent reasons for women entering prostitution.

They also imagine that pimp manipulation, greed and a higher income incentive, and a past as uncontrollable children or juvenile delinquency are powerful motives in women becoming prostitutes. It is interesting to note the high ratios of psychological motives, such as low self-esteem, lack of love or affection, loneliness and nymphomania, supposed as underlying reasons for taking up prostitution.

The list complements the usual assumptions about prostitutes made in the media, such as drug addiction, pimps, low self-esteem and poverty as the main contributors to women's entrance into prostitution. The general assumption here is that prostitution is such an odious existence that no woman in her right mind would freely choose it as an occupation; some powerful driving force over which they have no control gets them involved.

The reasons prostitutes give for having entered the sex industry, however, tell a very different story, as is seen in Figure 4. These subjects gave multiple answers, so that separate reasons were given.

Percentages are of number of subjects to each reason. An immediate contrast with the imagined motivations for entering prostitution suggested by the health-workers and students presents itself Whereas the non-prostitutes supposed that drug addiction and pimp manipulation were high level motivations for becoming prostitutes, the reality of the prostitute sample is that these feature quite low among motivations.

The economic motives of unemployment, supporting families and pursuing higher incomes given by the prostitutes as reasons for their own entrance into the sex industry do coincide more closely with the assumed motives given by the non-prostitutes. Another economic motive often overlooked by non-prostitutes is that of offering commercial sex in order to pay for an education, for money needed to take an overseas trip, to pay off debts, to purchase a car, house or other large expensive item, or for some other specific purpose.

It is far from unusual to find a prostitute with a specific goal, giving herself a time span in which to earn a high income and acquire the desired object or objective. The reality is then that the vast majority of prostitutes have entered the business for money and remain in it for money. In other words, prostitutes see and treat prostitution as a job option, unlike most non-prostitutes, who see it as an expression of a psycho-social deficiency.

The age of entrance for the prostitute sample provides further insight into this phenomenon. Most prostitutes seem to enter the sex industry in their late adolescence to early twenties.

Very few were in their early adolescence and little over 10 per cent were over 30 when they began. An interesting pattern occurs in the 16 to 25 years age group which would indicate that there are two age periods when large numbers of women enter the sex industry: The first period saw the entry of many of those girls who had experienced early coitus.

These girls may have been promiscuous teenagers with a long history of coital activity, or, just as likely, they may have been girls who found prostitution the only means to pay for their drug habits. The women entering prostitution in their early twenties, on the other hand, are mostly women making clear and rational choices about becoming prostitutes based on a strong economic motive, either in order to pay for an expensive item or some other benefit, or, as Figure 4.

Women who choose prostitution as a higher paying occupation represent over 40 per cent of the sample: Like many women in their early twenties, they have become dissatisfied with their low-paying jobs and little chance of an early promotion, and sought other means of earning much more in a much shorter span of time.

Well, possibly no other job options for higher earning power are open to them, and maybe, as women confident of their sexuality, prostitution seems attractive to them as mature young women. But it is not that simple. There is one other important, almost essential, ingredient for entering the sex industry which enables the mature woman despondent with her working life to cross the barrier of social taboo and adopt the role of prostitute. Let us listen to what some of the prostitutes I interviewed have to say.

Martine entered the sex industry for a clearly economic purpose:. I didn't have any money and I couldn't get a job. I was very depressed because I couldn't make any money, and I knew women working in bondage and discipline and this sounded too good to be true.

It did also fascinate me and I wanted to do it. So I just started because there were opportunities there. I didn't have any trouble getting a job because one of the women running the place was a personal friend of mine. I needed some money because I was having legal hassles and my present job wasn't bringing in enough to pay for this.

A girl friend of mine had an escort agency and this seemed the quickest way to get the amount of money I needed. She was the first prostitute I had ever met. I sat around with her listening to her conversations about work, and sat there with my mouth open hearing her on the phone making appointments.

There was my girlfriend, Sharon and Kerry, the prostitute, who needed two girls to see two men. The phone call came and we just happened to be sitting there, and Kerry said: All you have to do is make love to these guys. It will be real easy. The whole fear was getting over the first time. I met an old school friend and we had lunch together.

She told me she was a prostitute and how much money she made. She asked me if I would "sit" for her one night at five pounds a night in the s. But the fellows kept asking for me, not her. So, I thought, I must be sitting on a gold mine. And that's how I started. Caroline had also worked in the sex industry other than as a prostitute before becoming a sex worker herself:. I arrived here without a job or money. Because I had worked as a receptionist it was easy for me to look for a parlour to work in.

If I had not worked as a receptionist in a parlour before, there's no way I would have become a prostitute. I would rather have begged on the street than become a prostitute. It's marvellous just how many cops have got girls jobs. The first time occurred because I needed money to go overseas; I was determined to go overseas. But it probably wouldn't have happened, or I wouldn't have thought about it, had it not been for the fact that I lived in the Cross, where a lot of my social life was spent.

Although I didn't personally know any prostitutes, I knew of many hanging around coffee shops and other places.

I thought about prostitution as a possibility to earn money for about a month before I actually tried it. We have earlier seen how Jeanette's husband turned out to be pimp and put her on the street pp.

Streetwalker Kelly had very similar experience:. I was living with this guy for four years and his ex--wife was a prostitute. As the years went by I found out he was having an affair with a girlfriend of mine and he started her working. Being as it may, love is blind, and I gave him an ultimatum: Apart from Kelly and Jeanette, these women entered prostitution for economic reasons although one could argue that pimping is also an economic motive, except the motivation is from the pimp, not the prostitute.

But in all of these examples one common factor clearly presents itself. Each of these women knew someone - a friend, a policeman, a prostitute who hires her, or prostitutes and their work generally - before they entered the sex industry. It would appear that for most women an economic imperative or even a psychosexual inclination is not enough otherwise, the argument goes, all poor women and nymphomaniacs would automatically become prostitutes, which, of course, they do not.

It seems that just as important as these two factors is the need for a woman to be closely associated with the industry first, or to have acquired some knowledge about it, before she actually takes the step to become a prostitute herself.

But there are exceptions. Marie is one such exception. You will recall that she was raised in a home with exceptionally frank views on sexual behaviour p. This might indicate that for Marie becoming a prostitute might present less trauma than for most women. However, she entered the sex industry without prior knowledge about it:.

I could see my money getting smaller and smaller, and I didn't really want to go back to one of those casual jobs; that kind of thing didn't appeal to me any more. I could easily have got a job and I had lots of offers in the fashion industry, but it just didn't appeal to me. I thought I would like to do something different. I had seen these ads in the paper, which said something like: It took me a whole day to make the phone call, and another whole day for me to get it together to go around there and see them.

I was surprised to find the other women there a lot like me because I had expected them to be different, like floozies. Here is an insight into the reason for so few women entering the sex industry as prostitutes. If a woman with Marie's liberal and open family life was so hesitant when her economic and psychosexual inclinations could have been motivation enough, it is understandable why simply being poor or inclined to promiscuity is not enough for most women not to just contemplate prostitution, many women do that , but actually to become prostitutes.

Knowledge or knowing someone is the key nexus between economic or sexual motives and practising commercial sex. Certainly, those women above, judging by their comments, would never have become prostitutes had it not been for a friend, a cop or contact with the industry previously. If Marie is an unusual case and, I must suppose, that there are other women with similar backgrounds who underwent similar experiences , then Katherine's case might even be more unusual.

Because I have been overwhelmingly curious about it, and having lived in London and run a wine bar, I used to see a lot of guys who needed extra attention. Having given it away for such a long time and feeling that that is not very fulfilling, and having travelled around living out of a rucksack for a few years, I wanted a bit of comfort as well. Not to make a fortune, but just to live comfortably and have a bit of money to spare to help people and involve myself in other areas that I like.

Prostitution gives you the security, but it also gives you a lot of free time. Katherine had an economic motive for entering prostitution, and it seems that her "overwhelming curiosity" might have been the other side to a sex life that was not "very fulfilling". You will recall she had never had an orgasm before the day she began prostitution p.

Obviously there was a very powerful psychosexual motive propelling her towards sexual experimentation. It seems that for her, prostitution was an inevitable conclusion, or, at least, would have eventually been attempted in her quest for fulfilment as a sexual being. As it was she was nearly 33 when she became a prostitute, an age well beyond the average for entrance. None of this should detract from the fact that overwhelmingly entrance into prostitution in inexorably linked to the economic situation of the women who become prostitutes.

According to an American study conducted by John Decker in , 31 per cent of his sample of 29 mid-west prostitutes took up commercial sex for entirely economic reasons, 10 per cent did so for psychological reasons, and 59 per cent became involved due to a combination of factors. Eileen McLeod's , pp. It was clear to all of these researchers that the economic position of women entering prostitution is a reflection of the situation of females generally.

In spite of women's better education and involvement in the nation's productive output, men still remain the economically privileged sex. Hackneyed arguments to prop up this inequality, such as men need more money as the family "breadwinner", no longer have validity in the face of increases in double-income families, divorce rates and single mothers. The high ratio of single mothers in prostitution is one example of this.

Prostitutes generally are women who have tried to address the disparity in wage-earning power by entering the sex industry. But, as we have seen, they are just the tip of the iceberg. A common assumption exists that prostitutes are women incapable of other kinds of employment. Little separates the three groups in their past work experiences. Popular perceptions might have assumed a much higher ratio of other sex work, such as stripping and pornographic movies, for the prostitutes.

But the most instructive finding here is the low ratio of prostitutes who had never had any other work experiences. What this configuration indicates is that prostitutes are women who have emerged from the general workforce; prostitution is not their first and only work.

A comparison of Table 4. A glance at both Tables 4. Little can be gleaned from this profile, however, that might provide some indication of the prostitutes as a group of women with special work skills. In fact, on the contrary, they appear to be a highly diversified group. But if anything, their work experiences do seem to lean towards the lower paid occupations of factory work, office work, sales work, domestic work and work in the service industry.

This might explain why prostitution might appear an attractive economic alternative to the women involved in those occupations, but it does not help us to understand why women in high paid administrative occupations or in arts with a high level sense of creative achievement would turn to prostitution.

Comparing this Table 4. Fatale, you may recall, is the bondage mistress with a close affinity with her working environment p. She is also an artist, and to understand this side of her is to understand why an artist could find sex work attractive. She tells us something of her background:. I've been a landscape artist, professionally. I've made money out of performances, and I've done art work both for nothing and for remuneration.

And I've played in bands professionally, and as a professional musician I've taken part in sculptural performances. I'm working in a band at the moment on the performance piece called "Lady Macbeth", extracted from Shakespeare, of course.

She describes a period of her career as a sculptor, which she quite clearly associates with her role as a bondage mistress in one of Sydney's best known parlours:.

I started doing little sculptures called "cult objects", which were suitable expressions of my own suffering. They represented a mythical evolution, which I had created myself for figurines showing stages in this evolution.

They were quite distorted with their facial expressions of agony and ecstasy. They all appeared androgynous, except the last figure, which looked as though it were pregnant.

Having had the kind of childhood that I have already spoken to you about [p. I wished to express some kind of ecstasy inside the pain of my own past, and I was drawn to the images of our cultural past for inspiration, such as Christian iconography, like Bernini's "St Theresa".

I actually did a piece on St Theresa's ecstasy, an installation involving a painting and, since I'm a symbolist, an electric fan to symbolise energy, and a turning crucifix as a mesmerising object. In addition, I included a film of Bernini's sculpture with the camera scanning the length of St Theresa's body. I was definitely struck by the state of agony and ecstasy shown on Theresa's face. I suppose this state might be described as "masochist in tendency".

Now my little figurines also expressed that state with the higher order of St Theresa, and I think that state is related to the primal substances that are a part of our inherent nature.

In a lot of primitive cultures this state is in evidence through the shamanistic rituals of pain involved with an ecstatic experience. I am drawn to that state and empowered by it. A lot of my sexual pleasure derives from it. You might call me a masochist, but I think sadism is a primal state too, so the two go together. By doing sex work I am in touch with other people's energies, and I don't mean just physical energy either, but mental and spiritual energies as well; I mean primal energies.

As an artist I've made it a goal to tap deep into the recesses of my own being and I think I have been given a gift to show how others can reach inside themselves to tap the common human and vital source of our primal energies in our primitive roots.

Pain is an abstract term, but it stands for a common experience to all living things which comes from deep within us. Pain has so many ways of being delivered, but being delivered in a sexual way, the experience starts with arousal and a vulnerability which opens up deeper feelings rarely opened in normal everyday existence.

I think it is necessary for the whole being to tap into your primal energies, as I do in sex work and in my artwork. None of the other women I interviewed had such exotic work experiences, and certainly nothing to which they might apply an esoteric understanding of the sex work in which they became involved. But, taken together, these women had an extraordinary range of past work experiences.

Take Martine as an example:. I've been a strapper, looking after horses; I've done that for years. I've worked on farms, and as a nanny. I've worked in radio, and worked on a woman's newspaper for a couple of years. I've worked as a television presenter for a while, and I've also been a waitress and a dishwasher.

I used to work as a manageress of a fashion boutique. I've also done modelling. Once, when I was much younger I had this job selling hired television sets door to door. Also in my younger days before I came to this country I used to buy items cheaply in other countries and sell them for a profit when I brought them back into Germany. Basically I've gone in for office work, or running an office; anything steady, that was me. But I had to be in the front part of the office because I've always been gregarious and enjoyed the company of people.

When I finally branched out by doing some travelling, I did anything, including farm work; I loved getting a bit of dirt under my fingernails. Just recently I began working full-time in an advertising firm and continued prostitution part time. I've worked in chemical laboratories, nursing, cinema projecting, teaching English as a second language, bar work, work on a prawn trawler, and waitressing.

But for all their broad work experiences, qualifications, and their obvious abilities at adaptation, these women in the end turned to prostitution for their major source of income. And the reason for that was simple: These women were no struggling poor, although at the time of their entrance into the sex industry many of them were out of work, tired of mundane and unsatisfactory work, or in desperate need of extra cash.

The figures in Table 4. Over half of the prostitutes earned less than this as their highest weekly income, compared to about 45 per cent of the students and almost none of the health-workers. Since most of the health-workers were professional women they might be expected to include a number with very high salaries. A few of the prostitutes had also achieved high weekly earnings in their pre-prostitution occupations, which raises the question of their economic motive for becoming sex workers.

Other factors, such as job dissatisfaction, might have been at work. The evidence in this and the preceding Chapter indicates that women enter prostitution in two waves, based on age. The evidence of age of entry see Fig. Overwhelmingly an economic motivation was given as the reason for becoming a prostitute Fig.

Earlier we discovered that women destined for prostitution more than likely had histories of coital experiences back to their early adolescence Table 3. From these findings we can construct two scenarios for entry into the sex industry. In the first scenario are girls of 18 or less. Most of these had "lost" their virginities before their sixteenth birthdays and more than likely initiated the occasions of initial coitus.

They felt sexually mature by 16, but were still curious about their sexual passions and no longer held men in awe. They had learned that men most desire young female bodies and "innocent" girls, and were willing to pay handsomely for them. Coupled with the atrociously low wages paid girls in "straight" occupations, the economy of sex has an enormous appeal to these young women.

Some of the girls were already practising virulent promiscuous lifestyles, so that prostitution is a mere extension, albeit profitable, of this kind of sex life. Another sub-group within this age group are girls who experimented with drugs in their early adolescence, so that by 16 to 18 they had developed uncontrollable addictions to expensive narcotics or other drugs.

For them prostitution is the only occupation open to them able to support their habits. The second scenario includes the bulk of women entering prostitution. They were above 20 when they first exchanged sex for cash either in the context of the sex industry or in a private social arrangement to a persistent stranger. They too had learned that the sexuality of young women has a price on it. The vast majority of this group were "broke", out of work, or bored with their present job when they decided to take up prostitution.

They too had a mature approach to sex and had learned not to fear men, derived from long histories of coital interaction with males as far back as their early adolescence. But they had none of the wide-eyed excitement of their younger colleagues. These women were pragmatic in their decision to become prostitutes. But even so they required knowledge about the sex industry first from trusted friends or people already involved in order to dismiss the myths and negative popular notions that act as a barrier to entry.

Thus, we have two entrance scenarios, different in age, motives and kind. These are, of course, flexible, for, as always among prostitute women, there are exceptions, such as some a little older or a little younger than these pictures suggest, in which case they fall within the intermediate age group of 19 to But this after all is the human diversity in prostitution, as in all social institutions.

In the first Chapter we viewed prostitution as a work-based occupation from the perspective of the prostitute. Whatever sexual gratification or other emotional satisfaction a sex worker might obtain in commercial sex doesn't make it any less work, but simply more pleasant work. Earlier in the present Chapter the reader was introduced to "types" of work undertaken by the "professional" prostitute, including the structure of these "types" and their functions.

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I own travel trailer. Need a female shoulder. Blondes couple wants porno dating Toronto. Blondes couple wants hot fucking Val-d'Or Edson Any girls down for sexting. In the next two sections, we will introduce both evolutionary and social script views of uncommitted sex, to simultaneously consider the influence of each on hookup culture.

Human evolutionary behavioral studies attempts to explain sexual behavior by understanding our evolutionary history and how this may influence behavioral patterns in a given environment. There are several different midlevel evolutionary or biological theories about the nature of human sexual behavior. These theories seek to understand the way evolutionary pressures influence human sexual propensities, variation, and, in some cases, sex differences.

This logic is based on the premise that, compared to asexual reproduction, sexual reproduction is quite costly. Sexually reproducing organisms pay many costs, including the time, energy, and resources spent in finding and attracting mates—tasks that are unnecessary for asexual reproducers Daly, Offsetting the costs of sexual reproduction in large-bodied organisms is the benefit sexual reproduction provides against easy colonization by parasites and pathogens Van Valen, Sexual reproduction scrambles up genes, creating genotypes that are novel environments and forcing the parasites and pathogens to begin anew in their quest to exploit the host.

Thus, large-bodied organisms with long lifespans generally benefit evolutionarily from sexual reproduction despite its substantial costs. In humans, producing a viable offspring, from gestation through lactation, takes females longer than it takes males.

The sex with the faster potential reproductive rate— generally males— can benefit by attempting to co-opt the reproductive effort of multiple members of the opposite sex. However, the sex with the slower potential reproductive rate— generally females—will be operationally in short supply relative to the sex with the faster potential reproductive rate, simply because it takes them longer to complete a reproductive venture.

Males are predicted to compete for access to the reproductive potential of the slower sex; this generates expectations of psychological and physical adaptations in males that enhance their chances of success, including aggression and an array of physical features e. Females are predicted to be choosy concerning their mates because they invest more in each offspring, and they stand to lose more if they make a poor reproductive choice. Relative parental investment costs are thought to be the arbiters of mating behaviors Trivers, Thus in sex role reversed species where males provide a majority of parental support, it is females that are then expected to compete more for mates and be more indiscriminate in their mating Alcock, Because females choose males on the basis of critical features and resources, males are expected to compete with other males to acquire and display these features and resources.

This provides a basic framework with which to begin, and in humans we expect complex cognitive processes to be overlaid on it. In this view—sexual strategies theory—men prefer as many mates as possible, including short-term sexual encounters that can potentially maximize reproductive output. Men will attempt to mate with a maximum number of partners sexual variety , consent to sex more quickly than women, and provide minimal resources to any but long-term partners, only conceding to a long-term relationship for the purposes of enhancing offspring vitality Symons, ; Buss, Also in this view, women are expected to prefer long-term relationships to extract a maximum amount of resources from mates.

In measuring propensities for nonrelational sex, a variety of studies conducted within North America have demonstrated that men consistently have higher sociosexuality scores than women Schmitt, Several scholars have argued that the degree to which evolution shapes mating behaviors, including sociosexuality, will be contingent on particular environmental conditions Frayser, ; Low, ; Schmitt, To support the idea that sociosexuality is likely a combination of evolved sex-specific mating strategies and social structural factors, in a study of over , participants from 53 nations, Lippa demonstrated that although consistent sex differences emerged, gender equality and economic development tended to predict the magnitude of sex differences in sociosexuality more permissive.

Similarly, Wood and Eagly have endorsed a biosocial model for understanding sex differences cross-culturally that takes into account multiple levels of analyses, including biological constraints alongside social and economic constraints. In support of evolved sexual strategies, in a cross-cultural study of 16, individuals across 52 nations, Schmitt et al. Using the short-term seeking measure asking participants on a 7-point scale whether they are actively seeking a short-term mate , they reported that, in North America, relatively more men Of note, using the cross-cultural responses of those who are single excluding those currently involved in a relationship , Evolutionary-inclined researchers have often used these findings to point to the adaptive nature of sex-specific mating strategies see Schmitt, These data demonstrate fairly modest relative sex differences in propensities toward sex beyond a committed relationship—which are indeed important to document.

Yet, a cross-cultural sex difference of This is especially true considering that, compared to males, the relative risks of sexual behavior are higher for females: Although there is a reasonable proportional difference between sexes, there are still nearly two thirds of unpartnered women interested in uncommitted sex and over one fifth of unpartnered men who are not interested in this activity.

In short, there is significant overlap between the sexes and significant variation within the sexes. All things considered, the simplest expectation is that evolutionary processes will result in both men and women desiring both sex and pair-bonding. Extrarelational sex is part of the human mating repertoire, as is pair-bonding. The popularity of hooking up among both men and women presents a problem for approaching human sexuality purely from the perspective of sexual strategies theory.

That both men and women are engaging in this behavior at such high rates is not consistent with the model. Homosexual relationships also presents a quandary for sexual strategies theory. Although the proportion of gay men in open relationships seems to support the theory i. For instance, Li and Kenrick have pointed to the benefits of using an evolutionary economic model of tradeoffs to understand sex differences in willingness to engage in short-term sex, and sex similarities in prioritization of short-term partners.

Using biological and cross-cultural evidence, Fisher , has argued human possess a dual reproductive strategy of social monogamy serial or long-term and clandestine adultery. In their comparison of theoretical models, they found that attachment fertility theory. If humans possess a fairly flexible sexual repertoire, yet pair-bonding is essential, this sets the stage for a conflict between competing motivational drives that are fine tuned to particular environments. In accordance with an evolutionary model, the simplest, most general prediction is that men will be relatively more competitive and sexually eager, and that women will be relatively choosier.

Further, in accordance with an evolutionary model emphasizing pair-bonding, both men and women will have competing motivational drives for sexual engagement and pair-bond formation. This might assume that penetrative sexual intercourse between fertile men and women entails a sizable risk of reproduction for females—an assumption that simply no longer applies to humans in the 21st century.

In contemporary industrialized cultures, pleasurable sexual behaviors can be divorced from reproduction and used for other purposes, including social standing and simple enjoyment, among others. Contraception and reproductive technologies allow women greater control over reproduction, but this should not be enough to completely overwrite millions of years of evolutionary pressure to shape certain aspects of mating psychology.

Rather, in these contemporary conditions, those who use contraception to optimize their reproductive output may well be evolutionarily favored. Women could, for example, use contraception to control the timing of pregnancies in ways that maximize the chance of success, or ensure parentage by favored males over lesser-quality mates. Thus, contraception is simply an additional feature of the environment of reproduction, and males and females are expected to attempt to manipulate it in their own favor.

However, the ability to divorce sex from reproduction should allow for less discrepancy between males and females in willingness to engage in uncommitted sex and negotiations of both sexual and romantic desires. Clearly, the evolved reproductive motive involves both sexes desiring sex and desiring pair-bonds, but having different ways of obtaining each and different prioritizations for each.

Scripts, particularly gender-normative ones, dictate behaviors, such as who does what and when in context e. The most widely produced and promoted cultural sexual scripts are heterosexual in nature and include those focused on male roles Kim et al.

For men, sex is portrayed as central to male identity, men prefer nonrelational sex, and men are active sexual agents. Women are portrayed as sexual objects, sexually passive compared to men, and women act as sexual gatekeepers.

Sexual script theory is generally vague when it comes to origins, focusing more on descriptions of scripts. Wiederman , Phillips , and Jhally have argued that scripts are not only sexualized but also gendered, with underlying sexual messages being noticeably different for men and women.

Many researchers Jhally, ; Kim et al. But this does little to explain why the media industry produces these scripts in the first place. It is not by accident that consumer behavior can be well-explained by those products most salient to human survival and reproduction, and why messages of love and sex are among the most producible Saad, But, on their own, both the evolutionary perspective and the social scripts perspective have thus far been inadequate in fully unpacking the origin of sexual messages, their propagation, and their social retention.

Without identifying a primary, hierarchal, origin, it is likely that media is reflecting actual behavioral change in a circular way—media is a reflection of our evolutionary penchants, further exaggerated and supported by the presumption that it is popular. Images of a polymorphous sexuality that decenters the reproductive motive and focuses instead on sexual pleasure are consistently appearing in popular media.

It seems plausible that sexual scripts in popular entertainment media are exaggerated examples of behaviors that are taken to an extreme for the purposes of media sensationalism and activation of core guttural interests.

Conflicting gendered scripts may contribute to mixed perceptions and expectations of hookups. The first sexual experiences described by the 30 participants were almost all quite negative and, in some cases, horrific. Many women find the discrepant messages difficult to navigate: Messages often portray the sexually assertive woman as a woman who has extreme difficulty in being genuine and having a meaningful romantic relationship.

Psychoanalytic analysis views this conflict as the Madonna—whore dichotomy, where women face challenges in being viewed as both a sexually expressive being and a maternal committed being, and at the same time their romantic or sexual partners face challenges with categorizing women as one or the other Welldon, Presumably, these same conflicting discourse messages can make it difficult for individuals to psychologically navigate hookups, including sexual decision-making.

There seems to be inconsistency in the scripts pertaining to the casualness and emotional investment in causal sexual encounters. An example of this disconnect is presented by Backstrom, Armstrong, and Puentes , whose study examined the responses of 43 college women who described their difficulties in their negotiations of cunnilingus, such as desiring it in a hookup or not desiring it in a relationship.

Yet, in interviews, participants also expressed distinct discomfort with these extrarelational scripts. Men voiced alternative definitions that highlighted emotional connection and the potential for committed romantic relationships. While contrary to no-strings attached hookup discourse, these alternative romance and commitment-oriented scripts are not surprising. Similar discourse messages are present in other aspects of popular media.

It is curious that, although purporting to regale the audience with nonrelational sex, the previously mentioned films Friends with Benefits and No Strings Attached also highlight this; in the end, couples in both movies actually end up in seemingly monogamous romantic relationships.

Although the evolutionary reproductive motives produce contradictory motivations, for both short-term sex and long-term commitment, some media scripts apparently do the same. Despite the high prevalence of uncommitted sexual behavior, emerging adults often have competing nonsexual interests. Although there is a proportional sex difference, note that a substantial majority of both sexes would prefer a romantic relationship, despite their particular developmental stage of emerging adulthood.

The gender differences observed are modest, and point to the convergence of gender roles in hookup culture; even though there are some gender differences, it should not be ignored that the curves overlap significantly. Just as the discourse of hooking up is often in conflict with itself, individuals often self-identify a variety of motivations for hooking up. That a substantial portion of individuals reported emotional and romantic motivations appears to be in apparent conflict with the sexual strategies framework discussed earlier, which predicts significant sex differences.

Indeed, some hookups turn into romantic relationships. Paik a found that individuals in relationships that start as hookups or FWBs report lower average relationship satisfaction. However, this varied as a function of whether the participants initially wanted a relationship. If individuals were open to a serious committed relationship initially, relationship satisfaction was just as high as those who did not engage in initially uncommitted sexual activity prior to starting a relationship Paik, a.

The entanglement of more intimate and emotional aspects with sex is something the romantic comedy movies mentioned earlier highlight. Again in seeming contrast to the sex-specific mating strategies, contemporary hookup behavior involves a high degree of female sexual assertiveness for sexual desire and pleasure. Contrary to some media messages, individuals do not appear to be engaging in truly no-strings attached sex.

Competing interests at multiple levels result in young adults having to negotiate multiple desires, and multiple social pressures. Again, the most fruitful explanation is that both men and women have competing sexual and romantic interests, with tremendous individual differences in such desires. As such, the simultaneous motivations for sex and romance may appear different.

The origins of these pro-sex scripts have been theorized to be due to a subculture focused on male sexuality Mealey, Because same-sex relationships are naturally removed from the reproductive motive, it may be possible that part of the larger hookup culture is borrowed from sexual subcultures involving greater emphasis on the positive erotic.

Most students reported not considering or realizing their own health risks during hookups, particularly those that occurred within their own community such as with someone else on their own college campus. Compounding disease risks, individuals involved in hookups are more likely to have concurrent sexual partners Paik, b. In a sample of 1, college students, among the students who had engaged in oral sex, anal sex, or vaginal intercourse in their most recent hookup, only Although, in Paul et al.

Health-based hookup research like this may lead to programs for correcting misperceptions of sexual risk and sexual norms to ultimately restore individual locus of control over sexual behavior, reproductive rights, and healthy personal decision-making.

In addition to sexual risk-taking, in terms of low condom use, another issue of concern involving hookups is the high comorbidity with substance use. Alcohol use has also been associated with type of hookup: In one study of men and women who had engaged in an uncommitted sexual encounter that included vaginal, anal, or oral sex, participants reported their intoxication levels: Alcohol may also serve as an excuse, purposely consumed as a strategy to protect the self from having to justify hookup behavior later Paul, This paints a picture very different from popular representations of alcohol and substance use in hookups, which are often handled with a detached air of humor.

A Journal Chronicle Books, is playfully described by the publisher: Although alcohol and drugs are likely a strong factor, it is still largely unclear what role individual differences play in shaping decisions to engage in hookups. Other factors may include media consumption, personality, and biological predispositions. Garcia, MacKillop, et al. This suggests that biological factors that contribute to motivating the different contexts of sexual behavior for both men and women may be fairly sexually monomorphic Garcia, Reiber, et al.

This may, in some cases, point to fairly stable individual differences. The discrepancy between behaviors and desires, particularly with respect to social—sexual relationships, has dramatic implications for physical and mental health. Despite widespread allure, uncommitted sexual behavior has been shown to elicit a pluralistic ignorance response promoting individuals to engage in behaviors regardless of privately feeling uncomfortable with doing so Lambert et al. Misperception of sexual norms is one potential driver for people to behave in ways they do not personally endorse.

In a replication and extension of Lambert et al. Hookup scenarios may include feelings of pressure and performance anxiety. In Paul et al. Note that this study asked participants about typical hookups, and although this was informative for general patterns, it does not capture specific factors influencing specific individual scenarios.

However, this same study found that feelings differed during compared to after hookups: An individual history of hookup behavior has been associated with a variety of mental health factors. In a recent study of young adults followed across a university semester, those participants with more depressive symptoms and greater feelings of loneliness who engaged in penetrative sex hookups subsequently reported a reduction in both depressive symptoms and feelings of loneliness Owen et al.

At the same time, those participants who reported less depressive symptoms and fewer feelings of loneliness who engaged in penetrative sex hookups subsequently reported an increase in both depressive symptoms and feelings of loneliness Owen et al. In another study, among sexually experienced individuals, those who had the most regret after uncommitted sex also had more symptoms of depression than those who had no regret Welsh et al.

In the first study to investigate the issue of self-esteem and hookups, both men and women who had ever engaged in an uncommitted sexual encounter had lower overall self-esteem scores compared to those without uncommitted sexual experiences Paul et al.

The potential causal direction of the relationship between self-esteem and uncommitted sex is yet unclear Paul et al. Hookups can result in guilt and negative feelings. The percentage of women expressing guilt was more than twice that of men.

This is consistent with a classic study by Clark and Hatfield , which demonstrated that men are much more likely than women to accept casual sex offers from attractive confederates. Conley replicated and extended this finding, demonstrating that, under certain conditions of perceived comfort, the gender differences in acceptance of casual sex is diminished.

Possibly contributing to findings on gender differences in thoughts of worry, in a sample of undergraduate students, more women than men leaned toward a relationship outcome following a hookup. It is possible that regret and negative consequences result from individuals attempting to negotiate multiple desires. It is likely that a substantial portion of emerging adults today are compelled to publicly engage in hookups while desiring both immediate sexual gratification and more stable romantic attachments.

Not all hookup encounters are necessarily wanted or consensual. In a sample of college students, participants noted that a majority of their unwanted sex occurred in the context of hookups: Even more worrisome, a proportion of hookups also involve nonconsensual sex. In a study by Lewis et al. Unwanted and nonconsensual sexual encounters are more likely occurring alongside alcohol and substance use.

A number of studies have included measures of regret with respect to hookups, and these studies have documented the negative feelings men and women may feel after hookups. In a large web-based study of 1, undergraduate students, participants reported a variety of consequences: A vast majority of both sexes indicated having ever experienced regret.

There were few sex differences in reasons for regret, and better quality sex reduced the degree of regret reported Fisher et al. It appears the method of asking participants whether and when they had experienced regret i. On average, both men and women appear to have higher positive affect than negative affect following a hookup. Those with positive attitudes toward hookups and approval of sexual activity show the greatest positive affect Lewis et al.

However, there are also negative consequences experienced by both sexes. Two types of sexual encounters were particularly predictive of sexual regret: Among a sample of 1, individuals who had experienced a previous one-night stand, Campbell showed that most men and women have combinations of both positive and negative affective reactions following this event. There are substantial individual differences in reactions to hookups not accounted for by gender alone.

The gap between men and women is notable, and demonstrates an average sex difference in affective reactions. Yet, this finding also conflicts with a strict sexual strategies model because more than half of women were glad they engaged in a hookup and they were not in the context of commandeering extrapartner genes for offspring.

With respect to scripts, although presumably being sexually agentic e. Although the direction of the sex differences is in agreement with the evolutionary model, that nearly a quarter of women report primarily positive reactions is inconsistent with a truly sex-specific short-term mating psychology and with discourse messages of uncommitted sex being simply pleasurable.

Also inconsistent with both of these theoretical models is that a quarter of men experience negative reactions. Taken alone, neither a biological nor social model is sufficient to explain these individual differences.

Some research has considered the interactions of sex and individual differences in predicting hookup behavior. In this regard, there are sex differences in cognitive processes, but one cannot necessarily presume that the sexes vary fundamentally in their behavioral potentials; rather, they vary in their decision-making, consistent with other evolutionary models.

It is still unclear the degree to which hookups may result in positive reactions, and whether young men and young women are sexually satisfied in these encounters. Fine has argued that sex negativity is even more pronounced for women and the possibility of desire seems to be missing from the sexual education of young women.

Armstrong, England, and Fogarty addressed sexual satisfaction in a large study of online survey responses from 12, undergraduates from 17 different colleges. In this study, men reported receiving oral sex both in hookups and in relationships much more than women. In both contexts, men also reached orgasm more often than women. A challenge to the contemporary sexual double standard would mean defending the position that young women and men are equally entitled to sexual activity, sexual pleasure, and sexual respect in hookups as well as relationships.

To achieve this, the attitudes and practices of both men and women need to be confronted. Men should be challenged to treat even first hookup partners as generously as the women they hook up with treat them. Taken together, this points to a need for further and more diverse attention to the impact of hookups on the physical and mental health of individuals, as recommended by Heldman and Wade Further, more attention is needed on potential positive aspects of hooking up, such as promoting sexual satisfaction and mutual comfort and enjoyment see Armstrong et al.

Hookups are part of a popular cultural shift that has infiltrated the lives of emerging adults throughout the Westernized world. The past decade has witnessed an explosion in interest in the topic of hookups, both scientifically and in the popular media. Research on hookups is not seated within a singular disciplinary sphere; it sits at the crossroads of theoretical and empirical ideas drawn from a diverse range of fields, including psychology, anthropology, sociology, biology, medicine, and public health.

The growth of our understanding of the hookup phenomenon is likely predicated on our ability to integrate these theoretical and empirical ideas into a unified whole that is capable of explaining the tremendous variety in human sexual expression.

Both evolutionary and social forces are likely facilitating hookup behavior, and together may help explain the rates of hookups, motivations for hooking up, perceptions of hookup culture, and the conflicting presence and lack of sex differences observed in various studies.

Several scholars have suggested that shifting life-history patterns may be influential in shaping hookup patterns. Together, the research reviewed here can help us better understand the nature of uncommitted sex today.

It is worth noting, however, that several shortcomings in our knowledge continue to impede the understanding of hookup behavior. Much of the research asking participants about previous hookup relationships may therefore be biased due to recall. The literature reviewed here primarily focuses on heterosexual hookups among emerging adults, with some researchers not controlling for sexual orientation some purposefully and others restricting to exclusively heterosexual samples.

Future hookup research should venture into the MSM literature to explore patterns of casual sex among these populations to understand other sexual subcultures where uncommitted sexual behavior is prevalent.

Moreover, there exists little published literature on the hookup patterns among lesbians and women who have sex with women. Understanding hookups during the critical stage of late adolescent development and young adulthood is paramount for protecting and promoting healthy sexuality and healthy decision-making among emerging adults. Of the varied experiences and health risks young men and young women will experience, perhaps none are as pervasive and widely experienced as engagement in and desire for romantic attachments and experiences with sexual activity.

This review suggests that uncommitted sex, now being explored from a variety of disciplinary and theoretical perspectives, is best understood from a biopsychosocial perspective that incorporates recent research trends in human biology, reproductive and mental health, and sexuality studies. Both popular scripts and predictions from evolutionary theory suggest that a reproductive motive may influence some sexual patterns, such as motivation and regret following uncommitted sex.

However, patterns of casual sex among gay men highlight inadequacies of the reproductive motive and suggest that further theorizing is necessary before a satisfactory evolutionarily informed theory can be established.

We thank Melanie Hill for valuable discussion and feedback on an earlier draft of this review. We also thank Maryanne Fisher and Catherine Salmon for helpful editorial feedback. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U.

Author manuscript; available in PMC Jun 1. Garcia , Chris Reiber , Sean G. Massey , and Ann M. Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Justin R. See other articles in PMC that cite the published article. Cultural Shifts in Dating Hookup culture has emerged from more general social shifts taking place during the last century.

Representation of Hookups in Popular Culture Contemporary popular culture is now ripe with examples that depict and often encourage sexual behavior, including premarital and uncommitted sex. Hookup Venues Among college students, hookups have been reported in a variety of college settings. Theoretical Frameworks for Hookup Research An interdisciplinary biopsychosocial model can synthesize traditionally disconnected theoretical perspectives and provide a more holistic understanding of hookup culture.

In their comparison of theoretical models, they found that attachment fertility theory posits that short-term mating and other forms of mating outside of pair-bonds are natural byproducts of a suite of attachment and care-giving mechanisms… selected for in human evolutionary history to ultimately enable men and women to seek, select, create, and maintain a pair-bond… pointing to an increasingly coherent picture of the underlying biological and chemical systems involved… that generally operate similarly for men and women.

Prevalence of Alcohol and Drugs In addition to sexual risk-taking, in terms of low condom use, another issue of concern involving hookups is the high comorbidity with substance use. Hookup Culture and Psychological Well-Being The discrepancy between behaviors and desires, particularly with respect to social—sexual relationships, has dramatic implications for physical and mental health.

Hookup Regret A number of studies have included measures of regret with respect to hookups, and these studies have documented the negative feelings men and women may feel after hookups. Conclusion Hookups are part of a popular cultural shift that has infiltrated the lives of emerging adults throughout the Westernized world. Contributor Information Justin R. Alcohol and dating risk factors for sexual assault among college women. Psychology of Women Quarterly.

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