For some strippers there comes a breaking point. There were only two ways to go, up or down aka get out or get sucked in.
Some dancers I met that had been working in the club since they were 18 were now in their 40s. Weathered from drugs and alcohol, with listless eyes paired with a bitterness that you could only develop from spending most of your life in this business. Sometimes when I looked at them, in the pit of my stomach I felt fear. Fear of becoming the same.
the problem was a no brainer, the money was so good and for some this was all they Knew.
As my time in the club wore on, I started looking in the mirror and hating the person I saw. This bitterness followed me to work.
Suddenly, I was struggling to make money and the money I did make I blew on drinks and a lot of shots. I was partying too hard and recklessly driving home after instead of taking a cab so I could hold onto the small amount of money I had left.
Soon I needed to always have a drink in my hand and it wasn’t hard to come by, men would usually offer to buy the girls a drink but it never seemed like enough for me. I wanted to feel completely numb.
I knew I was spiraling downwards and The people in my life noticed.
Even though I was experienced now, with an edge on the business, I was really competing among the other girls.
I would turn my head away when I caught dancers fucking or sucking off their customer without shame in the backroom.
The men were well aware this was happening and were starting to figure out it wasn’t worth spending money on a tease when they could get the whole thing for cheap. Hookers were no longer being discreet about their services and danced only to advertise. I was always being asked the million dollar question, “so how much for the night?” And every time I would reply with, “I don’t go home with customers.”
Above the club I had been working at, The Mate, there was now a porn theater that a lot of the girls took the guys. It was basically just a fancy way of advertising a private room to fuck in with porn as an added feature. And of course, I can’t forget to mention the rub and tug down the hall. Except for the diner above the club the building was becoming a dangerous “whore house”. It was a rough area of town to begin with but it didn’t matter, by then most of the clubs were stooping low. Girls at another club I worked at occasionally, could drop 150$ at the door and be allowed to do whatever she wanted.
At the Mate, whenever a girl was “heading out for a smoke”, man in tow, she’d let tell the manager and disappear upstairs for an hour or however long. The club was fine with it because they were getting a cut.
It was when clients started asking me more frequently if I wanted to go upstairs instead of a dance that I realized the road was ending.
I always declined, believing that if I said no I still had a shred of my dignity even when my dance offers were beginning to be turned down.I would order myself another drink with my dwindling money and sit in the change room wrestling with my morals.
However One night I found myself convinced by G, my client/friend to go upstairs. We walked all the way to the back of the dark rooms. I sat down on the black couch, the wide screen TV offering a variety of porn you could choose with the remote control. On the wall there was a paper napkin dispenser and a garbage pale…
G put his hand on my leg like he always did but I went rigid.
He had said, “its’ just me.” But for me that hadn’t been the real problem. The fact was I was becoming so desperate to make money that this was becoming the few options..
. I lied when he asked if I was okay but he knew. He led me back out of the room and we both didn’t look at the lady working the desk. G had already paid her. it went unspoken.
My breaking point hit me one night as I was leaving, another pointless shift as I left with less money than I had going in. I was lonely and discouraged especially without my friend I worked with who was now hooking on a site.
I had again spent all my cash on booze. I slipped out the front door without even signing out and sat in the drivers seat of my car and cried.
When I got home I woke my boyfriend careless for the hour which was usually 3 or 4am by then. When he saw that I had been crying, He told me that I needed to quit, end of story.
So That night was my last shift.