Advertisement
Identity

Ask a Hooker: How Do I Get My Boyfriend to Do the Damn Dishes?

Some friendly advice on sloppy boyfriends, creepers, and self-care.

by Lydia Faithfull
May 29 2016, 2:25pm

Courtesy of Lydia Faithfull

Lydia Faithfull is a full-time sex worker at the Love Ranch brothel in Nevada. She specializes in domination, humiliation, and good conversation. She refuses to kiss for money.

Dear Lydia,

I love my boyfriend, we are amazing together, but this asshole will never do the dishes. I can nag, put post-it notes, have calm loving conversations about expectations of domestic life together but nothing gets through to him. His inability to be anything other than a huge slob makes me feel like he doesn't take my feelings seriously. And if he can't meet this basic demand does it mean he'll fail me in bigger ways down the line?

I'm wondering who cooks dinner in your house. That's how dishes are negotiated in my relationships. I'm completely useless in the kitchen and love to be fussed over. If my partner prepares my meal, it's absolutely my pleasure to scrub a few pots and pans afterward.

Props for remaining calm, but surely you realize that nagging doesn't work. An ex-boyfriend of mine once confided that my nagging sounded like the entire panel of 'The View' talking over one another. Don't Behar the boyfriend. How else does he contribute to your home? Does he take the garbage out? Maintain your vehicle? Eat your pussy for two hours straight? You love this man, so I'm assuming that he also makes compromises and allowances for you. Be honest with yourself about what that looks like.

I don't believe dirty dishes represent lack of devotion or that your relationship is doomed. Though if other conflicts are being swept under the rug, the dishes might be easier for you to address. When Bill Clinton publicly cuckolded Hillary, half the country questioned his ability to lead as a pervert. I'm of the opinion that his penchant for philandering did not impact his leadership. We're complicated animals. Your dude can be an emotionally available, loving partner AND a lazy slob. How's the sex, by the way? You mentioned concern for the future. Libido and sexual satisfaction reveal more than the dishes ever could.

Lydia,

How do you deal with the emotional labor of sex work/any service job? I'm a waitress/cashier and it's the hardest part of the job, letting people say shitty things to me because I needed their money. How do you navigate that?

Love,
BB

Dear BB,

Before sex work became my full time gig, I'd been employed as a waitress and retail manager. The height of my misery involved slinging burgers as a sad goth at Johnny Rockets on South Street in Philadelphia. Think choreographed dances to Donna Summer and The Bee gees because some clown requested them from their table side jukebox.

Retail wasn't much better. It did hone my skill for verbally insulting customers to their faces without their knowledge, that allowed some pressure release.

Same is true of working at a brothel where I'm unintentionally insulted on the regular. Most women quietly allow ignorant comments to gnaw at them. Asserting yourself often means taking the hit in your wallet. Recently I did a bar call (as opposed to the traditional parlor lineup where a client chooses a lady after we've each introduced ourselves) for an older white man. He mentioned that he was happily married but his wife has cancer and could no longer enjoy sex. He followed up with, "But she would if I insisted" and before I knew it, I'd hissed "Yeah, there's actually a word for that." Consequently, he did not choose me and that's okay.

You cannot appeal to everyone without compromising your mental health. Self assertion is my self care. Zinging someone unfazed by the concept of marital rape feels not unlike treating myself to a deep tissue massage or pedicure. I cannot do my job effectively if I resent the clientele. Every morning, I channel the Goddess Kali and envision myself strapping on a belt of severed heads. Find pleasure in setting boundaries.

You cannot appeal to everyone without compromising your mental health. Self assertion is my self care.

Dear Lydia,

How do you spot creepers and bad guys from afar? What are the more subtle red flags?

From,
Carla

Dear Carla,

Observation before engagement. When men enter my space (at the legal brothel where i work or otherwise), I tend to occupy myself and appear as though I'm not listening. When, in fact, I'm sizing them up in the mirror and taking in every word.

In my former life as an escort, I would arrive at hotels and restaurants about thirty minutes early to assess my date from a safe distance. Even better when we'd arrange to meet in a crowded bar and I could observe undetected at close range. How does he engage with or speak of women? When a man chooses the word "female" as opposed to "woman,"my instincts are on high alert. Is he kind to wait staff? Does he say please, thank you, and hold the door for people behind him? These are big tells.

Upon meeting someone for the first time, I expect a firm handshake, eye contact, and a proper introduction. Bypassing those steps suggests he doesn't believe me worthwhile or has something to hide. Post handshake, men should not feel comfortable physically touching you unless you've initiated affection. Nothing repulses me more than overfamiliarity.

What does overfamiliarity look like? Here's an example I recently had with a potential client:

It begins with a sense of entitlement. You've never met this person, yet he behaves as if he's known you forever. He feels entitled to your time and will often ask deeply personal, inappropriate questions. For example, this type of dude will sit beside me at the bar of the brothel and ask, "So do you even make money working here?"

I do, as a matter of fact. More than a surgeon. This is a subconscious attempt to rile me. If I took the bait, it would likely segue into PUA (pickup artist) negging. They'll zero in on something they can tease you about (maybe you're wearing a romper, colorful heels, or some hot pink lipstick). Do not mistake negging for banter. This is where you lay down the fucking hammer. Look them in the eye and tell them you'd be happy to make a detailed list of everything you dislike about their appearance. Rarely will they persist. The creeps of the world are desperate for our attention and validation. You can stew in your rage and feel victimized by their shitty behavior, but if you're an opportunist like me, you'll find a way to exploit them.


Have questions for Lydia? Email: broadly.editor@vice.com

Tagged:
Broadly
sex work
relationships
Advice
Lydia Faithfull
the Love Ranch
Broadly Sex Work
Broadly Relationships