For those who may be unfamiliar, the identity “demisexual” involves experiencing sexual feelings only after developing a close emotional relationship. This means that demisexuals don’t feel attraction based only on first impressions, physical characteristics, etc. This can make the practice of hiring a professional uniquely challenging! There’s an increased chance that a client’s unfamiliarity with the provider will supersede any attraction felt from viewing them online via ads, websites, or social media.
Because I am a trauma-informed provider who often works with clients of a variety of gender and sexual identities, I see quite a few demisexuals in my line of work, and they’ve always been grateful for the extra steps I take with them. Here’s how I do it!
Typically I only offer text and email communication with a new client prior to a session. For folks entirely new to the industry, I occasionally provide a complimentary 15 minute phone call to prove I’m a “real person”. I am conscious – without being strict – about my time, I limit the session to only what has been pre-negotiated, and I prefer to session at my home incall. While I am a fairly open individual, I limit the personal information I disclose to my client unless it’s relevant and/or we develop a very conversational rapport. This is all fairly standard across the board for such engagements.
Demisexuals don’t feel attraction based only on first impressions. This can make the practice of hiring a professional uniquely challenging!
However, I will alter my approach if someone identifies as demisexual and expresses the kind of concern that you may possess. I appreciate the additional patience, access, and opportunities for connection that are required. I will often offer a complimentary 30-60 minute non-sexual Facetime or Zoom to get acquainted beyond the rhetoric I use for marketing and promotion. I will also be more inclined to share details of my life that I wouldn’t otherwise in order to meet my client’s vulnerability with my own. I strive to make the introduction more like an organic date than a transactional one, which also involves being less stringent about my time. Many providers hold stricter boundaries than I do in this regard, and for good reason! However, demisexuals may feel as though there’s an additional emotional detachment with providers who harbor more rigid boundaries, and that can put them off booking a session altogether. This is perfectly okay!
From that point on, I offer to slowly increase the intensity of the sessions, once again mirroring more of a stereotypical dating process. I encourage half-rate social outings, whether that be going to lunch, a movie, or a hike. I keep an open line of communication going with my client throughout, encouraging them to speak up when they see or feel an opportunity for increased connection, as well as when they feel themself disconnecting from me. I only attempt to evolve the relationship into an overtly sexual one if I get unambiguous communication from my client that they’re ready.
For providers, the biggest risk when it comes to working with demisexual clients is the fear that as the relationship develops, the professional waters will inevitably muddy. It’s possible the client will move into a place where they are focusing all of their romantic and erotic energy on us, and this is sometimes accompanied by an increased unwillingness to continue to pay for the proffered services or a decline of professional respect for the provider.
I only attempt to evolve the relationship into an overtly sexual one if I get unambiguous communication from my client that they’re ready.
While working with demisexuals, I’ve found it’s important – and necessary – to have routine boundary check-ins to ensure that we are still on the same page about what and who we are to one another. If I ever feel as though my presence in a client’s life is having a detrimental impact on either one of us, I will compassionately suggest that we end our relationship, even if it means a loss of funds. This is because I respect the “campsite rule”: to leave my client in at least as good a state (emotionally and physically) as before the relationship began.
Be forthcoming with your professionals about your history and hesitations right off the bat! If they’re not willing or able to give you the additional grace necessary for you to proceed with a booking, then they’re just not the ho for you. If you do your damndest to set yourself up for success and your attempts continue to flop, you may just not be cut out for this kind of engagement. And that’s okay, too <3.
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The Good Client Guide destigmatizes sex work while providing guidance on how to be a better client and ally. Better experiences for workers mean better experiences for clients! To make this happen, we’re welcoming submissions from both providers and their customers.