The kitchen surfaces were clean of clutter except for a two-litre bottle of Coca Cola, a minibar vodka and a packet of Tesco apples. His family, he said, has been in the valley for generations. It was a Thatcher thing.
And so, on a weekend of sagging cloud and sopping air, we met in Ammanford , 45 minutes north of Swansea. In fact, Francesco is so open about his work that he wrote a book, Il numero uno. Banks might be an escort and porn star, but he sure as hell loves to sew. Soon after, I realised there was good money to be made in being an escort, but that the job had somewhat of an expiry date. By 13 he was snorting up to seven grammes of amphetamine a day. But some escorts and former escorts are taking matters into their own hands by challenging the stereotypes that dog the industry and fighting to create safe spaces for escorts to find the resources and support they may need.
She shut them all down. Whatever it is, it is. Even most of the white people are Russian or Bosnian or something. Perhaps it was a very new relationship. But he loved Josh, that was obvious. Nevertheless, I could see why Josh wanted to leave Ammanford and its people. I could see why, for someone like him, this Tesco town was a nothing town. Back in London, Josh posed for photographs in his Stratford flat. He smoked cigarettes in a choirboy costume and pouted in his school blazer. He had the king-sized bed, the big TV, the marble bathroom.
Josh says he earns anything from a few hundred pounds a week to many thousands. He differentiates escorts from rent boys, who he says are hustlers. Like, one guy threatened to slit my throat or whatever. The tone of his voice. Cleanse your soul.
I mean, why are they Googling gay escorts? There are odd requests, too. Fuck that. Lots of men fall in love with Josh. I lose a lot of money because I have to say goodbye to them. Even with the non-clients. Surely it must be dangerous to trade it, as if it were no different to putting up a shelf? There are risks in what Josh does, of course: But I say his father should be proud of the son who refused to accept the oblivion of his hometown and is working so hard to write his own happy ending.
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Drugs Sex features. Banks at work at his sewing machine. He told HuffPost that he hopes to launch a capsule menswear collection at the end of this year. Raydene Salinas. In fact, he was recently crowned the top escort in the world at the Hookie Awards , a ceremony co-produced by Rentboy. And life, he says, is really good: But times have changed. Exchanging money for a night of intimacy may still be taboo, but thanks to sites like Rentboy. As a result, industry insiders say, more people than ever are hiring rent boys.
More are also choosing to become escorts, despite the stigma and challenges that come with the job. Today, prospective clients can browse the nearly 3, escort profiles listed on Rentboy. Said to be the first male escort ad-listing website, Rentboy.
Though comparable sites have since popped up -- including the similarly named Rentmen. Company Director Sean Van Sant says that on a daily basis, the site gets about , unique visitors, about 70 percent of whom access the site from the United States. The average escort on Rentboy. The oldest escort on the site is We're not pimps here, not an agency. Eli Lewis knitting in his Manhattan apartment left and holding his dog, Lady.
Nick Kraus. Take Eli Lewis for example. He's a year-old former professional ballet dancer who says he got into escorting a couple years ago to pay off his student loans. Lewis, who attended Sarah Lawrence College before pursuing a career in ballet, says he never expected to become a sex worker. But spurred on by a need for quick cash after a dance injury and encouraged by how easy it was to get started, he eventually took the plunge. Like many others in the industry, Lewis says he also go-go dances and works in porn to make extra cash.
Industry insiders say about 60 percent to 70 percent of porn actors also work as escorts. Other escorts shared similar stories.
Most said about half their escorting sessions don't involve sex. One escort, for instance, told a story of a client who wanted nothing more than to masturbate while watching the rent boy break No. It seems, however, that each escort attracts a very different kind of client. One said his clients included coaches of college sports teams. With such a variety of clients seeking companionship, Daniels -- who recently published a tell-all memoir about his experiences as an escort -- said connecting deeply with the men who hire him and their whims and eccentricities can make the job "exhausting.
E scorts say that establishing and upholding boundaries -- whether physical, sexual or emotional -- is critical for their well-being and success in the industry. But it can sometimes prove difficult. They have no private life," said Lucas, who worked as an escort in Europe in his early 20s.
Other than in a handful of rural counties in Nevada, selling sex for money is illegal in the United States. The escorts who spoke to HuffPost all said they had never been targeted by law enforcement and that arrests among rent boys seem to be rare. However, most also seemed aware of the risks involved. Some escorts said that leaving the industry or the prospect of doing so and finding other employment can be daunting for this same reason.
In , adult entertainment lawyer Michael Fattorosi told Salon. The fears of social alienation and judgment also weigh heavily on the minds of some in the industry. Leo Forte, who served in the military before getting into porn and escorting, said he waffled for years before deciding to pursue sex work. Several escorts said the lifestyle has strained relationships with family members, and many expressed that dating can be extremely difficult.
Despite the drawbacks that come with the job, many escorts maintain the sacrifices have been well worth it. You have to be almost like a healer -- sexually. The struggle to overcome common misconceptions about working in the business is a different hurdle altogether, however. Yet, the stereotype lingers.
He said few show signs of mental illness or depression. Additionally, some escorts may need help with money management or body image issues, while others need support figuring out an exit plan. Grov and other experts say that to protect the lives and rights of escorts and other sex workers, there needs to be more discussions about the industry -- both in the community and outside it.