Archives For exotic dancer

Lots of single moms strip.  It’s not a new concept, we all know how expensive and exhausting it is to be a mother, and there are few jobs as flexible and lucrative as stripping  to help you along the way if your sperm donor isn’t holding up his end (and even if he is.)  It’s not a crime to dance and be a mom.  It’s normal for lots of people, and really it’s better than exposing your children to poverty.  Children shouldn’t have to handle that reality.  There are other realities that come along with it that they shouldn’t have to handle either, frankly.  I am not a mom, so I have been hesitant to post about motherhood and stripping, but a discussion I walked in on last week has backed me into a corner.  I have to write this or my conscience won’t let me forget it.  I hope it helps someone out there.

I’m not a mom, but I had a mom.  My mom did some sketchy shit, let me be really up front.  Her dating life was weird and I was privy to more of it than I should have been, to be honest.  The older I get, the easier it is to piece together all the weird things she got involved with that likely eclipsed the parts of her that I was aware of.  As a kid though, everything in my life seemed normal.  That’s really true for all of us.  When you’re a child, you lack the range of experience to be able to compare yourself to what’s actually normal.  This is the kind of thing that follows us throughout our lives.  The stuff your mom let you be a part of molded you, and the stuff she excluded you from, if she was good enough at concealing it, hopefully didn’t infect your young mind and distort you.  Ideally, your mom’s weirdness doesn’t become apparent until you are old enough to be able to digest it…in other words, until you have the scope you needed in order to determine if it’s right or wrong.

 

I was protected from a lot, thank god, but the stuff I wasn’t protected from has formed the core of my own personal struggle.  Relationships were the weak spot my mom exposed me to, and now forming a healthy one has become greatest challenge. My mom tried to hide things from me, but of course, kids are SMART.  Not everything was concealed as well as she thought it was.  Nevertheless, her intentions were good: adult stuff was for Mom, and kid stuff was for me.  I have my suspicions about what my mom did while raising me to supplement her income, but I have no proof at all.  No part of my childhood includes memories of my mom as anything but my mom.  Whatever she did for work was a blissful mystery to me.

In my fourteen years in the industry, though, I have seen some other approaches to parenthood.  Some were bearable, although you do feel bad for the thirteen year old boy who knows his mom strips in the town they live in, but technically, not illegal, and definitely not the worst case.  I have seen toddlers with Daddy playing in the parking lot at two thirty AM, waiting for Mommy to come home.  I have seen babysitters storm into dressing rooms drunk, screaming, “Your kids in the car!  He’s been in that bitch all night!  Get your ass home!” and thought to myself, “Is this it?  Is this when we call CPS?” (CPS stands for Child Protective Services, for those of you who don’t know.)

Last week, I walked in on a dressing room convo between two girls I don’t know at all.  I was guesting at a club I don’t usually work at.  I was touching up my face next to a couple girls talking about Seeking Arrangement, and my nosey ass opened my ears up for the convo.  I’m going to name the girls Pink and Green for the colors they were wearing.

Pink: I didn’t really have a choice, I had no babysitter.

Green: You ALWAYS have a choice.  Listen to me.  Don’t EVER bring your kid on a date with a dude.  Ever.

Pink: No it’s cool.  She’s only two and a half, she don’t know what’s going on.  She just sat and chilled while we ate.  It’s not like we did anything, it was just lunch.

Green: Yo.  Seriously, kids are smart.  That’s not cool, don’t do that.

Pink: We weren’t fuckin or nothing.  It was just a date to talk about maybe if it was gonna work, but that site is wack.  It probably won’t be anything.

Green: You’re not really listening to me, so fuck it, do what you want, but listen.  I’ve been a ho.  I’ve been a two hundred dollar ho, and I’ve been a two thousand dollar ho, but none of it has had anything to do with a kid.  I’m not judging you but you cannot bring your kid on dates with tricks.  A trick is a trick, and you cannot involve your kid with any part of it.

[OK THIS SHIT IS RAW AND PINK LEGIT IS IGNORING HER.  I interject because I can’t keep my mouth shut ever.]

Me: Listen to her, dude.  She’s right, this girl is smart.  You should thank her for taking the time to talk to you, she could save your kids life.

Green: Your daughter is smart and you are writing on her soul.  You can’t undo that.  She is a little girl.  If you want to write on your daughters soul, that’s your choice, but she will live with what you teach her for the rest of her life.

I think it stuck with Pink.  Really.  It stuck with me.  I hope it did, because what she shows her baby will certainly stick with her.

Your kids are only young once.  You think they’re tough, you think they can handle reality, you think you’re doing your best all the time, and I hear that.  Parenthood looks hard as hell and I commend every one of you who handle it like the bosses you are, but a little discretion goes a long way.  It is your job as a parent to protect your child from things that might hurt him or her.  Your job is most certainly one of those things.  The more you do it, the more normal it becomes for you, but this line of work is not normal for most adults.  Don’t poison your kid’s soul by making it normal for him or for her.  Sex is for when we understand it.  No two year old, five year old, or ten year old needs to know about it.  In fact, when you DO start talking about sex, please make sure you’re doing it for him or for her, when he or she is ready.  Your sex life does not have to be a part of your child’s life. To Ms. Green, thank you.  You are the realest one.  I wish we had gotten to know each other better.

To Miss Pink, I hope you heard her.  I hope you hold your baby close and keep her safe from all of it.  If I were a mom, I wouldn’t even bring my shoes home, y’all.  For real.  My prayers to her and to you and to all of your babies.  Keep them in their blissful youth for as long as you can, quit this job, and let them see you shine in whatever your dream job may be.  Inspire those kids, man!

chasekellysig

Safety First

Chase Kelly —  August 1, 2014 — 4 Comments

Amidst all the glamorization and stigmatization of strip clubs, sometimes what gets glossed over are the the dangers of stripping, or more accurately, the violence that sometimes burdens strippers and the vice industry in general.  A few weeks ago nine people were shot on Bourbon Street a few blocks from where I work.  Last week one person was stabbed and 6 people were murdered overnight. In 2010 there was a shooting INSIDE a club I worked at, and a few years before that there was a drive by at my club in Connecticut.  I’ve seen entertainers decked in the face by grown men, subsequent stabbings, and heard more dancers confess to leaving the club with customers and then being raped or drugged than I’d like to really remember.

Some of us work in small suburban areas, but due to our desire for community and anonymity and to access a larger clientele, many strippers choose to live in cities, and with that comes violence, especially against women.

Despite the risks, most of us are still dancing, because we are either blind to the possibility of it happening at our club/to us or because we have consciously decided that it’s a risk we are willing to take.  With the rise of strip club culture, more and more young women are getting into the industry.  It’s our duty to be aware of the dangers that do lurk around and do what we can to keep ourselves safe and how to stay away from the drama.  More safety tips here.

 

 

Hey y’all
Sorry for being MIA lately–I have been focusing so much on personal projects and dancing 5-6 nights a week, so I haven’t had much time to write about it, but some things keep coming up that I can’t help but address.  Recently I had a run in at my place of business.  A customer spent a ridiculous amount of money (5 digits) on me and another entertainer.  During that time, I had mistakenly given the customer my phone number; a thing we all do from time to time even if we preach against it and even if it’s against the rules.  In this case, I had used the customers phone to send myself a photo that he had taken while we were in our champagne room.  It’s a good photo, you can see why I’d want it.

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At the end of the night (7 AM) the customer got angry because I asked him for a tip instead of asking for the name of his hotel.  Tens of thousands of dollars in, this guy wanted a cuddle partner or two in his bed.  Neither she nor I are offer extras, so that was out of the question.  The problem is, now this guy had my number and he was sort of unstable, and he wasn’t getting what he wanted.  The argument is that I shouldn’t have asked for a tip at the end from both his and my clubs point of view, and perhaps they’re right, but I think the bigger mistake was giving out my number.  Had I not done that, he would have still spent the money but he would not have had the opportunity to do what he did next.

The texts started about 15 minutes after I left club property.  Asking me to go on vacation.  Telling me he fell in love with me.  Asking when he can see me again.  Referring to himself aptly as “needy boy.”  Talking about how we “connected” and al of a sudden I realize that my home address and last name are attached to that cell phone. I never answered or responded to his texts; quite frankly I wasn’t feeling so safe anymore.   Then the call from my club came: the customer is disputing the charges and I might be losing my job because of the exaggerated (read: bullshit) story he painted to the management when he realized I wasn’t going to be his girlfriend for the evening or in the future and wouldn’t respond to his messages.

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I got to the internet and started asking my twitter followers if they had had any similar experiences.  Immediately I had responses like this:

 

It should have been common sense to me, but I was still living in 2010.  Immediately, though, a lightbulb went off in my mind.  It isn’t the same as it was a few years ago; personal information is accessible to common people through the internet if they know where to look and are willing to pay a few bucks for it.  The mental health crisis is in full, glaring effect, and where do crazy people go to be “understood?”  To sex workers.  That’s me.

In the texts that followed, psycho custie made sure to let me know that he had “fallen in love with me that night” and that I was so good at my job, “maybe too good,” and it gave him feelings he didn’t know how to deal with.  I am still in the middle of the fiasco, but in the end the moral I think will be the same, whether I have to find a new club because of this nutcase or not, it will be the last time I give out my number for real.  In the wake of the Elliot Rodger tragedy and all of the other terrible crimes against women, it’s important that I take care of myself first.  The mental health thing is the major argument in this case to the civilian world, but what does it mean to women?  Does it matter if a perpetrator is “sick” on paper to the person who he murders?  Young men posting on the forums that Rodger posted on talk about their experiences with sex workers; we are sometimes the only women mentally ill people get to feign intimacy with, meaning that we are directly in their field of vision.  We want to believe that our customers are normal, and most of them are, but some are crazy and we have to account for that.  We also have to account for the fact that the craziest ones can often manipulate us into trusting them.  You might be quick, but sociopaths are quicker.

The money and the job are cool, but my safety is priceless.  I urge dancers who plan to give out their numbers to get google voice or a burner phone that cannot be traced to your home address.  The days of having fetish customers over to clean my living room are far gone.  We live in a more terrifying and woman hating world than ever, I’ve even taken back a “fake real name” that I’ll be using again.  I’m glad my wake up call didn’t leave me dead or hurt.  It’s still unfolding but I will probably change my number shortly.  Please cover your tooshies as much as you bare them!  Safety always first.

chasekellysig

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Sex workers and strippers face so many of the same issues when it comes to relationships.  Can a stripper have a boyfriend and not be miserable?  Yes.  Are those relationships few and far between?  Absolutely.  Even as dancing becomes more accepted, the stigma remains the same for the majority of men.

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If you’re under 24, you’re labeled as a person with no self esteem and daddy issues.  If you are over 25 or have children, you are a “single mom with no other choice.” We know men are going to judge us and when they are angry, we know the easiest target is our jobs.  That’s something that’s hurt me, but it’s something I can live with.  It really helps me detach from someone actually–when they are so low to call me names because of my job.  Goodbye, sir.  You are done.

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What I can’t live with is the manipulation.  What many dancers don’t realize when getting into relationships is that there is a large number of men looking for “sugar mamas” or even subsidiaries (there are stripper pimps, you know about them if you live in the South or North East) and sex workers are known for having expendable income and a lack of love in their lives.  There are wolves looking for lambs who need to be loved, and which one of us can definitively say that we don’t need it?  It’s really hard for a boyfriend to be comfortable with a job like ours, so if early on your guy seems way too comfortable or encouraging, don’t be ashamed of doing a little homework.


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A parasitic boyfriend won’t complain about your job ever, because he plans on paying his bills with your ass.  Please watch your money.  Please don’t give it to anyone, please only invest in yourself.  Please never trust someone who expects you to purchase their affection (unless, of course, you have hired them to do that, like so many men have hired us to do.)  Please know your worth (priceless) and require that your needs are met (or walk!)

chasekellysig

 

5 Things to Retire in 2014

Chase Kelly —  December 30, 2013 — 2 Comments

As 2013 comes to a close, I think it’s time that we look back at the mistakes we’ve seen strippers make, mistakes we have ourselves made, reflect on the changes in the industry, and adjust our hustle to make the most of the year ahead. Strippers have been directly affected by sexualization of mainstream media, and strippers, instead of being a part of a “secret society” are now front and center in television, movies, and of course, music videos.

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When something changes, everything changes, and although it moves at a slower pace than the real world, strip club culture does exist, and we DO evolve. So what things should we retire in 2014 to make this year our most lucrative yet?

1. Asking, “Wanna Dance?”

We KNOW this doesn’t work. We do it anyway out of laziness. Most dancers come into work more than they want to or not enough, which results in this “I don’t wanna do this tonight,” sort of feeling. The trick is to find the sweet spot. For me, it’s always been either 4-6 nights a week, but for some girls it’s 1-3, some can push it to 6-10 shifts even! But the reality is, when we don’t want to be there is when we do the “wanna dance?” thing. If you can’t do it tonight, don’t do it! Don’t get in lazy habits and become the “wanna dance” girl just because $100 is better than nothing at all. Take those nights to yourself and make an EXTRA hundred on the day that you DO feel like it, and nix the “wanna dance” crap FOREVER.

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2. Looking homeless on the floor

I know it’s cold out. Get a catsuit, a cute shrug, cropped jacket, or wear long sleeved dresses and leg warmers, but for the love of everything holy, please stop wearing your PINK hoodie on the floor. The general rule to stripper wardrobe styling is, “If his wife would clean the toilet in it, don’t wear it.” (plus, you look so sad!)

3. Tracks/Bad weaves

You get paid to look nice. If you messed up your hair or you prefer the look of a extensions or a wig, please invest in quality hair and have it put in by a professional. If you bought it at Sally’s and your brother’s girlfriend’s cousin did it in her kitchen? It’s not good enough for the strip club.

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4. Booty Work

No more. PLEASE no more booty, and no more booty poppin music!) The butt tricks of 2007-2013 are over. Miley does it, Beyonce does it, everyone does it. It’s too mainstream for us, so let’s take this opportunity to class the joint up a bit. Unless you work at Club Onyx or Magic City, we really don’t need the strip club to look like a rap video. Every club that I have worked at that allows pretty little blonde girls to twerk around on the floor to Gucci Mane has run off it’s good money customer base.* To be honest, it just looks trashy. Sooooooo let’s make an initiative amongst us to embrace the return of 90’s fashion and 90’S MONEY into the strip clubs by making whales feel comfortable there, and to make them feel a little less like they are looking at their highschool daughters on stage. Dance to less abrasive songs this year, do a little less ass popping, and try sensual on for size. It’s a new year, time to re-choreograph your stage show anyhow!

*There is a difference between “Bootylicious” and “Bust it Open”. Please keep dancing to R&B forever.

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5. Using your cell phone on the floor

Why this is permitted at any strip club is beyond reason for me. If you are making excuses in your head right now, do yourself a favor and STOP THAT. There is absolutely no reason to have your phone on you in the strip club. If you have kids, their sitter should know the number to the club and be able to retrieve you at any time. If you are bored, too bad. Stay bored. Your cell phone is making you complacent, and what’s worse, it’s keeping you checked into your real life. You need to leave (insert your birth name here) at the front door, and fully become (insert your stage name here). You cannot do that if you are texting your boyfriend or your homegirl or scrolling on instagram. Plus, you look like a huge asshole to your manager and your customers. Entertain yourself by devising plots to run the world with your favorite stripper friend.

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Honorable mention: The pussy flip.

Stop. Turning. Upside. Down. In. Guys. Laps. If I have to explain why you don’t need to do this, email me. We need to talk.

It’s been a little over a year now since I started teaching girls how to be safer and more mindful during their time in the adult entertainment business.  I have talked to girls who are dying to learn to become a stripper, girls who want to learn how to quit stripping, girls who are happy dancing and miserable with everything else and those that live dream lives but don’t feel comfortable in their occupation.  The more I speak with girls, the more I realize how different all of our stories are, but also how many universal truths exist within our community.  Survivetheclub is on a mission to unite us and make us stronger and better.  I hope that by sharing the stories of the women I meet along the way, we can inspire and teach each other.

This interview is with the lovely Alice, aka Sativa.  She lives in LA and can be lurked @jadedstripper on twitter and tumblr.

tumblr_mqb8cvKpCM1s0axgjo1_1280STC: How long have you been dancing?

JS:  3 years and three months

STC: Are your long term career goals the same or different than they were when you first started dancing?  How have they changed?

JS:  They have changed a lot. When I was going to school I realized my particular field of study was not the most lucrative, so I decided to drop out, take a vacation and find a new field that I liked. I had the typical expectations, telling myself I would only dance for 1 month, then go back to school. Well that turned into 6 months, a year…. Now I’m 22 and still don’t know what I want to do for career.

STC: If you wanted to quit dancing, would you be able to?  How easy or difficult would it be? –

JS:  It would be easy to quit, but hard to stay out of it. I have financed a car for myself and one for my parents, leased a condo, signed expensive cell phone contracts, used credit cards.. it would be very hard to keep the promises I’ve made and pay for the things I have financed if I only had a regular job, even two jobs.

STC: Are you open with your friends and family about what you do? –

JS: Most of my close friends now are dancers. When I first started I told most of my fiends, but slowly they have lost contact.
I told my parents I bartended at a popular strip club in LA to explain the fact that I can afford to pay their rent for them.

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STC: What is your earliest memory of “money” in your life?  What experiences in your childhood shaped your concept of earning, saving, or spending money?

JS: My earliest memory was that my dad had a piggy bank for me, my sister and my brother, one for each of us. He kept them on his dresser and put change in them every day. We would sit on the bed once a month and he taught us to count the change. If my siblings and I wanted to buy something we could combine our money, but usually I saved mine and my siblings bought ice cream and video games and things.
My experiences with money were shaped from my parents, who had very different spending habits. Growing up my dad had a great job and liked to spoil us every now and then. He taught us to appreciate when we could have nice things. My mom stayed home and was very frugal. She taught me how to double coupons at the grocery store and how to be crafty at home and about saving money by doing things yourself.

STC: Are you happy with the amount of money that you have in savings right now?
JS: At this particular moment, no. Six months ago I was but shit happens.

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STC: How has dancing affected your relationships with your…

friends?

JS: It’s hard to keep girl friends that aren’t in the industry because usually they just look down upon it.
And it’s hard keeping friends that are dancers because they come and go, sometimes never to be seen or heard from again. Most times you never really get to know each other personally, I have a lot of girl friends that I can call up to party with but I will never know their real names or anything about them. That can be lonely.

STC: family?

JS: I have changed from the spoiled baby of the family to the sole provider, which is stressful and difficult. But dispite that I have grown very distant from my family. I hate having to lie to them over about where the money comes from.

STC: significant others?

JS: Dancing ruined my first real relationship slowly over a two year span.  He was cool with it then I grew me confident in myself and sabotaged our relationship so I could make more money. Now I feel like men don’t take me seriously as a potential partner due to my job. So I pretty much stay single now.

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STC: What has been your biggest challenge since starting dancing?

JS:  Trying to get guys that I like to see me as a human being in lieu of a stripper slut.

STC: What has been your greatest accomplishment?

JS: Financial independence and confidence I could have never achieved by any other means.

STC: If you had a daughter and she wanted to dance what would you say to her?

JS: Go back to school


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STC: Are you in debt?  Only go into as much detail as you are comfortable with.

JS: No, never have been

STC: Have you ever been unfairly targeted/abused by anyone because of your occupation?
JS: There have been several occasions while working at the club when patrons have verbally abused me. That’s just part of the job. But luckily I have never really had anyone try to hurt me physically.
STC: What is the thing you really would like to improve in your hustle?  What about in your financial life?

JS: I wish I was a better liar! :p

STC: What advice would you give a girl in her first month dancing?

JS:  Save your money.  Don’t let yourself get stuck.

If you have more questions, advice, or would like to be featured on survivetheclub.com please comment below or use the contact page.  Thank you and be safe!

xo
Chase Kelly

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Despite the cash that is overflowing from their coach bags, most strippers have a fair amount of unmanaged debt that they do not know what to do with.   Borrowing money is part of our culture, and since most everyone we know is drowning in debt, maybe you jumped on the bandwagon of irresponsibility.  Maybe you got screwed in interest, and now you’re paying 10 times as much as you spent originally, now you are taking a stand against them and vow not to pay them at all.  Maybe you are a little lazy and paying them means doing a bunch of things you don’t feel like doing right now, but you swear you’ll do it “later,” and maybe you think you are being good, you pay all your bills on time, but you pay the minimum due and your balances never seem to go down?  (Maybe you have no debt at all and this post doesn’t apply to you, in which case, please comment how you managed your debt and give yourself a hug!)

Whatever the reason is, if you carry ANY debt as a dancer you are doing yourself a grave injustice.  Strippers should be investing and MAKING money in interest on all the cash we make (even if you’re a low earning stripper, you can be providing for your future more capably now than possibly ever.)  Right now, you make the cash that it costs to earn a Ph.D.  Even if you have NO IDEA what you want your future to be like, trust that one day a plan will show itself to you (please watch this video).  Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to quit dancing and dedicate 40 hours a week towards YOUR DREAM?  You don’t have to run in the rat race like everyone else.  If you pay off your debts and manage your money, you can live the life you want to live, without many of the limitations that keep people down.  You don’t need to have a plan for the rest of your life right this instance to prepare yourself for a comfortable life, and there’s something you can do RIGHT NOW instead of browsing the internet to improve your life.

IF YOU PAY OFF YOUR DEBTS AND SAVE YOUR MONEY, THE LIFE YOU WANT IS YOURS, so the first step is to gather a list of all the people who you owe money to.  If this seems daunting, just answer every blocked call, 800 number, or unknown call for a month or two.  Also, check the mail daily and open everything that looks like a bill the second you get it.  Write down all of the information from each-what you owe, whether the account is in collections, if not, what the interest is on the balance, and how much they want from you.  Then start going through them one by one.  Lots of places will settle your debt for less, and if it’s in collections I say do that.

Please don’t go getting student loans, either.  If you have one, pay it off, if you don’t, get on a payment plan, work more shifts, put a little more work into refining your hustle so you make more money, and pay for school up front.  “Dancing your way through college” is a bullshit excuse for what you’re doing if you are graduating with the same debt as your cousin who works at Whole Foods.  Don’t take loans for ANYTHING but a home if you can avoid it (which you can).

I am not a financial advisor, but there are ton’s of books on debt management that can help you.  I definitely recommend Suze Orman, I got through all of my debt while reading Women and Money.  Lots of the advice in personal finance books don’t apply to dancers because we make cash, but paying off your debts is a must for all people, it just so happens that it’s actually POSSIBLE for strippers.  The bottom line is, even though you can’t see it, the interest on those cards is eating away at your hard earned money.  These credit card companies are in business to make LOTS of money off of you, and if you aren’t paying attention, they will.  Carry a low balance on your cards, and pay it in full each month.  Don’t borrow money you don’t have.  Save.  Pay for everything you have up front.  I never tell someone to “bill me.”  and ALWAYS pay cash when possible.

I will post more on earning back interest with IRAs, savings accounts, and mutual funds later on, but while you wait, pick up the phone and cancel that Victoria’s Secret Card.

xxx

Chase

related post: Control your Credit

 

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