The Scene: Separated by the Atlantic Ocean, Alina* and I convene via Zoom. It’s been over two years since we’ve spoken so we get more than a little sidetracked before starting our interview. Lot’s has changed since living together at an ashram in Thailand in 2019. She’s moved back to Poland after living in the UK for several years and has met the love of her life. We talk about sacred prostitution and discuss the interesting intersection between spirituality and sexuality. I comment on how I think it’s interesting that we weren’t the only women with a sex work past at the ashram:

Jules: There’s something there and it’s more complicated of a narrative than women simply looking for redemption. It’s about the healer archetype. These highly empathetic women who are able to connect with others; to make them feel seen and heard. It’s a super power. Whether they express that talent through sex work, yoga, or psychotherapy shouldn’t matter. But of course, it does. Society will demonize the sex worker, write the yoga teacher off as some woo woo flake, and glorify the licensed therapist. Fuck all that.

Alina: Seriously! So are you still a sugar baby ?

Jules: Not these days. It was an exciting albeit complicated chapter in my life but I’m ready for something new — more of a long-term partnership like you’ve found I think. Zero regrets though. Sugaring gave me this space where I could just let go, free from inhibitions and judgment. I was able to explore my sexuality and push boundaries in a way that I probably wouldn’t have if I had been in a more conventional relationship. 

Alina: I definitely relate to that. Learning to create boundaries for myself was really empowering. My sessions usually wouldn’t go beyond spanking, BDSM play, getting naked, and cuddling, but I did have sex with people that I met sometimes. Only when I wanted to though. It would be like: “Okay I’m choosing to do this and now we’re switching into date mode.”

I liked the fluidity of that. There would be a clear boundary but I could move that boundary if I wanted to. Just being in a place where we could explore intimacy and be really honest with one another was really nice. Sometimes the masks would fall off. Sometimes it wasn’t that all the masks would fall off, but a lot of them would. 

It was a place where society’s standards didn’t apply and ironically enough, I learned to respect and appreciate myself more through doing that sort of work. Knowing that someone was willing to go to quite some length just to meet me and was really appreciating what I was offering — that was a real eye-opener. It was mind-blowing to realize that I could be relaxed in who I was while spending time with all these interesting, kinky people, who were ready to praise me. 

Jules: And to treat you like the goddess you are!

Alina: Yes and you know, not everyone gets that in their upbringing – relating to another person in a sexually charged situation in a healthy way. The first encounters I had with boys as a teenager were very disrespectful and so I learned to believe that’s all that I deserved. It was really only when I started doing sex work that the way I viewed myself started to change, in a positive way.

Jules: I totally know what you mean and I feel like people who haven’t done sex work have a hard time understanding that. To them, it’s more of a “you don’t have respect for yourself hence why you’re doing this” kind of vibe.

Alina: Exactly! It’s viewed as “I’m doing something that’s disrespecting me,” and yet I was able to develop a lot of respect and appreciation not just for myself but for others. 

Jules: Love that! So how did you fall into the whole spanking thing? 

Alina: Yes! I was finishing up university in Poland and was making plans to move to London with my boyfriend but then we ended up breaking up. So I reached out to an old friend who was living there and she said I was welcome to crash with her while I figured things out. When I asked her what she did for a living she said, “I’ll tell you when you’re here.”

Jules: And what age were you at this point?

Alina: 24 or so. So when I got there, I asked my friend again what it was she did and she told me: “I do different kinds of role-play. Sometimes I beat the guys, sometimes I let them beat me, and sometimes I get undressed and we just cuddle. That’s basically it.” 

I remember getting really excited by the whole idea. It was just so alternative and out there, and I had always wanted to try BDSM but had never really gotten the chance to do so. There had been one guy I explored it a bit with but we only saw each other for a few months. 

I had my doubts though. “Is this my thing or is this going to be the worst experience of my life?” I remember thinking. But it was taking me time to find a regular job, so in the meantime, my friend basically told me: “I have this guy. If you want to try, you can meet up with him. He’s really nice. A total gentleman and a bit older. He pays well but he hits hard.”

So I met up with him and things went well. He was really nice and intelligent and we started things off with good conversation and a bottle of wine. It was a lot about exploring my body boundaries, like how to discern pleasure from pain: “Is it two different things or is it one in the same and how can I sort of observe my body and my mind once someone is inflicting pain on me?” 

I ended up getting more clients and about a year in, went from being a sub to a switch [switch = switch between sub and dom]. Being a dom was really empowering because I had never thought of myself as a dominant person. I hadn’t seen myself as someone who could use their power to exercise control over someone. I wasn’t forcing them obviously, they were willingly giving themselves over to me and that felt powerful. 

Jules: I bet! I feel like as women, we’re conditioned to not even acknowledge that side of ourselves.

Alina: Very true. In the spanky world in the UK, a lot of girls that start off as subs end up becoming switches or doms because they discover through the exploration of BDSM that “Hey, actually I enjoy being on the other side.” And there’s also a lot of guys who start as doms but then find that they actually prefer being a sub. And I think you’re right that a lot of that has to do with conditioning. People subconsciously put themselves in the gender role that society is expecting them to play. 

Jules: So tell me about the cast of characters you met. I’m sure there was quite a range. 

Alina: Absolutely. The chemistry was different with every person. Sometimes it would be really playful. Sometimes the guy would make an intense ritual out of it – like he would want to get to the point where his body was trembling, as an emotional release of sorts. Some guys would cry the whole time, while others preferred being in total control and would get really into the role play. Some were just seeking connection but then there would be the guys where it felt unhealthy. It wasn’t so much therapeutic for them as it was compulsive. Nothing was ever enough. 

Jules: When you recognized one of these “unhealthy guys,” was it more of an energetic thing or were there times that they actually took things too far and made you feel unsafe?

Alina: Both. The energy would feel off but it also came down to how they behaved. For example, sometimes I would say “That’s enough,” or “This is too much for me,” and the guy would keep trying to cross boundaries. So then I would become very strict and be like “Ok we’re going to stop here.”

With guys who had a healthy approach, it felt like a really nice, respectful date. The comparison I would make between the two sorts of experiences would be overeating junk food versus having a light, gourmet, nutritious meal with a nice glass of wine. One leaves you feeling like you’ve had too much and the other leaves you healthy and relaxed.

Jules: Any favorite clients or stories you want to share? 

Alina: So there was this one guy who I always had a really good time with and he split his time between London and Dubai. So sometimes he would just call me up on a Tuesday or Wednesday and be like “Hi, do you have time to come to Dubai this week?” and then he would buy me plane tickets and book a hotel. We would do a few hour session and then the rest of the time I would go sight-seeing. 

Jules: Oh my god! That sounds AMAZING.

Alina: Yeah it was pretty good. And then there were just some really interesting people who I would have never met otherwise – these older guys that had completely different experiences and interests than me. Going out with them was like having this window into another aspect of life with someone else.

Jules: I totally relate! When you’re living in the matrix, you don’t realize how homogenized the people in your orbit are. It’s only when you take the road less traveled and meet people from other walks of life do you realize what you’ve been missing. 

Alina: I have so many amazing stories from my time as a spanky. I also made really good money doing it. Eventually though, it became draining. When you’re in that line of work, you have to keep things professional. If I wasn’t feeling it one day, I still had to show up and be as present as possible. Once I became more in touch with my needs, I realized it was time to try something new. I know people who have done the spanky thing for years though and love it. They are part of this big happy, kinky family and I think that’s great! 

Jules: I had a similar trajectory. I think there are different phases in people’s lives that align more with sex work than others. Also, some people are more empowered by their choice to make it a full-time career than others. Everyone is different and there’s no “right” or “wrong” way to do it.

Alina: Definitely. Everyone has their own, unique journey. For me, it was about going out and meeting the world. I experienced masculine and feminine energies both within myself and in others, while discovering different ways to connect with the world. Now that I’ve built that foundation, I’m ready to invest my time and energy into creating a more stable life for myself. 

Jules: Sounds like the transition from maiden to mother

Alina: Exactly!

*Names and minor details have been altered to protect subject matter. 

Culture
BDSM
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Jules

Jules

Author

Based in Brooklyn, Jules has dedicated her twenties towards harnessing her pussy power, exploring the muse, whore, and wild woman archetypes along the way. When not blogging, you can find her sweating the toxins out in a hot yoga class or sipping a matcha latte at a pretentious coffee shop, whilst she scribbles away in her journal.


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