Presently, I’m a dominatrix at one of the premier dungeons of New York City. By my estimation, I’m also 4 weeks pregnant, and very ready to leave the unstable economic world of domming in order to provide for my child. I’m 24 years old; I’m in a long-term, perpetually-in-a-gray-area relationship with my baby’s father; neither the baby’s father nor myself have finished college; I’ve only recently figured out who I am and what I want from life; and I’m a sex worker. If my life were a sitcom and this initial entry a pilot episode, it would end with a joke at my expense and a laugh track fading into the credits.
I became a dominatrix the same way that I decided to become a mom. I knew that giving myself either moniker would forever alter and define all that I am, and that once my mind was made up there was no turning back. I’d worked in everything from non-profit organizations to corporations, and had had my last abortion only a year and a half before deciding to be a mom. Yet, despite all of the goodness the yuppy and unmommified life has to offer, I yearned for the alternative. Who knows why the heart wants what it wants, or where our choices really come from? All I knew was that I had to take my time figuring out what was right for me.
I considered the challenges associated with each undertaking: the stigmas of sex work vs. the stigmas of being a single, college-drop out mom; making a living off of my sexuality and appearance vs. finding stable work in order to care for my child; questions of ethics and morality and self-worth. I weighed out my options and considered the repercussions of all the likely worst-case scenarios, i.e., What if I’m wrongly accused and arrested for prostitution? What if I’m not ready to be a mom?
I knew that each endeavor would grant me a particular set of complications, and that I had the option of avoiding them if only I sidestepped the opportunities. I really considered not becoming a dominatrix and not becoming a mom. So many doubts and insecurities and questions loomed like vampires, ready to suck the life out of me. But in the end, in the marrow of my bones, there was a truth bursting into existence. One that no fear or paranoia could nibble at: I was ready and willing to go forth into this very significant, new and exciting phase of my life.