.silent grey

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Anonymous asked: Ok serious question my friends always go to strip clubs and I never have bc I'm very uncomfortable with the idea I honestly don't know what to think!! I hear libfems say its empowering and bc I'm not libfem I tend to think that's not right at all? Anyway it's my friends bday nxt weekend and she wants us all to go to a strip club and idk what to do. Help


The conversation about stripping and strip clubs on tumblr is completely dominated by the same few privileged, white women who think that their feelings and experiences outweigh the experiences of literally millions of women who do not enjoy sexually servicing men everyday and working in heinous labor conditions. I’ve worked in a lot of different clubs, for years, and here is what I can tell you with certainty:

  • These “empowered” strippers may seem like the majority here on tumblr, but that is because non-privileged sex workers are underrepresented. Out of literally hundreds of women I’ve come into contact with, I have met exactly two women who got into stripping because it was something they wanted to do and thought they might enjoy. Neither depended on their earnings to make a living, and both only worked every once in a while.
  • Enjoying something and getting validation for assisting men sexually is not the same as empowerment. If strippers are so empowered by stripping, why is it so difficult to exit the industry? Why do so many strippers feel compelled to do extras? Why do men control the industry?
  • Racism is rampant. White women’s faux “empowerment” often comes at the expense of women of color.
  • Sex trafficking is literally everywhere. It took place in every club I worked at – there were always pimps, and there were frequently trafficked women from Poland, Russia and a few from the Philippines.

I could tell you stories about the things that my friends and I did because we felt we had to. About the time my manager literally locked me in his office and wouldn’t let me leave. About the woman who let a man cum in her face for $60 because she didn’t have enough money for gas. I can tell you stories about watching women get so fucked up that they pass out in the parking lot before the shift starts and the bouncers just dragged them into the maintenance shed and left them there. About women sniffing coke out of the carpets after closing when they didn’t make enough money. I can tell you about watching a young mother burning herself with her curling iron in the dressing room and crying her eyes out. I can tell you the dressing room stories, not the stories the women tell to keep customers interested.

 My experience is not universal, but it is not uncommon. I worked at chain clubs like Déjà vu and Spearmint Rhino and I worked at smaller clubs on the low and high end of the spectrum. Strip clubs are not happy, empowering places filled with articulate tumblr feminists.

Personally, I hated when groups of partying women came in more than anything. They’d gawk at us, they’d laugh at us, they’d grope us onstage and felt like they didn’t have to tip us as much because they were women, as if that somehow cancelled out the fact that they were treating us like meat to get their creepy bicurious fantasies out on. They barely bought dances, and never the more expensive packages. I never felt more hopeless and like an outsider than when women who didn’t have to strip came in to use my body purely for giggles.

Sorry for such a long response, but that is the information I thought you might want to know in making your decision. If your friend absolutely refuses to have her birthday party somewhere else, maybe you could meet up with them afterwards. Follow your gut. Thanks for taking the time to ask for my advice. Good luck, anon!

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Demand more research into mental illnesses

Demand more education on mental illness

Demand more positive representation of mental illness

Destroy the stigma that surrounds mental illness

Don’t let more kids struggle all their life not knowing what is wrong with them

Don’t let mental illnesses go unrecognized and untreated

Destroy this environment that favors neurotypical able people

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