Ticket to Ride

My name is Alexander Cheves. My nickname is Beastly. I write about sex. I wrote a book.

Have a question? Email askbeastly@gmail.com or go here.

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Hi Alexander,

I met up with a gay escort for the first time – he was handsome, super-nice, friendly, attentive… all that I could ask for. I had never bottomed before, but he took control and helped me relax enough that I got fucked for the first time in my life and it was AMAZING.

And now I can’t stop thinking about him. When I was younger, I fell quickly for guys probably because I didn’t think I was likable. I wish I could view him from a sexual standpoint only, but man – he is so nice that I fantasize about being in a relationship with him. What do I do?

James (he/him)

Hi James,

I can’t speak to your provider’s personal feelings, but as a sex worker myself who has been in this situation with clients in the past, I can say this: Though I sympathize with your plight, I must remind you that is his job, his livelihood. You feel connected to him and moved by him — that’s great, that’s beautiful. That means you had chemistry and that he did a good job. Nevertheless, it was a job, nothing more or less, which means you have a crush that likely won’t be reciprocated.

People pay for a variety of services. We pay dentists for dental care, therapists for therapy, and mechanics to fix their cars. Some people pay sex workers for sex, or for the impression of intimacy, or for personalized sex coaching, or for companionship, or for porn, or any number of other services. Good in-person escorts supply tailor-made, bespoke experiences — often risking both personal safety and the arm of the law — in exchange for handsome hourly fees. Escorts are working professionals, just like dentists, therapists, and mechanics, but their trade is sex.

If you tell him about your crush, you will likely be disappointed. He’s probably had several clients fall for him this way, and I imagine he has go-to lines to let folks down easily (I do). Letting someone down gently is part of the job, one that none of us enjoy (because it’s uncomfortable and, worse, it risks losing that person’s business). Some escorts feign interest and give you just enough hope to keep you buying, and many clients are looking for that experience. The “boyfriend experience” is, after all, just the consensual role-play of romantic interest, provided for a fee. If you want that — if you want to take him on dates and sweet outings while paying his rate — that’s a business proposition worth talking to him about. But I wouldn’t tell him about your crush — you’re likely to make things uncomfortable and risk not being able to hire him again.

I have a hard rule in my personal business: no matter how much chemistry I have with a client, I will never, ever date them in real life — because they’re a client. I strongly discourage escorts from trying to have romantic relationships with people who come into their lives as clients. I’m sorry to say that, if I had his ear, I would dissuade him from doing so with you.

Your best course of action would be to continue enjoying his services and let that be enough. If you can’t do that — if your feelings are too strong and you fear rejection — you should stop hiring him and hire someone else.

Love, Beastly

Dear Beastly,

Recently I was wondering what’s sex workers’ perception of the client? Do sex workers have attraction towards them? Do they fake signs of attraction?

Sorry if this question was asked before and thanks for doing this blog.


Hi Mark,

It depends on the sex worker. Some sex workers certainly don’t like their clients at all, but I’m not one of them. I’m proud to say that I try to create authentic, genuine connections with my clients. I usually like them — as people, as individuals — and I think they usually like me. That said, this is still a business. I like my doctor, I think she’s a good and kind person, but she’s still my doctor, and we’d never hang out outside the clinic. Similarly, I’d never hang out with — and certainly never date or have sex with — any of my clients outside of work.

Many people wonder about this. Sex work involves things that happen at home, outside clients’ working lives. Sex, intimacy, kink: these experiences are removed from most people’s professional environments — and when done well, they feel personal. But sex, intimacy, and kink are professional environments for sex workers. Few people wonder if their CPA genuinely likes them, but sex workers are asked all the time if they “genuinely like” or are attracted to their clients.

Yes, I think all sex workers fake signs of sexual attraction. I have. I do. Every job involves some performance. But for me at least, the performance is close to the truth: I choose to share my vulnerabilities and details of my personal life with most of my clients. I am not pretending to be someone else. Other sex workers do things very differently and lean heavily into their performances. The roles they play on the job are very different from who they are in real life.

I think many sex workers genuinely like their clients as people, even if they’d never meet outside the client-provider relationship. To be good at this business, I think one has to genuinely enjoy meeting new people and talking to them. But you still have to buy a ticket to ride.

Love, Beastly

I got my first happy-ending massage recently; both the massage and the handjob were very good. The massage cost $85, and I tipped $45 (both in cash) thinking that a ~50% tip seemed about right. But I really have no idea! I’ve done a little research around the internet on good tipping practices for happy-ending massages, or broad sex work tipping practices, and have not found much from either the workers themselves or customers who seem confident or consistent in their thoughts on tipping. I’ve come across your writing in the past when reading up on various sexual practices, and always appreciated what you have to share.

Hi there!

I wrote this previous post on tipping escorts, so please check it out! Bottom line: There is no standard rule or practice regarding tipping, and many clients do not tip at all. But I remember the clients who do, and generous tippers are likelier to “jump the line” and get special treatment in the future should they ever want to meet again. So if you really like your provider and want to meet them regularly, I’d encourage tipping them generously. I think a 50 percent tip is very generous.

Love, Beastly

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