By Kendra Holliday | December 13, 2015
The other day, I came across this post on Cameryn Moore’s blog about death and sex work: When a Client Passes Away.
It gave me pause.
I’ve been a sex worker for almost 10 years, and a lot of my clients are older, and/or have disabilities. I’ve had clients disappear, but have never been confronted with a death.
I wondered what it would feel like to lose someone you have a professional, yet loving, intimate relationship with, that society may or may not approve of. Talk about complicated!
Unfortunately, I soon found out. Not even two weeks later, one of my client’s passed away unexpectedly. He was 35 years old with a severe disability. I was supposed to see him again Christmas week. It hit me harder than I thought.
M contacted me back in May with the following request:
“sexual surrogate for a quadriplegic disabled man”
M had Muscular Dystrophy, which, according to Mayo Clinic, “is a group of diseases that cause progressive weakness and loss of muscle mass.”
We had an initial consult via Skype. He had to use his tongue for typing. I teased him about it: “I can’t wait to see what else that tongue can do!”
I only spent a few hours with him total, but what special hours they were!
I had to travel to him, since he was so limited in mobility. He lived about an hour from St Louis.
Each session, he was sooo eager and excited! He didn’t get to explore his sexuality nearly as much as he would like to, so he was an apt pupil. We practiced kissing, oral, pleasuring a woman, and condom sex.
He’d be hard before I even entered the room – anticipation is half the fun! He trembled with excitement, and complimented me on my body – “you look good for your age.” Ha, thanks! 🙂
Since he couldn’t move his arms, we adapted a technique where he was able to get me off – “knuckle riding” – we lubed up his hand and I rode the back of it. His soft knuckles folded perfectly into my labia and clit, creating a sexy sensation that gave me tingles!
I taught him to relax his mouth while kissing, and suck my breasts in a way that I enjoyed. I boldly stood above him so he could get a good look at my pussy, and carefully lowered myself on his face so he could taste the bittersweet tang of sacred femininity, being sure not to dislodge the tracheotomy tube attached to the base of his throat. He wasn’t as fragile as I thought he was – I was able to climb all over him and experiment with different positions. He was able to feel giddy waves of pleasure, and orgasm without ejaculating.
Most men keep warm – testosterone is nature’s furnace – but the men I’ve been with who have Muscular Dystrophy are more like me – they get cold easily. So we would cuddle under blankets together and talk about plans and dreams. We would gaze into each other’s eyes. I would stroke him all over and press my soft body against his. He beamed with joy. He loved live music, his pets, and the beach. And most of all, he loved women!
I last heard from him on Dec 1. We were discussing our upcoming session the week of Christmas.
I messaged him, “How are you? Counting down the days. It’s nice we’ll see each other over the holidays.”
He replied, “Yeah, looking forward to it. You’ve taught me well.”
So I was completely stunned to see an update on facebook a few days later from his family announcing his sudden death. His heart (our most important muscular organ) quit working during the night, after 35 years of extraordinary toil.
I wanted to reach out, but wasn’t sure.
Luckily, his family was supportive of him seeing a sex worker, and I received a message from his father. He wrote:
“Kendra, this is M’s dad. I’m sorry to advise that M passed away in his sleep Mon night. I want to thank you for helping him and being his friend. He needed female attention and touch so desperately. I really don’t know how we are going to go on without him. We always knew this day would come but could not know it would hurt this bad. Again, thank you.”
So unexpected and lovely to receive this note during their time of sudden grief.
His message took my breath away. After a moment, I replied: “Thank you so much for this message. I’m stunned at how much I’m grieving. I’m so blessed to have spent such sweet intimacy with such a loving man. We learned a lot from each other. Thank you for supporting his dreams and desires.”
We would not be seeing each other over the holidays, after all. The body I had shared pleasure with would be cremated. His ashes would be scattered on the beach.
I cried so much that night, and my strong and incredibly understanding partner lovingly held me in his warm embrace. I feel like I lost a lover – because I did.
Life is short. Please take care of yourself and enjoy all the beauty and pleasure life has to offer.
Related: Losing a Client, Part 2