Jobs to get Jealous of – Grace Bellavue, Adelaide Escort
With thousands of career paths out there, the sex industry isn’t one chosen on a whim, and it certainly isn’t suggested by careers counsellors. Of course it’s often drawn to through desperation and other reasons, but it’s easy to forget that for many it’s a career choice like any other.
Grace Bellavue was 18 when her curiosity for the sex industry got the better of her, and she decided to try it firsthand. Once she did, she never looked back, and her fascination turned serious when she made the decision to leave behind her corporate profession and launch her own escort business, which has fast become a huge success.
“While Grace uses a pseudonym, she doesn’t live a double life.”
Now embracing all the potential that social media has to offer, Grace is somewhat of a personality on Twitter, using her natural wit and intelligence to attract new clients and upwards of 4,300 followers. Meanwhile her ‘Blog on Life and Sex’ has proven she’s more than just a ‘pro’ in the bedroom or a savvy business mind, but also a brilliant writer; informally discussing the nuances of the sex industry from a fascinating and articulate first-hand perspective.
Coinciding with this week’s first ever Festival of Sex Work, Vulture talked to Adelaide girl Grace last week about how she found herself a working lady.
“I was 18 when I first started, I was actually still in school and I don’t know it just really fascinated me. I started writing a story on a prostitute, and so I visited a brothel because it seemed like good research, and I just couldn’t get it out of my head. So I went back in and did a shift and it started from there,”
“For me I love the lifestyle, and obviously the money helps, it’s quite lucrative. It’s flexible as well. Also owning my own business is a massive positive. I feel that very few jobs give me the opportunity to meet so many interesting people.”
But come on, there’s got to be occasions where you’re just not in the mood, right?
“Yeah you do have those days, but I used to get that in my old job too. It depends on my energy levels or what’s going on in my personal life. I find it’s not really a physical thing, it’s more if you’re feeling a bit emotionally drained and have a lot going on in your head, and being intimate with someone you don’t know takes a lot of personal energy. But I mean once you put everything else aside and get into it it’s OK. But yeah you do feel a bit drained sometimes; in the industry we call it sex worker burnouts. It tends to happen if you’ve been working a lot, your energy levels are depleted and you need a break, basically.”
Grace explains how Twitter has been become good for business.
“I have found a lot of clients through social media and through Twitter, particularly couples, I’ve even met a client through Instagram which was a little bizarre. But then I get a lot of emails from guys now saying, “I’d really love to see you but you intimidate me now!’”
“It’s like the more they get to know you the more intimidated they get, so it can backfire a little bit. But it’s good for advocacy, and it helps me give people an insight into what goes on.
While Grace uses a pseudonym, she doesn’t live a double life.
“No, everyone’s very much aware. My parents, all my family and friends know. My extended aunts and uncles have a vague idea but we don’t openly talk about it. Mum and dad are very supportive now, but initially that wasn’t the case I must admit. The name tends to be more of a branding thing and also just in case something negative happens, you don’t want people knowing your full name in case a client gets a bit too stalker-ish.
But Grace admits that the industry can put a strain on emotionally monogamous relationships.
“It does have a lot more challenges than most other relationships. When I’ve met someone I’ve always been tempted to leave the industry after a point and go back to my straight job. There’s been a bit of pressure to as well. Like for example, ‘this relationship won’t continue or won’t develop if you don’t leave the industry,’”
“Which meant I ended up transitioning in and out of the industry with relationships. But in saying that I actually left my last relationship because I wanted to go back to the industry, and he couldn’t/ wouldn’t handle it, so I ended up leaving him. So I don’t think I’d do it again, put it that way. Next time I’m quite happy to say, ‘look if you can’t handle it, then that’s fine.’ I’m not really in the mind-frame anymore of giving up my business and career to suit someone else,”
“Whilst I’m having sex for work, its still work. And I guess it’s hard to understand that sex without emotion, versus sex with emotion are two totally different things. It can seem the same but it feels completely different,”
“All jobs can affect relationships to a certain extent. But I think if you’ve got trust, and honesty and communication then you can work through it.”