Prudence K: An Interview with a Sex Worker

Sex workers put up with a lot of shit. A lot of said shit comes in the form of judgmental derision from the mainstream populace, people who have grown up learning that these individuals must have suffered some horrible trauma to sell their bodies.

Except sex workers don’t sell their bodies; not any more than a coal miner or a bartender or a cook does. They are providing a service with an almost infinite demand. The truth is, it is almost certain that you know someone who is now doing or who has done sex work of some sort. Your attitude towards the practice is the major deciding factor in whether or not they will trust you with that knowledge.

The title “sex worker” is also so broad as to be useless in a practical sense. It is an umbrella term that includes, but is not limited to: escorts, prostitutes, sugar babies, erotic writers, pro-dommes, pornographers, actors, editors, camera people, and social media specialists. Prudence Kevorkian, a Canadian cam girl, fits into several of the latter categories.

She primarily acts in, films, edits, and promotes custom videos for a consumer base from all over the world. She is also an outspoken mental health advocate and intersectional feminist, a loving cat mom, and a big fan of anime and Bruce Willis movies. While some people will certainly know her best for her fetish work, she prides herself on establishing a meaningful and caring connection with her clients, and breaking down harmful misconceptions about sex workers.

Prudence can be found online through Twitter and Instagram.

 

 

HC: Please explain how you first got into sex work.

I’ve always had an obsession with human sexuality and was very interested in BDSM from a young age. I dabbled in pro-domming and art modeling, but didn't have the confidence or stability to pursue it. I eventually ended up in a situation where my financial need became greater than my fear, so I started webcamming part time.

 

HC: How open are you with the people in your life about your work?

I'm not a very secretive person and was uncomfortable with the idea of being blackmailed, so I'm very open. My family knows, but we don't really talk about it past what a wonderful influence my regulars are on my life.

 

HC: What are some misconceptions that you have to deal with?

To be a little dramatic, I don't think there's enough space on the internet for the misconceptions about any kind of sex workers. Feel free to pick one or two: suggesting I'm mindless and uneducated; not capable of other work or being educated; every kind of sex worker is an escort; sex workers are hypersexual or non-monogamous outside of work; all sex workers are trafficked or tricked into it; all customers are creepy or lonely or desperate; sex workers don't respect themselves or deserve respect; all sex workers have diseases; all sex workers are greedy psychopaths and untrustworthy; sex workers can't be feminists; porn “is” or “should be” free; sex workers shouldn’t have opinions because it isn't sexy; whatever fantasy the sex worker is playing out must be something they really do or believe in…

 

HC: Please describe some of the biggest frustrations that you deal with on the job.

Finding the balance between honesty and "sexy"— I've avoided sticking my neck out a lot because popular models seem like they aren't allowed to have feelings or problems or opinions or privacy. Discrimination from civilians is also frustrating, as well as watching people prey on the kindness and naivety of new independent models.

 

 

HC: What are some of the biggest upsides?

I get paid to build my skill set and tape myself doing things that are good for me, like brushing my teeth or doing yoga, so it lines up with the self-care parts of my therapy. I do my prepwork/ post-pro wearing a onesie and listening to Critical Role, so I really can't complain at all. If I have a therapy appointment or a bad mental health day, I don't need to beg for a day off, and it's a big deal.

 

HC: What is your philosophy towards separating your personal kinks from work?

It took some time to be open to doing my own fetishes in videos. It's a little bit vulnerable, but being able to offer something genuine is important to me. The things I like were very hard to find a few years ago, so I enjoy catering to folks like myself who just want to see something on the amateur spectrum that feels a little more intimate or real.

 

HC: Do you prefer jobs that you already have an interest in, or are you open to other material?

I have some hard limits, but my main appeal is that I'm open to mostly anything. I do send customers to other sex workers who might take the request if I don't feel like a good match.

 

HC: Please provide examples of some memorable clips that you have made.

Seat belt fetish, Life Jacket fetish, Adult Diapers, Vintage One-piece Snow Suit, Laughing fetish, Whipped cream pie-in-the-face, Rubbing food on myself (Sploshing), Pretending to eat people (Vore), One where I had to cover my whole face in shaving cream & smoke cigarettes...

 

HC: There are a lot of different skills involved in what you do, from filming and video editing to social media management. Describe some aspects of this job that someone might be surprised to learn about.

I asked around a little bit. Some folks mentioned being surprised at just how much learning and work goes into planning as well as post-production. Others mentioned the marketing skills, social pressures, and how personal our relationships can be with our customers. Some webcam shows can feel like an intimate bartender-esque counselling session. The biggest surprise for me was how much I genuinely care about my regulars, and the genuine connections I've made with amazing people worldwide.

 

 

HC: You are very vocal about mental health and sex education. Why are these issues important to you?

Mental health and sex are topics that just don't come up together, and that never ever made sense to me. I feel like, as a culture, we've come a long way, but [we] need to continue reducing the shame we project on sex. We need more education and a healthy, open discussion that is inclusive to those with disabilities and chronic illnesses, including mental health [issues]. Even within support groups, the discourse around sex is pretty limited. In general, you only see disabilities come up when they're being fetishized.

Mental health has been a constant struggle personally; people think it's as simple as walking into an office for an hour and leaving with a bottle of pills. The process is very lengthy, hard to access without a lot of money or living in a metro area, isolating, and filled with judgement/societal shame. As a young adult with strange interests on top of it, I found a lot of inspiration and support from the BDSM community and female porn directors who had faced similar struggles but persevered.

 

HC: How does being vocal about these issues fit into your long-term plan?

A lot of people live undiagnosed or struggle to ask for help and often turn to porn as a distraction and self-soothing tool. I feel like porn is the perfect platform to reach an audience who could benefit from a little validation, community, and resources. The biggest risks to men currently are the rates of suicide due to depression and loneliness. One of my biggest goals is to try to create a space where porn is a positive, mutually consensual distraction that also reminds men to take their well-being into consideration. Money is important to survive, but the real reward is being told that someone made an appointment to get help for a long-term issue for the first time, or seeing my regulars connecting with each other and building friendships.

The other half of my goal is to build my platform enough to be able to actively employ other sex workers and genuinely support charities and foundations that I care about. While not forced into it or trafficked, a lot of sex workers are single parents, trans, disabled/chronically ill, and folks who may struggle to maintain comfortable employment in an able world. I really want to be a part of giving sex workers who may have less opportunities in the porn world a supportive, positive and understanding environment to support their life.

 

HC: What is the number one piece of advice you would give to someone who is considering going into sex work?

Don't.

Just kidding. But it is a very stressful career choice that can be very tiring and isolating. If I weren't so strangely passionate about porn, I definitely would have quit after the first year, even with money troubles. There's much faster ways to make cash when it comes to sex work—my best advice is do your homework. Follow other sex workers on social media and ask questions in relevant places, like the ambercutie forums or stripperweb.com. Find books on and Google the life out of business plans, marketing and online sex work.

Also hire other sex workers: you would struggle as a personal trainer if you’d never been to a gym. And it’s important to support other creators in the field you want to be a part of.

 

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