Quitting Stripping: the Challenges


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I want to share with all of you my story.  I’ve been a hustler since I could remember.  I haven’t lived at home much since I was 13 years old.  I took off when I was young and always took care of myself.  I guess you could say that my free spirit robbed me of a normal childhood.  I was worried about eating and paying for the roof over my head and having enough money to drop ecstasy with my friends on the weekend. But at the end of the day, I was a hard worker and I always got what I needed without hand outs.  I lived in the Prince Hotel for 3 years and I ate well and always could afford small things a teenager wanted, like new clothes or give a homeless lady $5 to go eat.

When I was 19, (2004) I found myself pregnant and wanting to get away from an abusive relationship.  I called a photographer friend of mine who had a connection at a stripclub, Club Sundance.  He got me a hostessing (buy me drinkie) job there, where eventually mama was asking me to dance day shift because she was short girls. Since I wasn’t 21, the legal age, It was easier to get around liquor commission during the day   I didn’t show that I was pregnant until I was 7 months pregnant so at least I had time to make some money. It was easy money to make fast, more money than I’ve ever made in my life.  I was young and naive, but you couldn’t tell me that.  They were the dumb ones for giving me all their money.

I guess a young girl feels pretty cool when someone drops $1,000 on them.  At the moment I guess that’s all they think they are worth.

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I remember being really scared at first, but what can you do?  Soon you become desensitized to it, and it doesn’t bother you anymore.  It becomes a job.  Before you know it, that nervous energy actually turns into personal enjoyment.  Masochism in it’s finest form.  Of course, I wouldn’t come to realize this until years later.  Do men subconsciously get off on the personal destruction of a young and naive girl?  Or did I get off on hurting myself?  For years and years I never realized the damage I was doing to myself emotionally.  I enjoyed the money, the social nature, the attention and drinking, the fun nights and flexible schedules.  I mean sometimes (especially in Vegas) I was making more money than doctors and most people with Masters degrees.

It wasn’t until I met my first love (2007) that I decided on my own, I don’t want to do this forever.  I need to go to school.  I looked into art schools, and I decided fashion would be an enjoyable career choice.  Schools were in San Diego at the Art Institute, and my boyfriend at the time wanted to move there.  I wanted to go with him, so I decided Art Institute would be a good choice and I’d find a career path I love, fashion.  Dancing however wasn’t something I had decided to take out of the equation quite yet.

He never cared that I was a dancer, because he knew that I needed to do what I needed to do, but he made it clear that he would never marry a stripper, and that he was concerned for me and that I needed to decide on my future.  He loved coming and hanging out when I was at work too.  He was a secure man and never let it get in the way of our relationship.  I wanted him to tell me that he didn’t want me to though.  I know it’s a good tool to use money to get where you need to get.  Some girls stay in the industry forever without any other goals.  I’m not going to be that girl.  They always tell strippers to save.  I say other ways.  Working towards a career while keeping a part time position dancing is smart if you need the extra money. At least you will have experience by the time you are 36 years old and a resume to try to do something else.  Us strippers don’t make as much money as you all think.  7 years ago?  yes.  Today, in this economy?  NO.  There are the exceptions of the hookers making extra money on the side, but then still they only make an additional 300-500$ if they’re lucky and they are putting out for the same cash. Waitresses and bartenders can make just as much, if not more than us, especially if they get benefits and a paycheck.

My first love and I broke up (2008) and I ended up staying in Honolulu for a little less than a year before moving to Vegas.   The funny thing is while we were in a relationship, he never said anything was wrong with me dancing.  The second we broke up, he used the “you’re a stripper card” on me.

I dated someone a few months later for 2 months before moving to Vegas.  He came from a dominantly wealthy family with political ties.  I quit dancing in the clubs for 2 months and was only doing private parties which went well for me.  I decided since I work out a lot, and had a personal trainer, that i should get my personal trainers license.  It was inexpensive and it would be a good trade to know and potentially become a business for me to make a full time income. (2008) The person I dated supported this, but after a couple months he ended the relationship with me and pulled the “stripper card.”  This really upset me.  We had a great relationship, with no arguments and we shared fitness and musical interests.  Because of his family’s ties, he was embarrassed of me.

I moved to Vegas (2009) and I enrolled at IADT where I studied fashion design for 2 years.  I quit smoking after being a smoker for 13 years where I had chronic bronchitis and was severely ill for 2 years.  Being a single mother, a full time student, and working nights at the strip club, being sick all the time took a toll on me.  I could only work 2 days a week (Friday and Saturday night and if I’m lucky one extra week night) and I was in school Mon through Fri, at the same time spending $800 a month on day care and an additional $500 on night care.  Even if I made a lot of money at the club, I wasn’t working enough to save money.  There would be times that I was sick with a high fever for an entire month with nobody to take care of me.  One time I remember being 3 weeks late on rent and sick.  I got really lucky and went to work and made $5,500 in one night.  In what other profession can you do that?  I ended up sending my daughter home to Hawaii every fall because my illness got worse and it became too stressful to be alone.    Vegas was a lonely time for me.  Vegas is a shallow city full of gold diggers, hookers, and hustlers.  Not many quality friends (or boyfriends) come around often.  By the time I left Vegas, I was a daily scotch drinker which continued for a year of living in Hawaii until I slowed down again.

Dancing in Vegas is different than Hawaii.  In Hawaii people are nice.  There is no contact.  In Vegas, they are lap dancing, so you can expect that the girls lower their standards and there is a lot more contact and expectations in Vegas.  Of course as the dancer, you set the rules, but it is a whole other ball game in Vegas.  The people in the clubs are really mean.  The employees.  The patrons.  The management.  You are just a piece of meat, a tip, or money in their pockets.  In Hawaii, we all become friends and care about eachother, and actually have friendships outside of work.  Strippers are people. And in Vegas they treated us like garbage.  As a matter of fact, I have forged life long friendships with patrons in strip clubs in Honolulu.

I got his Email from a fan on my blog.

Thank you for writing it, ive been working at the rhino for a short time and have already noticed all the shady low disgusting wrong stuff that goes on and i was curious and wanted to google it and see what came up and i found ur blog and it just confirms everything ive been feeling. I dont pay the managers or the hosts any attention at all and they dont like it. I dont kiss ass, i work for myself and i hardly tip them because they dont do shit for me! They really hate that so they try to get me in trouble a lot… I feel like they want to pimp me out.. all the hosts n managers are such rude assholes always wanting something from the hott girls… its bullshit… It is a stressful place to work in… Im tryin to find ways around it but I am ALWAYS being watched, more like TARGETED by all those hosts and managers or whoever they are working there… They are always making rude ass comments, being assholes, talking shit, being sexual and mean near me cuz i dont pay them any attention and they know none of them are gonna fuck me, i am young new and gorgeous and dont put out… wtf… I dont know which one john is because i just know they are all assholes and i dont pay that much attention, could u send me a picture of him? I always hear about the girls complaining about him! Everyday i juust get more and more disgusted by the hosts n managers, they are sooo shady!! I figured out their game. i love ur blog, i hope it stays up forever because other dancers NEED to know and not become victims! They DO pimp girls out and have special girls and if u arent special u aint shiiit.”

I dated a great guy in Vegas for a year.  (2009) Financially stable.  The polar opposite of me.  Calm, grounding, just what I needed.  We had great chemistry.  But from the start he pulled “the stripper card.”  We talked about being such good friends after a year and even getting married, but we decided to just be friends since the relationship could not continue towards a commitment.

So after coming home for a Christmas vacation, I impulsively ran home.  I had enough Vegas. (2011) I was tired of struggling and I missed Hawaii.  School, work and being a mom was too hard without any support, and even worse in a city where you don’t have many friends and am lonely.  But most of all, Vegas had changed the dancing world for me.  I couldn’t stand it.  I wanted to do something new.  I didn’t want this anymore.

I came home to a slow economy.  I enrolled online at a better school (IADT sucked) at the Academy of Arts University in San Francisco (2011).  I currently am enrolled in fashion merchandising instead of design, but I have taken a lot of journalism/media classes as well.  The entire aspect of fashion fascinates me.  I’m not the best sewer so I realized design might not be the best area for me.  My design aesthetics are good, but still I have 2 years of schooling on my belt.  Lucky for me, many of the basic classes cross over into multiple degrees.  I’m business savvy, and have a good eye for styling, art, design and aesthetics and I also enjoy writing about fashion.   I love media and film, as I was a model and a computer graphic artist since I was 16.  My many areas of interest cross over from food and wine, to travel, to health and fitness, night life, fashion, business, marketing, economics, networking, bartending, writing, art and politics.  Looking at my resume it’s hard to get long term experience in any one industry, but with an extensive list of skills, I would make the dream PA and am up for any job.

  • Have travelled internationally and become culturally aware.
  • I’ve worked construction for my father since a young age which requires skills as well as hard physical labor.
  • I’m a frequent winer and diner at international fine dining establishments.  I’ve developed a fine palate for food and wine as well as scotches and fine spirits such as Hendricks and fine liquors.  I consider myself a connoisseur for the finer things in life.
  • I enjoy sports such as surfing, volleyball, weightlifting and bikram. Bikram is my favorite for the discipline of the mind.
  • I’ve worked in commission based sales jobs which requires ambition and good networking and excellent interpersonal communications.
  • I’ve worked fashion retail which gives sales goals (which I always reach) and requires punctuality, good customer service, fashion sense and styling when catering to each individual customer.
  • I’ve worked as a computer graphic artist which involves my creative artistic side.  Also managing and doing sales and marketing for the business I worked for. This skill (graphics) has served me well in my many ventures saving me money on design.   I served as a photographer assistant and learned many aspects about photography, airbrushing, lighting and photoshop.
  • I’ve done business planning for a few small businesses and revitalized their entire plan and company boosting their sales over 300%.
  • I’ve worked for a shady loan company which tested my integrity (I quit).  I learned excellent telemarketing and cold-calling skills and the importance of following up on sales.
  • I’ve worked in various Network Marketing companies which teaches you the aspects of running your own business, being a self starter and motivated, and practicing good networking.
  • I’ve written for my blog for 2 years now, learning how to write, implicate local companies and sell advertisements, as well as utilize them for trade and leverage them as a tool for income and promotion and advertising.  Studying traffic and advertisement statistics have been the most interesting, to learn what is most effective.
  • I’ve worked in bars in positions from stripper, to gogo dancer, to bartender, to waitress for 8+ years.  I know what it takes to make a bar run from proper employment placement, to promotion and procedures.  Most of all being a stripper isn’t just about taking off your clothes for money.  Most of them resort to prostitution because they have no game or brain.  Being a stripper is about UP-SELLING and talking business.  We’re the modern day Geisha’s.
  • Apart from being Photoshop fluent, I know Microsoft office as well as type 120+ WPM and am very computer literate.  I work efficiently and fast and if I don’t have more than one project in front of me at the same time, I have to find something else to do.  I like multi-tasking.  They said ADD is a disease.  I say it’s a talent.
  • Most of all, I can’t believe how stupid most people are and incompetent.  Competence is natural for me, so I expect it out of all people.  When I give someone a job to do, like simply have people fill out forms and they come back blank, I don’t understand what was so hard about the simple job.
  • If you haven’t heard me play piano then youtube me.  I’m not a good singer, but I can jam on the keys.  I also play a little ukulele, drums and the flute as well as know how to compose.
  • Modeling has been a part time hobby of mine since I was 17.  It’s fun, and the camera loves me, and it’s taught me more about how to carry myself with confidence.  Working with designers, stylists, MUA’s, hair stylists and photographers I’ve learned all aspects of media.

Having shared with you some of my skills which include more than a mean booty clap, I’m more than a pair of tits and a pretty face.  I’m intelligence, I’m personality, I’m more than your typical employee.  I go beyond expectations.  I’m loyal, and I promote.  I’m a single mother, and hard worker and I need this job more than the girls who get turned over every month.  I know the true meaning of “working for that dollar.”  I think I can bring more to the table than most people in management positions.  More than often, I have been turned down for work without even having looked at my resume because of my notorious reputation for being a stripper.

So anyone who has ever hated or discriminated against me… I can probably do your job better than you.

Most of all, I’ve spoken to other women who have quit.   I fell in love with someone a year ago.  We argued almost an entire year about me quitting dancing.  I quit for a few months then eventually went back to it because I knew I needed to save some extra money to make money and pursue a career into the personal training business.   I finally quit a month ago.  After a year of arguing, we broke up right after I quit anyways.   He is the only man who ever asked me to quit dancing.  I did, but apparently it wasn’t enough.  I’m sure that in the future the idea that I’m an “ex stripper” will still come between relationships and men insecure with the idea.  Even the best of men will put this idea of respect out of their mind when they find out you are a stripper. Suddenly you are expected to be this wild sexual creature and you become an object of their affection, not something that should be respected and put on a pedestal.

Strippers are humans.  We need love too.

5 thoughts on “Quitting Stripping: the Challenges

  1. cz says:

    i dated a girl for four years. i met her in the strip club. it’s a long story. to make her stop dancing, i lied to my parents, give her my college tuition to pay for her schools. finally she finished her school. but the day she finished school, she went back in again. she said she needed the money to get better education. in between of the four years, she tried to work, and i found out. we weren’t living in the same city. she came back to me at that time. now, she is gone for good, i think. she finally told me, she fucked different men when she tried to go back in. coz she was stressed, and she can’t tell me anything. i am heart broken. her family doesn’t know she is doing this. i told on her, i don’t want to break her heart. i just want her to stop. i always saw someone nice in her, but i saw her this week, and we haven’t seen each other for 5 months exactly. she has changed, she is not the same girl anymore. i just don’t want her lost in the job and the money. i dunno, i love her, i really do. i love her with all my heart. but she broke my heart over and over and over again. i used to be the toughest man in the whole college athletic program, but she made me cry so much. i dunno what i should do. i don’t even have the strength to tell her, “stop stripping, baby, go home with me.”

  2. I’m having trouble. I began danceing when I was 20 (illegally) and quit at 22. Im a single mom. I had a day job also but needed the extra money. I left my sons father who was a dealer and lived with my sister in a two bedroom apartment with 10 people. I never wanted to dance but I knew I could make money that way. I was so scared the first night I drank but felt sober. I ended up loving it. I felt beautiful and boss looked out for me. I felt like he cared he always told me I was a Ferrari. Even if he said it to other women. He made me feel speacial like I had meaning there I guess. But it started to take a toll on me. I felt beautiful and it was fun like u said. But at the same time sometimes I’d come home and cry. And felt lost and bad inside. A guy told me that I looked to pretty to be doing this and told me all this advice about collage. And I almost cried but I pretended I liked it there. I loved it cause girls where there that I could talk about my life and they’d listen and understand.
    Anyways. I haven’t danced for almost a year now. But ill hear songs and I will want to go dance. I’d have the whole dance I’d do played in my head. When I walked in bars after I quit I’d automatically walk up to men and flirt and talk. I miss the money and the adrenaline of dancing on a stage.
    I guess my question for you is was it hard for you to quit ?

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