EP136 – Disabled Client of a Sex Worker | Spencer Williams

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Spencer Williams is a freelance contributor for Vice with a column based on sexuality and disability. He is also running a radio show on UBC’s campus station. He was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of one, his case was a moderate one, which affected his speech, and he has been living his life as normally as possible without CP getting in the way. He’s also been a client of a surrogate sex worker company for 2 ½ years.

Today, we will be talking about the light and dark side of sex surrogacy services, his challenges and experiences brought about by sex surrogacy and dealing with disability.

Below are some of the subjects we touched upon on this episode:

What led to him to sex surrogacy, plus a narrative that involved the famous sexual awakening movie – American Pie (6:39).
His experience going to an escort service provider and realizing that it wasn’t for him and just decided that he’ll continue waiting for his first sexual encounter (8:30).
How he was introduced to sex surrogacy through a radio segment (11:09),
How the service works, the regularity and cost of the sessions (17:10), how sex surrogacy helped him to improve his confidence and made him more comfortable socializing though he noted that at times, the self-esteem boost was very arbitrary (12:14; 24:30).
His feelings that the service is keeping him from what he really wants (14:40) which is not just the sex (after all he is mobile enough to masturbate) but to have an actual serious relationship, the person and the connection (20:35).
An internal conflict he felt between not wanting to be dependent on the service and at the same time wanting to feel the closeness and connection a surrogate was able to provide him (22:07).
The development of his experiences from the positive confidence boost towards a less positive state of confusion. He also gave a word of caution to people with disabilities who might be interested in the service to ensure that they are not being taken advantage of (26:36; 30:41; 34:36).
Why he decided to close this chapter in his life (32:20) and his insight that sex surrogacy is supposedly a humanizing experience, yet can also be dehumanizing for people with disabilities (37:04).
We hinted on communication as an important factor in human relationships including sex service providers (44:36).
His appreciation for the experience that enabled him to connect with someone on a personal level and experience intimacy (46:01), and why he recommends surrogate sex service to other people but with a disclaimer on how to deal with the situation (47:37).
If you want to read one of Spencer’s articles, you can find it here.
If you want to connect with Spencer, you may reach him at spencer [at] djspencer.ca or via Twitter (@djspencermusic).
Definitely an eye-opening episode, he provided me with an awareness on how differently abled individuals views sexuality and relationships. If you find this episode insightful, please share it with your friends so they may learn about sexuality and disability too.

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