Sunday, January 01, 2012

Interviews with prostitutes - part 1

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This is the first part of my series of interviews with prostitutes. The two others are here:

Interviews with prostitutes - part 2

Interviews with prostitutes - part 3

I had some contacts with prostitutes, years ago. Mostly via e-mail or internal mail on a forum, usually hookers.nl. I stopped chatting with prostitutes, because I want to leave them alone for now. I can derive enough information from other sources. For the time being, I will place translations on my blog of the conversations I had with prostitutes. I think it has been such a long time ago that nobody will know who these prostitutes are, so there anonymity will sufficiently be protected. And I believe the translations will cloud their writing style. I will remove private data as much as possible.

I must say that while reading all these messages back, I look at them with a different view. I now realise that often I didn't understand what the prostitutes told me. I also notice that my writing style was really aggressive. I'm surprised how calmly the prostitutes respond to my questions and messages. I felt at that time that their writing was also very aggressive, but after reading it back I realise that this isn't true at all. I misinterpreted. They are actually very friendly.

I want to start with two prostitutes who both worked on De Wallen in Amsterdam. They have very different opinions regarding the extent of forced prostitution. Then follows another prostitute, a window prostitute who worked in the Spijkerkwartier in Arnhem, a window prostitution area which has been closed down a couple of years ago. The latter prostitute has also worked on De Wallen. And I want to end with an older window prostitute, who made a short comment about the extent of forced prostitution. I don't know in which area she has worked.

It is interesting to notice that the women have different opinions of what coercion is. Some see the women who are forced to work in prostitution by their boyfriends not as forced at all, because they choose to be with him in their opinion.

But for now, the first girl.

I had contact via mail with a girl. That happened in the months of January and February 2007. She was forced to work in prostitution on De Wallen, in the period when also the gang of Saban B was still active there. It is possible that she was forced to work in prostitution by members of this gang.
And here are some translations I made of the things she said:

(…)

As soon as I feel mentally and physically good again I will devote myself full-time to prevent forced prostitution. It so happens that the Netherlands has been overtaken by the facts. They don't know education for this social problem.
Concerning me. I also stood behind the windows indeed. When you make a little list of questions I can answer that with confidence.

(…)

I worked only for half a year. He treated me so badly at that time, that I totally collapsed, I really couldn't possibly carry on with that.

(...)

Everything started approximately two years ago. I worked in Amsterdam on De Wallen and there the power was so enormously big. When there will come problems sometime, and all pimps will work together against the police, then a substantial war will arise (for example!!).
In terms of percentage, I believe that approximately 75 percent (perhaps even 80) works there for a pimp.

(I asked her about these wars)

Concerning these wars, I did actually hear shootings on De Wallen, luckily not where I was in the alley. The point is that if these pimps really want to, and they will conspire together and all their errand boys added to it, then the police has a substantial problem. No, I believe it never happened but I find it absolutely not an impossibility. It is reality and the police knows it all too well.

(I ask her if it is true that it is generally the younger prostitutes who are forced to work in prostitution, contrary to older prostitutes)

The pimps don't look at age. If you look at the world through the eyes of a pimp then you will only see pricetags hanging on women (perhaps men). Obviously, the younger girls generally earn more, but suppose that you have a hot person aged 50 who isn't stable enough to resist that man. Then also that person will become prey.

(I asked the question if she also knew of foreign women who were forced, for example Eastern European or a Latin American women)

Yes, especially Eastern European. Boys just walk around there who literally sell those girls. That is women trafficking at its purest. Most Eastern European girls who stand there, work for a pimp there, or have worked, I believe the percentage there could be as high as 95.

(I ask her how she knows that so many women are forced, and I ask her if the pimps who controlled her also pay a visit to other prostitutes)

MMM
That's a tough one. You know, when I walk on the street I could point to pimps, I can say to you who are the errand boys, I can say from who you can get drugs.
It is something what you start to see.
Plus, in addition to this, is that when the same boy steps inside as many as 10 times in one day, day in day out, then you know enough. When girls are picked up (it is just as if they can't walk to the car themselves!!!)
I recognise it because of these things. Just sit on the pavement of the bulldog a couple of days during the summer, in front of the dollebegeine then you can exactly look into it.
You will see that there is a pattern.

(She probably means ‘the bulldog seeds’ which lies near the Dollebegijnensteeg, I ask if this is also true for alleys outside the Dollebegijnensteeg, such as the Sint Annendwarsstraat and the Trompettersteeg. I tell her I heard that many forced prostitutes work in these alleys. That is what a prostitute told me. And the gang of Saban B supposedly had many women in these alleys, which belong to the so-called Sint Annenkwartier)

Well, these are the alleys where I stood, yes, but just take for granted that it also happens outside of it.

(to the next prostitute!)

(I have asked questions via internal mail to another prostitute. That happened at the end of 2005. She says quite the opposite as what the previous one said. She has worked in many brothels, sex clubs, window brothels, and also as a callgirl. She has also worked on De Wallen in Amsterdam, and which alley? The Dollebegijnensteeg. But that was after the Saban B period however. She has also worked on the Achterdam in Alkmaar. That was within the Saban B period. It is possible she knew him.)

(I ask her what she notices of forced prostitution in daily life, is it really all that bad?)

Haha, you may ask me really everything. No, I have no pimp, and most girls I know also don't. Haha, I don't discriminate but on street I talk with nobody. And I don't fall for Turks and Moroccans at all.
I unfortunately don't know it of Eastern European girls, you should ask that yourself anyway.
I myself entered the profession when I was 18 years old, just out of curiosity. And I'm still satisfied with it.
The criminal circuit isn't really so bad, like often an elephant is made out of mosquito. (…) You often see such men with a Dutch girl or with their own people.

(I tell her about all the high percentages of forced prostitutes often named by prostitutes, social workers and other people. I asked her about pimps hanging around Eastern European prostitutes, doesn't she see that?)

I must honestly say that I also don't associate with Eastern European ladies, so I really wouldn't know. You could be right anyway, in terms of percentage that would be really an exaggeration.
What I do know is that many ladies make up a story, that they are pitiful and have to hand over all their money, and that clients actually wheedle money out of them.

(…)

I do believe that many Eastern European girls lie about that working under force, because they can get help from humanitas, and get help, schooling and allowance.
At least, that's what you often hear.

(…)

No, I don't notice anything of it. And girls who say that they are being pimped, cause it themselves in my opinion. Afraid to receive beatings or something like that. I would have taken my high heels shoes a long time ago, and beaten the man to hell. In my opinion, a man who beats a woman is weak, it is pitiful for such girls, but they do it themselves anyway.
In life it is not what somebody does to me, but you could better think what you do to yourself. And try to make improvements in it.
It is just pleasant work, and it is supposed to stay this way.

(I tell her about my fantasy that I am a woman, and that I want to work in prostitution, and that I buy lingerie etc... And then I open the curtain. I ask her how her first day was, did she have heavy orgasms?)

No, I did start out of curiosity, but you find it too scary and you are too nervous to enjoy it.
I was 18 years old when I started at an escort agency, and I didn't have sexy clothes yet at that time. I wasn't very experienced or so, I just had had one boyfriend. Furthermore I wasn't used to every Tom, Dick and Harry touching me. This is not the film 'pretty woman' after all, where you meet nice clients, but my first client was an old man aged 60, unsympathetic, and arrogant.
So there goes your beautiful fantasy, after my first client I stopped for a while with this work. But okay, nice clients do make this work pleasant again.
You forget one thing, you don't only sell your body, but also your dignity. And that is what many don't understand. After all, for those men you are only a small piece of meat with a hole.

(…)

It is pleasant work, but every now and then you have rotten men. But what I said already, nice men make the work pleasant again. But then I was 18 years old, a perfectly normal girl who went to school. Is it okay just for once, that I became somewhat shocked? At that time I wasn't so emancipated yet. Now I deal with it very differently, but everybody will be. Haven't you changed??? I mean, when you look back on how you were when you were 18 years old, and now?? After you gained some more experiences??
But you have rotten people everywhere, haha, I could already get annoyed at people who jump the queue at the counter.
Just call that high-spirited.
You asked yourself about my experience, my first time in prostitution. I will say that was shit!!
But practice makes perfect they say hahaha like, I also didn't like my first time that I had sex with my boyfriend. Haha, I imagined more of it.
Was your first time okay then? I mean, didn't you feel nervous?? Did you feel at ease?? The strange thing is, I feel more at ease with one person than with another.
Anyhow, it is giving and taking, if you treat me nicely and respectfully, then I will also be like that the other way around.
I'm not a nymphomaniac or something, but erotica attracts me, regularly I also go to a swingers club with girlfriends. Just for fun.
You do ask a lot??
(…) if I wouldn't have liked the work then I wouldn't have persisted for four years.
And yes, some men are also nothing, do you like every woman?? Do you want to fuck every woman? Even if she is rowdy?? Or aggressive?? Or just gives orders??
You tell me.
Is it so bad that I can't stand men who are unsympathetic, are annoying, and thinks because he pays he wants to do everything with you?? Even if you don't do certain acts?? After all, that has been informed [to the clients] by the escort agency then.
Is it so bad then, that I can't stand men who put me to the test again and again, by crossing my boundaries??
I also don't put a dildo in your ass, don't I?? If you don't want that?? I also wouldn't hurt you, wouldn't I?? Hahaha, can you imagine it??
Anyway, be honest, we are sex objects and you the whore hoppers, you can present it nicely, but what's the difference. I would say, make a lot of fun, because you only live once. And life is what you make of it yourself.
I wish you the best.

(I tell her that I thought she worked on the Achterdam in Alkmaar)

You have read it well, I indeed work on the Achterdam in Alkmaar. Two years ago I also worked in Utrecht on the Zandpad.
So when I was 18 years old, I first started with escort, (…), I only did that for a short while, because I wasn't satisfied with it that much. Because as a lady you also never know in front of a whose door you are standing, and dangerous.
Then I worked for a while in a privéhuis [you know a club without a bar where the prostitutes are directly introduced to the clients in a separate room – Donkey] (…), afterwards together with a girlfriend in a club named (…) in Rotterdam. And then windows. But I just like variation, and you just try everything.
But I now work for four years already, on many different locations, also worked in Antwerpen. But wherever I have worked, I have never witnessed slave trade or women under force.

(to the next prostitute!)

(I also chatted with a young prostitute in 2005, aged 21 at that time. She initially was forced herself to work in prostitution, at the age of 14. At least, that's what I can remember.)

(I asked her if it is true what the Scharlaken Koord says about most Dutch window prostitutes entering prostitution because of a bad boyfriend/loverboy. The Scharlaken Koord is a Christian organisation who works mainly on De Wallen in Amsterdam to support prostitutes and help them leave prostitution. They speak with many prostitutes, and they know a lot about window prostitutes. I also asked about the Eastern European prostitutes, are most forced to work?)

Yes, I believe what the Scharlaken Koord claims could be true, but that's only the case in the beginning, so many girls leave such a guy after this, or they go to another. And yes, I do believe regarding the Eastern European girls that they have a pimp, how else must they get the money to come here, that cannot be earned there, look, all the things you need to migrate to another country?! And yes, mostly girls do have a partner, but look, forcing is a big word, let's say being tricked, and there are also lots of girls who have a man who simply accepts that his wife is doing it, you understand, it is 2005, the people think differently nowadays, yes, and if you want to live big, then you will have to work for it, whatever work that is, and if you have debts as a family for example, and you want to get out of it, you can choose for example, or the man will do illegal things, which causes the family to run the risk to lose your husband or father because of death or imprisonment, while you could also earn the same money and legal you understand???? That's how many people think nowadays?

(I ask if she wants to name a percentage)

Real force, that's what I don't know, you can almost never see that from outside, and girls who are really forced don't work out in the open that quickly with girls who just work you understand, these people are way too afraid that another girl notices something, and then they will be in danger with respect to the police and the like, but a rough estimate I believe is 15%, but that is really undercover, they mostly don't work behind the windows, because behind the windows it will cost money regarding things like for example lingerie and make up and the like, and they would rather not spend it obviously, look a loverboy is different from a real human trafficker.

(I asked her if she knows a place where there is absolutely no forced prostitution. I say that 15% is the lowest estimate I have heard)

If you want to go to a nice brothel where there are nice and sociable girls, then it would be best to go to Camilla Privé, that's on the Sonsbeeksingel 2 in Arnhem, and there are no forced girls there as far as I know! Look, and you say that it is the lowest estimate that you have ever heard, but forcing in my opinion is when a man threatens you with things, where you don't work I will shoot your mother to pieces and those sort of things! Things like honey, I need money, my rims are done for or something, in my opinion that's the own choice of the girls, well, fair's fair, here in the Netherlands there are many ways to find help, and if you have a girl behind the windows it is even more difficult to force her! Because one step outside of the door and you are free and the police comes walking by quite regularly. And what is all told to you is from my own experience, I haven't dreamt it up, it so happens that I was 14 years old when I had my first client on De Walletjes [she means De Wallen]. So in the mean time I work 7 years already.

(I talk with other clients of prostitutes on a forum about alleys where forced prostitutes work in window prostitution areas. She responds to that discussion)

Stoofsteeg Amsterdam Wallen, called the pimp alley among people of De Wallen and Sint Annendwarsstraat, Dollebegijnensteeg, Trompettersteeg, all 4 full with such girls, but don't even think about making the world a better place!!! People who haven't been in the same boat don't know how it's working!!! Boys, just forget it, it just won't work, it never will!!! The love of a prostitute for her partner goes straight through everything. Once they love somebody, prostitutes are often as loyal as a dog then! Why do some girls stay for years with a man who demolishes them, literally and metaphorically!!! They have to recognise that themselves, and when that doesn't happen then nothing succeeds! And if you want to drive apart two "lovers" they will only grow more towards each other. And if you do actually succeed to bring such a girl to other thoughts, she possibly will revolt and then the little courage and self-confidence that she has for a short while, will be truly kicked, spat and beaten out!!! So if you want to help these girls, then just simply leave them alone!! They will find out themselves, they truly will….. I also found out!

(On the forum I talk about what brothel owners can do about forced prostitution. They could just refuse forced prostitutes, have a talk with them first, how long have they been working, ask questions about if their boyfriends have debts, etc… I ask how many clients would stop visiting prostitutes if they would truly realise how many women they visit are forced and manipulated to do this. She responded to that message)

You can take it from me that nobody will stop visiting prostitutes! Look, if you are an owner of a brothel it's another story, and then you can do something, then you just honestly tell that girl that you have the feeling that she doesn't fit into your house, then it's easily done, that's even the most friendly way! And yes, it's all true what you say, but only as an outsider, if you at least are that then I advise you to stay out of it! It's all very awful, but they say that prostitution is the oldest profession in the world, but what do you think who has gotten her this far that she started to do this work?????? Ah yes, right, so as long as there are whores there are pimps!!!

(…)

You must just do your own thing, and just see with your own eyes what will happen if you will frustrate the pimps, because according to them that would be just like taking the breath out of their mouths! But you have to know for yourself, good luck!

(I showed her the link to the article written by Ruth Hopkins about the slave trade on De Wallen where she explains about the Turkish gang of Saban B and some other groups of pimps, also about the pimp called 'Lion' in the article, here's the link:
http://www.debalie.nl/artikel.jsp?podiumid=digitale&articleid=44036 , Slavenhandel op de wallen, NRC Handelsblad, October 1, 2005)

You are right, I know that boy Lion personally, his name is not Lion however, but Dragon, named after the dragon in his neck, and I also know the other Turks, but they have never made moves towards me.

(I ask her if Dragon is a handsome boy)

Ah yes, the only thing I can say is that they all pay a looooot of attention to their appearance, well, even when an ape wears a golden ring, he is and always will be an ugly thing......... not personally intended against him, but eh, he has left the business a very long time ago, together with a Moroccan girl, so I have heard, and pleasantly calm nowadays! This is called pimp on retirement ahahhaa.

(I complain to her that nobody responds to me anymore, and I tell her that I want to interview pimps on De Wallen)

When you do that then you are reeeeeeeally stupid I tell you, and don't you understand yourself why people don't respond anymore? Those percentages are nonsense and for people who have nothing better to do.

(I also chatted with an older window prostitute in 2005, who was born in 1973. She must have been 32 at the time. She says that a lot of her colleagues are independent. I asked her how many of her colleagues were forced to work in prostitution by pimps human traffickers and loverboys)

I'm actually not in the mood to do this, but just to give an answer..
I think that the percentages are a little like 50/50 where I work.
And no, I have never worked for a pimp.

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