The more I grow into a safe and stable life – the more I am surrounded by grief.
It is not now, and may of never been, a personal grief – even the parts that are connected to my personal history are never personal, but connected to all exited women.
I still do not know how to cry, find emotions confusing and still alien from my reality.
But I am learning to settle into grief.
To have the luck to be able to exit prostitution is often hard to believe.
To survive that world, where death was painted into our souls.
To survive and to keep our sanity could be seen as a miracle.
How can we not have grief that we are only here by the skin of our teeth?
We hold the grief that so many of the prostituted class do not live to have the chance to exit.
We hold their deaths inside our skins – we may never cry for them for the grief is too deep for ordinary tears.
We hold in our grief as we a world that does even notice the tossed away lives of the prostituted.
Where is the horror that prostituted women are 18 times more likely to die from male violence than any other woman?
Where is the stones, flowers, letters remembering their lives when the prostituted are murdered?
No, my grief and the grief of exited women grows as we see the world make invisible most murders done to the prostituted.
There is no rage, no marches on the streets, no headlines, no pausing in the day when prostitutes are murdered.
Live on go as she never existed – how can we not grieve that?
We grieve that most torture of the prostituted is made nothing.
We see on a daily basis that our tortures are re-framed as work, are made into adult entertainment, are used to advertise, are used to spice up TV dramas.
Our torture are never allowed to be real.
We are never allowed to know pain, we are never allowed to understand terror – we are not torture victims, we are just objects that feel nothing.
Torture exist in war zones, torture exist with political prisoners, torture exist somewhere that is nowhere near you.
Torture is terrible when it happens to men, torture is horrific when done “innocent” non-prostituted women and girls.
Torture does not exist for the prostituted – no torture in brothels, no torture of street-based prostitutes, no torture of escorts, no torture in most porn, and certainly no torture going into the prostituted on a street near you.
Only of course each and every exited woman carries inside her skin the years of the ordinary torturing the prostituted class.
The prostituted have always been tortured – torture is our norm.
It is so normal for us we lose words to frame the pain, the grief and the horror that so much torture has put into us.
We are learning to find words, we go back to our pasts, we view the long history of the prostituted class, we speak to each other – and search for words that fit what torture and being made into nothing means to us.
Grief is our key to language.
Grief is a gift for exited women.
As we grieve, we learn we were never made nothing, we learn we never truly lose that we have emotions, we learn to honour that we lived.
So if you are an ally – be patient and kind to exited as they grieve.
For we are reaching depths that you can never imagine.