Five years ago I was struggling with my sexuality. I was yet to have sex with a man. I’d come close a whole bunch of times, but never really had the guts to follow through. I’ve identified as bisexual since I was sixteen and although I was attracted to men, they frightened me. I knew how to touch a woman, how to love a woman but I wasn’t sure I would ever be able to be in a heterosexual relationship.
I’ve never been in love with a man. I’ve never even had a boyfriend and I’m turning 27 this year. But I knew that I wanted to experience what sex was like with a man. It was so foreign to me, how homosexuality might be for those who have sexual and emotional feelings for the same sex. Same-sex relationships was what I grew up with, was my normal, so I was exploring my heterosexuality, as bizarre as that may sound.
Uninterested in a drunken encounter with some stranger from a pub, I decided to use an escort agency. I didn’t want to have to explain the situation. I was shy and embarrassed that I hadn’t had sex at 22. As silly as it sounds, I felt I needed to have sex to grow up, to let go of this unknown yearning inside me that I thought about day in, day out.
So I emailed the madam after searching Google for what was going to be my first encounter. I browsed through the list of men (most with a photograph blanking out their faces) and decided on a guy. As I explained my nerves and virginity to the madam she suggested I go with another man, closer to my age. I took her up on her suggestion and was booked in the following Saturday with Nino.
That Saturday came around like a flash of lightning. I was terrified with every minute our appointment grew closer. I got dolled up, withdrew the cash from the ATM and sat around my apartment in a state of panic. I turned the TV on, then turned it off. I turned the music on. I turned the music down. I turned the music off. I paced the room wondering what to expect and felt completely out of my depth.
Looking back, I think a lot of people don’t plan when they lose their virginity, or they don’t really know when it will happen. I knew for two weeks beforehand and I was a bundle of nerves. I was excited but wanted to vomit at the same time.
Listen: Mia Freedman interviews porn star and sex worker Madison Missina, about the difference between having sex with a man and having sex with a woman, in case you were wondering. Post continues after audio.
9pm on the dot, he buzzed my apartment. My stomach was churning and I was madly checking myself out in the mirror. Why would a sex worker care what I looked like? He was doing his job. Hello. But still I wanted to feel sexy; I wanted an experience that would change me. And it did.