sex

Katie Price wants to hire a sex worker for her son. And she's not alone.

An important conversation was opened up when former British model and mother-of-five Katie Price shared she was considering hiring a sex worker for her disabled son when he turns 18.

Price, 39, detailed on UK talk show Loose Women how she had discussed the issue with her husband, Kieran Hayler.

Her firstborn son, Harvey, has autism and disabilities including partial blindness and Prader-Willi syndrome, a condition characterised by excessive eating and intellectual disability.

“Harvey is 15 now. Naturally, at 15 you go through puberty and it’s natural to experiment with yourself… Is it fair for him to experience it?” she asked.

Harvey, she explained, had the sexual urges of any other teenage boy. And she wants him to be able to experience sex – but coupled with that comes the fear that he will struggle to form intimate relationships with women he meets as an adult.

Price recognised that sex work might be the best, the safest – and potentially even the only – way for him to express his sexuality.

Predictably, the admission sparked a mix of shock and awe among the viewers of Loose Women. “How could a mother book her own child a sex worker?” they wondered.

But truly, it shouldn’t surprise anyone.

Price’s comments came during a conversation with Australian-British author Kathy Lette, who has previously spoken publicly about wanting to hire a professional to teach her autistic son about sex when he was a young adult.

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In the end, Lette didn’t need to, as he eventually found a girlfriend. But for a long while, it was a very real possibility. And it’s one so many loving parents have had to grapple with.

Listen to Kathy Lette talk about finding out her son was on the spectrum. Post continues… 

For Australian escort Madison Missina, this is “not news” to her.

She said it was “very common” for people with a disability to seek the services of a professional to experience intimacy.

“We’re all sexual beings regardless of what our bodies are able to do. Living your life without being able to fully express yourself sexually is unimaginable for most people,” Missina told Mamamia.

“Public perception needs to catch up.”

What’s more, the fact that mothers like Price and Lette are willing to take initiative in this domain is completely normal.

Missina said in her experience, parents of a disabled client were frequently the ones to organise bookings. And if the child had physical difficulties, a parent would often even be on-hand to help at the start and at the end of a session.

Kathy Lette and her son Jules. (Image via Getty.)

"It is all done out of love for their child. It's a conversation that happens over a long time between them," she said. "There is a long process leading to that point before they even reach out and contact me."

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The results, Missina said, were "amazing" for the clients, because it removed focus from the disability that sadly defined them in the eyes of society.

Missina said she'd had clients who told her they'd only ever been touched by relatives and medical professionals.

"That gives the person the impression they're different sexually... So having sex workers who can take them through that process leads to such a sense of fulfilment," she said.

"There's nothing seedy about this. It's the most beautiful part of my job... To give that person a moment that's all about them."

In fact, the practice is so widespread that there are organisations specifically built around connecting sex workers with people with disabilities.

In NSW, the non-profit Touching Base trains sex workers to provide these services.

"People with a disability have an intrinsic right to sexual expression. This right enables people to develop relationships, have sex, explore and express their sexuality and achieve intimacy without personal or systemic barriers," their website states.

A handful of clients have shared their stories, including 31-year-old Christie* who has cerebral palsy.

"No other guy had seen me naked before, so it was lovely having Richard look at my body. And of course I enjoyed seeing his too. He was extremely tender, and it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had," she wrote.

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"This experience has been quite an emotional one for me. Of course, I wish things were different and I could have a “normal” sex life. But since I haven’t been in a relationship, and it’s not looking like I will be in the near future, I feel seeing a sex worker is the best alternative."

One mother, Angie*, also described her experience helping her daughter lose her virginity. Elizabeth* was in her 20s and had never been in a relationship when her mum posed the question for the first time.

"One Sunday morning, I asked her if she’d like to have sex with someone. She looked at me in amazement, but nodded her head," she wrote.

After a lot of research, she found the right man for the job. And her daughter couldn't have been more pleased.

"It is a basic human need to want to experience closeness of a sexual nature. It’s not just the sex, it’s being held and touched and feeling desirable, even for a short time."

Each of these stories prove that Katie Price - a mother who only wants the best for her son - is not alone.

And if her confession on TV has helped in some way to normalise a conversation that is happening in homes around the world, every single day, then that's something worth celebrating.

For anyone seeking advice, there are extensive resources on Touching Base's website.

*Names have been changed.

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