by Rox Yates
I could tell you how I ended up there or all the things I did, but that would take too long and might hurt too much. I could tell you about all the families I probably played a part in ruining, but I can’t count that high. I could tell you about all the celebrities I met or about all the money I made, but it was all worthless in the end. I will tell you this; I dropped out of college to run a gentlemen’s club.
For the better part of five years I learned everything I know about “gentlemen” from a strip club. I was an eighteen-year-old virgin with a curious stare and open ears who was hungry for money, adaptable to any environment, and charming to a fault. The owners saw all of that in their newly-hired, ninety pound cocktail waitress and promoted me quickly.
Needless to say this atmosphere morphed my beliefs on sex and relationships. But it wasn’t blatant at first. Being thrown into that world was a rapid numbing process, nothing was a surprise anymore. I learned to justify what I was doing with the reasoning that I wasn’t the one taking my clothes off and Jesus would understand that I needed money to live. I worked from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m. most nights, and spent my time talking customers into paying for attention or getting advice from strippers. From the age of 18 until I was 23, I took pride in my hustle and the lessons I’d learned:
- Sex is just sex.
- To be worth more, wear less.
- Make a man wait to see you naked for at least one song, but make him wait more than two and he’ll lose interest and walk away.
- If a guy isn’t showing interest don’t worry, there are plenty of hurt women around that also crave attention you could choose from.
- Be as fake as possible. Go to any extreme to make your body look more presentable to a man that may only see it once.
Since leaving the club, it has taken me years to let God reprogram my thinking. I’ve learned that I’m not an object and neither is any other female around me. I’ve learned to value myself and my body, that it’s up to me who I attract, and guys that paid attention to me for the clothes I wore were also paying attention to every other girl that walked by.
Most importantly, I’ve learned that just because you can’t see the consequences to your actions presently doesn’t mean they won’t happen later. It was literally years before I started being hurt by my past decisions, and it’s even harder to see how those mistakes continue to make people around me suffer. Try telling your new Christian boyfriend everything he never wanted to hear from his “future wife,” or revealing a past you’ve kept hidden for so long to your mom.
I can’t change the choices I made in my past, and when I really think about it I wouldn’t even if I could. Because I had the past that I did, God is getting the glory for making me who I am now. It may not mean a lot to the people who know me today, but the friends and co-workers who have known me for years have seen a complete transformation in me, and I owe this life to God. He has forgiven me. He has shown me His mercy. When I look back, I really can see how He was always there with me in the darkest place on earth.
You say, ‘I’m rich. I’m wealthy. I don’t need anything.’ Yet, you do not realize that you are miserable, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked. –Revelation 3:17
Rox is a Christian rapper from Virginia who is actively involved with The Move and GFC’s Worship Team. She is an avid “foodie” who will travel far for a good meal. Rox is also in the process of starting her own non-profit, Raising Shiloh, to benefit young adults aging out of foster care and children’s homes.