Sex Ed

Infographic: Women’s Reasons For Becoming Sex Workers

July 1, 2016 by Justin Lehmiller


Many people are curious about the factors that lead some folks to sell sex for a living. Are they doing it because they actually like this kind of work, or because they don’t feel as though they have any other choice? Let’s take a look at what the research says. The infographic below summarizes the motivations reported by a sample of female sex workers in Switzerland.

It’s important to note that prostitution is legal in Switzerland, so these results probably speak more to the motivations of women in countries where sex work is out in the open and regulated. It’s likely that the motivations would be quite different in places where sex work remains underground and is more dangerous.

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Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

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