Give a little sugar, make a little dough

December 13, 2017

EEmily, a senior at UVM, padded her college student bank account by meeting with sugar daddies, using her earnings on rent, utilities, and some to splurge.  

Emily, a pseudonym, became a sugar baby to aid her college finance problems, she said.

A sugar baby is a younger woman who agrees to date and sexually satisfy a wealthy man.

In her time in this role, Emily met two men, but didn’t get far into the lifestyle, she said.

“One was cool, pretty good looking, in his early 30s and was just too busy with work to get some when he wanted, she said.

“We met up for a drink to make sure neither one of us were psychos. Afterwards we decided to go back to his house and do the dirty.”

Strangely, it wasn’t that weird, Emily said.

“It wasn’t anything remarkable,” she said. “More like a business transaction. Like, ‘pay me to look at my body and tell me how hot I am.’”

Emily’s other sugar daddy was “a little weirder,” she said.

“Most of them are socially-inept losers who think they can buy love, or intimacy or women for money,” she said.

Emily described her one sexual encounter with this sugar daddy as being ‘meh.’

However, “he brought beer, so that was cool,” she said.

Sex therapist Claire Diamond works for Wellspring Mental Health in Hardwick, VT. Diamond said there are power dynamics at play in sugar baby relationships.

But, she said, “these dynamics are at play in all or most relationships anyway.”

The money Emily made in these interactions was a bit disappointing, she said.

“My prices were lame because it was my first time. I made $300 per meet-up with the first guy and $400 for the meet-up with the second guy.”

Nearly 70 percent of all college students work while enrolled, with 25 percent working full time, according to an Oct. 2015 study done by Georgetown University.

Before she entered college, Emily was first introduced to the sugar baby lifestyle her senior year of high school when a co-worker told her and a friend about it.

Her co-worker explained “how she got to do it on her terms,” Emily said.

When Emily’s friend decided to try it out first, she made $8,000 to sleep with one man about four times a month, she said.

After seeing her friend’s positive experiences, Emily decided to try it herself.

“[My] coworker told us about the website SeekingArrangement, and we got involved through there.”

SeekingArrangement is an anonymous dating site that connects “successful men and pretty women,” from around the world in sugar daddy and baby relationships, according to the website.

Men on SeekingArrangement can select an annual income anywhere from $25,000, to $200,000, to “heir to a large fortune,” the website said.

Emily said she grew from her experiences as a sugar baby, but the transactional relationship becomes exhausting after a while.

“For some people it’s easy to just jump [into being a sugar baby] and go, and for others it ends up being a lot of energy, she said.

“People think having sex is easy, and it can be, but anything pleasurable that is turned into work becomes work.”

Emily said she does see a difference between her work and prostitution.

“I think the difference is based on the relationship, which is supposed to reflect dating … like the classic thought that men spend money on women and women in return give them sex, she said.

“It’s just a more explicit version of that. Besides, when you really break it down, it’s all prostitution. All sex under the male-centric patriarchy that has controlled us for all of time is prostitution.”

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