What kind of women strip? Stereotypes would have us believe they are drug-addicted, low intelligence, glorified sex workers. Some of us are all those things. Even with all those qualities, you can still have other, more common characteristics of exotic dancers:
-cunningly manipulative (all for the customer's own good, of course)
In other words, even if we're drug addicts, we're still entrepreneurs. And even if we're stupid, we're not that stupid. And even if we're sex workers, well...these are also the general qualities of sex workers. So, big surprise.
These are the qualities I've most noticed in exotic dancers. By "cunningly manipulative," I am referring to the ability to be a platonic fantasy for many different men, without ever leading them on. This quality is a form of art.
As an exotic dancer, you are self-employed. You have the option to stage dance, do private shows, or both. You can book yourself almost anywhere in the world. You get to spend time with other strong women who also like to laugh. The comraderie is one of the biggest perks of the job.
As a dancer, you are privy to the most honest, direct side of men. You see right through men. You aren't intimidated in the least. You know how to be a mystery and an open book all at the same time. You can make a man forget you are a stripper by your ability to appear innocent. Hell, you are innocent!
You are not insecure when your guy looks at pornography. You don't entertain the possibility that he never looks at other women. And it doesn't bother you. You realize your power sexually. You know how to use your charm or a carefully placed smile to keep your man interested in you. You take his wandering eye as permission to have a wandering eye yourself. Which leads to further proof that appreciating the beauty of others does not lead to infidelity.
If your man is not interested, he's got to go! As an exotic dancer, you know this. (Although this doesn't preclude you from making the same, stupid relationship mistakes as any other woman.)
But you are an independent woman. In fact, there's a good chance that there are a few people depending on you, financially or otherwise. You carry a load.
You have lots of other interests outside of your work or personal life. You don't need anyone because you can support yourself AND get along just fine on your own anytime. You get lots of attention from your fans, so ego stroking will never work on you. You've got a snappy comeback for any insult from a desperate loser in front row. And you're not afraid to scrap in the nude.
You're an independent woman. And stripping is your chosen job. For the time being, at least. And it's nothing to be ashamed of.