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The Sex Surrogate

By:Jessica Gadziala

Before the Sessions

“I am going to see a sex surrogate.” There. I said it. Out loud. Granted, only to myself and in the privacy of my car with the windows up. But, hey, it counts. It's not like it is something I could share with my family, or my coworkers, my roommate or... well, that's about all the people I have in my life. And they wouldn't get it. They hear “sex surrogate” and they think “prostitute”. Besides, admitting it would mean admitting to them that I am dealing with some form of sexual dysfunction. Which, I am. Totally. But they don't need to friggen know that. That would be so humiliating. It was bad enough that the guys I have (tried) to date are all too aware.

This was for me. No one else needed to know.

I pulled into the parking garage, three floors up, and parked my car. I was early. They said to come early because, apparently, there was a detailed questionnaire to fill out. But I'm pretty sure they didn't mean... an hour and a half early. Honestly, I had to leave my apartment or there was no way in hell I was going to go through with it. So, I just got to sit for forty-five minutes and freak the fuck out wedged between a van and a SUV, in perfect seclusion.

Six months ago, I had no idea there was even such a thing as help for me. I thought I was doomed to uncomfortable discussions with men I was interested in for the rest of my life. Or, more likely, a lifetime of being a spinster. Because, let's face it, how many times can you be expected to sit down and tell someone that you don't like sex? To see that look cross their face: confusion, disappointment, arrogant male pride. Because every guy thinks they'll be different. They will change it. They can make you writhe and moan and get over the fears and insecurities that make you lie there like a dead freaking fish, internalizing a panic attack because you're terrified of what they would do if you pushed them off like you wanted to.

No one changed it.

Four men down. And I was so over it.

I was supposed to be out enjoying sex. Hooking up. Dating. Having one night stands. All those things that normal twenty-seven year olds do before they finally get serious and give thought to settling down in their thirties. I had already lost so much time.

And it's not like I don't want to want sex. I totally do. I can get as turned on as the next girl just thinking about it. But when it comes down to it and he's there and you're there... and clothes need to come off, and touching needs t happen... I just flip out inside. And then that makes me lose the drive and then... yeah, dead fish, someone plowing into me, pissed off because I was not enjoying it.

Something needed to change.

Especially because... I have no trauma. I have no legitimate reason to be afraid of sex. I was never abused as a child. I never witnessed anything twisted or gross. I had never been raped or coerced into doing things I was uncomfortable with.

There was no good reason why I couldn't enjoy a healthy sex life.

Except my own stupid head.

And I had tried the traditional therapy route. Actually, I had been in and out of treatment for my anxiety issues since I was a teenager. The last therapist was a middle aged woman with startling green eyes and a soothing voice. To her, I spilled it all. All of the sordid, awful tales of my quest to have physical contact with men. She did her best, bless her, to help. Gave me workbooks meant to help me bolster my confidence, talked to me about sex in as frank a manner as possible to get me comfortable with the idea, hoping the action would be easier for me afterward. But nope.

Finally, frustrated with her inability to help, and sorry for me in her detached, professional kind of way... she had produced a card. It was small and white with raised black writing.

Dr. Chase Hudson

Psychologist/ Sexologist/ Sexual Surrogate

“Call his office,” she urged, nodding for emphasis. “I know it seems far fetched, Ava, but it's worth a shot. You've tried everything else.”

Afterward commenced a long, drawn out internet search on the topic of sexual surrogacy. A profession, I found, dominated mostly by women. Which, I guess, made sense. Men were a lot more likely to suffer from sexual dysfunction. But there was a growing subset of male practitioners. It was a legitimate, legal business. They could talk with me, touch me, have sex with me. It was all perfectly safe and, from the law's standpoint, acceptable.

I researched Dr. Chase Hudson, finding an amazing, upscale looking website with information on his degrees and certifications, a brief outline of all his services, and a place to set up an appointment online. Which sent a tiny surge of gratitude through my body, because, well... there was no way I could have set up that kind of appointment over the phone.

I got a call from a secretary the next day, confirming my appointment and telling me to arrive at least a half an hour before my scheduled time on the first visit so I could fill out paperwork.

My alarm went off at eight in the morning and I crawled out of bed, showered, and stood in front of my mirror for the better part of twenty minutes.

There was nothing wrong with me physically. My face is soft, slight cheekbones, a straight and well proportioned nose, a slightly pointed chin, brown eyes with light brown lashes, a somewhat plump lower lip, and long blonde hair. If I catch myself on a good day, I'd say I am pretty. It was not a good day.

My body is perfectly average. Not super thin, but not heavy either. A slight flare of hip. A decent rack. An ass that doesn't live up to current beauty standards (meaning big enough to be seen from the fucking front), but it isn't flat either. I like my legs most of all, I guess. Long, lean, slightly muscled from from all the squats I have done to try to get my butt to be seen from the front.

I dried my hair, applied a little eye liner and lip balm, and made my way to my closet. I hemmed and hawed over an outfit for forever. What, exactly, does one wear to meet a man who you are going to be paying (three thousand dollars for ten sessions!) to, essentially, sleep with you? I was assured, however, that the introductory meeting (not included in the ten sessions, thankfully) was just about getting acquainted. No touching. No nothing but a little talk therapy. But still, I would be sleeping with him eventually.

In the end, I decided on skinny leg blue jeans and a long sleeve v-neck white shirt. Tight. But chaste. And comfortable. Lord knew I was going to be uncomfortable enough, I didn't need to be worried about flashing my panties when I crossed my legs in a skirt or pulling up my bodice because it kept showing too much cleavage.

I ate dry rye toast, had a cup of tea, and started losing my cool.

Which put me in my car, frantically tapping my fingers on the steering wheel, trying to listen to the music on the radio instead of the voice inside my head.

Because, seriously, what a strange freaking situation. I am paying a psychologist, not some two-bit hack calling themselves a therapist, but an actual psychologist, to touch me and... yeah, didn't need my mind to go there. He was going to do things to me. Because I gave him a huge chunk of my savings to do it. Who else could say that?

I didn't even know what the hell he looked like for goodness sakes. He could be as old as my father with a belly spilling over his waistband and clammy meat hands. Literally. He could look like that. I had no clue. But I had spent the last few days trying to convince myself that that didn't matter. What mattered was learning how to feel comfortable in a man's presence, comfortable with them looking at me naked, touching me. That was what was important. Not whether or not he had huge ears or man boobs.

I wasn't expecting miracles. Maybe just some small breakthroughs. Maybe just not... cringing when someone reached out to touch me. Maybe not feeling completely horrified at being naked in front of someone else. I wasn't expecting to walk out of the office being some kind of sex goddess. Just... normal. I just wanted to be normal.

So, if that meant I had to sleep with some sixty year old with fake teeth... so be it.

I took a deep breath, checking the time, then grabbed my purse and got out of my car. I was still too early, but I could take my time with the paperwork. Check out the office.

I shivered against the late Fall air, grabbing the office door and pulling it open. And I stepped into straight up elegance. There was no other way to describe the waiting area of this office. The wall straight ahead, behind the white reception desk, was painted black with the doctor's name emblazoned across it. The rest of the walls were covered in some sort of white, shiny, textured panels. The hard wood floors were pristine and dark stained. There were two captain's chairs upholstered in a aqua color in front of a low white coffee table with two books on top.

Neat, clean, expensive.

Those were the three words that came to mind immediately.

The woman behind the desk was in her mid or late forties with a kind round face with large brown eyes and her brown hair pulled back at the nape of her neck. She looked up when I walked in, a kind, non-judgmental smile on her face.

“Miss. Davis?” she asked, standing behind the massive desk that kept her body under her chest hidden from view.

“Y... yes,” I said, shaking my head slightly.

“Great timing,” she smiled, reaching around for, I assumed, my paperwork. “You'd be surprised how many people take 'come at least a half an hour early' to mean 'show up five minutes after your scheduled appointment time',” she laughed.

I walked up to the desk, swallowing past the sudden fist in my throat.

“Nervous?” she asked, leaning closer, like she wanted to keep it between the two of us, despite the office being empty except for her.