First, let me tell you that you are not alone. We get emails and phone calls regularly from parents who discover their children are working as dancers, escorts, or in pornography. While we are not counselors and we don’t have all the answers, we can offer encouragement and support and some suggestions to help you love your son or daughter right where they are. Here are some suggested Do’s and Don’ts:
- Reassure them that you still love them and support them and most importantly that God does too.
- Cover them in love. The bible tells us that Love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8). It is up to them to share this information with others not you. It is understandable for you to seek support and guidance from a few trusted people but discussing this with people who really cannot speak into it is in vain and will only further distance your child from you potentially destroying your relationship.
- Ask appropriate questions e.g. “Are you happy with your job? Do you feel safe? Do you need any extra support?” Don’t debate their answers. Don’t treat them or those they work with as if they have no dignity or have sold their soul.
- PRAY. Never underestimate the power of your prayers. Nothing falls deaf on God’s ears. Nothing. Remember that your child is important to Him and He longs to move in their life.
- Get angry if they’ve been deceptive or kept this a secret from you. This is not the type of thing one usually wants to write home about.
- Assume the worst. There are a lot of stereotypes about sex-industry workers that do not apply to everyone and it doesn’t necessarily mean that your son or daughter fits into any of those categories or your preconceived ideas.
- Try to talk them out of it. They are an adult and have made this decision as an adult regardless of the reasons you may or may not think are behind that decision. [If your child is under 18 and you’ve discovered this information then please call your local authorities or Children of the Night (24 hour hotline: 1.800.551.1300 for some counsel]
- Expose or embarrass them. The last thing you want to do is out them to other family members or community. As mentioned in the DO section– love them where they are and COVER them in that love. Keeping in mind that doesn’t mean to ignore the situation, it just means that you realize you cannot control it.
We have some great reading recommendations for parents of sex-industry workers: