When 22-year-old straight-identifying Bicolano Thirdy* moved to Cavite in October 2016, he never expected life to be “as difficult as it turned out to be,” he said in Filipino. And so – while working for a job while staying with someone he knew in Mandaluyong – when someone he didn’t personally know started chatting with him on Facebook, “asking me if I’ve ever had experience with gays; and then (eventually) proposing to meet with me to pay me for sex, I accepted.”
That guy wanted to pay from P800 to P900; “I said I’m willing (to do it) for P1,600 or P1,500. He haggled. We agreed on P1,300.”
Thirdy said he asked the guy to send some pics. “And when I saw his chubby face, I thought: ‘Puwede ako pa-chupa dito (I wouldn’t mind letting him fellate me).’”
In total, the chats and the haggling took five days.
He didn’t know of the “small details” – e.g. rates, time to be spent with each other, et cetera. He just knew that “I needed help; he was willing to give,” Thirdy said. “It was a convenient arrangement.”
The two met at Gateway in Cubao, Quezon City specifically, at Taco Bell. From there, Thirdy said he just “followed that guy’s lead. He seemed to know what he was doing – I just followed him to the motel, and even followed his lead once we were inside.”
The first time he had an orgasm with the other guy, Thirdy said he felt “weird”. “It was a mix of emotions,” he said. “I felt disgusted – with myself, and with him. I felt pity – for myself, and for him.”
But the guy wouldn’t pay Thirdy yet unless he stayed for more rounds. “Uubusin daw naming ang oras sa motel. Kaya pinakain niya ako (He wanted to use up all the hours he paid for in the motel. So he fed me). And then he started playing with me again,” he said.
The second time he had an orgasm, “I just wanted for him to be done so I could get the money already.” The third time he had an orgasm, “I was basically forcing myself para matapos na (just to have it done and over with).”
That whole experience lasted over three hours.
“Tatlong araw ko ring inisip ang nangyari sa akin (I thought of what happened to me for three days after that),” Thirdy said. “I had mixed emotions after that over myself and my body – I felt dirty, I felt used… there were even times when I just wanted to be alone and didn’t want to be around people.”
In hindsight, “perhaps it wasn’t for me,” Thirdy said. “So naisip ko, one-off lang yun sa akin siguro (maybe that was just a one-off thing for me). It may be fine for others, but perhaps it just isn’t for me.”
Thirdy was, however, able to use what was paid him to look for alternative work And “I did find an (alternative) job from that,” he said.
Without intending to discriminate against those who are fine with this line of work, Thirdy said “one has to really think about going into this seriously.” Perhaps it’s because of “how society looks at our bodies particularly related to sex… and we have so many baggage surrounding this. So this does leave a mark on you; or at least it did with me.”
But he recognizes too that life will continue to hold surprises. “You really never know what you’re willing to do, and how far you’re willing to go when you have to,” Thirdy said. “They didn’t come up with ‘kapit a patalim (a Filipino saying that means that one is willing to do extreme things, such as hold on to a knife even if it could wound you, because of necessity)’ as a joke.”
*NAME CHANGED TO PROTECT THE INTERVIEWEE’S PRIVACY