Human Behavior Expert, Patrick Wanis PhD, answers questions about why married and single men seek out prostitutes.
Q. Married men who seek out prostitutes often say it’s for the thrill of it: they enjoy the risk.
While it seems obvious that most ‘rational’ men would weigh up the dangers and decide not to go through with it, what is it that makes certain people more prone to taking risks?
Patrick Wanis PhD: Prostitution appeals to some men because it is illicit, because the risk makes it more exciting. Whenever society chooses to create something as a taboo, that taboo behavior becomes much more appealing and exciting.
Note that it is difficult to quote clear data on men and prostitution because the data is only based on self-reporting and obviously many men will never reveal they use a prostitute until they are finally caught.
And from the data of those that have been caught in the US after propositioning an undercover police officer, it is revealed that 59.3 percent were single versus 44.2 percent who were married men, according to a study by Martin Monto, a sociologist at the University of Portland who has researched prostitution, published in the journal Violence Against Women in 2004.
Married men who seek out prostitutes and say that they enjoy the risk are most likely Sensation-Seekers – a personality trait that directly drives risky behaviors which, in turn, create intense thrills and sensory pleasure & excitement. Men who are hyper-active, are in a loveless & sexless marriage, feel unfulfilled in their professional life or are trying to escape a subconscious emotional trauma will also seek out intensely sensational activities such as reckless sexual escapades with prostitutes. Sensation-Seekers also have lower levels of Monoamine Oxidase A, which regulates the brain’s levels of dopamine, the ‘pleasure’ neurotransmitter and they often also have high Testosterone levels which increases sex drive, aggressiveness, competitiveness and desires for risk and danger. Thus a man who is a Sensation-Seeker might pursue reckless visits with prostitutes in an attempt to achieve the adrenaline-high from the risk of being caught.
Smoking, drinking, sex and drugs also work in tandem with each other, and when a man is doing one he will tend to do the others as well. So if a married man begins to engage heavily in drinking and drugs, the common result is a breakdown of morality & values, and a loss of control.
Men in power can be also Sensation-Seekers who love to take risks. Power leads to cheating because it can lead to delusions of invincibility, entitlement, and the male ego-drive to win, conquer, and dominate. (Read “Cheating – what men really want” https://patrickwanis.com/blog/cheating-what-men-really-want/ and cheating and how to affair-proof your marriage – https://patrickwanis.com/blog/list-of-articles-on-cheating/ )
Furthermore, constant battering from stressful events actually shrinks the brain and can lead to addiction, depression, loss of impulse control and diabetes; a man who is a victim of extreme, prolonged stress can thus find himself engaging in risky and dangerous behavior because he has lost control of his emotions. https://patrickwanis.com/blog/stress-shrinks-your-brain
Q. What other reasons might drive men to seek prostitutes?
Patrick Wanis PhD: Lack of sex, infrequent sex, unfulfilling sex, lack of affection or even a loveless marriage can drive a man to use a prostitute.
Some men say it helps their marriage:
“Sometimes my wife doesn’t want to have sex. It could start an argument. But I come here [to a brothel] and that’s it – we don’t have an argument.”
Others say they that the prostitute will do what the wife doesn’t and without complaining:
“She [the prostitute] does different things without whingeing. My wife won’t do oral sex. She just reckons: “Yuck!” I can see her point there.”
In other words, the man might be more sexually liberal than his partner or he has a higher sex drive.
Other men state they feel more manly and masculine with a prostitute and they even feel that they (the men) are actually good lovers:
“I suppose I do think of myself as a good lover and I reckon that both of us are getting something out of it, not just me. I presume the women here [brothel] would think that.”
“It might sound crazy, but this is really the only place where I feel I can be a man, the way men are supposed to be, without feeling guilty or that I’m a social misfit.”
(These quotes are from “Conversations in a Brothel”, published by Hodder Headline Australia © 2002.)
Some men actually seek out the affection of a woman – something they say is missing in their marriage; one man said he derives pleasure more from the back rubs than the act of sex with a prostitute.
For some men, visiting prostitutes can be a lifestyle – becoming a “sex tourist” who visits various places, cities and even countries.
A 2006 study in Sweden (published in the journal Sexologies) reviewed research on why men frequent prostitutes. It came up with 5 key motivations which supports the findings of the interviews in the book mentioned above “Conversations in a Brothel”, published 4 years earlier:
- A “whore fantasy” – excitement couple with some contempt; the “dirtiness” of the prostitute makes the encounter more exciting
- New sex – things that men can’t or wouldn’t ask their wives or girlfriends to do
- The ultimate male consumer product – men can go in, get what they want and get out with little hassle
- Loneliness – older men, shy or physically handicapped men who see prostitutes as their only outlet for sex and female companionship
- Power – sex workers treat men “like a man,” and will generally do what they are told
One of the most missed motives for men using prostitutes in general is that many men can’t or refuse to handle women’s emotions: “I guess the truth is that women frighten me” said one interviewee.
NFL hall of famer, Lawrence Taylor admitted in 2004 to often using 6 prostitutes a day. Lawrence Taylor, who was sentenced to six years’ probation after pleading guilty to sexual misconduct and patronizing an underage prostitute, openly and unashamedly said on FOX News with Sheppard Smith that he uses prostitutes because he doesn’t want to deal with women’s feelings and emotions. https://patrickwanis.com/blog/chris-brown-charlie-sheen-lawrence-taylor-racism-misogyny
Q. Can you share any personal case studies of willing risk-takers who crashed and burned?
Patrick Wanis PhD: One client of mine, a married man with three young children was a classic Sensation-Seeker – obsessed with competitiveness, conquering and constant thrill-seeking. However, as his stress increased over a long-period of time and his marriage crumbled into a loveless, sexless business partnership of roommates, he began to frequent prostitutes for the sexual ecstasy & thrill and for the affection and comfort he lacked with his wife. Soon, he longed for greater excitement and danger and he began doing drugs with the prostitutes. Eventually, he suffered an overdose, he was taken to the emergency unit and his secret life was exposed; he lost his wife, family and business.
Anointed “The Woman Expert” by WGN Chicago, Patrick Wanis PhD is a renowned Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert who developed SRTT therapy (Subconscious Rapid Transformation Technique) and is teaching it to other practitioners. Wanis’ clientele ranges from celebrities and CEOs to housewives and teenagers. CNN, BBC, FOX News, MSNBC & major news outlets worldwide consult Wanis for his expert insights and analysis on sexuality, human behavior and women’s issues. Wanis is the first person ever to do hypnotherapy on national TV – on the Montel Williams show.