Bethany St. James is someone who should be on your radar screen. This determined lady has strong views on condom usage and the path to legalized regulated brothel style prostitution. Her voice is important and it was a pleasure to have interviewed her. Her heart is in the right place especially when you consider her plans to create an organization to assist adult performers in their quest to organize their finances to fulfill their dreams.
Hi Bethany, I am so excited to finally interview you. I admire your honesty with a charm that soothes over the critical points of your discussion that makes you very conversational-friendly towards people. Have you always had this quality about yourself?
What a sweet thing to say! Thank you. I’m flattered! I appreciate the compliment! I’ve always considered myself a very honest and friendly person so, I suppose I have!
It is refreshing to have you in this industry since you are not afraid to stir the waters such as in your support for condom use. Why do you think that it is a necessity for adult male performers to wrap their sexual playthings with one of those latex items during their sex scenes?
The same reason that it’s important for anyone, anywhere to use one! STD's don’t care if the camera is rolling or not! Adult performers have a responsibility not only to their on-screen partners, but also for the health and safety of their off-screen partners. STD testing is far from fail-safe. Many STD's can take weeks to show up on a test and may show no symptoms for some time. Condom usage doesn’t prevent all STD's, but it certainly does reduce the odds!
What would you say to those detractors who believe that using a condom is unnatural and would harm the fantasy of the performance?
Well, unfortunately we live in a time where having recreational unprotected sex is exactly that – a fantasy. Anyone who thinks that you can have unprotected sex and never catch an STD is living in a dream world. As sexual providers, be it adult film or prostitution, we have a responsibility to the public to show that a small piece of latex is not going to change a hot sex scene! If the sex is good – trust me – you won’t care! Not one of my clients has ever complained yet! Besides, the use of condoms needs to become so commonplace that it isn’t even an issue.
As you are well aware, Wicked Pictures is the leader of condom usage in adult film making. Have they approached you or have you approached them to make films for them? You and they would be a match made in heaven.
It’s no secret that the porn industry is in trouble. The market is so oversaturated! I’m not sure if it’s something I even want to get involved with at this point. But, I have a huge amount of respect for Wicked and their stance on condom usage. They are leaders in standing up for the safety of their performers and providing a realistic version of just how hot safe recreational sex can be!
And yes, there has been talk about a possible relationship between Wicked and myself. There’s also been a ton of requests for me to shoot a feature film. In fact, there is actually a list of people who have “pre-ordered” my first film! It’s so flattering!
However, as I’ve said many times, the porn that I would want to shoot would need to be reminiscent of the sexual icons of the past such as Seka, Bambi Woods, Leslie Bovee and Linda Wong. Demure vixens with a ladylike prowess and passionate hunger for raw sexuality! So the script would have to be stellar in order for me to put my name on it!
Could you briefly give some background about your brothel experiences? How did you get started working in that industry? What were some of your most pleasurable moments? What were some of your least pleasurable ones?
Wow! That’s a lot of questions wrapped up in one! Let me see if I can cover all of that without writing a novel! I discovered legal brothels when I became disgusted with the state of courtesan style prostitution due to what I call “The Craigslist Boom.” It was roughly around 2005 when the whole industry started to change and girls were literally doing anything for a dollar with zero regard for their safety or the safety of the general public. I wanted a safe place to work doing what I have always done and have always enjoyed doing. Honestly, almost every experience I have had at the brothel I worked at has been wonderful! I have such a wide variety of clients that bring me pleasure every day I’m there!
The only things that really come to mind as “not pleasurable” were before I made my little rule that all couples need to email with me before making an appointment. I’ve had two bad experiences where they thought bringing another woman in would “save” their relationship. A bad relationship will only get worse if you try and do something out of your comfort level to save it! So, I like to ensure that all of the couples I entertain are in healthy, happy relationships and just looking for some added fun!
It is not only appropriate, but fitting that you should someday run your own resort brothel. Could you expand on your vision and what are the benefits for a lady who works at one of those establishments?
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My vision is expanding every day but, owning my own resort style brothel has always been part of the plan. I’m actually speaking with several investors about that currently. Hopefully, I can make it a reality within the next two years. It is my dream to provide a safe place for people to experiment with sexuality, discover new and interesting parts of their sexual being, and never feel out of place or threatened. Just like the brothel that I currently work at, the ladies can expect an all-female office and hostess staff that is there to not only ensure that the brothel runs smoothly, but also that they are all in healthy, safe environments within their personal life, as well. My brothels will offer all sorts of programs to assist in financial planning, goal setting, educational assistance as well as recreational and relaxation facilities. But, my true hope is to eventually legalize brothel style prostitution across the country! But, I can assure mine will never be made into a mockery by being a part of some ridiculous TV show!
I admire your stance on legalized prostitution. Why do you think that it should be legalized around the nation?
The benefits to legalized regulated brothel style prostitution are so many that it is difficult to summarize without rambling on for days! But, I’ll try! First, let’s look at the economic benefits! Not only do brothels provide tax money to the towns that house them, but they also provide jobs. I’m not just speaking to the “working girls.” It takes a lot of people to run a legal brothel – office staff, janitorial staff, groundskeepers, culinary staff, maintenance staff - the list goes on and on! Taking into consideration the current state of our economy and job market, you would have to be blind not to see how brothels can help. Those tax dollars generated can provide the money needed for educational and community programs. Many of the towns that have legalized brothels would have been long gone had it not been for legal prostitution.
As far as the social benefits, once again there are so many it’s hard to summarize, but let’s just discuss a few. First, it’s a fact that without a proper education, it is almost impossible for someone to obtain a job that provides enough money for a family to ever rise above the poverty level. Many of these people turn to dangerous and/or illegal means to make ends meet. It provides them a safe alternative. It gives women a chance to better their lives by making enough money to safely provide for their families. Receiving a paycheck like any other tax paying American is a very fulfilling feeling! They can use that money to better their lives as well as their children’s lives and eventually break that cycle of desperation and poverty.
Second, statistics show that the United States has the highest rate of STD's in the populated world. That’s alarming! By allowing state and/or federally mandated brothels with testing regulations strongly in place, those statistics would be drastically reduced. That’s also true for unwanted pregnancy, violence against women, and yes, even drug and alcohol abuse. There is so much shame and danger associated with street prostitution that many men and women turn to drugs and alcohol to ease that sorrow. If you take the shame and guilt out of the equation and then, you have a lot of hope and help there! Those people can get the help they need to become functioning members of society. They can use brothels as a stepping stone to a better life.
I could go on all day about the many, many benefits but, I think that’s enough to get the ball rolling here. Let’s move on!
What would you say to those who are concerned that a more seamier side of life would be more prevalent around their neighborhoods if brothels and prostitutes start to pop up next door to them?
Trust me, no one wants to have street walkers roaming the streets and pimps taking advantage of women who don’t have the means to defend themselves! I live in a very nice neighborhood. I don’t want that element around me either! So, let’s look at this realistically. Legal brothels provide a safe haven for women to clean up their lives as well as shining a light on those people who work the underbelly of the business. If there were safe alternatives, cleaning up the illegal element wouldn’t be such a problem. Not only could the tax dollars generated from brothels be used to actually clean up crime, but we wouldn’t need so much of our police officers' precious time to combat these predators. Opening legal brothels would actually reduce our street crime as well as the crime associated with illegal prostitution and get it out of our backyards.
What was the biggest surprise for you about working at a brothel when you started?
Believe it or not, the close relationship of the girls. Working as a prostitute can sometimes keep you at a distance from developing friendships with other women for fear of judgment. But, there is such a sense of sisterhood in a brothel setting. There isn’t much in the way of competition or any pecking order or that sort of a thing. It surprised me in the best possible way!
Since you will be shooting fun and upscale feature style porn, what has been the biggest surprise for you about working in the adult film making industry?
Like I said, that is still in the works. It may or may not happen. But, I grew up in the adult industry so none of it is really a surprise! It’s more normal to me than growing up with parents that were teachers or something!
I am a huge fan of girl-girl performances. Do you enjoy having sex with a woman? What traits of a woman do you admire most? What makes a woman sexy? As for your love towards men, what traits of a man do you admire most? What makes a man sexy?
I love, love, love the company of women! I love everything about them. The sensuality, the softness of their skin – everything! Having sex with a woman is so very different than being with a man for obvious reasons, but it goes so much deeper than that. I love how almost every time I get to pleasure a woman we end up holding hands while I go down on her. It’s so beautiful. There is a feeling almost like two kittens being sweet and cleaning each other. It’s so naughty and sensually tender. I find women who have a very distinctive look sexy. I don’t have a type per say. I’m the same way with men. It’s not all about looks. I’m not usually attracted to the everyday pretty boy types though, I can say that. I like to have a little something to hold onto!
The biggest turn on and quality I admire in a man is honesty! If a man can be honest with me, I’ll be putty in his hands. I really don’t want a monogamous relationship. In fact, I think variety is important for men. Men need to experience sexual pleasure from other women. He’ll always come home if he’s allowed to leave the yard once in a while! But! Along with that freedom comes responsibility! Don’t lie! Be honest!
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t need to know every detail about every which way he had sex or even who he had sex with. That’s his business! But, don’t lie and pretend it didn’t happen! Be honest. Have sex with whomever you want and I’m a happy little princess! I want a man who isn’t afraid to admit his sexual desires!
Are there any industry people (actors, actresses, directors, etc.) who you have not had the opportunity to work with yet and want to very badly and why? What would be your dream scene?
(Grin) I have a bit of a girl crush on Sienna Sinclaire. There is just something about her that makes me purr. Nina Hartley too. Both of them are just delicious! I could see myself having an amazingly orgasmic time with them! As far as directors, I have to say, Barrett Blade is a great director that I think has a lot of talent. Of course, anything that Barrett Blade or David Lord touches is usually gold! Also, I can’t lie. The Digital Playground girls are just hot, hot, hot! I could eat them up like delectable little soft centered candies!
How were you as a kid growing up?
I had a very different childhood than most people that I’ve met. I grew up in a house where both parents were in the adult industry. Most of the adult influences I had around me were in the industry in some way or another. We had to move a lot because once people found out what my parents did; it became difficult for us to blend and for me to make friends. I think that people thought we had crazy orgies going on in the living room or that my parents walked around naked or something. It wasn’t like that at all. I knew what they did for work, but it wasn’t odd to me because if I had questions about something I asked. They gave me answers that made sense. I was raised in a very sexually positive household. By that, I mean that I was always raised to believe that sex was a wonderful thing, but it also carries a lot of responsibility. I was taught that sex wasn’t something to venture into lightly at a young age or before being ready to accept the possible consequences.
I think I was a normal kid except that I didn’t have friends my own age. But, I wouldn’t change a thing! It was a great childhood and I wouldn’t be as well-rounded if it had been any different!
What are your hobbies and interests?
I have so many! I love to be outdoors enjoying the fresh air. I’m addicted to traveling and trying anything new! Believe it or not, my dream is to learn to drive a monster truck! I don’t know why. I just think it would be fun! I like to do things completely out of my comfort zone! But, I also love quiet nights at home. There’s nothing better than curling up in bed with a good movie and a good cuddle partner. That’s sheer heaven!
What is your favorite thing about being an adult performer?
I love the freedom that my life has given me. I say my life because the adult industry is really all I’ve ever known. I’ve tried a few times to have a “mainstream” job and I hated it! My life is wonderful! I make my own schedule, I take vacations when I want, I get to dress up all pretty every day and even better, I get paid to do what most people do for fun! Fabulous!
Are there any web sites or future projects that you would like to promote?
I am currently working on starting a non-profit organization called Strip Up that I hope to see come to fruition over the next year. Unfortunately, my time is so limited and the wheels of government move so slowly! But, it will happen!
It’s an organization to assist adult performers, new and well-seasoned veterans in the quest to organizing their finances in order to start a business, prepare for their future, go to school – whatever their dreams are. I want to help them utilize our business as a way to gain ground toward something better. I’d like to have people available to help them with interview skills, bookkeeping, and even drug and alcohol counseling. I really want to pave it forward. This business has been so good to me. I want to change the stigma that we are all stupid and have no goals. Let’s show the world who we are by helping one another achieve greatness!
Besides that I have plans for a clothing line, a line of romance enhancement products, many more charities and nonprofit organizations, my own legal resort style brothel, and lots of work on my campaign to educate Americans on the benefits of legal regulated brothels! Oh! And we can’t forget that while doing all of that, I’ll be maintaining a full appearance schedule all over the country! I hope that everyone will check out my new website that is set to launch this week and also make an appointment to play with me at Sheri’s Resort, Spa and Legal Brothel! I think that covers it! (smile)