Pretty Woman and the Media’s Glamorization of Prostitution

Aoi, a Thai prostitute, said, 

“I don’t know what’s love…I want love, but I know me…
Me is no good…No people can love me.”

In Thailand, known as the sexual playground of the world, of the woman in their 20s, 1 in 6 is in some kind prostitution.

Click here to watch a video on Thailand’s Need 

It’s easy to assume prostitutes are all “bad girls,” or girls who are willing to do anything for money.

Easy to assume, but wrong.

Yes, there are girls who will sell their bodies for money, but the more I learn about human trafficking and human bondage, the more I do not assume such things when I hear of or see someone who looks like they enjoy this “job” of selling themselves.

“They have to be the best actresses in the world,” a friend says. “They have to smile, pretend they like this, when they hate it.” She has met many prostitutes, and has heard many stories. One was sold into it by her father. Another just wanted to be loved.

I was sickened to hear that several of the American prostitutes she encountered came into that life willingly after watching the “romantic comedy” Pretty Woman. They thought the happily-ever-after love story might happen to them.

A man in a suit stands back to back with a woman wearing in a short skirt and thigh high boots.

It didn’t. Pretty Woman was originally intended to be a dark drama on the evils of prostitution–such movies, however, do not sell nearly as well as a lie, making the main character spunky and in charge of her own life, a heroine, making the client a good guy who rescues her from the life even though he himself paid to borrow her body.

Makes me sick. I have a friend who began selling herself to pay for the drug habit started by her drug-pushing father. I have another friend who was trafficked here in America and is now free. Their stories would not make a romantic comedy. I have never heard of one real-life prostitute who was spunky and happy and in control of her future.

2bf15c5fc2763dc83cb177f7e419a137--julia-roberts-movies-movie-subtitles


In fact, the average life span of a girl brought into the world of human trafficking is 5 years. Five years until the drugs or the violence or the “job” itself kills her, and another is brought in to take her place.

What does this mean for those of us who hate the idea of prostitution?
1. Hate the evil, not the person. 
2. Don’t assume you know why someone does what they do. They have a story; take the time to hear it.
3. Treat every person with the value they were given when created in the image of God.
4. When you see someone you initially want to judge, pray for that person instead.
5. If you see someone in this life who looks fearful or under another’s control, call the Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-788 (888-3737-888) and give them a chance at freedom.
6. Thank God for His grace in your own life. There are girls all over the world who grow up in brothels, who have no options but to one day join “the line.” If you were born into freedom, thank God for it.
7. Teach girls their worth in Christ, that their worth is not in how much attention they can get for their looks or their bodies.

fhd990PMN_Julia_Roberts_002

alg-toddlers-tiaras-jpg
It’s not cute, or funny.


Then lets all see beyond the outfits and even the outward actions, and look into broken hearts needing the love of a Father, the love of a Savior, the love of a friend.

Trafficking and Teen Girls – Nancy Drew Isn’t Real and the Bad Guys aren’t that Stupid

Nancy Drew books were fun. She was always getting kidnapped or held hostage. The bad guys would say, “We’re going to kill you,” but then they’d go to the grocery store or somewhere else, giving her a couple of hours to come up with a creative way to escape.

 nancy-drew-tv-series-nbc

Thanks in part to Nancy, I grew up thinking that to be captured was cool, that it would be exciting to get close to danger because there was always a way out, and I would be a heroine.
Then I grew up. I found out that Nancy Drew isn’t real, and the bad guys aren’t that stupid.

Sadly, there are girls who don’t figure that out in time. I have a friend who works with prostitutes. Several of them said they got into prostitution after watching the movie Pretty Woman, about a prostitute who meets a nice, rich guy, they fall in love and live happily ever after. These girls thought that might happen to them.

But it doesn’t.

51xz970DQTL._SY346_Since my suspense/romance novels on human trafficking have come out, I’ve had the opportunity to speak to lots of groups of women and girls. Teen girls are especially important to me, because in America, they are the ones at risk. In the US, the big target is runaways. Pimps are good at seeing what a girl is seeking and becoming that…for a time, until they are trapped.

I want to talk with teen girls because they can make a difference. Not just by getting involved in different activist groups. They can make a difference themselves, where they are. And you can, too. Here’s how:

For parents:
1. Teach teen girls to find their worth in Jesus Christ, so they don’t look for it in dangerous places.
2. Keep open communication with your teenager. Be the kind of person they can come to if they are struggling.
3. Be real with your teen about the dangers out there, especially on the internet. Predators can pose as young girls, or even be young girls working for traffickers. Know who your kids hang out with online.

For teen girls:
1. Know how much you are loved and valued by God. The One who made the universe says you are worth dying for. That’s pretty amazing. (Psalm 139, Jeremiah 31:3, Zephaniah 3:17, John 3:16)
2. Don’t look for your worth, or try to prove your worth, by your looks, your body, or the attention you can get from guys, especially the older, edgy kind. I know if feels powerful, but it is often a door to a place you don’t want to go.
3. Never, ever go alone to meet someone you met over the internet. If someone online even suggests a meeting, tell your parents about it. I’m in my 40s and I’ve been propositioned online – it happens.
4. Befriend the girls on the fringe, the ones who – if they disappeared–people would assume they ran away. Those girls are targeted, so your friendship could actually save their lives.
5. If you know your worth in Jesus, share it with other girls, so they don’t need to be looking for it in the wrong places either.

Nancy Drew stories aren’t true, but that does not mean that happy endings are impossible. We can change the world, one person, one heart at a time.

Let’s start with the hearts of the girls closest to us.