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Routine engagement with a sex worker may lead to love

Despite the public health concern that prostitutes and their clients are at a high risk for HIV, as well as other sexually transmitted diseases, such services are still often sought out in many countries. The reasons why men engage in such sexual activity vary. One explanation is that these individuals want to avoid an emotional commitment. However, according to a new study published in the SAGE journal Men and Masculinities, this may not be the case.

Two researchers analyzed approximately 2,500 postings on an online discussion board. The comments focused on clients' experiences with hiring a sex worker, and revealed that one-third of the anonymous participants who left comments reported a desire to expand their relationship and have more than just a business transaction.

Sometimes, this inkling may begin with a man stating that he wants the girlfriend experience, in which situation the prostitute role plays to be a pretend lover, according to the Guardian.

"These relationships follow a conventionally romantic script that normalizes the liaison and destigmatizes both provider and client," said Christine Milrod, the author of the study. "The study shows that this kind of normalization may manifest itself in a merger of finances, families and finally monogamous partnerships – the provider is no longer just a supplier of the girlfriend experience, but a real-life romantic partner."

Milrod added that increasingly more relationships begin as prostitute and client, especially when the sex worker sees the same client routinely. 
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