Sex Life is an anonymous Zikoko weekly series that explores the pleasures, frustrations and excitement of sex in the lives of Nigerians.
The subject of this week’s sex life is a 23-year-old man who refused to accept his sexuality for years after discovering he’s bisexual. Now that he’s accepted it, he’s sleeping with older men and getting paid for it.
When did you have your first sexual experience?
When I was 16, I went to a strip club with my cousin and a bunch of his friends. They’re at least 10 years older than me. It was my first time going to one. It was also the first time I saw a lot of real life half-naked women.
I was young and naive, but importantly, I was high and excited. I couldn’t sit still even when my cousin paid for a lap dance. I ended up grabbing one of the stripper’s breasts and kissing her against her wishes. We ended up getting thrown out.
I know better now. After that happened, we headed to a party at someone’s house. It was almost midnight and I had never been out that late before. When we got to the party, I felt out of place. It was clearly not my scene. So I didn’t head in with them.
I stayed outside by the car and because it was an estate, I felt safe. I was probably looking at my phone or something when this babe showed up. It seemed she had come from the house. She stood by me and didn’t say anything. She just put her hands down my pants and we started making out. We got into the car and had sex.
Just like that?
Yes. We didn’t even use a condom. Thinking about it makes me feel eerie, like I had sex with a spirit.
And you had never had sex before then?
What about making out?
Nope. There was a time in church that a babe started to give me head during a youth camp — that’s as close as I ever really got. It didn’t work because someone came banging on the toilet door and we chickened out.
How was the sex with the stranger?
It wasn’t bad. But it wasn’t great either. At the time, I didn’t know this. I thought It was the best thing in the world.
What were your expectations before then?
That everything I saw in porn was true, that I could last 30 minutes before orgasming. My first time really opened my eyes to reality.
What happened after your first experience?
At first, nothing. While my cousin encouraged me to explore and even invited me to parties where I could meet people, it wasn’t the first thing on my mind. I had a map for my life that I wanted to follow: go to school, study hard, finish with great grades, meet the woman I’d marry, date her the right way and have sex within the relationship. I had been conditioned to think this was the only way from when I was younger.
Did things go according to plan?
Do things ever go according to plan? It started going downhill when I dated this girl in my second year. We met online and had pretty okay sex a couple of times she came to see me on campus.
By the fifth month of our relationship, I was pretty sure we would get married. She knew my passwords, we lived together during weekends and didn’t have any problems. She met some of my siblings and my cousin. Then she ghosted me and broke my heart.
Wow. That’s unfair.
My then-best friend stood by me. He really helped me get through that phase. I moved into his apartment because I couldn’t stand being alone. He cooked for me, did my laundry, basically gingered me back to a better state of mind.
One night though, we got into an argument about something quite trivial and in the heat of it, started making out. We ended up giving each other head. It was the most fulfilling orgasm I’ve ever experienced.
Fun thing is, I didn’t know that I was attracted to men before then. When I think about it now, I know that there was sexual energy between us in that house, but back then, I didn’t know or realise what it was.
Yup. I also didn’t know that my best friend was bisexual before that experience. We talked about it the next day. He told me that he had always been attracted to men and women and that he’d always thought I was gay.
Because I was an idiot, I was offended by that and went back to my place. Alone, the experience kept replaying in my head. I had internalised a lot of homophobia, so I hated myself and had suicidal thoughts. I felt very dirty.
It took me a long time to accept that I was as attracted to men as I was to women. But by then, I had already lost my best friend. I did a lot of things I’m not proud of; I sent hateful messages to him, blocked him, outed him to some of our other friends. It was a dark time.
Have you tried to make amends?
I’m still trying. But I understand if he’ll never forgive me.
How did discovering your sexuality affect your sex life?
I stopped having sex at first. Then I started having a lot of sex with any girls I met. Then I stopped again. Just weird things like that until I accepted my sexuality and moved forward.
How were you able to accept your sexuality?
I opened up to my cousin and he told me that I was perfectly normal, that being queer didn’t mean something was wrong with me. I also told my sister and she was so loving about it. I didn’t expect that because most of my family is religious.
I guess the fear of not being accepted by my family played a role in the hate I had for myself.
What’s your sex life these days?
Certainly not boring. Last year, I interviewed with a really small business and thought I did pretty well, only for the interviewer who’s also the owner of the company to tell me that he’s not going to employ me to work for his business, but that he has other ways I might be of use to him.
Something in me told me to run at that point, but I wanted to hear more. This man runs his business from his home, so we were in his home office having this conversation. This man — a family man complete with a Sienna, who is in his late 40s — led me to his room. He asked me if I was interested in what was about to happen and I asked him if he wanted to have sex with me. He smiled. We made out and had sex.
Wow. How was it?
Incredible. It was my first sexual experience with a man and I felt quite liberated afterwards.
Did it stop there?
He gave me some money and gave me a date and time to come back. I went there every other week to have sex with him after which he’d give me money. This only lasted a month or two, before he said he wanted to introduce me to his friend.
I won’t lie that this felt strange at first. When I met his friend, he told me he only wanted ‘the company of a young person’. I don’t know how that translates to head because that’s what he was asking for.
He was also a family man; I could tell even though we only ever hooked up in hotels. The money was a lot more than the first man’s, even though it wasn’t happening as regularly. That was basically how I started sleeping with older men for money.
Would you call it sex work?
I’m not sure, because it’s really not structured. I’ve never thought of it. Maybe it is though. I don’t care. All I know is I have a set of clients — mostly married men — who I offer sex and other sex-related activities and who give me money in return.
Like how much do earn after one hookup?
It really depends on the client. Their mood afterwards is what determines what they give me. I’ve not tried to negotiate because doing that feels like I’m making it work and I’m scared they won’t give me. The highest I’ve earned is $1000 though and it was just head.
How many clients would you say you have?
What about women?
I haven’t had time for sex with women. When I’m making money from sex with men. Haha. But seriously, I’m actually in the talking stage with someone I like. I don’t know if it’ll go anywhere.
Does she know you’re bisexual?
Yes! I won’t even think of dating anyone who I have to hide it from.
Would you tell her about your men?
If we decide to date, maybe. We’re not there yet, so it’s none of her business.
Fair. How would you rate your sex life?
I want to say sex that gives me money is ultimately a 10, but if I’m being honest, my sex life is still a 6. I honestly think that if I’m in a committed relationship, it could be better.