Why do people use the term masseuse if it means sexual favours?

When it comes to the world of erotic massage therapy and the women who provide these services the topic of conversation is not only taboo but it is also confusing. Although you cannot refer to an erotic masseuse as a massage therapist due to the fact most of them are not professionally trained in traditional massage therapy, equally you cannot refer to them as prostitutes even if they offer sexual favours because their main service, first and foremost, is erotic massage therapy.

Many people frown upon erotic massage therapy and erotic masseuses due to their cultural or religious believes. In many parts of the world it is only deemed suitable to be intimate with someone to whom you are married to, therefore the nature of erotic massage therapy goes against the beliefs and morals of millions of people. On the other hand, you have many people who do not have much opinion over whether erotic massage therapy is morally right or wrong but do not deem it to be a legitimate job which is also a misconception as erotic massage therapists work extremely long and demanding hours. Nevertheless, luckily we live in a society that is slowly but surely accepting a more liberal way of life and lifestyles and career choices such as erotic massage therapy aren’t being met with as much disgust, but instead with intrigue and admiration.

Erotic massage therapy has been prevalent in the city of London for centuries. However it has become extremely popular and less underground in the last few decades, with more men seeking these services for other reasons as opposed to simple sexual gratification.

I took to the streets of London to find out what the British public think when they hear the words “erotic massage” or “erotic masseuse.”

Larry, 45 “I think it is great that more people are opening up to the idea of erotic massage therapy and that there is more respect towards the women that work in this industry. Personally, I have never used these services myself but if I did I would not be ashamed of doing so. I think erotic massage therapy first and foremost is the same as seeking any type of service, whether that be going to the barbers, getting your car fixed or going to a restaurant for a meal. I have had many friends use these services and they always speak highly of them and express how professional the massage parlours in London are. Many people have a perception of a dirty and sketchy basement, when in fact most erotic massage parlours look more like a spa or salon. When it comes to the masseuses, they obviously have trained hard and have a special talent for what they do, so why shouldn’t they make money from it? As long as it is safe and they have consented to this career choice, then more power to them.”

Douglas, 35 “I am quite a religious person and believe that you should only truly be intimate with not only someone that you have entered into a relationship but someone that you have committed to marriage with. Although I also believe that everyone should be able to choose their own pathway and if a woman wants to become a masseuse in the erotic massage industry, then she should be able to do that without any judgement. However, I do believe that they should always state that they are an erotic massage masseuse rather than calling themselves a masseuse as they are rather different and although they both are centred around bringing a sense of relief, obviously an erotic massage offers more.”

Tobias, 26 “I believe that erotic massage therapy is wrong and that erotic massage therapy definitely goes beyond intimacy barriers that it shouldn’t. My girlfriend is a fully qualified physiotherapist and masseuse and has studied at a good university for five years; therefore I do not appreciate when women who work in this industry also refer to themselves as “masseuses,” as it really isn’t on the same wave length.”

Peter, 55 “I have many female friends who have worked in the erotic massage industry for many years and although they may not follow the guidelines of the more traditional massage styles, they certainly still work as hard and as professional as a “regular” masseuse does. I think many people get too caught up in focusing on the extra services that these women provide and almost blame them for it when in fact it is a demand from the consumer and is clearly a service that many men in British society want.”

So, why exactly do many men refer to women working in this industry as a masseuse as opposed to derogatory terms such as “lady of the night” and “working woman?”  

Although erotic massage therapy may have a sensual and sexual nature and the client can ask for extra services such as the touching and massaging of intimate areas of the body, sexual gratification is not the ultimate goal or outcome.

Like most other massage styles, erotic massage therapy is used by the masseuse to help bring the client into a state of total relaxation. They use traditional massage styles and methods to calm and soothe the body and mind, working on relieving any muscle tension or pain as well as helping to distress the mind. Erotic massage therapy is known to be amazing for releasing negative feelings such as depression, anxiety and confidence issues. Not only is it very beneficial for you physically but it also helps your mental state significantly. (Read more:
https://academic.oup.com/jpepsy/article/22/5/607/907739 )