Working for a Sex Toy Company
"So, What Do You Do?" The Inside Scoop on Working for a Sex Toy Company.by Trisha Hurlburt
It's the question everyone gets asked at social gatherings from, say, your mid-twenties on. You know, "Hi, I'm (insert name of person you'll never speak to again). How do you know (insert name of person hosting gathering)? I see. So, what do you do?" And that's when I begin to enjoy myself. "Actually, I work for a sex toy company," I say.
Stunned silence. Fade to black.
Okay, okay, I don't actually get away that easily. First, there's disbelief ("Get out of here!"), then the inevitable questions: "What's that like?" "Isn't that a pretty sleazy industry?" "Do you do porn?" Too many questions, really, to list here, but in the interest of everyone out there who does, indeed, want to know what it's like working at a sex toy company, here's the scoop.
There is no nudity in the office -- ever. Mainly, because there's enough violence in the world, but also because we simply sell the sex toys. We don't use them in the office or on each other (unless it's our married couple we're talking about), we don't plan orgies (They just happen! I'm kidding!), and we certainly don't want to see anyone else we work with unclothed. Think about it. Is there anyone you currently work with whom you'd like to see naked? I rest my case.
Porn is miles away from what we do. Not that we don't enjoy watching it from time to time, but our goal is to be a clean, safe place for people to come to for their sensual toys, books, etc. That is why our site doesn't have a spread-eagle woman "welcoming" you on the home page. Or any other page, for that matter. We've seen -- and in some cases, worked for -- companies who do that and we want to be different.
Honestly, yes, the industry as a whole is not so, um, wholesome. But you have to realize that going into a line of work such as this. You are dealing with sex, and people who are having sex (again, no one in the office except the marrieds), and people who want to improve their experiences with sex -- what I'm getting at is that you can't get away from sex as the bottom line. However, our part in it is to simply provide the best toys, information and education available, so that maybe, someday, the majority of this country won't equate sex with being dirty or sinful. I know, dare to dream.
Yes, my family does know what I do. And they're fine with it. In fact, my Mom calls me the "Porn Princess," which I realize is not helping our cause any, but it makes us laugh. I am extremely lucky to have family, friends and a boyfriend who understand that where I work is not who I am, and who don't turn into small children when the topic of sex comes up. I am, in turn, hopefully educating all of them a little bit more about what we do so that they can then educate others about sex toys and how they're not instruments of the devil. Insert your own joke here.
It's been an interesting journey over the past couple of years in discovering who gets freaked out and who takes sex toys in stride. Let me regale you with a little story. Last spring, I was visiting with my grandmother. We'd never had much one on one time before, so we were sitting around, just chatting about life, when Grandma suddenly asks, "What is it that your website sells again? Is it cosmetics or something?" I had to take a moment, because when I first became involved in the world o' sex toys, I had been told by other family members that the news had been broken to my grandmother. Apparently not. So I took a deep breath, and said, "Well, Grandma, actually we sell sex toys." To which she responded, without skipping a beat, "Oh. You know, Mom (my great grandmother) used to get a catalog in the mail all the time that had vibrators and the like in it. I think it's good they're available to people. I know I was never talked to about sex and so forth." Blew me away. Then we continued to talk about it for a long time as I explained what I do and the goals of the company. Grandma just took it all in, and then told me some disturbing things about my grandfather. And that was that! On the other hand, I've told people my age about my line of work and have gotten a look of horror akin to seeing me eat a baby. You just never know.
Okay, yeah, our office is a little different from most other corporate offices. I mean, honestly, we have lube in our candy jar and a clock made of vibrators, but that's part of what makes working here so great. I used to work for a large consulting firm that I know could have benefited from having some dildos lying around. Wait, I know there's a joke in there somewhere...but I digress. There is no place else in the world where I could be sitting in my office and hear, "Has anyone seen the pink dong with the enormous balls?" Really. And the thing is, in all other aspects, we act like a "regular" office. We have meetings, we plan budgets, we do research; everything I've always done in my past work environments. Now, it's just done with a twist.
So, my overall answer to questions about working for MyPleasure is that it's a blast. We're made up of a small group of intelligent, literate people who are all passionate about what we do. We're of various ethnicities, religious and political beliefs, ages and backgrounds, but we all believe in this company and our parts in it. We've all had "normal" jobs in the past and agree that this is the most fun we've ever had at work. Now, I'm not saying that we all get along all the time or that there are no politics or problems -- of course there are, we're still a company, after all. What makes us unique, though, is that everything else about working for MyPleasure is so, well,pleasant, that the occasional irritant doesn't drag us down.
For me, personally, this is the best job I could ever hope for. And I'm not just saying that because I'm being paid to write this. It's funny, people ask me if I plan to do this forever and my answer is, "I hope so." Maybe that means I have no aspirations or further goals for myself, but I really just think it means that I love what I do and would like to continue to do it for as long as I possibly can. Now, how many people can say that?