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He hasn't found anyone yet and wants to experiment sex. What should I tell regarding the morality of having sex with a prostitute? He says he agrees that sex with a relationship would be great, but he wants to have intercourse now anyway.

asked Oct 29 '11 at 22:30

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edited Oct 29 '11 at 22:33

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Greg Perkins ♦♦

You should tell him that it would be immoral. Not because sex is bad, but because it is too good to be engaged in with random strangers. Ayn Rand said,

Sex is one of the most important aspects of man’s life and, therefore, must never be approached lightly or casually. A sexual relationship is proper only on the ground of the highest values one can find in a human being. Sex must not be anything other than a response to values. And that is why I consider promiscuity immoral. Not because sex is evil, but because sex is too good and too important . . . .

[Sex should] involve . . . a very serious relationship. Whether that relationship should or should not become a marriage is a question which depends on the circumstances and the context of the two persons’ lives. . . . Either [marriage or extra-marital sex] is moral, provided only that both parties take the relationship seriously and that it is based on values.

Playboy Interview: Ayn Rand, Playboy, March 1964 (available at The Ayn Rand Lexicon) (emphasis added).

In addition to the specific problems that Rick pointed out in his answer, your son should consider the damage to his own psyche that would be done by engaging in sex with prostitutes. His self esteem will take a hit for sure. But more importantly, engaging in sex with strangers who you do not value--indeed who you positively despise (after all, they are prostitutes)--is going to warp your outlook on sex. His sexual expectations will be warped. His ability to enjoy the spiritual side of sex will be deadened. Will one encounter cause all these problems? Maybe, maybe not. But I think sex is just too valuable to risk damaging your ability to fully enjoy it.

answered Oct 31 '11 at 09:50

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ericmaughan43 ♦

Would you say this applies despite the fact you are really horny and is causing depression. I belive Freud once said that, if you dont have sex it causes psychological problems.

(May 28 '12 at 14:19) Sage Sage's gravatar image

The Objectivist moral view is one of rational self-interest -- which means looking at things with a long-term perspective, and not just in light of spur-of-the-moment desires.

You might ask your son whether he's considered the following issues:

  • From the prostitute's perspective, sex with a 16 yr old is considered statutory rape. Yes, he might be able to find someone who would do it anyway for money, but it presents an extra level of risk for them, and therefore an extra level of risk for him. He could try to lie to the hooker, but what would he do if he got caught in the lie?
  • Is he aware of the possible disease risk? Not just STDs, but HIV, Hepatitis, etc? Does he know how to correctly use a condom to protect himself (including which types of condoms work well and which ones don't), and the limits of that protection?
  • Is prostitution legal where you live? If not, has he considered how he would feel if he got caught? What would you do if he got caught?
  • If prostitution isn't legal, has he considered that there are additional risks? Is he physically and mentally able to deal with them? For example, pimps, hidden cameras, possible blackmail, etc?
  • Does he understand that an emotional connection is a large part of sex, and how that part won't be possible with a hooker?
  • Has he thought about what he would say to his future girlfriends and/or wife if he lost his virginity to a hooker? If he admitted it, I know many women who think twice about sleeping with such a person (for a number of reasons: health risk, cleanliness, moral character, etc). If he lies, then that lie will eat away at him, and therefore damage the relationship as well.

I would also challenge the entire idea of "experimenting" with sex at his age. It's like experimenting with a loaded gun -- he can irreparably hurt both himself and others who are close to him.

answered Oct 30 '11 at 01:23

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Rick ♦

I knew someone once who went skiing for the first time without proper clothing or proper training, and she tried to go down a black slope her first time. She ended up falling several times until she didn't want to ski any more, and she had to wait for a long time on freezing weather for one of the care takers to bring her down in a snowmobile. It was such a horrible experience that she didn't want to ever ski again. She is now an adult with the means to go skiing, but she hates it and doesn't want to ever do it.

That illustrates the fact that the first time you do something will leave a mark on you. My friend deprived herself of the future enjoyment of skiing by doing it wrong the first time. If doing something as trivial as skiing the right way on your first time is so important, don't you think that something as important as sex should be done right the first time as well?

That is what I would tell the 16 year old kid, and then I would explain why sex is such an important thing, and what the right way is, with the same observations that other commenters already left.

answered Nov 08 '11 at 01:24

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Francisco ♦

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Asked: Oct 29 '11 at 22:30

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Last updated: May 28 '12 at 14:19