Photo: Joshua Caine/Courtesy of SHOWTIMEListen to the man.There’s rumored to exist an epic, doorstop of a book written by someone’s great,...
When Ash, a personal trainer and male escort featured on Showtime’s deliriously entertaining Gigolos (returning tonight for a fourth season at 11 ET), finally writes his book, you can be sure its pages will be peppered with more wisdom than your ancestors were ever able to impart. Want a taste? Read on to learn the worst thing you’re doing in bed, the pastime that could kill your sex life, and what you must do to ensure that your wife never visits a guy like Ash.
Men’s Health: First of all, how does one get into this line of work?
Ash: I just kind of fell into it. I used to model, and I had a page up on Model Mayhem [an online modeling portfolio] and the head of Cowboys 4 Angels [Ash's escort service] contacted me through that. He said, ‘Hey, I’ve got this company. I really like your look. Would you be interested in working with me?’ I wasn’t sure at all, but when I met him and we really hit it off, I thought, ‘Well, I’ll give it a shot.’ A lot of things I’d done kind of led up to this. I’d been a personal trainer and massage therapist for a long time. I’m very professional when I do that work, but I noticed that a lot of women needed more of a touch, some connection. That was way more healing to them than just straight massage therapy that focuses on your anatomy. I thought it would be great if we could create a therapeutic atmosphere where it’s okay for women to come in and have a man be very present with them and make them feel beautiful. I saw the healing power in that. And I thought, if nothing else, this will be interesting.
MH: It strikes me that a job like this could be very, very complicated. It must be challenging to maintain a romantic relationship.
Ash: My partner and I have been in an 11-year relationship. She’s actually a sexologist, so she helps couples with their sexual and spiritual health. She’s extraordinary. We both, in a way, work in a similar field. We feed off each other. We help each other out. If we have knowledge on a specific topic, we share. That’s one way it’s working now. But we also had a long relationship before it became an open relationship. That gave us time to really develop our boundaries and communication, and create a safe space for growth for both of us.
MH: You must have a pretty wide range of clients. Have you found your edges or boundaries in your work?
Ash: Yes. Definitely. The beautiful thing of working in this industry, especially in America, is that it can be so many things. We’re contracted for our time, not necessarily our bodies. We’re not required to do anything sexual, ever. Once you understand the nature of your job, you can create a safe space for yourself, while also creating a wonderful experience for your client.
MH: I imagine your business is so good because most men aren’t taking care of their women like they should. Do you have advice for guys who might be guilty?
Ash: It’s really simple stuff that most of us didn’t learn growing up. Listen. Be very present. When they’re talking, listen. That’s a huge part of my job, just listening. And they’re, like, ‘Oh my God, you’re such a great listener!’ It’s a shocker for many women. Men are so preoccupied with themselves that they don’t really take a lot of time or energy to truly engage with their partner.
MH: What else can we do?
Ash: Sexually, the problem in our society is that we’ve grown up on porn. It’s all a projection in our minds of what sex is, and it’s all body parts. People don’t know how to connect with each other, and the most important thing about sex is exactly that connection. You have to create a safe enough environment with trust between two people so you can talk about what’s arousing to you, what feels good to you, and all your fantasies. Women have as many fantasies as guys do. Maybe more. It’s just creating a space where they feel they won’t be judged as a terrible whore, or that it’s completely safe to open up and share everything. Trust is a huge thing. By listening, you engage trust. When you have trust, you have intimacy and presence. When you have intimacy, you can have fun.
MH: Why is fantasy so important?
Ash: We all have fantasies. It’s important to live them out rather than suppress them. Get them out of your system. A lot of things are a lot more fantastic in your mind than they really are. When you’re suppressing that natural, primal stuff, it becomes perverted. You’ve got to be free with who you are.
MH: Technique-wise, what’s something we can do better in bed?
Ash: Most guys hammer away. You can’t hammer away. You have to catch a woman’s rhythm. Slow down and really feel her. When you do that, you find a rhythm together. A woman will move in the way that feels good inside of them. Listen to that. Flow with that. The pace will change, so stay open. Sometimes it’s slow, and sometimes you bang away. It’s creating a rhythm together. So don’t be a sledgehammer.
MH: When the night is over, what’s the elegant way to wrap things up?
Ash: It’s hard to generalize, but it’s important to let her know you had an amazing time. A woman really needs to feel appreciated.
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