By Nishi Naik
With college tuition on the rise nationwide, millions of college students across the United States have found an alternative way to pay off their bulky college education costs. Along with being enrolled in private or public institutions, many students are also enlisting themselves as “Sugar Babies” across the nation. These students are paying off their college loans and college tuition with the help of “Sugar Daddies” and “Sugar Mommas”.
According to SeekingArrangement.com, “Sugar Daddies and Sugar Mommas” are wealthy individuals who are willing to pay for student debts and loans, usually in the return for companionship and sexual favors”. Students are interested in this profession, as they are often being crushed by student loans and the scarce amount of financial help from their families and the colleges and/or universities these students are enrolled in.
Based on the statistic from News Channel 3, there has been a 1200 percent increase in the number of Sugar Babies and Sugar Daddies registering on the website since 2013. There are currently about 2.6 million people registered on Seeking Arrangement, among which 44 percent being college students, according to The Village Voice. Seeking Arrangement also advertises itself as a dating website, which “provides symbiotic relationships”, thus leading itself as one of the largest and oldest underground economies, with estimated annual income of $2 trillion dollars.
Most students, both male and female, who are Sugar Babies are comfortable with the concept of Sugar Daddies, as the Daddies often provide the Babies with a expeditious way of making money as well as “the finer things in life,” such as fancy dinners, extravagant vacations, or monthly allowances, reports The Atlantic. Along with the short-term benefits, Sugar Daddies also provide the Babies, with “financial and emotional rewards”, claims Norma Jean Almodovar, a former sex worker who forged long lasting bonds with her once clients. However, Max, another sex worker of NYU Tisch of Arts, had a different opinion.
Max is one of the thousands of Sugar Babies, who are unable to lead romantic personal lives, due to their harsh experiences, which not only drifted them in debt of millions, but also caused an imbalance in their personal life.
“I occasionally struggled with bouts of shame and guilt and being a sex worker in the past still affects my personal life”, Max told The Village Voice.