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Don't know whether to say anything about what i think friend may be doing...

(55 Posts)
ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 14:42:51

This is veeeeeeeery long, sorry. We moved into this block of flats a few months ago. I quickly made friends with the woman who lives next door (actually opposite me - our doors face each other off a corridor) and we've become quite close. She has a DS aged 4 who is a lovely boy, and she's really easy to chat to. We're both at home through the day so have taken to popping into each others flats for a cuppa and a natter. My friend is a lovely, sweet, witty woman with a heart of gold.

She's late 20s, has never worked and has no qualifications. As I say she's lovely and I think the world of her, but she's a bit chaotic. Her timekeeping is woeful (her DS always late for school, if she says she'll come by at 11, it'll be 12 before you see her) and her organisation skills are fairly rubbish - she doesn't manage money well (so is in debt/always borrowing money for the meter) and can never find where she's put things. I mention all this not to slag her off but just to explain that in a city with high unemployment, she's not exactly very employable. I'm a bit older than her and feel quite maternal towards her.

So I was a bit (pleasantly) surprised when she told me she had a job, working in a bar (though another time she said it was a club) from 10-2, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. She asked me if i would sit with her DS while she works those hours, and I said yes because I'm happy to help, my DH is at home then so can be with our DCs and her DS and i know each other and get on well. Basically I come round in my PJs and i just lie on her couch with a fleece blanket on me and snooze until she comes home, then i just go straight to my own bed. It works well, her DS sleeps through & it's no trouble for me to do it.

Still with me? Basically I've started to wonder if this bar/club exists. My friend has said contradictory things about it and has even said it's called different things. If you ever mention the workplace, she's very keen to change the subject. Also, the way she dresses to go to work (very very short tight skirts and long high heel boots and loads of make up) and the fact that she'll come home and straight away empty cash out of her handbag makes me wonder if she might actually be doing sex work?

So, do you think I'm being ridiculous? I don't think how she earns money is any of my business but I don't like to think of her being in danger, especially since her DS doesn't have any other relation on the scene. If I mention my suspicions and I'm wrong, she could be really insulted? Would she just deny it even if I'm right?

The short version is that I'm worried about a friend I feel protective of, but it's a very awkward situation. WIBU to say something to her?

woowoo22 Fri 07-Nov-14 14:47:54

You're child minding from 10pm to 2am???? Eh?!

Littlef00t Fri 07-Nov-14 14:50:28

Sounds like a strip club to me. Yes working in a club/bar, possibly as a waitress but more likely as a pole dancer/similar.

TSSDNCOP Fri 07-Nov-14 14:50:52

Let's say you're right.

Could you continue to help her as you have been?

Let's say you have a bust up over it. Would she go and leave sleeping DS, or take punters to her home.

If something happened to her, what would happen to her DS?

ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 14:54:48

if something happened to her, I think her DS would go into care. His dad isn't around and she is in touch with her foster mum and one foster sister but no birth family.

I would still babysit if she needed me to but I would try to talk her out of street work. I hadn't thought about pole dancing. I wouldn't think of that as dangerous so I wouldnt try to talk her out of that.

I'm sure she wouldnt ever leave her DS alone. She is a very loving mum.

WorraLiberty Fri 07-Nov-14 14:55:55

Probably a strip club and the cash is her tips.

I wouldn't say anything because it's her choice to keep it private.

I can't believe you (and your DH) don't think she's massively imposing on you though.

I'd probably do it for one night but not 3 nights!

hokeycokeyyy Fri 07-Nov-14 14:58:03

I think it's more likely to be a lap dancing bar than working as a hooker.
I know a few people who have been lap dancers, it can pay well and they do dress like you've described.
She'll be lying about it because she doesn't want you to know what she's doing but I think it's unlikely that she's standing around on street corners.
She'll probably tell you when she's ready to.

Aeroflotgirl Fri 07-Nov-14 14:59:16

Yes she sounds like it's stripping or sex work. I don't know, if you see her bring punters round or put her child in danger you might call SS.

Aeroflotgirl Fri 07-Nov-14 15:00:55

Yiu are good though to help her out without money. Is this long term, or will you stop soon.

ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 15:01:13

I honestly don't mind sleeping on her couch for a few hours. Its very comfy! i feel reassured that posters think it's more likely to be work in a venue.

Sockstealer Fri 07-Nov-14 15:02:49

I'm not sure that you should say anything because you could be wrong or it could be something legal such as stripping.

But I'm wondering if this arrangement is going to work long term? Are you going to want to spent Thurs, Fri, Sat in her flat for the next 5 years? What if you want to go out or spend the evening with your DH?

SundaeGirl Fri 07-Nov-14 15:03:31

Seriously, you agreed to middle of the night babysitting? Three times a week?

Yes, she's a sex worker. Bar work would start earlier in the evening.

Aeroflotgirl Fri 07-Nov-14 15:05:58

I agree it's more likely to be stripping of lap dancing, hence her being cagey about it to you as she feels you might judge her, or call SS. It's great she has you as a friend though, she sounds as though she might have learning dufficulties, hence tge disorganisation, not good with budgeting, lack of qualifications.

ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 15:10:44

Sockstealer, I'm on the bones of my arse and have two disabled DC who can only be left with me or DH. Trust me my social life is non existent anyway grin

ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 15:12:17

in case anyone missed it her couch is about 10 steps from my bed and i can be home again in half a minute so its not that i'm putting myself out.

BoysiesBack Fri 07-Nov-14 15:15:01

I don't know, it does sound a little seedy sad. Unfortunately, we do stuff we wouldn't normally do when we are desperate. I was a young, skint, single mum once and worked in a lap dancing club because I really needed the cash, only behind the bar mind, but I hated myself for it anyway (ardent feminist).

Hopefully, your friend isn't putting herself in danger, but I don't know how you would approach the subject with her, she obviously doesn't want to discuss it. Just let her know that you are there for her and hope she's okay, I guess.

If you are happy to babysit at those times, OP, then that's up to you. I think you are a fantastic & kind friend.

Sockstealer Fri 07-Nov-14 15:15:54

Fair enough you sound like a good friend anyway.

I think the time to be concerned is if you suspected drugs or if she was bringing anyone back to the flat and putting her ds at risk.

She'll probably tell you eventually what she's doing anyway.

weebarra Fri 07-Nov-14 15:16:44

It does sound a bit like lap/pole dancing. You are a good friend to help her out.

ReputableBiscuit Fri 07-Nov-14 15:26:29

boysies, that's a good idea. I could say something like 'look I know you don't like talking about work but if you ever do I'm here to support you'.

whois Fri 07-Nov-14 15:28:09

I am another one who thinks it's more likely to be lap/pole in a club than out and out street corner prostitution.

Be warned tho, it can be a bit of a slippery slope. I had a friend who did dancing in uni after getting into debt. She did some more dancing work a few years later to cry solvent after a big traveling trip. The second time she found it much harder to make cash as a lot of the dancers were actually prostitutes using the club to pick up clients.

Don't know how representative that is tho.

MindReader Fri 07-Nov-14 15:38:08

You are a very kind friend.

Sounds like a strip club to me too.

Perhaps just tell her, 'I know you don't like talking about work and I am not prying but I am worried you are putting yourself in danger. Can you reassure me that you are safe - thinking of the wee one, and all?'

Serenitysutton Fri 07-Nov-14 15:43:23

Whois almost exactly the same thing happened to a Uni friend of mine. Even if you can stick it out for a Few years it's easy to slip into sex work when you hit late 20s and are considered too old and decrepit for the "high end" places.

I don't think id say anything, but like others think you're mad for babysitting all that time shock

Shockers Fri 07-Nov-14 15:46:02

Why would she dress like that to travel to work in a strip club? Don't the women who work in them have outfits/costumes to change into when they get there?

Shockers Fri 07-Nov-14 15:47:15

Or men...

fromparistoberlin73 Fri 07-Nov-14 15:48:53

she is blatently a sex worker

given you are providing FREE babysitting you have a right to know - purely because its a high riosk profession and if the police rock up at 3am with bad news- its better you know, assure you wont judge her

also you cant do this indefinately surely|?

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