By David Odongo, John Lawrence and Gardy Chacha
Pregnancy is a delicate time for a woman to take it easy and prepare for the arrival of the bundle of joy. But a puzzling trend in some of Nairobi’s entertainment venues, popular for sins of the flesh, has left experts scratching their heads. Demand for pregnant prostitutes seems to be on the rise as some fetishistic men offer to pay a premium to get such women.
In the past, when a prostitute got pregnant there would be no business for several months until they delivered. But today some women in their sixth or seventh month of pregnancy are minting more money than they were making before they got pregnant.
The Nairobian moles set out to unravel the mystery behind the pregnant prostitutes fetish. We started at Accra Road, popping into several bars, casually chatting with barmaids, before we were directed to try our luck at Cross Lane, the road that links Accra and Racecourse Roads.
Nancy, a pregnant prostitute, opens up and reveals that she charges three times what others ask for, indicating a boom in the niche market.
“Men like us because at three months pregnancy we produce the heat that turns them on. I can do this until 8 months. At 32, this is my fourth baby and I still plan to continue,” she says.
She explains that her life as a call girl started in Hurlingham but after her third pregnancy she was relegated to the ‘River Road’ area because competition was tight upmarket.
The woman then takes our team to a bar in the nearby Mwimbi Road to show us other pregnant prostitutes, who are apparently a big hit among men.
When we offer to buy alcohol, she politely declines and instead opts for a soft drink: “I am pregnant, I can’t take alcohol, the drink will harm my baby.”
There are more of her kind at a nearby joint on Duruma Road. A green open door leads to a steep staircase. The place is poorly lit and by eight in the night, there are a few patrons. Girls are everywhere.
“Yes, men seem to love the pregnant ones. Today there are three of them. If you want one you better start now because by 10 they will all have been taken,” a waiter says in response to our inquiries.
Jane, one of the said women, is deliberately dressed to expose her pregnancy.
“I am on my sixth month. I get a bit tired nowadays so I only to sleep with return customers because I know they will be gentle and we can agree on a comfortable position. Otherwise, it is risky to go with strangers,” says the 24-year-old mother of one.
She reveals she usually has three or four clients a night, and some even pay her up to Sh000 per session.
“Last week one of my friends from Tahiti (a strip joint) invited me to a mzungu’s house. He paid me Sh15,000. He took my number and said he will call again,” says Jane.
A spot check around Nairobi’s red light zones, including the famous Koinange Street, reveals that pregnant prostitutes have loyal clients. Besides the city centre, visits to joints in Huruma, Zimmerman, Parkroad and Kayole revealed an average of at least three pregnant prostitutes. And the story was the same— they charge higher than other women but still have a huge client base.
But why would men be interested in pregnant prostitutes?
It turns out that men are always curious about what they don’t have or are yet to experience, as Counseling Psychologist Catherine Mbau attests. “It is a fetish like any other. Different men fantasize about having sex with different types of women. There are those who fantasize about fat women, thin women, and just about a woman in any unique state you can think of,” Catherine says.
Sex during pregnancy is definitely a conundrum of morals, considering that the woman will be dealing with nausea, vomiting, and overwhelming fatigue. The psychologist says that there is always a unique group of men and women who may crave for sex at pregnancy. There are men who find nothing sexier than a pregnant woman, but other men may be too afraid of hurting the baby or their pregnant partner.
Fantasies aside, is sex during pregnancy even safe?
“Sex during pregnancy is safe for women with uncomplicated, low-risk pregnancies,” says Dr John Ong’ech, a practicing obstetrics/gynecologist at KNH. “Some people feel like they enjoy sex during pregnancy more and others enjoy it less: it depends on different people.”
According to Dr Ong’ech, most women are still fairly comfortable with sex during second trimester. However, when the third trimester sets in, the stomach grows and fatigue strongly sets in hence sex may seem less attractive and physically daunting.
The doctor explains that at that time only certain positions can be applied to avoid trouble and injury to either the baby or the mother.