When I first qualified as a massage therapist two decades ago, I chose not to include the word ‘massage’ in my brand. For me, this was to protect myself and my business from any unwanted, inappropriate behaviour that sadly still crops up in the massage therapy world.
As massage therapists, and particularly female massage therapists, we’ve all got a few stories. From dodgy special massage requests, comments on our appearance to clients thinking they can do a better job than you. There have been times I have been stunned to silence from lude behaviour and others where I have stood my ground and firmly said no.
In my ten years of training new massage therapists I’ve always made sure that part of this training is to teach dignity and respect. Since bringing my course into the online space, I think it is important we continue to discuss and support each other in the industry. I wanted to share a few ways I have learnt to keep safe and to call out inappropriateness in a professional and safe manner.
Ways to keep safe:
- Remember that ‘No’ is a full sentence
- Don’t accept work that makes you feel uncomfortable
- It is fine to ignore, hang up on and block phone numbers, emails, Facebook users who make inappropriate requests
- Go with you gut – it often isn’t wrong
If you are a massage therapist, about to train as one or even a client and would like to discuss this topic further, please feel free to get in touch.