Hip hop artist Lecrae has decided to tell the “prostitution story” he referred to in the first episode of his new podcast, “Deep End with Lecrae.” While the interaction, which he had as a young man, confused him at the time, in retrospect it highlights the inherent value that all people have.
“It haunted me for some time because I didn’t know what to make of it,” said Lecrae, who shared that not even his mother knows this story. That’s all right, though, he said, because “I’ve learned and I’ve grown.”
Lecrae on ‘Swimming in Trauma’
Lecrae, a Grammy Award-winning Christian hip hop artist, has started a podcast where he discusses some of the most difficult parts of his life in the hopes of helping others find healing. In the most recent episode, he responded to requests from his audience to share what he had previously referred to as a “prostitution story.”
The artist shared that when he was about 18 or 19 years old, he had a close friend whose uncle had served a lot of time in prison. After getting out, the uncle had a habit of spending his time drunk in strip clubs. Lecrae and his friend would regularly pick up the uncle from the strip clubs and, as a result, ended up spending a lot of their time around pimps, strippers and prostitutes.
Because the two friends were in that environment so often, they became friends with the strippers and prostitutes and got to know their “dark backstories.” Strip clubs consequently lost their “allure,” said Lecrae, but the lifestyle associated with them came to seem like a “normal reality.” The artist said he got so used to this reality that the “chaos and trauma” the people in it experienced started to seem as though “it wasn’t a bad thing.”
One night, Lecrae’s friend hooked up with a prostitute and encouraged Lecrae to do the same with the girl’s friend, so Lecrae agreed. “Now, I had definitely had a one night stand before,” he said. “I had definitely put myself in positions where, you know, it was objectifying a woman. But I don’t think, I don’t think my body was willing to shun the reality of the trauma that I was introducing it to.”
He explained that when it came down to actually sleeping with the prostitute, he found that he couldn’t do it—and he didn’t know why. “It was weird.”
“What I know now through therapy,” he said, is that at that point in his life, he used promiscuity to seek love in order to deal with trauma in his past. That was why he was open to objectifying that girl that night. And she, with her own struggles, was willing for him to do so.
“Here we are, just two people swimming in trauma, and I cannot [go through with sleeping with her],” he said. “I see you as more than that, even though I don’t want to acknowledge that in this moment.”
Referencing the book, “The Body Keeps the Score,” Lecrae said that his body instinctively knew that what he was about to do was “traumatic,” even though he didn’t consciously understand why he was hesitating.