A SINGLE mum who struggled to provide for her young family is now making thousands as a £5-a-minute webcam girl.
Jess Shaw, 32, quit her barmaid and carer jobs at the start of the year as she was struggling to make ends meet to support her two boys and two girls, who are aged from four to 15.
The kids, at times, went without evening meals and rarely got new clothes or toys.
During the first national lockdown, Jess “fell into” webcam work after reading about it and started raucous flirtations with strangers online a couple of times every week.
But it quickly became lucrative as she started charging £5 a minute and the mum-of-four, from York, turned her webcam on six nights every week.
She talks to men and women of all sexualities, couples wanting to spice up their sex life and lonely middle-aged singletons.
Since then, Jess has been able to treat her children to short trips to Cornwall, Christmas presents this year and even get her youngest daughter a pony.
“It has become a living. I can finally provide for my children again.
“I earn sometimes thousands on some nights, and hundreds on others. It can be as much as £5,000 some evenings.
“People are going to have their opinion, I get that, but at the end of the day, I’m doing it to support my family. I’m doing nothing wrong. It is all done in front of a computer screen when my kids are asleep.
“I’m building a better quality of life for myself and my kids, totally different to before. I was doing two jobs and still struggling to support my family. I’m a single parent on my own.
“It is just like people sitting around on Facebook scrolling down timelines at night. Don’t get me wrong – I’d rather be scrolling, not talking to men all the while but it pays the way.
“But actually it does genuinely make me happy as I have made quite a few virtual friends this way, especially during lockdown.
“I’m speaking to help other women. This is something I’d suggest to women out there who may be struggling like I was.”
Fighting back the tears, Jess recalled her daily battle to put food on her table, pay rent and bills and keep her kids clothed.
Jess, who doesn’t have a partner, said: “I was struggling big time. I was worried, reading all these stories about a year ago about people losing their homes and stuff like that. I was close to that, it was really tough to provide food and pay bills.
“I’d do anything for my kids. I’m fighting for them.
“So it makes me sleep easier at night having this job, because that’s what I call it. It helps me plan for my children and give them that quality of life they deserve.
“I took them on a little road trip to Cornwall and then a break in Wales just after the second national lockdown. We love the outdoors now and hiking.
“I have managed to go overboard this Christmas too as a result. I’ve got my daughter a pony, for instance, as she loves animals and the countryside.”
Jess admits her older children are aware of her side hustle but she doesn’t believe it sends out the wrong message.
The former carer continued: “They’re not bad kids. They’re not stupid either. I think it’s like that elephant in the room kind of thing.
“My girls are a lot younger than my boys. I wouldn’t want my girls doing this when they’re older. In a way though, this is sending a message out that you can provide for yourself, you know, you don’t have to stress and worry about things when they’re older.
“I have a really good relationship with my children. They don’t, and wouldn’t, frown about me.”
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