How a Singapore woman who once turned to prostitution faced her son about her past

Elizabeth Tong
Entertainment Reporter
An interview with Pamela Lim. Photo: Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore

Singaporean marketing specialist and author Pamela Lim, 43, has been in the spotlight recently after an interview about her opening up about her past as a prostitute was published on a website called Happiness Notebook.

About 15 years ago, Lim found herself delving into prostitution in order to pay off her debts after chatting up men on the now-defunct Internet Relay Chat (IRC) platform.

In a recent interview with Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore, the mother of three and wife to one of her clients opened up about her self-published book “Love Heals: How I Turned My Life Around” and how she had to face her eldest son about her past.

Lim said that her 11-year-old boy had read parts of the book that interested him. However, due to his age, he wasn’t able to fully understand her past situation.

During an interview with Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore on Thursday (24 Aug), Lim recalled the moment her son approached her, saying: “Mummy, I read a few chapters of your book and I know what happened to you.”

“He also asked, ‘But why like that?'” said Lim, who added that her son was “okay” with her story, based on the few facts he had read from the book – including the part on prostitution.

“But all my boys are very strong… I think when they are older and wiser, it would probably be a better time for me to tell them (everything),” she added. Her other two children are 10 and three.

Lim married her husband Eric Lim, an operations manager at an IT company, in 2005. The  54-year-old is one of the 30 clients she met during her time as a prostitute.

Prostitution was something that she turned to in order to help pay off her debts after she “lost more than half a million” through a failed business and “get-rich-quick” investment scheme.

“I came to a dead end where I didn’t know how else I could even survive. I had never thought of it,” she said. “At that time (around 2004), IRC was very popular, and I thought I could borrow money from there.”

Lim fell into prostitution after receiving several sexual offers from men via the platform. During the eight months that she was involved in prostitution, she met people “from their 20s up to those in the 50s or 60s” via IRC, some of whom were nice to her.

“Maybe one or two people who were very nice, but I also met nasty ones as well,” said Lim.

Some time after meeting her husband, the couple discovered that Lim was suffering from a sexually-transmitted disease. To her surprise, Eric offered to help her get treatment for it.

Lim now has her own digital marketing business, conducts social media marketing classes and gives wellness talks. She still has over $200,000 of debts and hopes that her work, including her new book, will help her to pay them off.

“Everyone makes mistakes in their lives. It’s not about regretting what’s in the past, but rather moving forward and saying what I can do now and what I can do for my future,” she said.

Watch the full interview here:

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