SALEM, Mass. —
She has been the subject of numerous magazine and newspaper articles and been bombarded with requests for interviews.
Just last week, she released her memoir: “An Intimate Life: Sex, Love and My Journey as a Surrogate Partner.”
Cohen Greene worked as a secretary, got married and headed to Berkeley, Calif., right after the “Summer of Love,” making the trip in a Volkswagen camper with her first husband and two young children. Near the end of their journey, they got in a bad accident that left Cohen Greene with a fractured neck and other injuries.
Needing money and following the lead of a friend, she started doing nude modeling for art classes. She also volunteered for an organization called San Francisco Sex Information, answering phone calls and making referrals. She later became a member of the nonprofit’s training staff.
It was through this volunteer work that she met her first sex surrogate, someone who engages in intimacy and sex with a client under the supervision of a therapist. The role of a sex surrogate was introduced in the 1970s by Masters and Johnson, the noted sex researchers.
“They can’t see me unless they’re working with a therapist,” she said of the clients, “and the therapist works with me. It’s a team. It’s a wonderful process.”
She even attended the Institute for The Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco.
“It’s accredited,” she said. “I got a doctorate of human sexuality from them.”
Cohen Greene met Mark O’Brien in the late 1980s in Berkeley.
“By the time I met Mark, I had been working (as a sex surrogate) for about 13 years. ... His therapist heard about me. He said, ‘I have a client and he wants to find out what he’s capable of sexually.’”