Adult film star James Deen responds to multiple assault allegations

The following story is not for readers under 18

James Deen is probably the most famous adult film star working now. He co-starred in Farrah Abraham’s adult film, he was in The Canyons with Lindsay Lohan, he does cameos in mainstream TV and on popular YouTube channels and up until recently he wrote a sex advice column for The Frisky. Deen was known as a feminist and had a reputation as a decent person. He’s so well recognized that he was shown in an extended cutaway to the audience at the AMAs. (Although that speaks to the fact that there weren’t that many celebrities there. I had a moment of “how do I know that guy? Oh.”)

Last week, Deen was accused of rape by his ex girlfriend, Stoya. She posted a detailed description on Twitter, claiming he raped her and repeatedly ignored her when she said “no” and used her safeword. Trigger warning for Stoya’s description.

In response to Stoya’s claim, former adult star Tori Lux wrote an article for the Daily Beast detailing a assault by Deen on set in which she claims he repeatedly hit her on the face, held her down and forced her to smell his testicles. Other people were there and no one intervened. Tori explained why she didn’t contact authorities:

A few people with whom I’ve shared this story over the years have asked me why I didn’t call the police as soon as it happened, or publicly speak up about it shortly thereafter. The reason for that is because people—including the police—tend to believe that sex workers have placed themselves in harm’s way, and therefore can’t be assaulted. Of course, this claim couldn’t be further from the truth, as being involved in sex work does not equate to being harmed. Despite porn being a legal form of sex work, and it occurring in a controlled environment such as a porn set, this blame-the-victim mentality is still inherent in much of society. In turn, sex workers are silenced and our negative experiences are swept under the rug as we try to protect ourselves from the judgment of others—or worse, a variety of problems ranging from further physical attacks to professional issues such as slander and/or blacklisting.

[From The Daily Beast]

Several other adult film stars have also said that they’ve had bad dealings with Deen on set, including Joanna Angel and Catalina Cruz.

In another article on The Daily Beast, former adult film actress Aurora Snow writes that she’s worked with Deen in rough scenes and that he was respectful to her, but that she did feel “tortured” as that was the type of film she was making. However, Snow quotes another actress, Ashley Fires, who says that Deen sexually assaulted her on set and almost raped her. Fires claims Deen approached her in a shower room on set, when she was off work, and stuck his erect penis against her bare bottom. He shoved her against a sink and grabbed her without her consent. She said no and he propositioned her and left. Fires said she barely knew him and that “he was so out of line and entitled with my body.” Afterwards, Fires refused to work with Deen and would tell producers the story. Deen asked her to stop telling that story and she refused. In that same piece, Snow tells another troubling story, in which Deen was not involved, where film producers continued to shoot a sex scene with a female performer who was passed out on pills.

Deen’s situation is drawing comparisons to Bill Cosby in that he’s being tried on the Internet and in the court of opinion and is not likely at this point to face criminal charges. If there was just a single charge of assault against Deen it might be questionable, but now that several women have publicly said that he assaulted them, I believe it. If he has more victims I hope they speak out and I hope they don’t face repercussions in their industry, as Tori Lux so aptly put it.

This does bring up wider issues of mainstream acceptance of porn and image problems for the adult film industry. If their most popular and prolific performer raped and abused women on set, does that mean that the industry isn’t as consensual and safe as they’ve been trying to portray? What does that say about consumers of porn, particularly those of us who thought we were watching consensual sex? Did Deen regularly violate women on set and was it covered up?

For his part Deen has denied the allegations. He tweeted the following.

There have been some egregious claims made against me on social media. I want to assure my friends, fans and colleagues that these allegations are both false and defamatory. I respect women and I know and respect limits both professionally and privately.

Deen has lost his contracts with Kink.com and Evil Angel and his column with The Frisky has been discontinued.

XBIZ Awards 2015 presented by Fleshlight - Arrivals

70th Venice Film Festival - 'The Canyons'

70th Venice Film Festival - Celebrity Sightings

photo credit: WENN.com and Getty Images

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125 Responses to “Adult film star James Deen responds to multiple assault allegations”

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  1. Artemis says:

    This is nothing new, his behaviour was an open secret.

    • Jenni says:

      And women still work/worked with him. That’s the part I don’t get it.

      • Arpeggi says:

        Women did/still work with him because they need to work, it’s as simple and sad as that. As one mentioned sex workers don’t have much choices and get little support if they try to denounce an assault and few women porn actresses have enough power to get him not hired for a job yet all these girls need to work, walking away will make you look “difficult” and you won’t be called again. And directors won’t care cuz he’ll bring the money… Hopefully, this last part will now change.

      • Aren says:

        Men and women still work with Terry Richardson. Even very rich and famous ones, as well as huge companies, your point?

      • perplexed says:

        I have to admit I don’t understand the clout that Terry Richardson has — his photographs don’t strike me as anything special. With someone like Woody Allen or anyone in that perceived artistic talent category where you’re hailed as being some sort of legend, I sort of fathom why famous people would be more willing to turn a blind eye (even if I disagree with doing so) for their own gain, but why is Terry Richardson perceived as being that talented or skilled? And I suppose I don’t get it in the case of this guy either, since his skill set isn’t about art or anything else like that. He participates in an industry where it seems like he could easily be replaced…I think? I don’t know — I don’t watch this stuff, but my perception is that he is an industry where he could be easily replaced given how gratuitous it is.

      • K2 says:

        Woody Allen and Roman Polanski don’t seem to suffer from any lack of actresses prepared to star in their movies. Oscar winners included.

    • Artemis says:

      Stoya, his ex, is probably the most popular pornstar out there because she’s relevant outside of the porn industry. Likewise for Deen. When they got together, it was a huge deal because they don’t look like pornstars, they look like two beautiful people who happen to be pornstars. They redefined what a pornstar is supposed to look like. Together they were the Brangelina of the porn industry.

      Deen has been working a long time and didn’t seem to slow down, He’s known for his positive stance on feminism and consent which made him very beloved. There were rumours about his abusive behaviour, but it took Stoya, somebody with equally a lot of clout, to bring the abuse in the open. If it wasn’t for her, the others wouldn’t have the support and courage to come out too. I’m glad Stoya and the other women are being supported because going against somebody like Deen must be difficult.

  2. AntiSocialButterfly says:

    His eyes look empty; not so much devoid of any particular intelligence, but rather of emotion, in spite of what facial expression he is making himself display.

  3. Saphana says:

    Like Jessica Valenti said: I believe women. its imperative to believe women who come forward about abusers and rapists. we cant question those claims without hurting victims. i cant read this “innocent until proven guilty” crap anymore, its a typical rape apologist mantra.

    my thoughts are with Stoya.

    • QQ says:

      Exactly This, it reminds me of that documentary the Hunting ground about Campus assault ans how people treated Jameis Winston accuser and how I had to block someone yesterday behind that, we can START at believing women and then judiciously investigating stuff

    • Sam says:

      Oooh…you opened a can of worms with that.

      I mean, I’m a lawyer, so I come at this with a different perspective. I don’t want to live in society where any claim cannot be questioned. I’m sorry, I don’t. That scares me. I do not want a justice system that cannot question a victim. To me, the problem is not that investigations are over-zealous. It’s that we ask the wrong questions. A victim’s sexual history is, by and large, not relevant to a rape case. There are very limited instances in which it could be. But it routinely comes into court. I support reforming laws to clarify what sorts of things are actually at issue in rape cases. (Like for example, we’re seeing that now with the War Machine trial. His whole defense is that because Christy Mack performed in violent scenes, one can infer that she was into this stuff outside of work. Which presumes that one cannot make a distinction between her work activities and personal life. That’s an example of smearing a victim I’d like to see removed from court entirely).

      But I cannot support, wholesale, saying “rape victims cannot be questioned on their claims.” That is a frightening idea. All criminal allegations should be held to scrutiny. If you take that away, we don’t have a justice system, we have an allegation system. And that would be a frightening thing.

      (When I was in school, I worked on a clinic that was part of a network for wrongful convictions. And a sizable chunk of them were men wrongfully convicted of rape or sexual assault. Should those men have languished in prison because questioning a victim (and to be sure, many of them were legitimate victims – true false accusations were rare) can never be questioned on any grounds? That is why I find this so ridiculous.)

      • Saphana says:

        “But I cannot support, wholesale, saying “rape victims cannot be questioned on their claims.” That is a frightening idea.”

        for whom? think about that.

        every feminist i know will always believe a woman who comes forward, thats our duty.

        also fake rape accusations are incredibly rare, (like getting hit by a comet) so just by statistics it makes more sense to believe women. in the worst case scenario a couple of innocent men would go to jail but we would have every rapist in jail also.

        here is a good article:
        https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/12/06/no-matter-what-jackie-said-we-should-automatically-believe-rape-claims/
        “No matter what Jackie said, we should generally believe rape claims
        Incredulity hurts victims more than it hurts wrongly-accused perps. Ultimately, the costs of wrongly disbelieving a survivor far outweigh the costs of calling someone a rapist.”

      • David says:

        Very hard subject. You make some strong points.

      • Water says:

        Sam couldn’t have said it better myself

      • Bridget says:

        This isn’t a discussion in the legal sense, but in the social sense. Because in our society, the bias almost always lies in the man’s favor, and it is the woman’s responsibility in the court of public opinion to prove she was even raped. Look at Bill Cosby: it was only after a flood of women came forward, because when individual women spoke up they were ‘discredited’. As noted above, true false accusations are rare. So why do we believe so few women when they come forward?

      • Shambles says:

        Exactly what Bridget said.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        I think there’s a difference between saying that a woman who comes forward as a victim of rape should be believed – as in taken seriously, rather than dismissed out of hand – and saying that a person charged with rape should be convicted without the right to question his accuser. Every claim of rape should be taken seriously and investigated. I think maybe the word “believed” is causing a problem here?

      • Lindy79 says:

        GNAT has it in a nutshell for me.

        The problem here is that women are normally automatically NOT believed or taken seriously in their claims and are borderline dismissed and the few that do are treated in a way that turns the tables on them and makes them feel they are the ones being accused and in a way violated all over again. This needs to change.

      • Gretchen says:

        @Sam, I think there is a difference between believing women and not bothering with a legal system. I presume that most victims of non-sexual assault don’t fear not being believed by friends, family, police etc when they come forward. On being informed that someone was punched in the face, most people aren’t going to begin querying what you were wearing at the time or what you might have done to indicate that you wanted to be punched in the face. In addition, people not in some way involved in the case aren’t instantly going to start calling you a liar. By all means investigate accusation thoroughly, but from my admittedly limited legal experience, outside of rape cases innocent until proven guilty doesn’t mean resolutely disbelieve the victim and put them on trial and slander them with everything you’ve got. To me that’s where believing the woman comes in: treating the alleged victim with compassion rather than suspicion as you would for most other crimes, whilst simultaneously investigating their claims…Don’t know if the distinction is clear, I’m crap at expressing myself on small touchscreen devices with random predictive text ;)

        ETA: just saw GNAT’s comment, that’s it in a nutshell.

      • Sam says:

        Saphana – But you do realize what happened at UVA, right? Jackie lied. And the only reason the truth (or at least portions of it) came out was because you had people willing to question the facts of the case. And they took heat for it – Jezebel said anybody who questioned Jackie was a rape apologist and idiot. They apologized, which I respect, but that shows the mindset at work here. If the Duke accuser had never been questioned, you’d probably have a couple innocent people in prison.

        I think you can both believe a victim but still understand that scrutiny is needed anytime you have a criminal allegation. You need to be willing to question. The alternative is that you will jail innocent people, and our whole system is designed to try to prevent that (it often fails, sadly). I can’t get behind exempting rape from judicial rigor simply because it is a woman’s issue.

      • Pandy says:

        Agree with you Sam. I’m a feminist and certainly not a disbeliever of women who have been raped – but due process is due process. I agree that sexual history needs to be taken out of the conversation (for most cases), but I don’t think anyone gets a pass on not being cross examined.

        The War Machine trial defense is interesting and should bring in the victim’s sexual history. I mean, the woman was acting – we can compare another woman playing a part in a movie to say this is not that woman. Example, Hermione from Harry Potter. Noone would say that Emma Watson is a wizard – it’s just the role she is playing. Stupid defense.

      • Dani says:

        Agree with Sam, but also with GNAT and Lindy. You should have the right to question the victim, but also the right to not dismiss their claims right away. Allegations should be taken seriously, just like innocent until proven guilty. Light should be shed on these allegations and they should be looked in to, but James shouldn’t be thrown under the bus and run over repeatedly until further information is available. Allegations are just claims until more knowledge is shed. I stand with Stoya and Tori and Ashley; no one should have to go through that. But, I also feel for James because as someone who’s met him, watched his work and read his articles and interviews, the claims baffle me.

        Also, for the ‘feminists will stand with Stoya’ thing – I think as a feminist, you shouldn’t blindly follow women. Feminism isn’t about making women more than men. Refusing to question Stoya and persecuting James is the opposite of feminism. Being open to the idea that these could be just allegations and waiting to see what will happen without closing your eyes and picking sides is feminism.

      • Arpeggi says:

        I think that the comment was refering to society and not the justice system, the two shpuld be treated separately in this case. I want the justice system to question a potential victim since I don’t want innocents to go to jail and live with being falsly seen as guilty of a crime; in a court, innocent until proven guilty is essential and the base of our justice system (which is why it is so difficult to find someone guilty of rape, it’s one person’s testimony against another’s). But, as I society, as human beings, I think that our knee-jerk reaction when someone comes forward saying he/she’s been a victim of rape or sexual assault should be to believe that this person is saying the truth instead of automatically trying to defend the potential rapist. If someone says it’s been robbed, others will beleive that person immediately, they won’t automatically tell the person he/she’s lying, so why should it be different when it comes to rape? There is nothing to gain from claiming you’ve been raped, actually there’s a lot to lose from coming forward, so it would be great if rape victims were not automatically seen as liars trying to destroy someone’s reputation. They too deserve the right to be seen as innocent until proven guilty.

      • Josefina says:

        I agree. As a woman I support those who come forward and make the accusations, but as a lawyer I have to look at it objectively and question her claims, as it has to be done for every other criminal allegation.

      • Bob says:

        Sam, regarding that sizeable chunk wrongfully convicted of rape or sexual assault. If your clinic was anything like the other clinics I’m familiar with, those men were convicted because of cops bullying confessions out of them, or otherwise railroading them and no DNA testing was done at the time of original trial. They were very rarely convicted based on the victim’s testimony (and many of them were strangers or barely known to the victim, so even if there was a positive ID, it’s nothing close to a woman alleging she was raped by her then-boyfriend). I feel like the information you’ve shared here is very misleading and the fact that you’re a lawyer kind of makes it worse because you should know better.

      • PJay says:

        Men = Guilty. No need to question here.

      • Sam says:

        Bob – in reality, the majority of wrongful rape convictions fall into a few categories, almost none of which involve false confessions (which are actually quite rare in rape cases). I pulled up a quick list of men who have been exonerated of rape in the US, and here are the results:

        1.) Non-victim: the woman lies (Brian Banks).

        2.) Victim misidentifies attacker. Happens most often in cases of white woman attacked by man of color. (see: Delbert Tibbs, who was a black man convicted of rape after being ID’d by a white woman, Douglas Echols, same thing, Tim Cole, Clarence Elkins, Thomas Haynesworth, Ivan Henry, James Tillman, Steve Titus, Richard Alexander, Johnny Briscoe,

        3.) Wrongful accusation by accomplice, co-conspirator or informant. (Ken Wyniemko)

        4.) Bad eyewitness testimony (Kirk Bloodsworth)

        4.) False confession – One, and that’s the central park jogger case.

        So…nope. Most exonerations occur because legitimate victims misidentify their attacks. That’s becoming less common due to DNA evidence, but it still goes on. But this doesn’t diminish the victims – in all but one of those cases, you had a real victim. But we know witness IDs can be wrong – especially when different races are involved – so why lie? You should know better than to argue without checking your facts first.

      • Loulou says:

        Agree 100% with Sam. There is sometimes an attitude amongst internet feminists that due process must be ignored to favor the victim. I completely disagree with that.

      • FLORC says:

        Bridget
        Thank you! It’s a simple concept that is often forgotten. It’s not to not question and believe with blind faith. It’s to not automatically blame the accuser.

      • Sam says:

        FLORC: There is a difference between the two. When the UVA case happened, there were only a few media sources and reporters who dared to dig into the factual meat of Jackie’s story. And the response from the feminist and progressive spheres was that they were “victim-blaming” and rape apologists for even attempting to look into Jackie’s story. Well, thank God they did, because they uncovered a lot. That was very disturbing to me, as somebody who considered herself pro-woman and pretty progressively-minded. I believe that each person who makes criminal allegations is entitled to a dispassionate examination of their case. Trust me, I’d love for more victims to be believed. My problem is that when they are disbelieved, it’s for the wrong reasons. But the rhetoric now has largely turned from, “Don’t dis-believe her for no good reason” to “do not question her at all, for any reason.” Both are egregiously wrongheaded and don’t further the interests of justice. I think victims should have the right to a courtesy, decent – but thorough – investigation. That’s, I think, the best we can hope for.

      • Angel L says:

        I have an ex co-worker (lets call him J)that spend 3 months in jail (couldn’t make bail) because a woman accused him of rape and she was lying about who did it. J did bring her back to his apartment after a night out partying but passed out before they had sex. She was upset and called a different guy at the bar to come pick her up. He did. They had sex (I don’t know if he raped her or not – he was never accused). She called the cops from a gas station down the road claiming that she had just escaped from J’s apartment – that J had been holding her captive and had raped her. Cops busted in his apartment, woke him up and brought him to the station for questioning.

        He was arrested the next day and spent 3 months in jail until the DNA results finally proved that he hadn’t been the one she had sex with. He lost his job, his apartment, his truck. Everything because this woman accused him.

        I still will believe a woman who claims rape until it is proven not true. I as molested and raped and I know fully why women are hesitant to come forward as victims.

      • xpreson says:

        @Pjay… No, Men doesn’t = Guilty, no need to question here. As a feminist myself and a rape victim I support the statements made by Sam and others. Yes, do give credibility to the victim and do question BOTH parties . I think everyone that claims they have been victims of a crime ( sexual or not ) should be taken seriously ( credibility ) and their stories and evidence checked seriously as well .
        As the case in matter is James Deen who is heavily into BDSM in real life I tend to give a lot of credibility to the statements these ladies have provided. It is not the first time allegations have come about Deen.

      • arabella says:

        I’m not sure I agree with you, but I truly appreciate your perspective. Def gives me something to think about!

      • FLORC says:

        Sam
        By majority any and all people will automatically think “who’s lieing” over “Who’s telling the truth”. Our minds go to blame like we only seek negative reasoning.
        Why can’t it be more objective?

        And I don’t claim there are not people who act like there should be belief without question. Just that someone is in a fragile state and until things are sorted who are we to cast guilt on them?

        I think we’re on the same page overall. I just disagree in the extremes and personally have found them to not be the majority by all, but rather the majority of those who scream the loudest.

      • claire says:

        @Saphana:
        “every feminist i know will always believe a woman who comes forward, thats our duty.”
        No, I do not consider that as a duty of mine, being a feminist. If a case sounds like absolute bullshit, rare but they exist, I’m not going to ignore all logic, evidence and common sense like I’m in some kind of cult and unallowed to think for myself.

    • Cee says:

      There’s an episode in Aziz Ansari’s Master of None in which this is spoken of (not of rape, but on the differences between males and females going out to have fun). Some characters (most of them male) question the women’s POV and narratives, as if doubting how many times a woman said NO to a guy and he still followed her to her HOUSE.

      Women should be believed, even though some people do scream rape when there is none.

  4. OhDear says:

    His statement is not very convincing, IMO. Sounds very much as if his lawyers drafted it.

  5. OSTONE says:

    I feel for these women. It makes me ANGRY that so many won’t seek or receive justice because of who their attacker is. The fact they are on the porn industry – male or female performers – does not give anyone entitlement to their body.

    • Snazzy says:

      Agree 100% with what you have said :(

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      Agree, OSTONE.

    • xpreson says:

      Ostone, the problem here is not that they are in Porn per se or how famous or powerful Deen is. The issue here it is the type of porn they are filming that is complicated. Deen has been accused before of overdoing it while filming his BDSM porn. There are girls that consent to being slapped, spat on, chocked and treated roughly… on Camera. They have safe words they use and usually say to the male performers what they won’t consent before they start shooting. Deen has apparently overlooked a few of these ladies requests or so it seems.. and worse still his ex girlfriend is accusing him of continuing a practice she was clearly not ok with. So yes in that case is rape…. but so tricky to prove due to the nature of the sex involved here.

  6. aims says:

    I also believe women. If someone says they’ve been violated, then I’m going to believe you. We all have personal boundaries and if they’ve been crossed, then yes, that’s unacceptable. I don’t care what profession you’re in. I don’t know a lot about this guy, other then the connection to Farrah.

  7. anna says:

    porn could be safe and consentual, but all the documentaries (9 to 5, hot girls wanted etc.) tell a different story. it’s quite the dilemma for the consumer. porn is not inherently exploitative, but a lot of the people working in porn are.
    i thought he was a good one. makes me very angry.

    • Cee says:

      I don’t watch porn and admit to know very little of it, but it seems the industry needs to be shaken up with more protective measures.

    • Kitten says:

      Yeah this.

      Shane’s World was the only p0rn series I ever watched, mainly because it was distributed by a company that was owned and run by a woman, so it never dabbled in all the violent sh*t and scary stuff that some men seem to enjoy. It was more female-centric (hard to believe I know), if you will.

      • Dani says:

        Men are not the only ones in to ‘violent sh*t and scary stuff’. I know more women than men who enjoy BDSM and other kinks. Generalizations like that is what gives the porn industry a bad name.

      • anna says:

        no. stories like james deen’s are giving porn a bad name.

      • Korra says:

        @Kitten yeah kitten! You’re the one giving the pron industry a bad name. Not this alleged rapist!

      • Marty says:

        @Dani- I understand what you’re trying to say. Many women are into rougher or BDSM type sex and there is nothing wrong with that as long as it’s consensual.

      • Kitten says:

        LOL, Korra.

        UGH.
        BDSM does NOT automatically mean brutal rape, guys. In fact BDSM is consensual sex between two partners. I have a couple close female friends who are very involved in the BDSM community, one of whom has been abused for years by her (now ex) husband and would happily tell you that there is a clear line between the two. Anyway, if you think women are the majority of people buying gang rape pr0n where men are violently assaulting/sodomizing one woman (why is it never a group of women raping a man?) then I have a huge gigantic bridge to sell you.

      • FLORC says:

        Kitten
        Loads of movies where women degrade and force a single man. It’s extremely common which I found a bit shocking.

  8. Shambles says:

    Just FYI, I’m still seeing the F Word in Stoya’s tweet. Doesn’t bother me, I just didn’t know if it was supposed to be the censored word.

    Anyway… The following is really personal, and I’m opening up about an aspect of my life that’s a little taboo to talk about. Be kind, please.

    I watch porn sometimes. Not always, but sometimes it helps to have something visual. I’m very particular about what I choose, and if it makes me feel uncomfortable in any way I get out of it immediately. James Deen used to be a favorite of mine, but now I feel utterly gross for watching anything of his. Never again. As a poster said above, he has really empty eyes. I have no problem believing he has a capacity for cruelty.

    I will absolutely believe this, because it’s my duty as a woman to support these ladies no matter what industry they work in (thinking of you, lovely Stoya). Plus, this man agreed to shoot porn with Farah Abraham, so he’s obviously a questionable decision maker.

    This does raise a lot of questions about the porn industry as a whole, and it makes you think. Even as a person who watches it on occasion, there’s no way to deny how harmfully misogynistic some scenes are. So is it even possible for the porn industry to be anything but harmful for women? I want to believe that sex can be depicted beautifully and tastefully, but maybe the industry is just too far gone at this point.

    For anyone who lost an Internet boyfriend in James Deen: look up Tyler Nixon.

    • QQ says:

      Nothing to be ashamed of Shambles, I’m a Porn consumer ( more than sometimes) but I too x right out when I don’t see a girl having a good time or any manner of running roughshod on a woman… He isn’t my fave cause he looks super smarmy as is… Partial to Jared Grey

      • Shambles says:

        Jared Grey… I was unfamiliar but I googled. Tattooed and beardy and nose-ringy? QQ you truly are my woman.

      • Marty says:

        You should check out X-Art, Shambles. It’s series of videos is all about shared pleasure not solely male gratification. That being said it’s perfectly fine to be interested in all sorts of porn, but I understand the conflict.

      • jjva says:

        Bless you people for these recommendations. Bless you.

    • Bishg says:

      @Shambles
      You shouldn’t be ashamed of it! I respect your honesty.
      I watch p**n too sometimes. Actually not full-length movies, mainly short videos.
      And I can relate a lot to what you have just written. If something makes you uncomfortable, you just need to snap out of it. Now that you expressed this concept clearly, I understand why I only watch girl-on-girl “action”, even though I am as straight as an arrow: male-domination in such context makes me extremely uneasy.
      It is one thing when you’re being intimate with a sexual partner whom you respect and have no boundaries with, it is another thing when you see two or more people performing an act that could potentially be violent and disturbing. I do not enjoy it. It doesn’t turn me on.

      I will definitely watch all the documentaries you guys have recommended (“Hot Girls Wanted” is currently on Netflix)

      • doofus says:

        Hot Girls Wanted is SO SO sad and eye-opening.

        I had to watch it in segments, it’s really hard-hitting.

    • vauvert says:

      No judgement from me. I don’t watch anymore but in my twenties I used to watch some porn. But I stopped because it was boring, repetitive and unimaginative and too much clearly directed to a male audience . I would have liked to find movies that actually had a story, that were a visual representation of good erotica, but either I didn’t know where to look or it did not exist. I got the impression, at that time, that most if not all the women in this industry were being exploited – via drugs, or intimidation – which is why I guess I became uncomfortable watching. Sounds like nothing has changed…
      Regardless of who a woman is – if she claims rape, then there needs to be a thorough investigation. Her lifestyle or profession should have no bearing on it. Sadly that is not the case, which is why so many women, whether porn actresses, regular actresses, models, business women, students etc. have trouble coming forward.
      Here in Canada there was a huge scandal last year when a very respected and famous radio host was accused of abuse – systematic, repeated, violent abuse against many women. After the first victim came forward the floodgates opened and it became apparent that it had been an open secret for years. On the surface he was charming, sweet, a perpetual bachelor dating beautiful women, a star who claimed loudly to anyone that he was a feminist. He is now awaiting trial, but I don’t think anyone doubts his guilt anymore. He has hired a terrific female lawyer who has the reputation of defending (successfully) rich sleazebags and will likely get him off on a technicality after ripping to shreds the victims – again. (She has a habit of dragging their lives through the mud.) I digressed – but the point is that too many women fear speaking out about rape, abuse, violence and being intimidated in some form or other. They know they wont be believed, and until we start reacting differently as a society men in power will continue to take advantage of it.

      • Lou says:

        Jian Ghomeshi is truly scary. How he hid his kink for abusing women for so long is hard to understand, but i’m glad he’s locked up. He always struck me as really smarmy. I remember when he went to Joni Mitchell’s house to interview her, he kept interrupting her and it seemed to me that he would never do that if it was a man. She wasn’t having it and was as long winded as she wanted to be. When she heard he had been arrested for these crimes she said she wasn’t surprised, that she got a really black energy from him the moment he walked into her house.

    • Naya says:

      Oh drats. I meant to post my Deen experience here but messed up hitting the reply button I guess. I’ll just say that Porn also induces a lot of internal conflict for me too. I just cant shut down my empathy button for those girls. I’ve tried to focus on the female driven media houses but it often feels so contrived to exploit the market. Like if we use soft focus and have lots of whispering the audience will believe this is a great workplace for these girls. For me, seeing James Deen on such a set being a romantic heart throb shortly after watching him very happily (too happily?) degrade a girl on another clip killed the illusion forever. To be honest, I’ve now taken to watching gay porn when needs must. With men at least the arousal is harder to fake? I guess I just experience less fear for the performers when its two guys.

      • Cee says:

        Maybe p0rn needs a Feminist Production Company? IDK, have never watched p0rn but it does seems very unfair towards women.

      • Naya says:

        Oh there are feminist porn houses. Most of the people on set are women and the content is less gruesome. But as I explained above it is very hard to get into it because these same actors are also working for other “male oriented” production houses. So you have your fav actor being the lover of your dreams on one movie. Then a month later he is filming a scene for a different production team in which he is a rapey dbag because he needs to appease the male audience too. It just becomes clear that even the feminist porn company is just exploiting the niche in the market that you occupy and is really just part of this big horrible cycle.

      • lizzie says:

        Cee – Stoya runs a feminist production company!!

    • kri says:

      Shambles, that line in the article bothered me as well “What does it say about US as porn consumers”? It says nothing about us. We would have no idea what was going on with the film. Ok, maybe we can assume that someof these performers are on drugs, as sometimes they appear to be on something. But who would think a porn actor was doing anything like this?? Even though I have my issues and concerns with the industry, I had no idea about Deen. Once again, the film industry appears to be protecting the male Emperor and pitching the female disposables out like rash if they speak up. Sick.

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      Absolutely no judgment, Shambles. I think nearly everyone my age or younger has watched porn at some point in their lives, out of curiosity, if nothing else. I just wish it was better. I tried it and agree with vauvert that it’s just repetitive and unimaginative. I think your questions are thoughtful and difficult. I don’t judge fantasies or portrayal of fantasies. That doesn’t mean you really want something like that to happen. But if these women really ARE, in real life, being treated badly, then it changes things for me. It feels like participation. I mean, I judge people who watch child porn because children are being hurt in the making of the film and they are supporting that. Is this the same? It makes you wonder.

    • K2 says:

      There was a British documentary about a girl trying to break the porn industry made 20 years ago now, called Hardcore. She was raped on screen and a lot of really horrific situations happened to her. My husband watched it with me (we were at college and it was shown on a terrestrial TV channel) and has never watched porn since. He had no qualms before, but he just said he couldn’t be turned on by porn again, after seeing what happens to some women at least in making it.

      The problem is women sex workers aren’t seen as human beings, and so the degree of abuse and exploitation isn’t a scandal. It would be if any other group of women were treated this way.

      • K2 says:

        An article about the documentary is here: http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2011/jul/14/hardcore-abuse-of-women-in-porn

        The doc is available online now if you google, but tbh I wouldn’t want to see it again. It was so horrendous it has stayed with me ever since.

        I believe in freedom of speech, and of sexual expression, but the porn industry should be heavily regulated IMO. Women deserve better protection from the law.

      • FLORC says:

        K2
        Women and men get exploited. There are numerous stories of men being forced to continue the filming. And it’s about as hard for them because no one really believes men can be raped.
        All people deserve that protection.

  9. Loopy says:

    These women will not get the proper respect and action needed to be taken against Deen even more so than other victims simply because they are ‘adult’ fim stars. its a shame!

  10. Sam says:

    Don’t worry, everybody. The important thing here is that Deen always identified himself as a feminist. Let’s not lose sight of what really matters.

    But seriously. That’s why I place little to no stock in words. Now that it’s coming out, it seems like Deen had a long-term problem with mistreating women. But he was able to still be a mainstream golden boy because he said all the right stuff. I went back and re-read his stuff he wrote at the Frisky – and he pushed all the right buttons. Talked about feminism, and consent, and all that nice stuff. Didn’t practice it, obviously, but hey, what’s that matter?

    • Saphana says:

      that was also my point in the other thread about more and more “male feminists” being found out. if we push so hard for a label and then fall on our knees before every man who says he is a feminist it will obviously attract mostly sociopaths.
      im very careful around men who need to tell people they are feminists, too many bad experiences.

      • Sam says:

        Yeah, I agree. It’s the “hide in plain sight” thing, to me. It creates a shield for them. And that’s why I, at the end of the day, don’t much care about the label. There are men who embrace the term whose actions are nothing of the sort. And there are men who treat women well and with equality who decline to be called feminists. I don’t care one bit about the word. I don’t get why that is often a controversial position. But it seems to be, sometimes.

      • Emily says:

        I’ve noticed the same thing. It’s not all that different from men who go out of the way to describe themselves as “nice guys”.

      • Keaton says:

        Thank you Emily. So many self-described “nice guys” are the biggest misogynist pricks. I think there’s even a name for it: misogynerds. I’m always wary of men that describe themselves that way. At the very least they tend to feel a sense of entitlement due to their self-proclaimed “nice guy” status. bleh

      • K2 says:

        I’ve never met a man who identifies as a feminist who doesn’t have deep-seated issues with women, sadly. My husband is a feminist, all right, but he’d not think to call himself one. It’s instinctive with him; not a socio-political stance.

  11. Naya says:

    Funnily enough, James Deen was recommended to me when I expressed disgust at how terribly the women in adult films were treated. “Try James Deen, seriously he loves women”, I was told. Well, I found James Deen and it was awful. He spat on her mulitiple times, he slapped her, and other things….it was just aaaaaaargh! Then someone told me thats just his “BDSM persona” and that I should search for his romantic sessions. I told her to have a seat. Nobody is that good an actor. And yeah, I am the most unPC barbarian but you know what? People who get off inflicting pain or humiliating others are ugly creatures who need to inspect their subconscious. Likewise, if you get off on being treated that way, you need to discover WHY? An ingrained shame over sex, low self worth, societal conditioning, traumatic past experience? Figure it out and deal with it.

    I’m glad Stoya and company are speaking out. Isnt it interesting that the male actors are so silent? Even the ones also marketted as female friendly, like Manuel Ferrara who also happens to be husband to Stoyas business partner and bff.

    • kat says:

      I know. I wish Manuel would say something (he’s the only male star I really like). But Kayden posted support, so I’m *hoping* he shares his partner’s views.

    • Dani says:

      Why are people who enjoy different things than you considered ‘ugly creatures’? I personally am not a fan of BDSM or humiliation in sex etc but those who chose to practice it obviously enjoy it and do it with others who enjoy it. Who are we to judge them on that and tell them they are less than us or disgusting? Just because they practice kinks of sorts doesn’t mean they have any sort of mental illness or trauma. Your words are so unkind and condescending.

      • Josefina says:

        It makes me sad to see how close minded people still are about sex. Some people like that and practice within their boundaries in an atmosphere of mutual respect. If you don’t like it then good, have sex however you’d like. But don’t ruin the fun for everyone labeling them as “ugly creatures”.

      • Naya says:

        As I said, i am happy for “enlightened” people to call me close minded. I dont care. Its ridiculous how a certain crowd cant think beyond the surface of this “kink” for fear of being labled unaccepting. Whatever. It doesnt take a genius to see that a person whos orgasms are driven by harming others or being harmed has problems but yeah lets invoke “sex positivity” in the one situation in which sex is NOT positive. I hope that one of the outcomes here will be that misguided branch of feminism finally starting to question this last pocket.

      • JenniferJustice says:

        If a person enjoys inflicting pain on another even the other wants it, there is definitely some serious pathology going on there. It isn’t normal. It isn’t natural, It is abusive. Consent does not matter. I wouldn’t call them “ugly creatures” but I would definitely label them as warped and disturbed. Some of us do not pander to the PC liberal – everything goes and is fine so long as they consent – crap!

        And using the term “mutual respect” when talking about masachism is ridiculous.

      • Kitten says:

        This again huh?

        Why are people so quick to categorize the depiction of rape or violence towards women as “BDSM”? Have you really never seen a violent pr0n that was created predominantly for the male gaze to find the victimization of women pleasurable/erotic to watch?
        You’re really just gonna gloss over that and pretend it’s ok?

        It’s one thing to be accepting of what gets people off but to deny that there is a deeply-ingrained, long-standing tradition of violence towards women and misogyny in pr0n (an industry that is driven predominantly by men’s wallets) because “oh BDSM” misses the mark entirely.

      • Korra says:

        @kitten EXACTLY! JFC these “kinks” (hate saying that in reference to rape pron) don’t exist in a vacuum people.

    • Miss Melissa says:

      Manuel has no trouble hitting women across the face while doing them either. What can he say?

    • marshmellow says:

      Hey, now… While there are most definitely legit sexual sadists who use BDSM as a cover to rape people *cough* Christian Grey *cough* … I doubt that’s the mentality of all Doms or Dommes. BDSM emphasizes safe, sane, and consensual. Any good Dom or Domme will stop the second they hear a safe word, and they communicate everything beforehand to make sure that all parties have a good time and don’t get seriously hurt.

      I enjoy both domming and subbing, and I don’t think either say much about my self-esteem or my subconscious. It’s just pretend. It adds an extra flavor for when vanilla gets boring.

      • Jay says:

        But….. didn’t Christian Grey stop when he heard Anna’s safeword?… and didn’t Christian Grey lay out everything beforehand? So by your definition, he’s a good Dom?

    • Trixie says:

      So I’m an “ugly creature who need[s] to inspect [my] subconscious” because I like tying a guy up, spanking him, and choking him during sex?

    • FLORC says:

      Naya

      What is wrong here is use of the safety words and still he persisted. There are safeguards that by law must be demonstrated on camera and in writing that all pparties understand and agreee to. That he is alledged to do some of this stuff off camera makes me bbelieve it more.

      So, let’s not start judging people who do private acts with consent. That doesn’t make them bad people. The lack of consent does. If something is not your cup of tea that doesn’t make it by default terrible.

      This is all just some backwards judgement on people who doesn’t feel the same so they lable it as wrong. It’s nearly exactly the same argument a few decades ago against Homosexuality.
      Jennier Justice
      That’s mostly to your comment as for a while a man wanting to be with another man was seen as a pathological issue. We aren’t all wired the same way. Flavors of food. Styles of clothes. What gets our heart pumping. That something doesn’t do it for you and you are against for yourself doesn’t mean another person might like it and be totally healthy mentally outside of that.

      And people who eat hot sauce seem like people who love to hurt themselves. It isn’t something I like, but they do and it’s not without consent so IDC.

      • Kitten says:

        Maybe it’s “judgmental” but why is Naya not allowed to judge?

        It would be different if women weren’t almost always victims at the hands of men. In fact, if the playing field between men and women had always been level, then we wouldn’t even be having this discussion. Yet the fact remains that we still have women getting raped every 2 minutes in this country and we still have female sex workers going missing every day and we still have women’s bodies being served up for public consumption. Personally, I think the often-violent sexual attitude of men towards women in pr0n and how it impacts our society is an important discussion we should be having. It shouldn’t be glossed over in favor of PC liberalism or feminist-driven acceptance about people’s sexual proclivities.

        Judging what two consenting adults do behind closed doors at night is a different topic than judging how women are portrayed in the pr0n industry and other forms of media.

      • marshmellow says:

        I wouldn’t call rape porn the same as BDSM porn. In BDSM, everyone’s having a grand time, enthusiastic consent is shown, and BDSM porn has a lot of fem-dom stuff. In rape porn, whether it’s acting or not, one party either shows obvious discomfort or is explicitly saying “no,” and the aggressor is almost always a man.

        Yeah, misogyny certainly exists in the porn industry and rape porn is a product of it. Even average porn is misogynistic. But I don’t think BDSM porn is the problem if it accurately shows BDSM (NOT 50 Shades). I’d even say that it’s better than normal porn since gender roles or more flexible (again, a lot more female dominants in BDSM porn than average porn) and it places heavy emphasis on communication and consent.

      • Marty says:

        Kitten, my biggest problem with that kind of judgment from Naya is that it’s not just directed at the p0rn industry but at people who don’t have the same sexual desire as her. She and JenniferJustice are equating any type of rough or pain-oriented sex as “disgusting”. I think this is different than what you were taking about in your second paragraph which I agree with. I just think it’s wrong to shame consenting adults on what turns them on because yes, a discussion needs to be had, but not at the expense of judging people so harshly it turns into a vilification of their character.

      • xpreson says:

        @Kitten, in Gay porn you have exactly the same type of rough porn of BDSM as in straight porn… so it is not just WOMEN being victims here. Also in straight porn you have Women doing the torturing and humiliating of a guy. These are extreme tastes but they are shared and liked by both Men and Women.

      • FLORC says:

        Kitten
        OK. Everyone is allowed to judge. Where a line for me is drawn is when that judgement is made on preference and misinformation that leads them to act like something must be really wrong with them for liking something. Like my point of homosexuality. And the ccomments read as the judgement didn’t stop at the porn scenerios. Then went further to closed doors.

        And what happens out of crimes is in no way what i’m speaking to here. Not at all and I think you’ve misread my comment if you drew that connection. Consent is Key. I can’t stress that point enough.

        And xpreson, Marty, and marshmellow all stated the rest correctly regarding gay, straight, femdom/sub/ bdsm, and whatever else. It’s not mistreatment of women alone and as long as there is consent idc. In no way am I saying it’s ok without consent.

        I stand by my point. If there’s consent I disagree with the judgement of what people do for porns and for private life. It does not mean they hae something wrong with them. And without consent it’s a crime. Full Stop.

    • littlestar says:

      I used to think James Deen was okay too. Not anymore. What I think is really sad is that the industry he’s in probably gave him even more excuses to abuse women. Sickening.

  12. JenniferJustice says:

    “…does that mean that the industry isn’t as consensual and safe as they’ve been trying to portray? ”

    Ya’ think?! Of course it’s not safe. Why do we keep pretending that porn is a legitimate business to be respected and supported? It is a cesspool of assault, mysogyny, oppression, rape culture, objectification and degradation. There are so many unreported cases of rape in that “profession” it would blow our minds. It is not a profession and there is nothing legit about it. It is merely a smoke screen for the continued warped attitude toward women. Who cares if the women are consenting? Who cares if they sign contracts? Who cares if they think they’re in control because they chose to do it? Would we let a person walk blindly into traffic because they want to? We are never going to have it both ways – objectification and respect. It’s never going to be a safe environment for women because there are always going to be men who think they can do what they want and that industry supports those men – not the women. But everybody keeps talking about consent and choice and rights, blah blah blah., oh and my personal favorite – feminism. As if!

    • d says:

      Agreed. There’s a book out there that describes the real horrors that women in porn have to deal with, among them, the damage to their bodies and minds. I can’t remember the name of it but it gave me nightmares. The author was maybe Kate something? Everyone should read it.

      • Betti says:

        You should watch ‘Hot Girls Wanted’ a documentary about teenage girls who want to be porn stars in the amateur industry – it made me soo sad. It should be still on Netflix.

    • Naya says:

      Agreed. Also just to point out that Stoya is herself a porn A lister. She is also known as one of the more well read and assertive performers. If he is their Brad Pitt, she was is their Angelina Jolie. And still she was afraid to come forward. So then how much worse is it for day players?

      • Miss Melissa says:

        Exactly. Deen is one of the RARE cases of male porn star with power. It usually doesn’t work that way… the A listers are usually the women, the men are just another d7cK….

        If Stoya was shut down over this, no one has a voice in that industry. I can’t shake the description in that Deen GQ profile a few years back of a gal doing bondage porn with Deen in SF. The writer was clearly troubled by what went down, and the discomfort of the scene comes across in the story ( it was called the “porn star next door” or something). She was in tears afterward, but pretending to be OK. Very troubling. But then the writer (and the reader), like Deen, just moved on to the next encounter.

      • xpreson says:

        I got the impression ( by what she said ) that this happened privately ( while they were together as a couple ) and not during a scene. So she couldn’t have reported it to the industry. She should have reported it to the police as a rape case.

    • d says:

      @Betti: ug, that’s depressing re that film esp if it came out this year. I was thinking of an earlier documentary by CBC(? maybe 10 years ago) that followed a young girl and her mother(!) into porn and it was just awful. It ended with them losing track of the girl and the mother (who was waay delusional about how she was “protecting” her daughter by being there) going into porn herself. Harrowing. I can’t find it and it’s of course very hard to search on, given the search words. But I’m pretty sure it was a CBC doc.

    • Aren says:

      This is a tragedy to be honest. Girls are abused, crimes are committed, and nobody speaks against it.
      I’ve seen several documentaries on porn; the girls, even the super famous ones, are never in control.

  13. d says:

    I was always appalled that people believed he was a feminist. I mean, really. It’s like people WANT to be fooled.

  14. kat says:

    It should also be noted that joanna angel isn’t just a former co-star, but another of his ex-girlfriends. I think that gives even more credibility to what she’s saying because they dated for 6 years. Anyway, I always really liked Stoya and found James super icky so I could never get into their scenes (which most of the feminist porn-viewing people I know raved about). Anyway, she is an NYC girl and he’s based in California. I think she had moved to be with him out there and very quickly moved back. Then they were done and it seemed like a nasty break up. I found James skeevy, but had no idea just how far his creepiness extended. I completely believe Stoya and what other women are saying about him. Some of their mutual friends like Kayden Kross have also stood in solidarity with Stoya.

    A couple of years ago, I read an AMA with a porn star who claimed that he played head games with his co-stars and that “sexy whispering” he’s famous for doing in his scenes is actually him saying some terrible, disgusting stuff. That raised some major red flags for me–that James was more than just a little creepy. I think more stories like this will emerge. It must have been hard for the co-stars he assaulted to speak out because everyone in the industry just looooved him and talked about how how professional/respectful he is. Hopefully, now, Stoya and the others will be supported and believed.

  15. Dana says:

    “Deen was known as a feminist ”

    Really? I assume people who considered him a feminist never read his twitter.

    For example:

    http://38.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m29dr86O8J1qbom8i.jpg

    • Zapp Brannigan says:

      Wow that tweet is an eye opener, I will admit that when he first started going “mainstream” online I looked up some of his stuff and watched two short clips of him in action so to speak. It turned me completely off him, he spat on his co-star and was holding her throat tight and in a very rough manner. He was just violent and I don’t think it was an act put on for cameras.

  16. Dragonlady sakura says:

    Disgusting. Because these victims work in porn, (their jobs) people are quick to disregard and discredit them. It’s awful how many times Deen has got away with rape while people look the other way. Just like Cosby, his dirty deeds are coming to light.

  17. isabelle says:

    He has always given off the shady hiding something air. Surprised he was ever called a feminist, he sets off my bad stay intuition vibe.

  18. georgia says:

    I wish the title of this article was Stoya and other adult film stars speak out against James Deen. Because this about her and their stories, not his bs denial.

  19. Erica_V says:

    Recently a dancer/model sued Tyga when she was groped on the set of one of his videos. I was shocked at the amount of comments under the story (not here) that blamed the girl for being a “video hoe” or “what do you expect when you take your clothes off for money”.

    No one should be OK with unconsenting sexual violence no matter your profession.

  20. FingerBinger says:

    I’m not a fan of Deen but it’s insane how you can be accused, tried and convicted on social media.

  21. sauvage says:

    I was eating just now, browsing the internet. I clearly was not thinking clearly to click on this. Totally lost my appetite.

  22. nikzilla says:

    the only thing that surprises me about this story is that he somehow got people to call him a feminist. creep.

  23. Jesusstolemybike says:

    Hang on. Those of us who enjoy rough sex and choking/hair pulling/slapping/hard spanking are not “monsters” and we do not have mental problems. It’s a consensual thing and I am in a very loving, very healthy, very respectful marriage. Occasionally, we get incredibly rough. Different strokes for different folks, but that doesn’t make us deviants or disgusting

  24. jessoutwest says:

    I once worked with someone who had no qualms about making false sexual assault accusations and even did so once just to get out of a ticket, so it does happen. I have no knowledge of Stoya or Deen so I don’t know who is more credible, but blindly agreeing supporting either a possible victim or abuser is definitely the opposite of feminism. I’m also deeply uncomfortable with naming someone a rapist on social media without showing an interest in reporting a crime to the proper authorities.

  25. Whitney says:

    I remember reading a tweet where he says he “definitely just duct taped an apron to a MILF’s head”. It didn’t sound pre-arranged with the actress to me. I can’t find any feminism in that.

  26. mina says:

    Honestly I think what it comes down to is– If you watch porn— then you become complicit in the subjugation and exploitation of women. It’s a business. An industry literally….literally founded on the hatred of women. I have a really hard time seeing how the industry as it is, is sexually empowering for women. It perpetuates and upholds the worst kind of things and this is coming from someone who has watched (and enjoyed ) porn before. I just tried to educate myself about the industry, its effects and its history and refuse to delude myself into thinking watching some sort of niche or sample “romantic” or “porn for women” is somehow separate from the industry as a whole. A few posters already mentioned how many of those sex workers in female friendly porn still work in other abusive and misogynistic shoots (no judgement). I remember reading about the #1 porn search being for amateur porn. Guess how many of those participants (willing or unwilling ) are actually amateurs. I’m not against the concept of porn but am firmly against the porn industry as it is today.

  27. Betsy says:

    I’ve never watched porn, and every time I read an article like this, I’m glad that I don’t. Since I don’t have any screen time with it, I rely on what consumers of it say, and there are some disturbing comments about the content of what passes for fairly garden variety stuff. Gross. Gross, gross, gross. I do not think that the people who do this, but especially the women, are mentally, socially, and physically well, and it makes me ill to think of people getting off on their exploitation. Make your own stuff at home? Enjoy! But I just cannot with what sounds like one huge sexual assault.

  28. kanyekardashian says:

    Of course he did it. Porn people are sex addicts and mentally unstable. No one in their right mind would choose a “career” like that instead of constructively working out their past traumas with a trained therapist. The whole industry is despicable.