40 years of faulty wiring

Poor Pathetic Parenting Produces Promiscuous Pitiful Pornography Prototype

Poor Mom and Dad. We’re always blaming our parents for every trivial mistake we make such as baring all for hard-core porn and deciding to skip college and go straight to work earning minimum wage for the next 10 years until we get it together and go back to angry-woman-Manasschool. It’s decidedly unfair when adults, even young adults, make poor decisions in their lives and blame their parents but sometimes the blame, at least partial blame, is placed squarely where it belongs. In fact, some porn queens, most of whom are anywhere from 18 to 21, just kids really, don’t know for themselves why they are into this way of life besides easy money. Well, easy if you don’t mind being forever branded a whore and contracting as many STDs as you can along the way.

I blogged about one typical porn queen in Tales from the Dark Side, a dark tale indeed about Colleen Applegate turned Shauna Grant in her hardcore porn films. A beautiful blonde, Colleen hailed from a cold, strict, self-righteous family that oppressed her to a point that when she finally broke away, she went to the extreme of degrading herself in Los Angeles pornography. Her mother stated “I wasn’t aware of how bad her life was until after she died.” No kidding. Meh. If you want to read more, click here.

I say typical about Shauna Grant because her sad story isn’t unusual in Los Angeles porn, where young girls are chewed up, spit out, and often left with drug addictions that are as hard as the porn they’ve starred in. Nasty. Lately violent and degrading porn is in high demand. The silly sappy stuff you see on YouPorn is the PG version of pornography. Yep. PG. The stuff that’s being filmed in L.A. is truly awful: young girls are supposedly gang-raped in videos, they’re beaten, called degrading names, forced to partake in BDSM scenes, and used in the worst kind of porn you can imagine. These scenes aren’t real in the sense that these women aren’t truly being raped, but after the fact they often feel as though they have been: their bodies hurt, their self-esteem plummets, they feel depressed and some are suicidal. Some succeed at suicide. Do these girls sound like whores to you?

You may wonder what drives a young woman into hardcore porn, especially the aforementioned degradation? Well wonder no more. A little online digging and I uncovered some valid, yet perplexing reasons, that the daughters of certain parents become victims of pornography. A list:

The Boss Is Mad1.  A truly nasty divorce absolute vindictiveness and no “amicable” anywhere to be found. These are the divorces where name-calling and false sexual abuse allegations occur. The worst kind is when parents convince their children to lie about a parent having molested them. Do children lie about this stuff?  Absolutely, when they’re under pressure to do so. Do they feel worse than shit for doing it? What do you think?    A study by Paul Armato showed that children of divorce score lower academically, and suffer “psychological adjustment, self-concept and social competence.”  

2. Furthering this concern, a 2002 study in The Journal of Pediatric Psychology found that adolescents from mother-alone or mother-absent homes are more likely to become sexually active at a young age, risk taking behavior that is compounded by substance abuse and lack of social support. I do have a bone (pun) to pick with the mother-alone conclusion. As a single mother raising a beautiful, healthy daughter I take offence to that statement. Mind you, I was a single mother by choice and there was no divorce. That might account for my daughter turning out so beautifully. That and my awesome parenting, of course.

3.   Mothers and fathers who weren’t parents: they were friends. Allowing daughters to set their own boundaries, get a boyfriend as young as they pleased, These parents didn’t teach their daughters how to set personal boundaries and that they had the right to be respected by boys. This is one of the worst parenting styles ever.

crying-girl4.   Families that raped and molested their daughters – a pretty obvious (and tragic) one. It’s possible that someone outside the family was molesting a little girl and the parents ignored it. I mean, how do you honestly not know this stuff? If you’re a distant, uncaring parent then you might just might not know about it but otherwise, you do and just don’t want to deal with it. I knew a young woman who was sexually molested by a neighbour for a number of months. When she got older and confronted her parents they claimed innocence. She killed herself.

6.   Parents that were prudes or mothers who were total sluts and didn’t have a good handle on their sexuality. This leads parents to inadequately educate daughters about sex, either teaching an abstinence only or a laissez-faire approach. Statistics on abstinence-only programs show this approach to be insanely ineffective. I love my mother with all my heart but that was her ridiculous approach and that was because she was raised in the previous generation. She truly did abstain until marriage. Mind you I didn’t become a slut or a porn star.  I only had sex with one boyfriend for 5 years. Honest.

7.   When Mom and Dad let men or women run in and out of their lives teaches daughters that significant others, and people in general are exchangeable. Kids need the truth about reliable sources of adult support and attachment.

8.   She was permitted to watch insane amounts of television. Wholesome role models such as Madonna, Paris Hilton, and scantily-clad skanks dancing around in MTV videos have proven to be a great substitute for caring mothers and fathers. And if you believe that one, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I’d love to sell you.

9.    She got a smartphone when she was 10, and took awesome #selfies all day. With every picture she took to post to her social media sites, she became less sensitive to the idea of her images floating around on the web. Sexting, btw, is a booming practice, and a gateway technology usage that might lead to appearances on Internet porn sites. If a neglected daughter isn’t participating yet, she’s thinking it over.

gal_marilynmonroe_210.   Parents have let her peers raise their daughters and her friends want to be porn stars, Playboy models, the Bachelorette or any hyper-sexualized version of a real woman.

11.   Parents didn’t know their daughter’s friends. When a child has excessive contact with her peers and loses touch with safe adult attachments, the likelihood increases that she will become an addict, or become involved in sex for hire, as mentioned in addiction specialist Dr. Gabor Maté’s book, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts.

12.   Parents taught her to worship false idols before God. She never learned a healthy way to fill the spiritual void that is quintessentially human, especially when Mom and Dad are addicted to keeping up with the Joneses, or even better, being the Joneses. Isn’t it interesting that girls leave porn because they’ve found religion? No fake. Money, sexual exploration, and false adoration didn’t provide personal fulfillment like spirituality did. Who knew?

13.   The most tragic of all from parents’ perspectives: they truly tried their best but for whatever reason it wasn’t enough. Most likely, these were parents who simply didn’t have the necessary skills to raise a girl (or a boy) and yet they don’t know why their child has become a porn queen. In this category, you might include mothers who gave birth at the age of 16, or mothers who forced their daughters onto the birth control pill at the same age “just in case“, humiliating and infuriating her and emphasizing a lack of trust in her sexual behaviour.

14.   Mom and Dad loved her lots but they didn’t love her right. They weren’t in tune to her emotional and psychological needs. These parents have a problem with authentic intimacy too, and it’s often an intergenerational issue, a cycle that has never been broken and probably never will be. I knew a man like this once. He wasn’t a father (thank God) at that time. He was the strangest, most detached person I ever knew, able to manipulate people with insulting behaviour that he tried to cover up as if it was as natural as could be. He even manipulated a girlfriend into an abortion she didn’t want. When and if he becomes a father, his daughter is in for a very rough ride.

money_24077_lg15.   The parents were married to their careers and nurtured them far more than they did their children. I’m not talking about parents who have to both work a job in order to keep a roof over their children’s heads. Most of us have to do that. I’m talking about people who devote as many overtime hours into their careers as possible in the quest to get ahead and climb that promotional ladder, while forgetting that raising their kids just might be an important priority too.

16.   People who shower their children with gifts as a substitute for affection and spending time with their daughters are headed for trouble – and of course so are their daughters. These are the parents who protest, “of course I love her! I gave her everything a kid could want.” Materials (like false idols) are never proof that a person loves their children. In fact this approach is a convenient way to avoid spending time with their kids.

17.   A complete lack of stability. These are families with no roots, they pick up and move continually without a moment’s notice and no explanation to their children. Sometimes a spouse is left behind in the move and the daughter never sees him or her again. Secrecy, denial, and instability have severe effects on children, probably more than most adults realize.

18.   Low self-esteem and no friends. Traci Lords, an underage porn star, has discussed being bullied, beaten up by peers, and isolated at her school at the tender age of 14. Girls were envious of her pretty appearance and early physical development. Along with those characteristics, Traci had low self-esteem and few social skills, typical of girls who run away and have little attachment to their families.

lonely19.  Growing up in poverty. Some young women live in homes that provide scant food and clothing, they go to bed hungry, and worse, Mom and Dad seem to have enough money for dope but not enough for food. These girls want a way out of poverty and into fast, easy money. Enough said.

19. Parents who were themselves sexually abused. That vicious cycle again. It’s a killer.

20.  Children who were unwanted and unloved. Pornography becomes a sexual substitute for affection. Sex is a barter for love.

Obviously not everyone who lives in these difficult circumstances becomes involved in pornography so don’t get all riled up. For instance, some parents who are poor (not to be confused with poor parenting) manage to provide beautifully for their children. These are the parents who go hungry in order to feed their children. Poverty isn’t a sign of poor parenting. Many parents living in a high needs area I know are wonderful parents, who strive hard to help their children succeed academically and psychologically. They do not want their children to “end up like they did.” All of the aforementioned examples do not necessarily encourage  young women to enter into porn, certainly not when isolating merely one “point” on its own. The human mind as we know, is so much more complex than that.

People who are reading this blog and see themselves in it are probably pissed and in complete denial. They’re thinking “who is she to point her finger at me?” Someone’s got to do it. You certainly won’t. And of course there are people who are guilty of a number of these sad family tragedies yet who don’t see themselves in here at all. That’s probably the worst reaction to a blog like this one. If that’s you, your daughter probably isn’t in porn, but is it possible she’s developing other self-esteem issues? They say it’s never too late to turn your life around and perhaps that’s true of your parenting.

Well, perhaps.


September 3, 2013 - Posted by | Bizarre yet True, corrruption, Human psychology, Reflections, Relationships | , , , ,


  1. Very interesting blog…this post hits close to home with me, because I worked in the sex industry for a short time in my early 20’s.
    I don’t think that this is true of every woman in porn…some of them are from surprisingly stable backgrounds/families. But while every situation is different, I agree with many of your points.

    I will share some info about myself despite the fact that I no longer do any sort of porn. I grew up very lonely, with very few people I could trust. My mother is/was a wonderful parent in some ways but she was a single mother and when she wasn’t working, she was more concerned with her social life.
    She was very needy in some ways…always wanted to have a man around even though her choice in men wasn’t the best. My parents divorced when I was about 3 years old and my father was never around. I was bullied constantly by other kids, including my cousins. Very few friends.

    My mom met my stepfather when I was about 13 or 14…he turned out to be abusive, mostly towards me, but my mother stayed with him anyway.
    The abuse was mainly verbal and emotional. He tried to hit me sometimes but he figured out that I would fight back so he stopped. I made it clear that I wouldn’t allow him to physically hurt me, despite my small size. I was subjected to cruelty on a daily basis for many years by him and others. Constant name-calling, screaming, shouting, threats, etc. were a part of my daily life. He would belittle me and my mom wouldn’t do anything about it. Sometimes she even took his side. Apparently, having a man in her life was more important than my safety and happiness.

    I had suffered some sexual abuse when I was younger…not by my stepfather, but by other males. I had my first real boyfriend in high school and this was when I realized that maybe I could use sex to feel loved. I had very low self-esteem thanks to my abusive environment. I felt ugly and stupid and unworthy all the time, but I was a girl nonetheless. I had a mouth and a vagina. So I figured that having sex would fill the emotional void inside me. It worked for a while but I knew deep down that my “boyfriend” didn’t truly love me, it was only about sex to him. His parents, especially his mom, judged me harshly without understanding how bad my situation at home was. My father had walked away from his duties during my childhood and my mother had placed her abusive husband above me, her only child.

    Many terrible things happened over the years and I found myself in a lot of pain. I suffered from depression and worse, I had no one to talk to.
    I barely graduated high school due to a severe learning disability. My decision to do porn wasn’t really a conscious one…it was more of a series of events. I started out as a nude “model” for a freelance photographer. The pay wasn’t very good but it was only pictures on the beach. There was no sex at all. I was about 20 at the time and starting to be more open, less inhibited.
    I still had some shyness about my looks, I wasn’t gorgeous by any means but I was more like the cute “girl next door” type. I was petite with a sweet innocent face and I could still pass for a very young girl.

    I worked with the photographer a few times and it was fun…like I said, there was no sex and he turned out to be OK. But I was a college student still living at home and struggling with school and trying to find decent jobs. My stepfather became more abusive with every day and I was desperate for a way out. One day I saw an ad in the newspaper for girls/women of all types who were interested in making money, so I took a chance and contacted the people who placed the ad.
    I met with them and on the same day, I wound up having sex with the guy who placed the ad. I didn’t want to, but I figured he would help me out of the situation I was in at home.
    To make a long story short, I wound up doing a few porn videos and it cost me a lot…my dignity, my reputation, and relationships with people I thought cared about me.

    Sorry about my comment being so long…I guess what I’m trying to say is that your post really touched on a lot of true things for me. I don’t want to blame anyone for choices I’ve made but at the same time, I feel that a lot of my painful experiences contributed to it. People often judge women who do sex work (stripping/porn/prostitution) very harshly without trying to understand the reasons behind it. You’re one of the few people who seems to understand. Thank you so much for being compassionate and caring.

    Comment by MB | August 9, 2014 | Reply

    • God bless you. Thank you for reading and for sharing a very painful, personal history. I am happy for you that you are out of the sex industry, not as a moral judgement, but because of the threat of HIV, Hepatitis C, and other sexually transmitted diseases. Of course the worst damage of all is the damage done to your soul and your self-esteem. I am certain your history had a great deal to do with your difficult foray into the porn business. I am also certain that your mother was anything but! I am also a single mother and I would die for my child. I once had a boyfriend who raised his voice at her and pointed at her about something absolutely ridiculous. He never saw us again. You were unlucky to be born to an unhealthy and possibly mentally ill woman. I wish you the best.

      Comment by marilyn4ever | August 19, 2014 | Reply

    • I recently read a Time magazine issue about the effect of epigenetics on our behavior and decision-making. Epigenetics refers to environmental influences over our genes and psychological and physical development. It stated that during abuse, DNA actually changes to respond to it, clearly in a negative manner (not meaning you were negative, meaning your brain didn’t like it). It also stated that when children were removed from abusive environments their behaviours adapted to new, positive environments and it was believed that new epigenetic influences were the catalyst. I wonder if this applies in your case?

      Comment by marilyn4ever | October 16, 2014 | Reply

      • I apologize for my very late response to this…that is very interesting. I would say that the article probably does make some valid points about how abuse can affect other things.
        I was young (as many porn performers are when they first start out); I came from a bad environment where I constantly felt unloved, and I didn’t have the right type of guidance in life. You might find that this is true of more than a few women who are/were in porn at some point. Not to say that we didn’t make certain decisions for ourselves, but we are often shaped by our environment.

        Comment by MB | June 28, 2015

      • The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.

        Comment by helthnut | June 30, 2015

    • Thanks for your kind words. Yes, I do consider myself lucky that I didn’t contract HIV or any other serious illness from my time in porn.
      I noticed that I often had vaginal infections that needed constant treatment but other than that, I was fine.

      You are correct…my environment wasn’t happy or stable at all when I was growing up. Maybe if I had been raised in a home where I knew (without a doubt) that I was safe and loved, things would have been very different. My self-esteem would be intact and I would most likely have made different choices.
      But sadly, I was a young woman who felt completely lost and alone. I don’t feel ashamed anymore, though…some people still want me to feel that way and I won’t. I had sex for money but that doesn’t make me bad or any less of a person. Lots of women do it and they all have their reasons. If certain people see it otherwise, that’s OK but I know who I am and their opinions don’t matter.

      As to my mother…I wouldn’t call her mentally ill, that’s a bit harsh. But I would say that yes, there is something unhealthy about her relationships with men-especially my stepfather.
      I adore my mother and would do anything for her. I will admit to not always being the perfect daughter; however, I believe that much of my actions stemmed from what I was being subjected to by nearly everyone around me. I think my mom tried to do the best she could and was/is a great mom in many ways, but there are times when I often feel that she was selfish and that she loved me far less than she did my stepfather.
      And there are actual things that support this feeling, too.

      I’m thankful for my mother because I do love her very much. It’s just that she wasn’t the best role model in terms of self-esteem and empowerment and showing me how a woman should be treated by men.
      Which is weird, because she grew up with two parents who loved her…she lost her father at a fairly young age in an accident but he still loved her.

      I was angry a few years ago when she asked me if I’d ever been in porn; somebody had told her about it.
      I denied it because I didn’t want to talk about it with her. I’m much older now and it’s a bit late to be concerned with my past mistakes when my home environment is what led to so many of the bad choices I made. What matters is who I am now and what I’ve learned from my experiences.

      Comment by MB | June 28, 2015 | Reply

  2. Oh, yes…I also agree with many of your points on the factors that can breed future porn stars.
    I see many young girls/women from the ages of 18-22 (sadly, some are even below the acceptable age) thinking that they have to fit this sexualized image for different reasons.
    In my case, it was because I was a girl who felt ugly and unwanted by both parents…my father wasn’t around and my mother married a man who treated me like shit, reinforcing my feelings of rejection.

    I realized that I could attract male attention (even if it was bad) at a young age, especially once I was in my senior year of high school.
    I remember reading about Marilyn Monroe when she was still Norma Jeane…I see you mention her quite a bit on this blog.
    Anyway, her transformation was something I often aspired to as a young girl. Norma Jeane said that once she started getting male attention, she felt like it was a way to get the approval and recognition she’d never really had. I understood that because once my appearance started changing and men started seeing me as a pretty girl, I started seeing my sexuality as a tool to get what I needed in life. Certain girls I knew growing up had the same idea even if they didn’t do porn.

    During my time in porn, I was determined to look as close to perfect as I could with my limited resources…after all, it is a business based on how your “instrument” (your body) looks. You will be judged on every aspect of your appearance but I was already used to people doing that.
    To this day I still have to fight against the mentality that says if I’m not sexy or hot or pretty, I’m nothing. A lot of girls and women believe this about themselves and this is why they either hate porn stars or try to emulate them. As women we are often told in some way that beauty is power, that our worth is in how we look and the “golden ticket” to a better life.

    I knew on some level that doing porn would eventually come back to haunt me but when you’re a young woman with few options and your environment is a nightmare, you will do what you can to survive…even if it makes no sense to others outside of the situation.
    Alyssa Funke is another one (you can look her up; she killed herself, like Colleen Applegate).

    I also think that porn is alluring to girls and women who want to feel pretty. Porn stars don’t have to be pretty, but they are generally seen as objects of desire. To girls that are tired of feeling overlooked, doing porn can be a way of showing people that they aren’t invisible. I had guys telling me I was pretty and it was a definite change from being called ugly in high school.
    My stepfather also viewed a lot of porn (video and magazines) and growing up, I thought the girls looked glamorous. I came to believe that if I looked like them, I could escape his abusive treatment somehow; I would have more opportunities. The sex industry is often glamorous to girls from broken homes. You don’t learn otherwise until it’s too late.

    Comment by MB | June 28, 2015 | Reply

    • I’ve never been of a mind to judge people in porn. There’s money to be made, people like to watch it…it is what it is. I only pity young women and men who do not truly understand the implications of their porn careers until much later in life. This closes many doors and causes many barriers for them. That’s a shame.

      Comment by helthnut | June 30, 2015 | Reply

      • Hmm…”pity” sounds a bit condescending. Maybe empathy or compassion is the term I would use.
        In the golden age of porn (before Internet), porn stars didn’t have to worry as much about being outed or recognized. Some of them had “vanilla” (mainstream) jobs in addition to doing porn, so they still were able to make a decent living outside of sex work.

        This is not to say, of course, that some of them didn’t face other issues like maybe losing friends or being disowned by family if their porn careers were discovered.
        Barbara Dare was one such porn star who talked about this in an interview some time in the 80’s…a close friend of hers stopped speaking to her after she found out that Barbara did porn; they lived in a town where everyone knew other people’s business.
        So in that sense, I agree with you that there are certainly risks associated with doing porn and some of those risks *can* possibly include lost opportunities, especially in today’s world where anyone can do a background check.

        I think that when a person decides to do porn, there are many factors to consider beforehand but it depends on the individual.
        Some young people today do it because they see it as a fast track to fame and wealth, but that usually doesn’t happen for the majority. Some (like me and even Alyssa Funke) wind up doing it because we come from broken homes and need the money and are unable to get “respectable” jobs. Some porn stars come from extremely abusive environments and sex became their only means of survival. Some come from loving homes but they were wild and rebellious, so having sex for money seems “cool” to them; in that case, the family might even be supportive.

        I think that despite porn becoming a bit more mainstream today (in Western society), there is still a definite stigma against sex workers.
        And with the Internet being what it is today, people can access information about somebody at the click of a button…I’ve had a few strangers recognize me in public and harass me. This was several years ago, but still. I also had a relative and her crazy mother try to “expose” my past porn career to my loved ones.
        There is something about porn/sexuality that really brings out ugliness in people and shows their hang-ups about sex and their need to feel morally superior.

        The way I see it is this…if somebody wants to assume that I’m a bad person because of my past, I feel sorry for them because they don’t actually know me. It says more about them than it does about me. Many porn stars are kind, intelligent people who have chosen that path for complex reasons. I understand why people would react negatively in some cases but they tend to forget that porn stars and other sex workers are still human beings…diverse human beings with feelings and thoughts and experiences.
        I also find it very ironic that the people who tried to “out” me and shame me for having done porn, are some of the most deviant people you can imagine. They have skeletons in their closets but try to hide them. And how else would they know what I’ve done if they hadn’t been looking at porn? So that’s why any sense of shame I might have had when it comes to it is gone; their judgments don’t hurt anymore.

        But I would caution young women today on what they’re getting themselves into before they do it.
        I wouldn’t discourage them if that is what they want to do, but I would suggest that they consider all of the possible consequences…socially and emotionally as well as the health side of things.

        Comment by MB | July 1, 2015

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