Holly Madison Recalls Time With Hugh Hefner As ‘Stockholm Syndrome’
Girls Next Door star Holly Madison has opened up about her time living in the Playboy mansion.
Madison, who was one of the three girlfriends – Kendra Wilkinson and Bridget Marquardt – to Hugh Hefner at the time, told the Call Her Daddy podcast about her experience at the mansion and on the E! reality show.
“I was kind of desperate. I was sleeping on somebody’s couch. I just felt like I needed a minute to reset my life and I felt like if I could stay at the mansion and just have a minute to kind of not worry about bills,” she recalled after her move to Los Angeles at the time.
“I had to sleep with him first. I’m not trying to slut-shame anybody or anything but nobody ever got asked to move in unless they slept with him. No way,” Madison said as she explained what happened that first night. Hefner offered her pills to relax but she declined. While she did not expect to get intimate with him that night, she was “so wasted and just kind of thrown into it, that once it was done there was something about the experience that made me feel very out of control.”
“I felt like I was just internalizing all of this shame and I felt like by sticking it out I was fighting for myself and fighting to get something out of this experience, I guess,” She spoke about moving into Hefner’s home. “Living at the mansion was something I thought would just be a super fun, crazy experience in my twenties that I’d look back on. I knew it wasn’t going to be conventional and I was excited about it and I wanted to stay and get that full experience…Everything about that experience was completely different.”
Madison quickly became Hefner’s main girlfriend and lived in the same room as him. This led her to feel distanced from the other woman in the house and gave her some “pretty heavy suicidal ideations.”
Despite all those limitations, Madison stayed in the mansion with Hefner until she was 29. “I feel like it was a very Stockholm syndrome type of thing,” she said. “I just couldn’t really imagine a life outside of there. I thought, ‘Ok, this is my last stop. I want to have kids, I’m gonna try.’ And then when I knew that wasn’t going to be a possibility with him, like we’d tried in vitro [fertilization] and everything, it didn’t work, I was like, ‘Ok, well if I’m not going to have kids here, that’s something I need to think about. This is really like a death sentence in a way.”
Madison, who’s now 41-years old, was thankful that she didn’t get pregnant with Hefner’s child.
“When I look back at Girls Next Door, especially the first few seasons, I see myself just coping. I was really stiff and not open and just like a robot and just saying the type of things that I felt like Hef would want me to say and things that made him look good and I almost can’t really regret that because I don’t know how else I would coped,” she added.