Being a working mom, attempting to maintain a career while raising kids, is no easy task. It’s hard enough for women who hold down jobs in conventional industries like education, medicine, law and finance. But for women who work in the adult entertainment industry, any issues the average mom may encounter while raising their children is compounded by the added difficulties associated with being a recognizable figure in the public sphere. Not to mention, the various positive and negative opinions and stereotypes people often associate with those working in porn.
We here at Arm Candy Creative asked ourselves what it might feel like trying to balance being a porn actress and raising children, the kinds of difficulties one might face, and the methods they employ to overcome the struggles they endure. To help us answer these questions, we approached Shawna Leneé, porn actress, entrepreneur, mom and overall hustler, for her insight and expertise. Having begun her career in porn at the age of 18, winning an AVN Starlet of the Year award back in 2010, Shawna is in a unique position to provide valuable knowledge and life experience around balancing young children while being in the spotlight of what some still consider a taboo industry.
Arm Candy Creative co-founder Dave Strauss had the pleasure of interviewing Ms. Leneé one-on-one, and in this blog, we’d like to share with you some of the knowledge Shawna was gracious enough to share with us. and asked her a few questions about what it’s like to be a mom in the adult entertainment industry.
Part 1: Shawna Leneé on Being a Mom
Dave: Today, as you can see, we have got an adult film star, an entrepreneur, a camgirl, and a mom. Shawna Leneé, welcome to the show!
Shawna: Hi, thanks for having me!
Dave: Well, thank you! We appreciate it! So, what we’re here discussing today is about what it’s like being a mom in adult entertainment. How many kids do you have?
Shawna: I have two, they are five and twelve.
Dave: Five and twelve, that’s interesting. So one’s younger and obviously has no idea what you do. The twelve year old, has he started to ask questions, does he know what you do yet?
Shawna: Um, I teach them both age appropriate things. My five year old, she knows that I model lingerie and bikinis and she knows that I go to the expos, that I do promotional modeling with ransom friends. My son, I told him about 4 or 5 months that I make adult content. He already knew that there was something weird about my job whenever I would leave to go to LA for work. It’s better that he knows, I’m happy that I told him.
Dave: So, what was his reaction to learning that news?
Shawna: Um, he totally understood it. He knew that as a mom I needed to provide for them. He was very understanding and knew that it wouldn’t change anything.
Dave: No, I don’t think that it would. You’re still his mom, he’s still gonna love you. It’s, you know, I think it’s a good thing, I mean, to show your son that hey, listen, you know, everyone’s gotta earn a living and this is a totally appropriate, respectable way to do it, and that’s fantastic!
Shawna: We had a conversation about what we do to keep everything safe and responsible.
Dave: That’s great. Now that your son is aware of what you do, do you worry that he might get teased or bullied in school, if other kids find out?
Shawna: I do worry, but I also explained to him that it wouldn’t be his fault, that that would be the bully’s fault and that he would have to take care of his anger issues.
Dave: Yeah, I mean, listen, bullying is going to be an issue no matter who your mom is, right?
Shawna: Yeah, exactly….
Dave: Have you ever been approached by a fan in public while you were with your kids? And what was that like?
Shawna: No, not yet, not with my kids. But I’m worried for it to happen! I have been hit on by a guy, I don’t know if it was a fan or just a guy, but a guy asked me for my phone number and it was the most awkward moment of my life.
Dave: Yeah, you would think that people would have a little more sense to not come up to you when you’re with your kids… and you know, fan boy and stuff. [laughs]
In Part two of our interview, Shawna gives us some valuable parenting advice.