Holly Madison has made it no secret that her time at the Playboy Mansion was anything but enjoyable. Nearly one year after the release of her tell-all book, “Down the Rabbit Hole: Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny,” the expectant mother of one is sharing even more horror stories about life under former boyfriend Hugh Hefner’s roof.
In a new interview with People magazine, Madison, 36, opened up about the many challenges she faced while living in the famed Los Angeles mansion. She claimed that she did her best to put on a brave face, creating the illusion that “everything is so great here,” but it wasn’t easy. The key to living a happy life in the home of Playboy magazine’s founder — which may soon be transformed into a nightclub — was “conformity,” she said. Madison said she felt like a carbon copy of the other women she was living with, which only added to her anguish.
“The mansion is all about conformity and judgment and following the rules,” she said. “I didn’t like being a clone. That was definitely something that bothered me the whole time. But the mansion wasn’t a place where confidence was built. It was a place where manipulation was used to keep everyone scrambling to keep her spot in the house.”
Madison’s negative comments about life in the Playboy Mansion have caused a rift between her and former “Girls Next Door” co-star Kendra Wilkinson. Wilkinson accused Madison of lying about her experience, and it seems the women still haven’t managed to get past their differences. The “Kendra on Top” star told People she is past the drama but has no interest in rekindling a relationship with Madison.
“I wish her the best, but I’m done with that portion of my life,” Wilkinson said. “I’ve moved on. I’m happier now.”
Hefner has also addressed Madison’s claims, denouncing them as false. In a statement released to Us Weekly in June 2015, the father of four said he had seen many women come and go through the Playboy Mansion’s doors, noting that many of them have thrived in their later lives. He called the ladies — many of whom he was romantically involved with prior to his marriage to current wife Crystal Harris — “wonderful,” though he said he was aware that some were using their ties to him for personal gain.
“Over the course of my life I’ve had more than my fair share of romantic relationships with wonderful women,” Hefner told Us at the time. “Many moved on to live happy, healthy and productive lives, and I’m pleased to say remain dear friends today. Sadly, there are a few who have chosen to rewrite history in an attempt to stay in the spotlight. I guess, as the old saying goes: You can’t win 'em all.”
In Madison’s first book, she shared detailed accounts of several dark moments she claims took place during her Playboy Mansion residency. She opened up to readers about her first visit, alleging that Hefner offered her drugs he called “thigh openers.” She added that in a matter of three weeks she was living in the mansion full time, despite her bad first impression. Madison wrote that she and her housemates were controlled by Hefner. Things got so bad that she eventually considered suicide. Madison shared the full account of one night when she attempted to drown herself in a bathtub in the hopes of ending her suffering once and for all.
“If I just put my head underwater and take a deep breath in, it would all be over,” she wrote.
Madison will reveal more about her past in her second tell-all, “The Vegas Diaries: Romance, Rolling the Dice and the Road to Reinvention,” which debuts May 17.