Jan, formerly known as Elizabeth Rollings, left porn in October, 2007 and shares her story in an interview with Shelley Lubben.
ER: I was in my first movie because of an ad I answered on craigs list off the internet. I needed money and it sounded easy to do so I thought, why not? I knew it was wrong but I needed quick cash and of course it was legal, right? So I did the movie and never told anyone until months later when I decided to do it full time.
SL: Tell us about your childhood.
ER: My mom and dad divorced when I was three. My dad was a weekend dad and my mom took all of the responsibility raising us. We never had much of anything but my mom always tried to make sure that my older sister and I stayed in good schools and out of bad neighborhoods. My mom met a man when I was about 6 or 7 who whisked her off to Europe often and she would leave us with her side of the family. This went on for the next couple of years until my sister was about age 14 and I was about 11. We ended up homeless and went to live with our Godmother who was very spank happy to to say the least.
I was becoming very bitter about my mom and dad not being there even though I had accepted God in my heart at 7. When I was in 8th grade is when all the trouble began and I started noticing boys. There were a lot of gangs and gang fights and because of that I needed protection. I turned to clicks and pot heads and underage parties and smoking cigarettes and boys. I was only 13 years old.
I was in a world of trouble when I met “Candyman”. Candyman was a gangster and offered me protection and a lot of attention. He took me home to meet his parents. I trusted him and thought he loved me. He tied me up and raped me. This was my first sexual experience. When he was done, he told me if I said anything I would be hurt worse by him and his friends. Gangs began to harass our family so we moved out of the neighborhood.
In high school I was into getting high and smoking cigarettes and having sex with my boy friend. Even though I was an A student, we constantly partied and had sex. At age 17 I ran away from home. My boyfriend and I were living in a friend’s rat infested basement for 200 a month and soon I became pregnant. I attained my GED and traded in my hopes of becoming a nurse for becoming a mom and wife. I married my boyfriend and we had three children together.
SL: What led you into the sex industry?
ER: I worked off and on sometime two jobs to make up the lack of my husband’s laziness. He never wanted to work. I got involved in prostituting at 19 and I worked for a women who had about 50 other girls working for her. I did topless massage and dominatrix work off and on for two years. I also pursued modeling because it had always been a passion of mine to be a model even though I am plus size. My husband knew I was doing sex work and didn’t care.
I always loved to act and was involved in school plays growing up. I did a lot of promotional modeling and some street acting, but having to work a 12 hour shift as a cna (certified nursing aide) and take care of three kids kind of killed the dream. My husband and I divorced in 2004 for obvious reasons and my financial stress grew and grew. I had been to church a couple of times but to me it wasnt enough. I felt like a horrible mother and provider. I made my first porno after answering an ad in craigslist. I felt so ashamed and yet sexy at the same time. Even though the money was good, I had no intention of doing another one.
I ended up doing about 40 movies, 20+ websites, 3 magazines, 3 expos, countless online interviews and finally my own website. But yet I have nothing to show for it.
SL: What was the porn industry like?
ER: I was in Las Vegas so I had to drive back and forth to the porn industry in California four times a week. The money was great and my new boyfriend who recently lost his job, was loving every minute of it, traveling, seeing me have sex with other men and with other women. To him we had it made. I started making a name for myself in the BBW niche. I was in high demand and started loving the attention. My kids were fed, happy and had what they needed when they needed it. My boyfriend and I stayed in nice hotels and ate at good resturants. I bought him things and even helped him out with his own kids.
I got more and more requests for fetish films. After much pressure from porn producers, I finally caved in and did a 25 guy movie. I never thought I would have done something like that. I felt disgusted and violated, but what was I going to do? I was paid well for it and needed the money desperately.
SL: OH MY GOSH. What was it like to make a 25 guy movie?
ER: For two days I had to fast. I drank heavily one day prior before I did the movie. When I got on the set I felt really sick to my stomach. I wanted to turn around and run when I walked through the door and saw all the male porn stars and film crew standing there. I zoned out and wanted it to be over. I kept saying to myself, “this is going to be over in an hour. You can do it.”. I wanted to break down and cry but I hid behind my fake smile.
During the movie I mentally and emotionally checked out and felt like I died. I don’t remember real well the pain and trauma I went through. After it ended, everybody wanted to take pictures with me and get my autograph. Here I am standing there with bodily fluids all over me and people wanted to take pictures with me. It was horrible. My body was sore the next couple of days and I wasn’t right mentally for two weeks after that. I wasn’t able to use to the bathroom right either. My internal system was totally messed up. SL: Did you lie to your fans and clients? What lies did you tell them?
ER: Of course I lied to my fans. I led them to believe I lived a fantasy life which was far from the truth. I fed into their fantasies. I said I wanted sex 24/7 and made it seem like I absolutely loved what I did and was living this happy life. I gave them hope and insight into their relationships by telling them what to do, or if I were with them what I would do to them. I started to feel like an important nobody, they knew Elizabeth Rollings, but they would never care to know Jan.
SL: Were you exposed to drugs and alcohol?
ER: Yes, the first time was at the 2006 AVN Porn Convention after party. I didnt do them but saw other porn stars using drugs. I was seriously tempted to but instead I got drunk and fooled around with a lot of other people in the “sex room” of the suite. I was still kind of new to the industry but I think after time, I would have used drugs. I always drank heavily before I did a movie.
SL: In your experience, how many other porn stars or sex workers use drugs and alcohol?
ER: I would guess around 90%. It becomes an escape route to reality, a temporary vacation from it all.
SL: What was the worst thing about the sex industry? Or a worst experience for you?
ER: The feeling that you are not in control of your own life. You have to submit to others (producers, agents, etc..) no matter HOW important you think you are, you’re not in control. Being called a bitch and being told it was all apart of “acting” the part. Having men do disgusting things to me and even if it hurt, I had to make it seem like I was enjoying every minute of it. I hated it.
SL: Where was God while you were in the sex industry?
ER: In my heart and in my subconscious, pulling on my heart strings, painfully and patiently waiting. Many times God saved me from harm, especially from sexually transmitted diseases.
SL: Why did you leave the sex industry?
ER: I left because I was on the verge of suicide. I hated who I had become. I hated looking in the mirror. I hated not having any “real” relationships with people and most importantly I was desperate for love. There is a website on me for which I have no part in, the man who owns it will not take it down. I had a contract with him and put much time and effort into this site, but after 8 months of mental and emotional abuse, financial threats and much more, I chose to part ways with him. He made threats to “break” me financially because I wouldn’t bend to his will. I told everyone I could that I wasnt associated with the site anymore and he was not happy about it. My nerves were shot, I couldn’t take it anymore, I was physically sick and had to go to the ER for a nervous meltdown, enough was enough. I didn’t care about my name anymore. I didn’t care about a temporary financial fix. I wanted to be a good Mother for my children and show them that life is not about the easy way out of things, but about the road less traveled. I left for the sake of my sanity and my soul.
SL: Where are you now in rebuilding your life?
ER: I’m struggling with finances and I don’t know how my bills are going to be paid, rent, food, supplies, but I know God is faithful and I’m NOT turning back again. I’m back in with my church and just started a job at Starbucks, for which I’m so grateful to God for. I’m honestly on the verge of losing a lot, but have a peace I haven’t felt in years. I know God is with me and has a plan for my life.