Hugh Hefner would fake cry to manipulate his girlfriends

Hugh Hefner would cry fake tears to manipulate his girlfriends, who were more like employees, to do whatever he wanted. He used the fake crying to get them to quit outside jobs, to do sexual favors for him, or to make them feel guilty for speaking their opinions. Holly Madison and Bridget Marquardt opened up about this behavior in their podcast Girls Next Level, and Holly has written about it in her memoir Down the Rabbit Hole (affiliate link.)

Holly recounted a story on Girls Next Level about the first time she saw Hugh fake crying. She had tried to go to bat for a girl who wanted to move into a different room. Hef, however, put another girl in the room.

After the girls left, Holly advocated for the girl who had been there longer to get the room. Hef denied her request and yelled at Holly for the first time after the love-bombing period.

Holly told Hef that the relationship wasn’t what she thought it was. This triggered Hef to break down into fake crying to through a pity-party.

Bridget interjected that they should spend a minute talking about Hef’s fake crying. Holly described the fakeness as “obvious” and “bad acting.” For a while she never brought it up with anyone else, but then heard Kendra Wilkinson ask about it.

“You can’t say anything,” Holly says. “Because he was the one with the power in the relationship. What are you gonnna do? Accuse somebody of fake crying? That sounds crazy. It was like a weird gaslighty thing. And it just makes you back off because what else are you gonna do? He’s fake crying. It’s insanity.”

Holly didn’t expect Hef to fake cry because of his status as a powerful man and cultural icon. It successfully manipulated her, but in a way that made her lose respect for him.

In her book Down the Rabbit Hole Holly Madison recalls Hugh using fake tears on her to get her to quit her job at Hooters and turn down an opportunity to compete in a Hooters pageant to represent Sant Monica, CA.

Holly would have had to leave for two days to participate in the pageant, but Hugh wouldn’t stand for it. He started fake crying and told her that working at Hooters made him jealous.

Holly was working there to earn extra money to pay off her student loans. Girlfriends at the mansion received a $1,000 allowance a week to pay for outfits, but they could also stretch the money for other things. They also had their housing, food, salon visits, and other luxuries paid for, but $1,000 a week was all the cash they got.

Working outside the mansion was discouraged, so it was amazing that Holly was able to keep her outside job at Hooters for a few months, but that didn’t last long. Hef didn’t let her know he didn’t like working there until she was offered this opportunity that made her feel special.

When Holly didn’t react to Hef’s crying, he told her that she had to stop working at Hooter’s completely if she wanted to continue to live in the Playboy mansion. Holly still didn’t react and silently left the room, but the next day she called and quit her job, leaving her completely dependent on Hugh Hefner for survival.

On the Girls Next Level podcast Holly also remembers a time early on when she left Hef’s room after an orgy in Las Vegas. She had already done “her part” and wanted to go back to her room because she wasn’t “feeling the vibe” from the other girls.

Soon, though, one of the girls chased her down to tell her that Hef was “worried” about her. Hef went on to tell her that he felt betrayed when she left because he cared so much about her. That whole situation made Holly feel emotionally overwhelmed and she started to realize that Hef and the Playboy lifestyle was much different than she expected.

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