Playboy Enterprises mogul Hugh Hefner has responded to claims by a former girlfriend, Playboy model and reality TV star Holly Madison, that her time living in the Playboy mansion made her miserable enough to contemplate suicide.
"Over the course of my life I've had more than my fair share of romantic relationships with wonderful women," Hefner, 89, said in a statement. "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."
Madison, 35, who starred with fellow Playboy model Kendra Wilkinson and Bridget Marquardt in E!'s "The Girls Next Door," said in her new memoir, "Down the Rabbit Hole," that as one of Hefner's seven concurrent girlfriends from about 2001 to 2008 she felt trapped and depressed. "Everyone thinks that the infamous metal gate was meant to keep people out," she wrote. "But I grew to feel it was meant to lock me in."
Hefner would manipulate his girlfriends against each other, Madison wrote, and involve them in twice-weekly, drug-fueled sex with himself and various participants. The women had curfews and were not allowed to hold jobs away from Playboy, she claimed.
"Maybe it was the pot and the alcohol, but drowning myself seemed like the logical way to escape the ridiculous life I was leading," Madison wrote, adding, "Would he even miss me? No, I was certain I was just another warm body -- as we all were."
Madison remained on "The Girls Next Door" for a time even after breaking up with Hefner. After leaving the show in 2009, Madison went on to have a daughter, Rainbow Aurora, 2, with her fiance, music festival producer Pasquale Rotella. The two married on Sept. 10, 2013.