If you have been waiting, here is part three of my interview with Nina Hartley. In part two, Nina talks about both her sexual and professional future as well as advice to aging women.
Ashley: How would project what your personal sexual future will look like?
Nina: Umm, my future as a sexual being is fine. Barring unforseen accidents, I expect to be as interested in sex now as I've been my whole life. I expect to have partners that I like who like me back. My private sexual life will be perfectly fine. I am not even worried about that a little bit. I am a polyamorous, bisexual and kinky person, so I have a wide circle of friends who I can be affectionate and/or sexual or emotionally intimate. I have a great example of fierce older women in my family, on both sides, who were active late into life. Sexuality is my thing; I'll always be associated with sex. After 30 years how could I not be? Nina's personal sex life is going to be fine. I have my trusty Hitachi and I have friends of all kinds of persuasions. I will have all the outlet that I will want.
Ashley: What can you say about your own aging process and what advice can you give to aging women?
Nina: In terms of my own physiological aging, my pre-menopause sex and my post menopause sexual life are almost exactly the same. I talk to women all the time who say I'm really messed up over menopause because before menopause I lubricated and I had desire. Once it (menopause) hit that all went away and they miss it, so I let them know that's normal and it happens to many people. See your doctor to see if any hormone replacement therapy is right for you. Then with your partner or alone, mourn the loss of what was. Mourn the loss of your youth, it's a loss. It's a change, but it's also a loss. A loss that you don't like very much. It was easy a certain way, it always was a certain way and now it's not and it's not coming back. Although with some women, the right balance of hormones can bring it back pretty amazingly, but for me my interest in sex has always been from the head down.
Ashley: Can you talk more about that?
Nina: When I'm alone, my fans often ask, how often do you masturbate, Nina? They think that I must you know... I don't get horny that way. If there was an island with food, clothing and shelter I might need to masturbate once a month. My vulva never says "Get me something now." I know women who are truly horny, like the way guys are horny. I am interested in sex with someone else in the room because, for me, part of my kink, my polymorphously perverse sexual nature, I am interested in sharing sexual space with anybody who wants to and whatever that might look like. Consensually of course. Once we agree that we want to share sexual space together I don't care what we do, because I am helping person and I like to help. I'm a nurse and I'm a health care provider. I really do like helping other people have a sensual or sexual experience they always wanted to have in safe way. I have really good boundaries. It is all about you. I'm not working through my issues with you. I have a husband. I work through my issues with him. Well I do have my own hard boundaries: no animals, poop, kids, blood, death, clowns, tickling, and adult baby. That's a no for me.
Ashley: What do you see in your professional future?
Nina: Professional future...I see myself in it, unless I can get a good gig coaching. I see myself being a teacher on camera, but staying more and more dressed and helping other people be sexual on camera. Umm... because while in person all bodies are beautiful and I don't have an age limit, I must say, I have been messed up by the media enough that in terms of objectifying bodies on camera I prefer up to 50 and fit. Looking at people who are visibly old and aged, it's not going to be a turn on for me, but I am also a professional. So if I am...in my other mind... If I am an older person who is struggling with these issues it would be very empowering and very important to see images of themselves on camera. But would that be a masturbation image... I don't know. We are many years away from seeing aging bodies as sexy or sexual. We can say all bodies are sexual. I think we are a number of decades away from truly being able to see beauty at all ages. It's a youth oriented culture.
Ashley: What would like to see in 10-20 years in the porn industry?
Nina: In 10-20 years, I would like to see porn...again porn is just something that shows the bits. You have good porn and bad porn, stupid porn and not stupid porn, moving porn and ugly porn, soft porn and hard porn. Porn encompasses all those things from naked women or men gamboling in the meadow to "whoa I didn't know that would fit in there." The most important thing to remember is that no matter how ugly the porn may look, no matter how uncomfortable the movie may make you feel, the people were paid, they knew what they said yes to and they might be having a great time. I don't want to do that scene, but for some women they've always wanted to do the scene that I consider very out there, that I would consider degrading and they consider challenging. Or some people have really dirty fantasies and they love that. Some people get excited because it's dirty. I grew up in the 70s and it was all about if it was consensual, it was okay. So dirty, I'm not religious and I am certainly not Christian, so because it's dirty and wrong, isn't why I want to do something. For other people, if it's dirty sign me up because for them everytime they do a dirty thing a. it's exciting and b. it just pokes that preacher in the whatever. How porn aging will look? I don't...I can't see that far into the future because it grows so much. There is no central porn commission. There is no central think tank. There's no NPAA...There's nothing there, so porn if it sells will make it. If it doesn't sell, it won't make it; simple as that. The population in America is very large. The population of the world is very large.
Ashley: How would you describe, since you started in 1984, how would describe the change in the general public's perception and acceptance of sexual expression? Did it change?
Nina: The 80s were all about it. Once the video came in 1984 that was the quick and brutal death of film and the quick extension of video. There has always been films made since then, but before video it was all film. In the 80s the push was both mainstreaming and mainstreeting porn. You have the mom and pop video stores and they would come to the shows every year and say "our adult section keeps us in business," or “Without the adult section we wouldn't be able to make a living.” So clearly the market was there for sexually explicit material. Then from 1990 to 2000 we hideously over produced subpar material. I think over time the fans have lined us and taken us for a ride and stole our money. With all the video and porn piracy. I think young people don't think you should pay for porn, but old people think ‘you stole from me I am going to steal from you.’ In the middle of the 80s there were the so called porn wars. There was the Meese Commission on pornography which was Reagan's attempt to debunk what Nixon's panel had discovered, which was that porn was not a bad influence. Now people say that porn is more extreme, it's worse. There is so much more porn than there was before. There is alot more of everything. There is always ugly porn to be had. You can always find ugly porn. You can find beautiful porn; really well thought out crafted movies with full female characters. That's always been a market. That market is still served somewhat by 2 or 3 companies that still do the story movies. More people your age grew up with porn and they either like it or they don't like it. Porn is not sex education. Another reason for good comprehensive sex education is for people to realize this is a movie. The most important thing for people who don't like porn to understand besides that nobody in commerical American porn is forced into it. We have to sign releases, we have to offer proof of age, they have to be paid. This is not Moldova, this is not Central America, this is America. You want to make sure your porn comes from people who are paid and tested and agreed to do this buy American made porn.
In the next few months, I will sporadically sprinkle in more Nina interview, so stay tuned!