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Tits & Trauma- my implant journey

Updated: Jul 30, 2019


It has been exactly a year this month since I had my breast implants removed.

The journey of body image, health and navigating my career in the adult industry has been an interesting one, and I'm definitely on the easier end of the spectrum comparatively to people who are dealing with these issues who have suffered and lost more than I have. I feel it is time to make a post about the entire journey from when I made the decision to get implants, my implant illness journey, the recovery and where I'm at now. I made a video after explanting (removing implants) that got quite a lot of attention but I feel like it was very clinical and not really addressing the full scope of the experience because I wasn't yet fully aware of just how much trauma the situation caused me until the months that followed in my recovery... so here it is all laid out for those who are curious, who have implants or who are thinking to get them.



Young, sassy and flat chested-Photo by Hana Schlesinger


My choice to get breast implants was, what felt like, an empowered decision. I had no one telling me I needed them, I had no abusive boyfriend making me insecure about my body. I was already a well paid erotic entertainer who had people spending very good money to admire my body, tiny breasts and all. I was a little insecure about my small breasts but I was also very much a feminist rebel with a 'I don't give a fuck what you think of my body' attitude. I profited off those who did like them (and the rest of my body and personality) and told the others to go fuck themselves. I had many customers beg me not to get implants, telling me they thought my body was beautiful and perfect the way it was. 'I'm not getting them for you!' I would say, I didn't care if someone liked my breasts small or large. I didn't want ANYONE telling me what to do with my body.

I used to dislike the look of implants because I saw a lot of terrible boob jobs. The hard-as-rocks or jumbo sized blow up doll look was absolutely not for me! But I also saw some amazing ones that jiggled, bounced and looked natural that swayed my opinion on them. After playing with these kind of boobs (my best friend had some and we would always do dances together) I decided that I wanted some too. They were cute and fun and lingerie would fit me better! It would suit my figure since I'm tall and have a pretty big booty- so I wouldn't look ridiculous like some of 'those girls', and it would be good for my career as I was doing a lot of modelling as well as dancing.

I was making pretty good money and after winning a showgirl competition, with the prize money, I had enough for my boobie trip to Thailand in no time! I was a strong independent woman making my own money and deciding to upgrade my already awesome body to a better model because I made the choice and I wanted it. YEAH EMPOWERMENT! I think this is still one of the best places to come from in making a decision like this- but it still at it's core wasn't a healthy mentality and had serious consequences for my future.



When you research breast implants, or at least when you did 8 years ago when I was getting them, they mention a few possible complications. Capsular contraction when the scar tissue hardens- leaving a weird looking implant until they remove it, and rupture- which I was told wasn't possible with the 'gummybear' implants I was getting (not actually true, there are some horrible photos and videos of ruptured gummy implants!). Most complications were caused by women not following the 'rules' post surgery (like picking up heavy bags) or having some kind of accident later and there being a bad reaction (like a car crash). I was absolutely not told about cancer risks or autoimmune flare ups, chronic illness or any of the other issues I'm not fully aware of thanks to private internet groups and women sharing their stories.

Had I been aware of the other complications, would I have done it? It's hard to know since I was far from healthy at that point in my life, big on partying, drinking and vegan junk food. I do however have a history of autoimmune diseases (I had chronic fatigue after getting glandular fever when I was 15), so if any respectable doctor had told me that implants often spark autoimmune responses, especially in people with already compromised immune systems, they would have known I would have absolutely not been a candidate for surgery and that it was a big risk. It did not at all feel like any kind of risk for me to get implants, it felt like a totally safe and fun thing to do.

My friend had described her experience getting implants as mildly traumatic, but I was pretty numb to that at the time. It was horrible of course, waking up in so much pain, on a morphine drip that caused insane heartburn that hurt more than my chest, painful scars that needed to be stretched out lest I limit my mobility (my incisions were in my armpits so I had to work to lift my arms above my head each day), weird squelching sounds in my chest from the fluid moving around, puffy stretched skin, painkillers nowhere near as strong as I needed, nausea and sitting in beds sleeping for days.. It is surreal now to think that I didn't find it all that big of a deal at the time. I had paid thousands of dollars to go through this and weeks of my life in recovery, unable to move much.


The sensations in my chest were altered forever. The first 6 months I felt nothing at all in my chest between my armpit and my nipples. I never fully got sensitivity back there, even post explant surgery. My nipples already had issues from the scar tissue left from nipple piercings and the last of my pleasurable sensations in my chest were gone. They were now things that looked erotic, but didn't feel erotic at all. I often hear of women having orgasms from breast massage and I wonder if I will ever be one of those women after all the trauma my chest has endured, I do tantric breast massage and it brings up a lot of emotions but none pleasurable. Perhaps one day.



Finally able to rock the 'underboob' look!- Photo Tom McEvoy for my company TrashDolls

After I healed fully from surgery, I loved my implants. I loved how they looked on me and I often said 'It feels like I finally hit puberty!'

TADAH! Look at these lumps on my chest! I am a woman! Look how feminine I am now!

Only now do I see how problematic this idea is... that my idea of femininity and womanhood was based around curves and lumps, and that I wasn't a 'real woman' until it clearly showed on the outside. It was the days of the 'Only dogs like bones, real women have curves' memes and it had really sunken in to my psyche. I had often been bullied for being tall and thin, for having the physique of a '12 year old boy' and having men rudely question if I was a man or a woman. I was already very 'masculine' in a lot of other ways, being very outspoken and un-ladylike and I had a lot of male friends who never seemed to think of me as a woman or as dateable- then suddenly I had a lot more male attention, although I never even really wanted it unless I was profiting off it. I didn't want random stares and gropes and comments at all, that was never the intention. I wanted to feel at home in my body, comfortable in my skin when I was naked... but of course the stares and comments came despite my efforts to cover up at times. I truly feel for my sisters with naturally large breasts and the over sexualisation that comes with it. But this was my choice- I wanted these, so I had to deal with the negative repercussions. Some women love that attention- or they think they do- but there is an inherent feeling of un-safety with this attention that gives you anxiety and I don`t really believe any woman truly wants that deep down.

Perky fake breasts are probably always going to be sexualized, and I became more and more self conscious outside of the strip clubs because of it. They were great for work and for modelling, and in the right clothing things would fit perfect! But a lot of the time I craved to just wear a singlet with no bra and not look erotic or pornographic, to be able to go to the beach and take my top off and not gain stares and attention, to dance topless at a festival and not feel objectified, I suddenly envied the flat-chested goddesses who could walk around topless or in skimpy outfits and just look cute, not looking erotic or like they're trying too hard.


At a burner festival I even had a man interrupt my hulahoop flow to ask me if they were real or not, clearly staring at my barely-covered breasts for a while wondering, and deciding that my choice to get surgery warranted interrupting me and questioning me for his own knowledge. It confirmed my insecurity that people were watching and looking, and that I wasn't safe to have my breasts exposed even at a festival which is supposed to be free expressive.

My implants were always bursting out of clothing when I danced and in a lot of angles they were so clearly fake, even if they in general looked natural when I was standing up naturally. I was getting photos back from performances I did and shoots, and all I could see were these weird, round, creepy looking implants. I was embarrassed of them and myself, even though I got compliments all the time about them looking natural and 'perfect' from so many people.

I had swapped 1 mild insecurity for another, much bigger insecurity in the end.



What could have been a nice photo had my implants not been so creepy- Photo by Lux Faber

Over the years gravity started to take hold and I started noticing 'rippling', when the skin is a little too thin and you can see the ripples in the implant, particularly when you bend over. I could also quite clearly see the top line of the implant when I leaned back and stretched. More to be self conscious about! They started feeling more foreign in my body the more I got in touch with myself, they felt alien and numb and creepy. I started to look at the idea of removing them, especially when a friend removed her implants and she looked amazing after. It was time.


During my research into explanting, I came across Breast Implant Illness. Suddenly a lot of things clicked into place... I had been getting sicker and sicker over the years. I didn't know what was causing it, I thought it was stress and my environment so I went to Thailand and tried to eat and live healthy but ended up spending almost the entire trip in bed, crying most days and feeling like I was literally dying. This happened over and over for the next few years where I would have some good periods where I was somewhat OK then a flare up and I would spend weeks on end in bed, barely able to move. I knew from having Chronic Fatigue as a teenager that there was no point going to the doctors because they still have no idea what to do with autoimmune diseases, I didn't have health insurance and I knew it would be a waste of time and money. This was familiar territory and I thought it was some unexplained relapse. I tried all the usual dieting, minimizing stress, going away on holidays- but it got worse and worse. Chronic body pain, migraines, weak muscles, dizziness, brain fog, vertigo, swollen lymph nodes, depression, anxiety, premature aging. It wasn't going away no matter what I did. It was obvious when I found the 'Breast Implant Illness and Healing' group that it was the implants making me sick. I had all the symptoms and shared the same story as all these women... and on a simple logical level it totally made sense- there was a foreign object in my body, right by my heart, lungs and vital organs, that is made of hundreds of chemicals and just sitting there- warm in my body- for years and years. Of course over time some of the chemicals will migrate away from the implants and my body would start to attack it. Of course my body wants these foreign objects gone. I wanted them out ASAP but I was in the middle of summer and festival season, I had a lot of gigs and things to do and no savings, so it would have to wait a few months. I started researching where in Europe to remove them and making plans for the winter.


Photo by Justine Louise, London


I got sicker and sicker, I couldn't handle working at the club I was at anymore because I was so depressed and all the indoor smoking made my migraines worse and made me nauseous. I was so sensitive to smells, light and sounds so it was hard to work in any nightclubs for performing. I relied on speed to get me to gigs because I had no energy of my own to source from. I could rarely train and work to improve my skills. I wasn't making much money performing or from the events I ran, so I had even more stress triggering me. My partner and I were fighting a lot because he couldn't really understand what I was going for and at times I knew he didn't fully believe me, even if he was there physically supporting me and saying all the right things. Invisible illnesses are hard to comprehend, and I can see how others wouldn't have any idea what it is like to go through that. I turned into a complete mess, I started to hate myself for the choices I had made that got me to this point where I was. I hated that I had been so stupid, that I had wasted so much money and time on the implants, that I had voluntarily destroyed my body. Deeper and deeper I sunk. The more I was aware of the implants making me sick, the worse it got. They were a constant reminder, they were toxic and sitting there in my body, they looked disgusting to me. I hated them and I wanted them out right away.



One of my last performances with fake breasts- showing how round and fake they looked when I was contorted.

We finally went to Sweden in December 2017 and I had a month until my surgery. This was probably one of the worst months of my life. My partner had to work to help us get the money for the surgery while I sat at home waiting around, my parents had to sent me some money to help out too. I could barely do anything at this point. I managed to pull off a couple of performances and a photo shoot to make some more money, and besides that I sat in this room in his dad's apartment going not-so-quietly insane. I had no friends there, no money to leave the house and nothing to do but wait for my surgery. He was busy working and when he came home he had no energy left for me. He was already doing all he could to support me and had nothing left to give. I am still so eternally grateful for the support he was able to give in this time, but unfortunately these situations are bigger than what 2 people can handle sometimes. I felt abandoned, I felt crazy, I could barely get out of bed. I knew I was slowly dying, I felt death coming closer. I wanted to leave, to run away anywhere... I was stuck. It was snowing and I didn't even have a house key so I couldn't go for a walk and be in nature, I had no money as it was all going to surgery so I couldn't get public transport so I was essentially trapped.. not something easy to handle for a free-spirited world traveler. I didn't have the internal ability to ask for help because I was so low, and I always hate admitting when I'm weak. I was in survival mode. There was nothing but the surgery, and I didn't really realize the scope of the severity of my mental and physical health at this point. I was having suicidal thoughts, I wanted to die. I had so much fear- what if it isn't the implants? What if this doesn't work? I can't live like this. I won't. I shut down. I cried for days.


One regret I have is not getting tested for lymphoma. 'Breast implant associated Large cell anaplastic lymphoma'- caused by precisely the type of implants I had. I had all the symptoms. Why didn't I think of it at the time? It was understandably a scary thought, also I had no spare money and no health care- testing was pointless in my mind. But another case on record would have helped get implants banned. France is now banning those implants because of there being too many reported cases. It could have helped people.

And maybe people would have taken me more seriously. People understand the severity of cancer. There is help for cancer patients. You get sympathy when you have cancer. Support groups, funding...

Mysterious chronic autoimmune diseases don't get taken seriously. People think you're making it up, that it's psychosomatic, that you're just putting it on to get attention. It hurt to feel like this is how people probably felt about me deep down, I could see it in their tone and the way they looked at me, even if they should KNOW that my freedom and my independence is so important to me, it is who I am. Having to be this sad, sick, pathetic mess was hell for me. I live to move, I live to create, I live to explore the world. Being in bed and needing people to make me food because I can barely stand or take care of myself is the worst possible reality for me. Why the hell would I chose that? Create that? I was a prisoner of my own body, and I had made the decision years ago that inevitably locked me in there.

The illness also slowly destroyed my relationship, it was never the same. He never saw me the same after that, even when I got better, and we really tried. I truly believe the Luna he saw me as before I was sick had died during that time, and when she returned months and months later, the damage was already done. I won't go too much into this topic because it is very painful for me, and for his sake too, but I will just say that this was one of the worst repercussions of the illness which caused me some of the most pain in the long run. I wish we had got outside help, I wish we had both had more support, I wish we had been to counselling, group support or anything, but we didn't get help and it tore us apart little by little, trying to deal with something that was so much bigger and darker than we thought it was. We were in survival mode, and it is what it is and we tried our best given the circumstances.

The months that followed were hard, I had a lot to do to get my strength and mental health back.

My first performance back with no breasts, there were comments from women in the audience that 'She would be pretty if she had boobs but she's average otherwise' which was a nice welcome back to the itty bitty titty comitty- gotta love women being supportive of other women! It didn't phase me- I was already feeling better than I had in a long time even just weeks after the surgery. Most of the symptoms disappeared in a matter of days.

I had a great birthday in Berlin and threw the last Faetish party, surprisingly surviving being at the venue for 24 hours straight. We went out a lot, had some fun dates and ate a lot of good food. Things actually felt pretty good for those 2 weeks and I was happy to see my friends and show off my natural chest.

After that we flew to Turkey where the 2 months of training and emotional processing began. My period was weeks late which sparked the first freak-out, then I got scolded for messing something up and broke down in my room for an entire day. I was still an emotional mess even though my health was getting better. I tried every morning to do a little exercise, to try to get on my aerial hoop and do a little conditioning- and I spend a lot of the time laying on the ground feeling like a hunk of painful jelly. Day by day I tried to do a little more and tried to motivate myself but it was extremely hard to do- to know you used to be fit, strong and healthy goddess and now you're a weak and feeble mortal again. Over the 2 months I got there, day by day.

Slowly, slowly, I felt stronger and more myself again. I had to adjust to the new balance point in my body, which was unusual to realize since I now had a few KGs off my chest so my balance was off. I was getting back on track with my health and wasn't having any bad flair ups or being stuck in bed. Good signs, but I stayed skeptical, waiting for any moment when I would be fatigued again and bedridden.

I started doing self-love work and practices, following amazing inspiring women online and doing guided practices to help me return to myself again. I used to be so happy, positive, motivated and in love with life- I knew I could get there again somehow. Some days it felt like total bullshit but slowly things were sinking in.

Months and months of work. Then another injury. More bed, more rest. More self love.

Work, work, work.

Workshops, online courses, guided meditations, yoga, dance, cuddles. Lots of crying. Some of it working. Feeling stronger. A whole year of ups and downs and processing. Will it end?

Eventually I've been getting there but it took years to get me to such a low point so it isn't surprising that it's taken me a year to recover, mentally and physically. I'm happy to say I am finally feeling myself again.

And as for my career- some of last year I was making a lot less money than previously at strip-clubs and I was tempted to blame my implants, but in reality I was so depressed still it was hard to be positive and work. Last month while feeling good I managed to make more money then I ever have in my entire career, so clearly the lack of implants is not affecting my income. People are far more into booties these days anyway ;) .

My breasts are slightly deformed now. It feels ridiculous to say that because they do look pretty good now, but it is true, and I was even one of the lucky ones. Besides the obvious surgical scars, I had a dent from a stitch pulling in, and now I have a dent in my right breast from the healing. I tried doing Chinese cupping on it and it improved, but I think it will be a little deformed forever now. Not only did I go through all of that, but my breasts are left worse than they ever were to begin with. My breasts were perfect to begin with, tiny, puffy and all.

Most women have to get a lift after removing their implants because of all the extra skin, I was lucky that I originally got very small implants so it wasn't necessary. More scars, more trauma on the breasts.

Women who had mastectomies after having cancer were getting implants put in and getting cancer again. They were being left with more scars, more trauma.

Women who had implants for 20+ years were taking them out and having such bad adhesion in their chest that they need full reconstructive surgery- if they can afford it.

Women have died because of their implants and the complications.

If we had all accepted our bodies and made no alterations, how different would our lives be?

All the things I could have done on all those days I was stuck in bed... I can only imagine.

Where would my relationship have been if we hadn't been through such a traumatic experience and I hadn't become such a mess?

I really do believe things happen for a reason and that we grow in infinite ways from our bad experiences, but you can't help but wonder how different things would have been if we didn't make these choices that negatively impact our lives so much.

Now all I can do is try to stop others making the same mistake I made.

My recovery is still a journey- I am doing breast massage regularly trying to get sensitivity back in my breasts- to get the feeling back and fill my breasts with love, and to love them even with the dents and scars. I often cry and apologize to my body for the harm I have done by not loving it fully. It gets easier but it does not happen overnight.

I have to fight the paralyzing fear every time I get a hint of being sick- that it is back, that I have not recovered and that any minute now I'll be bedridden again. It has been a year and I have not fully relapsed yet but I still feel like it may come at any moment and that I'm just lucky to have gone this long.

I have to work through the regret and 'what ifs' as well as the disgust I feel towards implants now. I can't look at them the same on anyone and I find myself feeling so much sadness towards women who have them, even when they seem healthy and happy. I don't want to be judgmental but it is a result of trauma that my reaction is so strong to it now.

I am not totally anti-plastic surgery. I had rhinoplasty when I was younger and I have no regrets there- it was an amazing decision for me. However, Implanting and injecting toxic chemicals into our bodies is a different case. We are not being told all the risks, we're being told it is safe when it is not and we're being flat-out lied to. Plenty of doctors will still blatantly lie to women about the risks- never mentioning the rising rate of cancer caused by implants and the autoimmune diseases (saying there is no evidence despite the huge amounts of scientific evidence) I really understand now the severity and the pain that this industry is causing on us and I can't un-see it. Once you go down the rabbit hole of learning the reality of these procedures, there is a massive shift.




Filling my tiny boobs with ALL the love!


I want women to know that their womanhood has absolutely nothing to do with their lumps and bumps on their body.

I want women to know they can be sexy, sensual and erotic even if they have a completely flat chest because eroticism and sexuality is largely a mental and sensory state- getting implants will negatively impact your capacity to feel sensations and therefore actively hurt your own sensual experiences (not to mention being in bed for weeks feeling like you're dying is a bit of a libido killer).

I want transwomen to know that they also don't need to take that risk- and you can be a beautiful women who is flat chested too! I know this must be even more confusing and tough for transwomen when it is such a symbolic surgery for their choice to live their authentic self- but this still buys into the idea that woman=breasts and there are so many epic goddesses, cisgendered and trans, that have no breast tissue and ROCK IT.

I want us all to know that out bodies are AMAZING, FUNCTIONAL, FANTASTIC WORKS OF ART and we don't need to go to such extremes! We're so lucky to have these amazing bodies that can feel so much and do so much, and we should be worshiping them and loving them and taking care of them. Our bodies give us so much pleasure, and to minimize our physical pleasure so that they 'look good' to someone else is so absurd to me now. Yes I still like to dress up and do my hair and look good, but I will never again risk my health in such an extreme way like that just for aesthetics. Being healthy and happy is the most sexy thing to me, and implants won't give you either of those things.

If you or someone you know has breast implant illness, or suspects that they do, please check out this website and join this facebook group for more information. You can also message me and I am happy to chat and give any guidance you need. You don't need to be alone in this.

Love, Luna.