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How to Survive a Sex Tape Scandal

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Every day you hear it in the tabloids or even on the real news: someone somebody knows was seen naked or having sex. Scandal ensues!

The latest is Kanye and the Kardashians arguing over whether there even was one. More newsworthy, but hardly surprising, was the revelation that Hugh Hefner filmed bigwigs getting busy in his mansion, without their knowledge.

My philosophy is pretty much WHO CARES, and I hope that is how you will feel after reading this, should a sex tape leak happen to you.

Read: Pam and Tommy: The Untold Story of the World’s Most Infamous Sex Tape

People have sex. Sometimes people film themselves having sex. Sometimes said film ends up being blasted accidentally onto the Cloud or texted to everyone in your contact list. Sometimes it isn’t an accident, but a dangerous ex. Or an angry one.

The usual response you want to take on in order to survive the scandal is: SO WHAT? It was your business, and it was unintentionally broadcast beyond your business. Move on, people, nothing to see here.

Of course, there are times such a blasé attitude is easier said than done.

How to Survive a Sex Tape Scandal

When You Are the Victim

If someone filmed you without your knowledge, you and your lover or lovers are all victims of a perv attack.

If your lover filmed you without your knowledge, you are the victim.

If you both filmed the tape but your lover leaked it, to be funny, or out of revenge for something real or imagined, you are the victim.

Never lose sight of that when your family, friends, office, church, or volleyball team treat you differently. Speak up for yourself and remind them of that fact.

“I understand that seeing your son dressed as a racehorse and standing on his head while performing fellatio on the strap-on of the minister’s ex wife is shocking, and I wish you hadn’t seen my private life. We are consenting adults and the doors were closed, but someone decided to violate us, and you. I’m sorry for that, but I hope you can move past it.”

The scandal is more scandalous for the leaker, the filmmaker, or the vengeful.

In most cases, the scandal for the naked people is nonexistent. You might fear someone making fun of you or your virility, or be angry at the violation of your lover, because you are a sensitive guy and she did not consent to being seen naked by everyone else. But all that will pass. You were doing nothing wrong, after all.

What is wrong is that someone vicious and unhinged decided to leak your private life into the world. They are the ones that should be embarrassed.

Remember, Nothing Is Shocking

Even if whatever you were doing was embarrassing—maybe she doesn’t like how she looks naked, maybe you didn’t want your twin sister knowing that you like to have your butt crack tickled with a pink feather—okay. It’s understandable and it’s embarrassing, but it will blow over.

You can see on Pornhub or any number of sites every imaginable sex act and all kinds you could never imagine. Your father is kinkier than you ever want to know. Your surgeon does insane things with those medical supplies.

Read: How to Live Out Your Favorite Porn Scenes

The scandal is almost over already. Hold your head up through it, and kindly but firmly remind anyone you need to that your private life was made public against your will and that you cannot apologize for being a sexual person like everyone else.

Comfort the Uncomfortable

The people who react the strongest or strangest to your tape may not be worth your worry. Or they might be your mother, someone you love most. Go ahead and comfort those people. Make them more comfortable! Encourage them to get past it. “I know, I know Ma. I wish you didn’t have images of me on all fours emblazoned on your eyelids. I also wish I hadn’t walked in when I was 12 and caught you riding Dad. But we’re still the same people.”

When the Sex Is the Least of Your Worries

Of course, there are times when a sex video is not just embarrassing, but incriminating.

If you were doing something someone didn’t consent to, you have bigger problems and now there is evidence to boot.

Maybe you are married, and Hefner has you hammering the blondest bunny, and your wife saw it.

Maybe you’re doing something illegal, not that uncommon in party settings, but it makes you look bad.

If you’ve been caught in the act, it’s not so much the nudity that matters, but the deception, broken vows, and the cover-up.

You are at rock bottom. It is a terrible situation to be in, but it is also the start of the possibility to change course.

Damage Control 101

If you did something wrong and you want to fix it, man up and address the situation head on. Do not continue to lie, cheat, and justify your actions if you’ve been caught cheating and you care about your girlfriend.

It might be time to have that hard conversation about how she never gives you head, about polyamory, about your blow problem, about your secret affairs. Don’t blame her if it’s you—the only chance you have of salvation is the truth, and some hard work ahead.

Read: What It’s Like to Stay In a Relationship After Cheating

If you’ve been shown to the whole world wearing red satin panties and a corset, you didn’t do anything wrong, but you may still need to do damage control. This time it will mean a different difficult convo with the wife—you should have done the “honey I have something to tell you” in advance of the video doing it for you. Lots of those conversations ended in deeper intimacy and kinkier sex.

Finally, if you could have done more to stop a video leaking—say it was your angry ex and her actions exposed your hookup date to embarrassment and violation—apologize to her, and affirm that you respect her and want to make it up to her.

No matter where you are at in your sex tape scandal, remember, a year from now most of this will be moot.

Have you survived a leaked sex tape? How did you handle it? Please share!

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