Mia Khalifa Breaks Down Just How Little Money She Made in the Porn Industry

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Former adult film star Mia Khalifa has revealed how much money she made while working in the porn industry, and it’s not quite the fortune that some people might expect. “People think I’m racking in millions from porn,” she said in a recent tweet. “Completely untrue. I made a TOTAL of around $12,000 in the industry and never saw a penny again after that.”

Khalifa’s porn career came to an end in 2014 when she began to receive death threats from terror group ISIS, after performing in a scene wearing a hijab. In an in-depth interview with life coach Megan Abbott, Khalifa recently spoke about her experience working in porn, and specifically how difficult she found the transition back to “normal” working life after deciding to leave the industry.

“It wasn’t all sunshine and flowers,” she recalls, “it was actually very difficult to get back into the workforce.”Facing a huge challenge in getting back into the workplace, Khalifa was offered a temporary financial solution: keep the link to her adult scenes in her social media profiles, and continue to earn money while looking for other employment.

“It was terrifying,” she said. “I didn’t know what I was going to do. I had this huge gap period in my resume… I was trying to lead a normal life, while also maintaining my online persona, because it was financially beneficial to me, and I really needed it.”

Her first job after leaving porn was as a paralegal in a small attorney’s office, where one co-worker made her feel uncomfortable because he told her he recognized her. “After the whole high from feeling validated by porn wore off, I immediately began to feel ashamed when a man looked at me a certain way,” she said.

Shortly after, Khalifa moved to Austin, Texas, and began working on turning her passion for sports into a career. In her talk with Abbott, Khalifa said that in the years since leaving the porn industry, she has worked through her feelings of shame and met a truly understanding partner, and that the experience as a whole has made her incredibly resilient:

“Anyone can say anything they want about me and it’ll never offend me,” she said. “Of course, some things do still get to me sometimes, but I do always compare it to like, alright, but are you ISIS? Are you gonna kill me? No? Move on, keep walking.”

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