Christy Mack has endured a grueling road to recovery since she was savagely attacked by her MMA fighter ex-boyfriend War Machine back in 2014, but the former porn star is now stepping back into the spotlight.
Inked magazine captured the first photo shoot of the Mack since the widely-publicized assault that left her hospitalized with 18 broken bones and required extensive reconstructive surgery on her face. And from the looks of these images, she looks more stunning than ever.
Check out Inked's serpentine-inspired shoot in the gallery above, and read this sneak peek of the tattoo enthusiast mag's Q&A with Mack provided exclusively to Maxim.
When you look in the mirror now, what do you see?
I see me. I went through a time where I didn’t recognize myself. I lost 20 pounds, I had my hair cut off, my nose changed, my teeth changed, my eyes changed, my life changed and I fell into an identity crisis. I shaved my head the rest of the way and I got used to my new features.
I went to therapy, and I tried to find my happiness and myself again. Now, I am very comfortable with myself again, though I do struggle with body image issues from time to time.
Which scars run deeper: emotional or physical?
My physical scars are long gone, but I still deal with emotional struggles. While I feel that I am in the best place of my life, I am still healing and working on myself. I have depression and anxiety. I have struggled with suicidal thoughts and rediscovering my personal boundaries. Things that I didn’t think would affect me send me spiraling into a depressive state that takes days to climb out of.
Sometimes I will cry when I hear something, or read an article that hits too close to home. There are times I won’t leave bed for days, and just sleep as long as I can. Every day is a chance to try to improve myself, work on my mental health and improve my relationships with everyone around me. I am still a work in progress.
What message do you have to those who are currently in abusive relationships?
Since my stay in the hospital, I have received hundreds of letters from people who have been in abusive situations. Some feel a connection to me and share their past; others seek advice on how to leave, or how to move on. I take every letter and message and work with anyone that contacts me to find resources in their area, and advise them how to move forward, and provide them with options.
Sometimes they just need someone to listen to them. I will always be there to listen and chat without judgment. It is important for everyone to know that there are options. There are resources to help you out of any type of situation you may be in. It feels inescapable, and you still love this person, but it doesn’t get better. Life is possible without them, and you are worthy of a healthy, loving relationship.