I’ve left the furry fandom. I had a “farewell letter” here, but I’ve replaced it with this brief post because I don’t want to give the impression that I’m kicking up dirt; I want to be left in peace.

I regret everything I did in this community. From day one bad actors sank their hooks in me because I wrote a few racy stories about humans & dinosaurs. I was led down a very dark path because I was 19 and didn’t know any better, whereas everyone pulling my strings had something to hide and I tolerated their sick perversions because I thought this was just “how things were”. They normalized disgusting ideas to me that I knew nothing about when it came to social ramifications. I know better now, and have for years, but I didn’t have the nerve to stand up for myself and say “no” to these literal predators when I should have. I was, and still am to this day, terrified of them; I fear they will never stop haunting me. (As of 2020 they haven’t stopped prying into my life.)

A close friend realized I was in a dire situation and reached out back in 2011. I’d fallen victim to the fandom’s feedback loop of exalting everyone who provides them with spank material; it blinded me to the fact that I was being taken advantage of. I said a lot of profoundly stupid and made-up things to impress people. I had unknowingly sold my dignity and the realization of this disgusted me. I began replacing my furry involvement with healthier hobbies that didn’t revolve around sex and I am a better person today because of this. I left everything behind. I continued to go by “Dracokon” for a few more years thinking I could be an example of someone who turned their life around but I understand today that was a fool’s errand. Everything that name represents to me elicits nothing but painful memories and leads to literal anxiety & panic attacks. It reminds me that I was a victim.

I wish I never wrote my first few stories; sharing them was a mistake and I was goaded into doing it by people who didn’t have my best interests at heart. I REALLY wish I never involved myself with the nightmare that was Herpy but I got duped into that as well and stuck around for way too long because, again, I had no backbone or exit strategy. During my time in the fandom I received propositions for gross sexual “favors”. I was constantly groomed. I was sexually assaulted. Even as I broke away malicious people still gravitated toward me and their dishonesty — intentional or not — ruined my ability to trust others. I never spoke a word about any of this as it happened because I was scared of retaliation (and I still refuse to name names because of it). The damage done to me psychologically has taken almost a decade to unravel. I’ve been through a dozen medications. For years I’ve been receiving treatment for PTSD and have had to spend time as an inpatient at psychiatric facilities. The literal physical tissue of my brain was damaged by what I went through; I will never be “okay” again. Ever.

Yes, there are awful people in this fandom; sadly I’ve met a lot of them. But no, I was not one of them; I was a literal patsy. Mark my words, the stories you hear about the monsters in this fandom are by and large TRUE and I am an unfortunate example of circumstance. My emotional and developmental problems made me an extremely easy mark. I have moved on and reclaimed my life. I am deeply sorry for what I said and did while I was here. Even though I’m talking about things that happened a decade or more ago these are matters that have eaten at my very soul every day for literal years and they’re still worth addressing if only for the sake of closure. The regret I feel is indescribable. I mean this with as much weight as I can give to words on a screen: I’m sorry.

Please respect my privacy and my desire to disengage. Please do not harass or stalk me; I have no gossip to share. Everything I am comfortable or willing to say I’ve said on this page. I have nothing more to add regarding the companies, conventions, websites, and their personnel who hurt me. With this awful chapter of my life behind me I just want to heal and become the best person I can be for me, my family, my future partner, and for God. The best years of my life were stolen from me by unspeakably atrocious people and I will never get them back. Please allow me to have the life that I very nearly lost.

Thank you, and God bless.

– L. Kohn