Trending 17th October 2017 by Grace McGettigan
‘I Find It Hard To Sleep’: Reese Witherspoon Admits She Was Sexually Assaulted By A Director When She Was 16
"You can only heal by telling the truth."
Reese Witherspoon has added her name to the growing list of brave women speaking out about sexual assault by powerful men in Hollywood. The 41-year-old was speaking at the Elle Women in Hollywood event last night when she admitted she was a victim of such an attack numerous times during her career.
The Big Little Lies actress began by saying, “This has been a really hard week for women in Hollywood, for women all over the world, and a lot of situations and a lot of industries are forced to remember and relive a lot of ugly truths.
“I have my own experiences that have come back to me very vividly and I find it really hard to sleep, hard to think, hard to communicate a lot of the feelings that I’ve been having about anxiety, honest, the guilt for not speaking up earlier. [I feel] true disgust at the director who assaulted me when I was 16 years old and anger at the agents and the producers who made me feel that silence was a condition of my employment.
“And I wish that I could tell you that was an isolated incident in my career, but sadly it wasn’t. I’ve had multiple experiences of harassment and sexual assault and I don’t speak about them very often.
“But after hearing all the stories these past few days and hearing these brave women speak up tonight about things that we’re kind of told to sweep under the rug and not to talk about, it’s made me want to speak up and speak up loudly because I actually felt less alone this week than I have ever felt in my entire career.
“I have just spoken to so many actresses and writers, particularly women, who have had similar experiences and many of them have bravely gone public with their stories.
“That truth is very encouraging to me and everyone out there in the world because you can only heal by telling the truth. I feel really, really encouraged that there will be a new normal. For the young women in this room, life is going to be different because we’re with you, we have your back and it makes me feel better.”
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