Ellen DeGeneres recently sat down with David Letterman for his Netflix show, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman.
She opened up about, and described in truly terrifying detail, the alleged abuse she faced at the hands of her former stepfather. The beloved host is sharing her story to encourage other victims to come forward and help them realize they’re not alone.
According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, one in three women in the United States experience some form of contact sexual violence in their lifetime.
The Emmy-award-winning talk show host revealed that her mother, Betty, got married to the “very bad man” when Ellen was a teenager.
Ellen claims her then-stepdad used Betty’s breast cancer diagnosis to manipulate her, which led to multiple sexual assaults.
Ellen also described one horrific incident during which her stepfather tried breaking down her door, and how she managed to escape through her bedroom window.
The comedian expressed how the alleged abuse affected her self-esteem at such a crucial point in her adolescence, “I’m angry at myself because,” she said, according to E! News, “you know, I didn’t — I was too weak to stand up to — I was 15 or 16.”
Ellen kept the abuse a secret for years before gathering the courage to tell her mother — but that’s where her story took another gut-wrenching turn.
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