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“He dropped me off pregnant on a street corner.”
Speaking on Prince Harry and Winfrey’s new mental health docuseries, The Me You Can’t See – in which Harry opens up about his past trauma and battles with alcohol and drug – she describes how, after months of abuse, a powerful music executive raped her and ‘dropped [her] off pregnant on a corner.’
Speaking through tears, the Oscar winner described the months leading up to the incident and went into detail about how it affected her mental health long-term.
She shared her experiences of self harm from a young age and said that, by and large, her mental health struggles stem from the trauma she experienced as a result of the rape.
“I was 19 years old and I was working in the business and a producer said to me, ‘Take your clothes off’,” she says.
“I said no, and I left, and they told me they were gonna burn all my music. And they didn’t stop… they didn’t stop asking me and I just froze and I just… I don’t even remember.”
She said that she understands victims who come forward and name their abusers, but for her, this isn’t an option.
“I understand this #MeToo movement, I understand that some people feel really comfortable with this, and I do not,” she went on. “I do not ever want to face that person again. This system is so abusive, it’s so dangerous.”
A few years on from the ordeal, the pop star says she went through a ‘total psychotic break’, finding herself in an ‘ultra state of paranoia’ as a result of the rape trauma.
“I [couldn’t] feel my own body,” she shared. “First I felt full-on pain, then I felt numb, and then I was sick for weeks after. I realised that it was the same pain that I felt when the person who raped me dropped me off pregnant on a corner [by] my parent’s house, because I was vomiting and sick. Because I had been being abused, and I was locked away in a studio for months.”
On her recovery, Gaga said that it took around two and a half years for her to overcome her mental health issues, but as with any illness of this nature, all it takes is a small trigger for her to experience the physical and mental symptoms once more.
To watch Oprah’s new series, The Me You Can’t See, tune in to Apple TV from May 21st.
If you have been a victim of sexual assault or know someone who has, the Rape Crisis national freephone helpline is open 12 to 2.30pm and 7 to 9.30pm every day of the year on 0808 802 9999.