Lady Gaga has always been open about her struggles with bullying, substance abuse, and even the pressures of society. She uses her platform to help people who are feeling the same way she did find answers and help for what they are going through. However, she is only now opening up about something that happened to her when she was 19 years old, something that changed her as a person.
Ten years ago, Gaga was raped when she was 19 years old. She kept the event as a closely guarded secret, but opened up about it at a TimesTalks panel where she discussed the film The Hunting Ground, which discusses the growing problems of college campus rapes, a film for which she wrote a song.
She also stresses that she does not want to be defined by what happened to her years ago, though she is still living with the fallout.
“I think it was important to everyone that the person singing this song had been abused, or experienced something like that so it was authentic,” Gaga said at the panel discussion of the song she penned for the documentary, “Til It Happens to You.”
“I didn’t tell anyone for I think seven years [about the rape]. I didn’t know how to think about it,” Gaga said. “I didn’t know how to accept it. I didn’t know how to not blame myself or think it was my fault. It’s something that really changed my life. It changed who I was completely. It changed my body, it changed my thoughts.”
She further spoke about how the rape changed her body and the way she felt about it: “When you go through a trauma like that, it doesn’t just have the immediate physical ramifications,” Gaga said. “For many people it has almost like trauma, where you re-experience it through the years after it. It can trigger patterns in your body of physical distress. So a lot of people suffer not just emotional and mental pain, but physical pain as a result of being abused, raped or traumatized in some way."
And why should it define her? She's iconic and has done so much in spite of what happened to her.
“I’ll be damned if somebody’s gonna say that every creatively intelligent thing that I ever did is all boiled down to one d—head that did that to me," she championed.
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