Lady Gaga recently shared a very private part of her past. The singer and fiancee of Chicago Fire star Taylor Kinney divulged she was raped at the age of 19–and that she kept the rape a secret for a full seven years.
It was during a TimesTalks Q&A session promoting the campus rape documentary, The Hunting Ground, that Lady Gaga shared the traumatic event from her past. The documentary features a song on the subject of rape, written by Lady Gaga.
“I didn’t tell anyone for, I think, seven years,” Gaga, who is now 29, said. “I didn’t know how to even think about it, 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.”
In addition to the physical pain and ongoing mental and emotional anguish, Lady Gaga explained she relived her rape throughout the years.
“It can trigger patterns in your body of physical distress,” she said.
The singer also hit upon the issues of guilt and self-blame.
— billboard (@billboard) December 12, 2015
“After it happened, I’m like, ‘But what did I do in my life to bring it upon myself?’ Maybe there was some sort of religious guilt attached to it, that I had somehow inspired the violence,” she said. “For me, because of the way that I dress and the way that I’m provocative as a person, I thought I had brought it upon myself in some way, that it was my fault. I just never even told anyone.”
As Lady Gaga clearly knows now, women aren’t ever responsible for becoming victims of rape. Her public image and huge fan base will no doubt help her spread this word to people on college campuses and beyond.
— ET Canada (@ETCanada) December 12, 2015
Kudos to Lady Gaga for the bravery it surely took to speak out about this trauma she experienced 10 years ago.