On Tuesday, November 25, Teri Hatcher spoke to the assembly at a United Nations event about her childhood experience of sexual abuse. The UN event commemorated the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, and Hatcher recalled when she was being molested by her uncle, Richard Hayes Stone, at age 7.
“I was convinced it was my fault and I blamed myself for what had happened, so I didn’t tell anyone and I was silent. I did, however, unsurprisingly, start to act out and my mother decided to keep me away from my uncle. I didn’t see him anymore, but no one in my family ever asked exactly what happened. We remained silent,” revealed Hatcher.
— UN Women (@UN_Women) November 26, 2014
Stone was reportedly the uncle of Hatcher by marriage and allegedly stopped abusing her by the time she was 8 or 9 years old. However, he allegedly continued to sexually abuse other young girls. Hatcher apparently found a current news article about an 11-year-old girl named Sarah from her hometown who had committed suicide, implicating Stone in her suicide note as having sexually abused her for years. Hatcher then decided to reach out to the District Attorney and cooperated with the office to get her uncle sentenced to 14 years in prison.
“I am simply one in three women who is forced to accept violence as part of their life story,” said Hatcher. “This is a statistic that has to change. One in three women can no longer have to face a stigma and a fear that prevent them from seeking help.”
“Until violence against women is not a part of any woman’s story, silence will not be a part of mine,” Hatcher added.
Hatcher, who has made the prevention of sexual abuse her passion, also commemorated the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on Monday, November 24, by helping to light the Empire State Building orange.
— Human Rights (@HumanRtsV) November 26, 2014