Celebrity host and actor Ellen DeGeneres has gone on record and opened up about being sexually assaulted as a teenager. Appearing on the second season of David Letterman’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, DeGeneres spoke about a ‘very bad man’ who was briefly married to mother, Betty.
According to this report appearing on CNN, DeGeneres spoke about how Betty was diagnosed with breast cancer shortly after marriage, and had to get one of her breasts surgically removed. Using this information, Ellen’s step-father would routinely ask to ‘examine’ her breasts. “He convinced me that he needs to feel my breasts and then he tries to do it again another time, and then another time,” DeGeneres told Letterman.
Things got to a point during the alleged incidents that Ellen recounted how the step-father even tried to break down her bedroom door, after which she fled from the window. “I’m angry at myself because, you know, I didn’t — I was too weak to stand up to — I was 15 or 16. It’s a really horrible, horrible story and the only reason I’m actually going to go into detail about it is because I want other girls to not ever let someone do that,” DeGeneres admitted on the show.
DeGeneres even went on to address how she broke it to her mother, whose happiness was definitely going to be ruined. However, Betty didn’t believe Ellen at first. She finally divorced him after 18 years of marriage, because according to Ellen, he kept changing his story. And shortly after that, Ellen expressed her anger about a culture where victims aren’t believed.
“I think it’s important to talk about it because there’s so many young girls and it doesn’t matter how old you are. When I see people speaking out, especially now, it angers me when victims aren’t believed, because we just don’t make stuff up. And I like men, but there are so many men that get away with so much” DeGeneres says on the show.
The new season for My Next Guest Needs No Introduction features names like Kanye West and Shah Rukh Khan, apart from DeGeneres. It premieres on Netflix, this Friday.