Reese Witherspoon breaks down about her sexual assault by director

1 min read

“As you can see, I’m very emotional about it but I keep going back."

Hollywood is rapidly changing and it all started with women speaking out.

Now the #TimesUp movement has began and it’s getting bigger each day.

Reese Witherspoon has revealed details about why she recently spoke out about being sexually assaulted.

The Oscar-winning actress was just 16-years-old when she was sexually assuated by a director.

In a discussion hosted by Oprah, Witherspoon joined by by Natalie Portman, America Ferrera, Tracee Ellis Ross, Shonda Rhimes and more discussed the change they want to see in Hollywood in the wake of the sexual assault stories being heard. 

Witherspoon says she was done with staying silent.

“As you can see, I’m very emotional about it but I keep going back.

“Somebody sent me this Elie Wiesel quote that said, ‘Silence helps the tormentors. It doesn’t help the tormented, and neutrality helps the oppressors not the oppressed.’

“And there’s moments that you have to evaluate whether silence is going to be your only option and in certain times that was our only option, but now is not that time.” 


Oprah's sit-down with some of the famous faces in the Time's Up movement airs Sunday at 9am on CBS.

When speaking about the assault in October last year, Witherspoon said the experience made it hard for her to communicate.

“I have my own experiences that have come back to me very vividly, and I found it really hard to sleep, hard to think, hard to communicate.

“A lot of the feelings I’ve been having [anxiety about], about being honest, the guilt for not speaking up earlier or taking action, true disgust at the director who assaulted me when I was 16 years old and anger that I felt at the agents and the producers who made me feel that silence was a condition of my employment.

“And I wish I could tell you that that was an isolated incident in my career, but sadly, it wasn’t.”


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Written By Christina Cavaleri


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