Entertainment

Vanessa Williams Reveals Shocking Details of Childhood Molestation

Thu., Apr. 5, 2012 4:19 PM EST
by Yvette Caslin

It seems that Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry’s willingness to share deep, dark secrets of their past has opened the path for other celebrities to disclose theirs. “Desperate Housewives” and “Ugly Betty” star Vanessa Williams has written her memoir titled, You Have No Idea. In the book, the gorgeous 49-year-old reveals a disturbing incident.

When she was only 10 years old, a friend’s 18-year-old cousin crept into the den where she slept during a sleepover. Williams recounts, “[Susan] told me to lie down on the rug. I was confused. ‘Are we going to play a game?’ As I tried to make sense of it, Susan pulled down the bloomers of my cotton baby-doll pajamas. ‘What are you doing?’ I asked. ‘Don’t worry – it’ll feel good.’ ”

She continues, “I lay there paralyzed. What was going on? I didn’t speak. She kept at [the molestation] for I don’t know how long. She slid my bloomers back up and whispered: ‘Don’t tell anyone.’ ”

It wasn’t until years later that Vanessa began to comprehend what had happened to her that night.

“For years I kept Susan’s visit to myself. I didn’t really understand until college. I was with my boyfriend and it hit me and I blurted out: ‘Oh my god — I was molested,’ ” she said.

While what had happened to her didn’t resonate at the time, she started to rebel by smoking marijuana, avoiding curfew, and while a high school student, she had an abortion.

Before finding fame as TV star the Grammy-nominated singer enjoyed success in beauty pageants, earning the crown of the first black Miss America in 1983.

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