Lady Gaga Opens Up About Getting Raped: 'It Changed Who I Was Completely'
Lady Gaga joined “Til It Happens To You” cowriter Diane Warren for a frank discussion about thriving in the wake of sexual abuse during Wednesday night's “Times Talks.”
Kirby Dick and Andy Ziering's documentary “The Hunting Ground” features the song and focuses on sexual assaults in colleges nationwide and victim-blaming by universities.
Both Gaga and Warren share their experiences with sexual assault and the struggle each faced to overcome the shame that accompanied it.
The pop star recalled,
I didn't tell anyone for seven years, I didn't know how to accept it. I didn't know how not to blame myself, or think it was my fault. It was something that really changed my life. It changed who I was completely. It changed my body… Because of the way I dress and that I'm provocative as a person, I thought I brought it upon myself and that it was my fault.
Gaga shared her hope that those who have suffered abuse will be able to come forward and be met with concern for their wellbeing rather than questions, like, “Well, what were you wearing?” or “Are you sure that happened?”
The singer stressed the importance of not being scared off by the process of filing complaints or reports, as well.
It's important to tell the police when you have a stalker... if somebody is hanging around you or showing up at your house or loitering around you at school... to tell somebody. It's important to actually tell the police and file a complaint.
Powerlessness and pain are not things Gaga wishes fellow victims would carry with them, especially considering, as Dick indicated, one in five women will be sexually assaulted at some point.
I hope that anyone watching this today or in this room, from me, hears that I think the most important people to change the world is you. I'm not looking to the government to change my life, I'm not looking to the next president, I'm not looking to our next world leaders. I'm looking to everyone in this room — you cue culture. You are culture... Be kind, that's what I hope people take away.