"He dropped me off pregnant on a street corner."
Speaking on Prince Harry and Winfrey’s new mental health docuseries, The Me You Can’t See – in which Harry opens up about his past trauma and battles with alcohol and drug – she describes how, after months of abuse, a powerful music executive raped her and ‘dropped [her] off pregnant on a corner.’
Speaking through tears, the Oscar winner described the months leading up to the incident and went into detail about how it affected her mental health long-term.
She shared her experiences of self harm from a young age and said that, by and large, her mental health struggles stem from the trauma she experienced as a result of the rape.
“I was 19 years old and I was working in the business and a producer said to me, ‘Take your clothes off’,” she says.
“I said no, and I left, and they told me they were gonna burn all my music. And they didn’t stop… they didn’t stop asking me and I just froze and I just… I don’t even remember.”
She said that she understands victims who come forward and name their abusers, but for her, this isn’t an option.
“I understand this #MeToo movement, I understand that some people feel really comfortable with this, and I do not,” she went on. “I do not ever want to face that person again. This system is so abusive, it’s so dangerous.”
A few years on from the ordeal, the pop star says she went through a ‘total psychotic break’, finding herself in an ‘ultra state of paranoia’ as a result of the rape trauma.
“I [couldn’t] feel my own body,” she shared. “First I felt full-on pain, then I felt numb, and then I was sick for weeks after. I realised that it was the same pain that I felt when the person who raped me dropped me off pregnant on a corner [by] my parent’s house, because I was vomiting and sick. Because I had been being abused, and I was locked away in a studio for months.”
On her recovery, Gaga said that it took around two and a half years for her to overcome her mental health issues, but as with any illness of this nature, all it takes is a small trigger for her to experience the physical and mental symptoms once more.
To watch Oprah’s new series, The Me You Can’t See, tune in to Apple TV+ from May 21st.
If you have been a victim of sexual assault or know someone who has, the Rape Crisis national freephone helpline is open 12 to 2.30pm and 7 to 9.30pm every day of the year on 0808 802 9999.