'I have no shame in telling you either I had spent almost ten years completely alone and it still burns my heart to write it'
Duffy made headlines earlier this year as the Grammy award-winning artist took to social media to reveal that at the height of her success, she was drugged, held captive and raped after being kidnapped.
‘Many of you wonder what happened to me, where did I disappear to and why,’ she explained in a now deleted Instagram post. ‘The truth is, and please trust me I am ok and safe now, I was raped and drugged and held captive over some days… There’s no light way to say it. But I can tell you in the last decade, the thousands and thousands of days I committed to wanting to feel the sunshine in my heart again, the sun does now shine.’
Duffy, whose real name is Aimee, also shared that in the coming weeks she would be taking part in a spoken interview where she would go into detail about what exactly happened to her.
Weeks later, Duffy explained that she has decided against the interview, releasing a song, ‘Something Beautiful’, instead, to lift morale over the coming months.
Now, the singer has released her story, leaving a link to her account on her Instagram account.
‘It troubles me that this story contains sorrow, when so many need the opposite of that at this time,’ Duffy writes. ‘I can only hope that my words serve as a momentary distraction or maybe even some comfort that one can come out of darkness. We are in troubling times, where we’ve not seen such national and global worry since World War II. Now, it’s more important than ever to think about the impact we have on each other.’
Going on to explain her fear at the reception, Duffy explained: ‘I have been very warned by some I know not to tell you what I am about to tell you. Some alluded that I would pretty much be finished in whatever chances I have to make music publicly again, some have said I would be scorned by the public, another said I would be called selfish that the rapist is still at large.
‘It has served to delay my talking by weeks, and me just lying in bed looking at the ceiling trying to find meaning. I take my personal freedom over any amount of stones that can be thrown at me. If I destroy my future, I do it to honour my past.
‘Rape stripped me of my human rights, to experience a life with autonomy from fear. It has already stolen one third my of life. Deep down I do know it would have been a shame and done such an immense disservice, to my existence, to just delete myself and forget what I had experienced in music publicly.’
Speaking out about her rape and kidnapping ordeal, Duffy recalled: ‘It was my birthday, I was drugged at a restaurant, I was drugged then for four weeks and travelled to a foreign country. I can’t remember getting on the plane and came round in the back of a travelling vehicle. I was put into a hotel room and the perpetrator returned and raped me. I remember the pain and trying to stay conscious in the room after it happened. I was stuck with him for another day, he didn’t look at me, I was to walk behind him, I was somewhat conscious and withdrawn. I could have been disposed of by him. I contemplated running away to the neighbouring city or town, as he slept, but had no cash and I was afraid he would call the police on me, for running away, and maybe they would track me down as a missing person. I do not know how I had the strength to endure those days, I did feel the presence of something that helped me stay alive. I flew back with him, I stayed calm and as normal as someone could in a situation like that, and when I got home, I sat, dazed, like a zombie. I knew my life was in immediate danger, he made veiled confessions of wanting to kill me. With what little strength I had, my instinct was to then run, to run and find somewhere to live that he could not find.
‘The perpetrator drugged me in my own home in the four weeks, I do not know if he raped me there during that time, I only remember coming round in the car in the foreign country and the escape that would happen by me fleeing in the days following that. I do not know why I was not drugged overseas; it leads me to think I was given a class A drug and he could not travel with it.
‘Thereafter, it didn’t feel safe to go to the police,’ she later explained. ‘I felt if anything went wrong, I would be dead, and he would have killed me. I could not risk being mishandled or it being all over the news during my danger. I really had to follow what instincts I had. I have told two female police officers, during different threatening incidents in the past decade, it is on record.’
Later, she wrote: ‘I have no shame in telling you either I had spent almost ten years completely alone and it still burns my heart to write it. I owe it to myself to say it, I feel obliged to explain how challenging recovering truly was and to finally disclose it. I hope it comforts you to feel less ashamed if you feel alone.’
Read Duffy’s full account at duffywords.com
Thank you Duffy for telling your story. We’re forever bowing down to your strength for telling it.