[Trigger Warning: Sensitive Content]
AnnaLynne McCord opens up about her painful past.
On Tuesday, while attending Mosaic Foundation’s first annual Gala Against Human Slavery at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City, the 90210 actress talked to People about the numerous traumatic events in her life.
The 32-year-old said:
“I remembered a sexual assault when I was 19 years old. That was the story I knew.”
(In 2014, the thespian wrote an essay for Cosmo where she revealed she was raped by a male friend shortly after she moved to Los Angeles to audition for roles.)
The Nip/Tuck alum also told the publication she attended therapy last year to treat her PTSD. While seeking professional help, McCord recalled “memories of child sexual abuse” for the very first time. She remarked:
“A year ago, I was in treatment for PTSD and memories of child sexual abuse came back for years all the way until I was 11 years… Now I know why this is my life and this is my story because it is so personal to me.”
While growing up, the model “believed that sex equated love,” explaining:
“Sex and love equaled the same thing… So what did I do? I wanted to be loved. I thought I had to had sex with someone to be able to be loved. It was devastating to my soul as a human being to feel I wasn’t worthy of love unless someone was taking advantage of my body.”
These days, the Atlanta-Native — who is the president of an anti-human trafficking organization called Together1Heart — strives to “make sure every single person in this planet knows what love feels like,” adding:
“To be able to be a part of something where young men and women and boys and girls have been through even worse than what I have been through in my own life [and] to see that they weren’t suicidal like I was, they weren’t cutting up their arms like I was, they were forgiving and loving themselves and those who did that to them, that gave me a way out. They gave me hope.”
In her Cosmo essay, AnnaLynne divulged she “grew up in an extremely religious and conservative family in Georgia,” where her “parents believed in strict ‘discipline’” that involved spanking with a ruler, and then a paddle.
After having “a vivid nightmare about [her] childhood,” her then-boyfriend convinced her to confront her parents, where she told them, “What you considered discipline, I considered abuse.” While her “dad cried; [her] mom seemed to be in denial.”
Years after her rape, she “thought seriously about killing [herself]” following a fight with a different boyfriend in Madrid.
“I had pills and water in hand and thought seriously about killing myself. I didn’t fear death — it felt like a solution. When you’re in that mode, you don’t think suicide is a selfish thing to do. You think you’re doing everyone a favor.
I called my sister Angel; I called my dad. No answer. I got ready to swallow the pills and suddenly heard myself screaming, ‘Stop!’”
Fortunately, her sister called, and flew to Spain to be by AnnaLynne’s side.
Ultimately, “with some professional help”:
“I forgave myself for not standing up for myself, and I began channeling my experience into something good.”
If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
[Image via Nicky Nelson/WENN.]