One of television’s famous faces Ellen DeGeneres, had a guest appearance on Netflix’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction season 2, and opened up to host David Letterman about a childhood trauma that still haunts her. Celebrity-talk show host and stand-up comedian DeGeneres recalled that as a teenager she was repeatedly groped by her stepfather. By sharing her story, her intend is to help other victims of sexual assault come forward, CNN reported.

“That’s another thing where I’m angry at myself because, you know, I didn’t… I was too weak to stand up to… I was 15 or 16,” the 61-year-old celebrity and gay rights champion revealed. “It’s a really horrible, horrible story and the only reason I’m actually going to go into detail about it is because I want other girls to not ever let someone do that,” she added.

“It’s a really horrible, horrible story and the only reason I’m actually going to go into detail about it is because I want other girls to not ever let someone do that”

DeGeneres further explained to Letterman that her mother, Betty DeGeneres, married “a very bad man.” Recounting her horrific moments, she told Letterman, “He told me when (my mom) was out of town that he’d felt a lump in her breast and needed to feel my breasts because he didn’t want to upset her, but he needed to feel mine.”

“Again, because I didn’t know about bodies. I don’t know that breasts are all different. Anyway, he convinced me that he needs to feel my breasts and then he tries to do it again another time, and then another time he tries to break my door down and I kicked the window out and ran ’cause I knew it was going to go more to something.”

Also Read: Law alone can’t deter sexual harassment at workplace

DeGeneres didn’t want to ruin her mother’s happiness so she kept her mouth shut, as she explained, she felt she was “protecting her” and “knew that that would ruin her happiness, and she was happy with him even though he was a horrible man.”

“I should never have protected her,” she reflected. “I should’ve protected myself, and I didn’t tell her for a few years and then I told her, and then she didn’t believe me and then she stayed with him for 18 more years.” According to DeGeneres, her mother “finally left him” because “he changed his story so many times.”

“What most women do is we just don’t feel like we have a voice… we just don’t feel like we’re worthy or we’re scared to have to have a voice and we’re scared to say no”

‘What most women do’

“What most women do is we just don’t feel like we have a voice… we just don’t feel like we’re worthy or we’re scared to have to have a voice and we’re scared to say no,” the multiple Emmy-award winner said told Letterman.

“I think it’s important to talk about it because there’s so many young girls and it doesn’t matter how old you are,” she added. “And when I see people speaking out, especially now, it angers me when victims aren’t believed, because we just don’t make stuff up. And I like men, but there are so many men that get away with so much. It is just time for us to have a voice. It’s time for us to have power.”

Earlier in 2005, DeGeneres made another reveal that she was molested by her mother’s third husband when she was a teenager with Allure magazine.

Feature Image Credit: WTHR

Read More Stories By Ria Das

Get the best of SheThePeople delivered to your inbox - subscribe to Our Power Breakfast Newsletter. Follow us on Twitter , Instagram , Facebook and on YouTube, and stay in the know of women who are standing up, speaking out, and leading change.