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Lady Gaga is opening up about her past sexual assault that led to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In an emotional sit down for Oprah Winfrey and Prince Harry's new unscripted series The Me You Can't See, Gaga revealed her rapist, an unnamed music producer, left her pregnant "on a corner."
"I was 19 years old, and I was working in the business, and a producer said to me, 'Take your clothes off,'" she recalled.
"And I said no. And I left, and they told me they were going to burn all my music. And they didn't stop — they didn't stop asking me," Gaga continued, through tears. "And then I just froze and I just — I don't even remember."
Gaga will not name the man who allegedly raped her.
"I understand this #MeToo movement, I understand that some people feel really comfortable with this, and I do not — I do not ever want to face that person again," she explained, adding, "This system is so abusive, it's so dangerous."
The 35-year-old songwriter first shared in 2016 she suffered from PSTD due to sexual assault. Gaga was diagnosed after she went to the hospital for chronic pain and a psychologist was brought in.
"First, I felt full-on pain, then I went numb. Then I was sick for weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks after, and I realized it was the same pain I felt when the person who raped me dropped me off pregnant on a corner, at my parents' house, because I was vomiting, and sick," Gaga revealed. "Because I'd been being abused, I was locked away in a studio for months."
Gaga wants people to know "you can come back" from that kind of trauma.
"But when it hits you really hard, it can change you," she added. "I had a total psychotic break, and for a couple years, I was not the same girl."
The A Star Is Born actress said she still feels the pain she felt "after I was raped."
"I've had so many MRIs and scans, they don't find nothing. But your body remembers," she continued. "I couldn't feel anything. I disassociated —it's like your brain goes offline."
Gaga self-harmed to try and cope, which "came from a place to show the hurt inside."
"You know why it's not good to cut? You know why it's not good to throw yourself against the wall? You know why it's not good to self-harm? Because it makes you feel worse," she shared. "You think you're going to feel better because you're showing somebody, 'Hey, look, I'm in pain.' It doesn't help. I always tell people, 'Tell somebody, don't show somebody.'"
Gaga said the process of healing has been "a slow rise."
"Even if I have six brilliant months, all it takes is getting triggered once to feel bad. And when I say feel bad, I mean want to cut, think about dying, wondering if I'm ever gonna do it," she said.
While Gaga "learned all the ways to pull myself out of it," she said it took "two-and-a-half years."
"And I won an Oscar," she laughed. "Nobody knew!"
Gaga, who won an Oscar in 2019, previously spoke about going through a dark period in her life when the Joanne World Tour ended in 2018. She has tried to use her platform to talk about mental health and mental illness, which is what Oprah and Harry's new series examines. The singer said she wants to try "to make sure I give back" by sharing her experience, instead of "locking it away and faking it."
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, help is available. RAINN's National Sexual Assault Hotline is here for survivors 24/7 with free, anonymous help. 800.656.HOPE (4673) and online.rainn.org.
If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.
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