Actress Rosario Dawson has gone public with her own experience of sexual assault, revealing she was a victim of child rape and molestation.
The Sin City star has been a big supporter of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements calling for an end to inappropriate behavior in Hollywood and other industries,and now she has explained why the campaigns have been so personal for her.
“I was raped and molested as a child, so for me, the world was like that since I was a child,” she shared on the Morado Lens podcast.
Rosario did not identify her abuser, but suggested it was a relative.
“So when I saw it (sexual misconduct) in the workplace, it wasn’t foreign to me,” she continued. “It was like, well, that even happens within the family. It happens with people that are supposed to take care of you when you’re a child.”
Despite the trauma of her past, Rosario has refused to let her abusive childhood affect her bright outlook on life, and she credits the heartbreaking death of her 26-year-old cousin, Vaneza Ines Vasquez, last year with inspiring her to make every day count.
“When Vaneza died, it was like, oh my god, regardless of how well I’ve spent these years, I’ve already got 12 more years of life than Vaneza will ever have,” the 38-year-old said. “And I think what it really did was give me back my gratitude.”
“Whenever my moment comes, I wanna know that it’s been a good life,” she added. “I don’t wanna be marinated in the upset – because I have a lot of trauma and sadness to dwell on if I want to – but there’s so much beauty and so many things to be grateful for. And I don’t want to waste my time not being dedicated to that.”
Rosario found her cousin, who worked for her, unresponsive in her Los Angeles home in May. She is thought to have died of natural causes.