Jade Roper Opens Up About Sexual Assault, Lady Gaga Thanks Her
After watching the singer be joined onstage by rape survivors, Jade Roper was so moved she first posted about it on Instagram.
I've been trying for hours to think of what to say here, typing and back spacing. To be honest, I'm terrified. Yet, this is something I felt was put on my heart to write and to share and after all these years allow myself to be free of something I felt I had to hide. Lady GaGa's performance was powerful and really moved me. I share my feelings and my story in the link I put in my bio. Hopefully sharing my story can help others as much as it is helping me heal. Much love.
And then, taking many by surprise, she detailed her own harrowing experience on her blog.
“I've only shared my story with but a few, not even my family knows,” the Bachelor in Paradise alum writes. “But when I saw GaGa fill the whole room with emotion as she sang with conviction and urgency, as I saw survivors of sexual assault bravely stand up there showing the world that what happened to them does matter, tears streamed down my face.”
As Jade recounts, she was only 16 years old and attending a high school party when she was assaulted by some guys she and her friends knew.
“I'm not going to go into detail, but I remember it getting late and I needed to be home for my curfew,” she explains. “I remember one guy holding me down while another got on top of me. I remember them driving me home and my parents were gone, driving around town looking for me. When my parents got home, my dad said he found me in my room on the floor in my underwear, mumbling to him I wasn't innocent anymore. I was a virgin.”
The now-29-year-old later contacted the men responsible but they “denied anything happened,” and she admits she was too afraid to tell her parents or the police.
She continues, “I was afraid of what they would think of me — or worse, that they wouldn't care at all. I convinced myself I must have deserved it. All the hurt and the anger I had towards the boys that assaulted me, I took out on myself. I destroyed myself with harmful words and internalized all my emotions.”
The newlywed says that, while she’s in a good place now, it’s been “a long road to healing,” and she’s hoping opening up will help others in similar situations.
“I am not chained to this experience, it doesn't have to control my life. I am unafraid of the feedback anymore. This happened to me and it matters. I matter. And I am worthy of love.”
After sharing her story on Twitter, Lady Gaga herself responded to the post, and thanked her.