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Queen Latifah Opens Up About Sexual Abuse

Known for being a powerful female rapper-turned-actress, who transformed her ‘All Hail the Queen’ mentality into a brand, Queen Latifah opens up about surviving sexual abuse at the hands of a male babysitter in the July issue of Essence magazine.

“He violated me,” the Academy award-nominated actress revealed to the publication. “I never told anybody; I just buried it as deeply as I could and kept people at an arm’s distance … I never really let a person get too close to me.”

The Academy award-nominated actress dons a new look on the cover of the mag and discusses how the abuse made it difficult for her to settle down. “I could have been married years ago, but I had a commitment issue,” Latifah admitted.

Latifah also says she kept the abuse a secret until she was 22-years-old. “I had to get it off my chest. My mother felt terrible. She was kind of a country girl, so she wasn’t up on how slick people could be. When I told my dad, he said nothing,” she described.

The rapper/singer/actress goes on to describe feeling powerless and blaming herself until seeking help from her therapist. “I was a kid, and I had no power or control over the situation. I really wish I’d had the strength and the knowledge to say something sooner, because I always wondered, Did he do that to someone else? But I accept that the time for action has come and gone.”

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