In her upcoming memoir, You Have No Idea, singer-actress Vanessa Williams reveals that she was molested by the acquaintance of a family friend when she was just 10 years old. The Huffington Post reports:
"She told me to lie down on the rug," Williams told People. "I was confused. Are we going to play a game? As I tried to make sense of it, Susan pulled down the bloomers of my cotton baby-doll pajamas. 'What are you doing?' I asked. 'Don't worry — it'll feel good.' "
The 49-year-old actress, of Desperate Housewives and Soul Food fame, said that she kept the assault a secret for years. She believes that the trauma of the incident caused her to act out during her later teen years, including having an abortion during her senior year of high school.
Williams came to national attention after winning the 1983 Miss America pageant and subsequently being forced to return the crown when a nude-photo scandal broke. But Williams successfully weathered that storm, going on to become a multiplatinum recording artist in addition to finding success in film and television.
Read more at HuffPost Black Voices.