"90210" star AnnaLynne McCord revealed some shocking details of her personal life in the July issue of Cosmopolitan. The 26-year-old said she was raped as a teen and sexually assaulted early in her Hollywood career.
McCord decided to open up about the traumatic incidents to empower other women and let them know that "they have a voice." She was brought up in Monroe, Georgia in an "extremely religious and conservative" family. Her pastor father taught her discipline by spanking which she described as "painful and ritualistic".
"We would have to bend over the bed," McCord recalled in her essay, "sometimes with our pants down, arms outstretched, and get spanked - with a ruler in our younger years and later with a paddle that my parents bought when they thought the ruler wasn't strong enough."
She added, "I knew my mom and dad loved me, and I loved them too. I still do...but at the same time, my parents hurt me, which told me they hated me. know they were doing what they thought was right to discipline their kids. But it really messed me up."
It affected her in teenage years when she had unhealthy relationships with men. "My sexual relationships were dark and violently dramatic," she said. The trauma of her upbringing kept haunting her when she moved to Los Angeles at the age of 18 to pursue acting career. She was raped by a friend who had stayed overnight at her apartment.
"At first, I felt so disoriented and numb, I closed my eyes and pretended to be asleep," McCord said. "I wondered if I had done something to give him the wrong idea. ...My childhood had come back to haunt me again: Because of the physical abuse, I didn't believe there were borders between other people's bodies and my own. I didn't believe I had a voice."
She even thought about committing suicide. "I had pills and water in hand and thought seriously about killing myself. I didn't fear death - it felt like a solution," she said. But she was able to stand up again with the help of professionals, friends and family. "It would take an outright breakdown to truly turn things around," she said.
McCord is launching a speaking tour in colleges this fall.