The actress and former Miss America talks about a tragedy in her childhood that had made her 'more sexually promiscuous' as a teenager.
Vanessa Williams appears on "Oprah's Master Class" on OWN and opens up about being molested by an 18-year-old woman when she was 10 years old. The abuse happened in the summer before her fifth grade when she joined her friend's family on their trip to California.
"We ended up staying with a family friend of theirs. They had an older daughter," the actress says. Initially, Williams thought the woman was "one of the cool girls" that made her feel like she was "a grown up."
One night when Williams and her friend were sleeping, the older girl sneaked into their room and woke Williams with a strange request. "She told me to lie down on the floor. She took my bottoms off and she said, 'Be quiet,' " Williams reveals, "She went down on me."
At such an early age, she didn't understand what was happening or what she should feel about it. She continues, "I had no idea what it was, but I knew it felt good and I knew I shouldn't be saying anything and I didn't tell anyone."
Williams wanted to talk to her parents about the incident when she got home. However, a family tragedy stopped her. "I saw my dad's face and his face was gray. And I just found out that his brother had died," she says. She then decided to just suppress it.
As a result, the incident had brought negative impact on her psychology. The abuse sexualized her at an inappropriately early age and took away her innocence. It also made her feel ashamed about herself. She says, "Had that not happened in my life and had I had an opportunity to have a normal courtship with a boyfriend at 16 or whatever... there wouldn't have been that shame that was always haunting me. It made me more sexually promiscuous and more sexually curious at a younger age than I should have been."
Williams previously revealed she had been sexually abused as a child in her 2012 memoir "You Have No Idea".