The recent Lady Gaga – Oprah interview was nothing short of heartbreaking. In her mind-numbing interview with Oprah, Lady Gaga shared how sexual assault can take the best from you, and how you can fight it.
Lady Gaga. This name is synonymous with talent, strength, boldness, feminism, and conviction. There are hardly any human beings on this planet who have not heard her name and her iconic music. Her bold and devil-may-care attitude is what makes people admire her. She well and truly does not care what you think of her, and that is where her strength lies.
But, you know what they say? The strongest people have gone through the most pain. In the Lady Gaga – Oprah interview, she revealed that she was repeatedly raped by a music producer when she was 19. Even though she is well beyond his clutches now, she is still carrying the pain and the scars from that tumultuous time. Lady Gaga also disclosed that she started to suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of being raped. What made the situation and Lady Gaga’s mental health worse, was the fact that she did not get to process her trauma.
According to Lady Gaga, she became a star all of a sudden and the next thing she knew was she was touring around the world. She was going from hotel room to garage to limo and the stage, and this made her repress all those traumatic thoughts at the back of her mind. But, the worst was yet to come. She started to feel intense physical pain suddenly, which was similar to the pain she used to feel after her assaults. Additionally, she used to have trouble breathing and her body used spasm continuously. It was none other than PTSD, and it broke her.
Crying and forced to face her long-repressed trauma, Lady Gaga shared that it was a dark period in her life. She realized that in order to move on from this, she will need to face this head-on. It took her years to finally face her pain and share her story with people, in the hopes that it will help other victims speak up, take control and not have their lives defined by it.
You can watch the entire Lady Gaga – Oprah interview here:
What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a mental health condition that can happen to literally anyone. PTSD develops due to experiencing major trauma or traumatic event such as sexual assault, war, accidents or losing a loved one due to unnatural circumstances. This condition cripples a victim mentally, where they find it difficult to cope and lead a normal life. Studies have shown that sexual assault victims have a 94% chance of developing PTSD, with around 50% of them dealing with it in the long-term, similar to what Lady Gaga experienced.
‘And mental health is a medical condition, it should be treated as a medical condition. It should not be ignored.’ – Lady Gaga
Lasting effects of sexual violence
The Lady Gaga – Oprah interview clearly proved that sexual violence or sexual assault is not just the physical act in itself; it stretches far more than that. A trauma like this can wreak havoc on not just your body, but your mind also. Apart from PTSD, it can lead to a lot of other complications like:
Depression is one of the major effects of sexual assault. According to experts, it is normal for victims and survivors to experience feelings of hopelessness, sadness, emptiness for long periods of time. Apart from this, victims’ thought processes and patterns can also be severely affected.
2. Substance Abuse
Sexual assault is such a painful thing to recover from, that a lot of people fail to do so. They simply do not want to face the truth, rather they look to suppress the pain completely. And this is what leads to substance abuse. Indulging in drugs and alcohol takes care of the painful memories temporarily, and does way more harm than good.