Trigger warning: This article contains descriptions of sexual assault
Actress Selma Blair has shared candid details about alcohol addiction and sexual assault in her new memoir – revealing that her battle with booze began at the age of seven.
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Selma also shares that she was raped “multiple times” during her college years, often, she says, because she was “too drunk to say the words‘ Please. Stop. ‘”
Selma, best known for her work in Legally Blonde and Cruel Intentions, is an open book in the memoir Mean Baby, set for release on May 17.
“My first [time] drunk [was] when I was seven. I had my first drinks much younger, ”she told NBC.
“It was hard. I don’t know. But maybe it was easier. Maybe I would never have survived without a drink, ”the 49-year-old said.
“The desire to drink as much as I could, as often as I could, stayed with me, and did not let go for more than 20 years.”
In an interview with People, Selma said she didn’t know if she “would have survived childhood without alcoholism”, calling it her “coping mechanism”.
The actress said her reliance on alcohol escalated as she reached her teen years and early adulthood, using it as her way to deal with personal trauma.
She has been sober since 2016 after passing out on a plane alongside her son Arthur, who was then four years old, and being carried off the aircraft in a stretcher.
“The thing that made me really stop drinking was that I could have died on that plane,” she said in her NBC interview.
“I mean, now that I was a mother, it just changed everything.”
‘Quiet and ashamed’
In the memoir, Selma says she “drank to forget” and to bury things that “hold the shame in your cells”.
She recounted a trip during her college years, where she was raped after drinking.
“I don’t know if both of them raped me. One of them definitely did, ”Selma said, alluding to more than one potential perpetrator.
“I made myself small and quiet and waited for it to be over.
“I wish I could say what happened to me that night was an anomaly, but it wasn’t.
“I have been raped, multiple times, because I was too drunk to say the words‘ Please. Stop. ‘
“Only that one time was violent. I came out of each event quiet and ashamed. ”
This is not the only encounter Selma details in the memoir, recalling an incident with a dean at her high school, Cranbrook Boarding School in Michigan.
“I counted on him for everything,” she wrote.
“I really couldn’t believe my good fortune in having such a wonderful mentor and friend.”
However, she then details a time when the man embraced her, saying “It felt too long and too still and too quiet”.
“His hand went to the small of my back, tracing the space just above my tailbone. His lips were on my mouth, ”she wrote.
“Please, I thought. Please don’t go under my pants, my dress-code-approved Ralph Lauren khakis into which I’d carefully tucked a plaid shirt, please.
“You are a grown-up and I love you; please do not put your hand inside my pants.
“But he did.
“He didn’t rape me. He didn’t threaten me. But he broke me. ”
Selma said when she told her mother what had happened, she was instructed not to tell anyone.
“He’s beloved at that school. And you’ll just be a troubled girl … I’m sorry, ”she recalls her mother saying.
‘Doing so much better’
The actress also wrote about her chronic pain that led to a multiple sclerosis diagnosis in 2018.
“I had so many things that were so indicative of MS,” she wrote.
“Doctors thought I had leukemia. I didn’t, but it was a constant high fever. … The ailments as a kid connected.
“I do know for sure I had it by the age of 23. It was definitely there for so long.”
Selma has since undergone chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant to treat the incurable disease.
“I’m in remission [but] I built no new lesions, ”she said.
“I still have, you know, some brain damage and things that are there, but I’m okay with it.
“I’m grateful because I’m doing so much better.”
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