Reese Witherspoon: “I’ve had multiple experiences of harassment and sexual assault”

Reese Witherspoon is the latest actress to speak out about her own sexual assault experiences – plural – following the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct cases.

The Oscar-winning actress revealed at yesterday’s Elle Women in Hollywood event that she was just 16 years old when she was sexually assaulted by a director.

“This has been a really hard week for women in Hollywood, for women all over the world, and a lot of situations and a lot of industries are forced to remember and relive a lot of ugly truths,” she said, according to People magazine, before revealing that she felt an incredible amount of guilty for not speaking out earlier.

“I have my own experiences that have come back to me very vividly and I find it really hard to sleep”

“I have my own experiences that have come back to me very vividly and I find it really hard to sleep, hard to think, hard to communicate a lot of the feelings that I’ve been having about anxiety, honest, the guilt for not speaking up earlier,” she added.

“I feel true disgust at the director who assaulted me when I was 16-years-old and anger at the agents and the producers who made me feel that silence was a condition of my employment.

“I wish that I could tell you that was an isolated incident in my career, but sadly it wasn’t.”

“And I wish that I could tell you that was an isolated incident in my career, but sadly it wasn’t. I’ve had multiple experiences of harassment and sexual assault and I don’t speak about them very often.

“But after hearing all the stories these past few days and hearing these brave women speak up tonight about things that we’re kind of told to sweep under the rug and not to talk about, it’s made me want to speak up and speak up loudly because I actually felt less alone this week than I have ever felt in my entire career.”

We appreciate that it must have been hard for Reese to relive these horrific incidents, but we’re very grateful that she has finally spoken out.