Gabrielle Union says that thirty years after being raped at age 19, she continues to battle with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in ways that affect her everyday life. Union described the impact in a lengthy statement on Instagram, Tuesday.
"As a rape survivor, I have battled PTSD for 30 years," she began in her post. "Living with anxiety and panic attacks all these years has never been easy. There's times the anxiety is so bad it shrinks my life. Leaving the house or making a left hand turn at an uncontrolled light can fill me with terror."
She added that even attending events she's looked forward to, such as the Met Ball, can be "pure agony."
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"When we tell y’all what we are experiencing, please believe us the 1st time we mention it. No, it’s not like being nervous and everyone experiences and deals with anxiety differently, and that’s OK. I don’t need you to try to 'fix' me," she added.
Union previously opened up about the incident in a book of essays titled We're Going to Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True. She says that the traumatic event happened at gunpoint while working at a Payless shoe store.
In recent years, she's spoken about learning to "embrace" being a survivor of sexual assault.
"I have to keep talking out because people feel like they're the only ones," she told E! News in 2017. "They feel like are on an island by themselves; they feel like they are screaming into a hurricane and nobody is listening and I am just trying to say, 'I'm listening. I hear you. I've been there, and there is light at the end of the tunnel.'"
Check out Union's Instagram post below.
View this post on InstagramA post shared by Gabrielle Union-Wade (@gabunion)[Via]