Lady Gaga is finally ready to open up to her family about being sexually assaulted at 19 years old. While it's a well-known fact among fans, the "Born This Way" singer's family — namely her grandmother and aunt — had no idea.
It wasn't until after Lady Gaga performed at the 2016 Oscars on Sunday that her family became fully aware, People magazine reports. The singer shared with fans via social media that she got phone calls from both her grandma and her aunt the day after her performance of “Til it Happens to You,” during which she was joined onstage by several other survivors of sexual assault.
Lady Gaga wrote that she was “ashamed” and “afraid” to open up to her family about what had happened to her — even to herself. She went on to write that she knew that the person who hurt her was “evil” but said her first instinct was to blame herself. Much to her surprise, 10 years after the fact, her grandmother cried while telling her she had “never been more proud” of her.
My grandmother (in the middle) and my Aunt Sheri (on the right) both called me the day after the Oscars because I never told them I was a survivor. I was too ashamed. Too afraid. And it took me a long time to even admit it to myself because I'm Catholic and I knew it was evil but I thought it was my fault. I thought it was my fault for ten years. The morning after the Oscars when I talked to my grandmother Ronnie, with tears in her eyes I could hear them welling through the phone she said to me "My darling granddaughter, I've never been more proud of you than I am today." Something I have kept a secret for so long that I was more ashamed of than anything-- became the thing the women in my life were the most proud of. And not just any women, the ones I look up to the most. #BeBrave #speakup #tilithappenstoyou
This is just one of many messages Lady Gaga shared during and after the 88th annual Academy Awards. Prior to the show, she shared a sweet photo of her and fiancé Taylor Kinney kissing. In the caption she wrote that she “never thought anyone would love” her because she was raped. She revealed that even after going public about her sexual assault, Kinney stood by her side “proud and unashamedly.”
Lady Gaga took the stage during the 2016 Oscars to perform “Til it Happens to You.” The song was written to be included in “The Hunting Ground,” a documentary about rape culture among college students. It was nominated for an Academy Award alongside “Earned It” (“Fifty Shades of Grey”), “Manta Ray” (“Racing Extinction”), “Simple Song #3” (“Youth”), and “Writing's On The Wall” (“Spectre”). Sam Smith went on to win the Oscar for the “Spectre” single.
Lady Gaga has been outspoken about rape and sexual assault since 2014, when she revealed for the first time that she was raped when she was a teenager.