Celebrity

Lena Dunham reveals she was date raped in college

So much respect to Lena for her very real account of sexual assault.

In one of the most honest pieces of writing we’ve ever seen, Lena Dunham has revealed that she was date raped while she was at college.

In her new book, Not That Kind of Girl, Lena describes an "aggressive" sexual encounter she experienced when she was only half-conscious. She explains that the incident left her vagina so badly damaged, she needed medical attention.

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In a move upsettingly common with victims, Lena also says that at one point she even blamed herself because she was too drunk to stop it.

"I was at a party, drunk, waiting for attention," she told NPR. "And somehow that felt like such a shameful starting off point that I didn't know how to reconcile what had come after. But I knew that it wasn't right and I knew in some way that this experience had been forced on me."

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While the explanation of the incident is particularly difficult to read, one of Lena’s bravest moments is when she admits she wasn’t even sure what had happened to her at first and that she “burst out laughing” when her friend told her she had been raped.

"I didn't really go to any more parties. I just stopped going. I stopped putting myself into - I don't think I - I basically didn't have a drink for the rest of college," she added.

"It was a painful experience physically and emotionally. And one I spent a long time trying to reconcile."

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Since then, Lena has emailed a friend of the man in question to explain how the incident made her feel, so that he wouldn’t read about it first in her book.

"It wasn't something that I was able to be honest about [at the time]. I was able to share pieces, but I sort of used the lens of humour, which has always been my default mode, to try to talk around it," she expalins.

"And I said to this old friend in an email, I said I spent so much time scared. I spent so much time ashamed, I don't feel that way anymore. And it's not because of my job, it's not because of my boyfriend, it's not because of feminism - though all those things helped - it's because I told the story. And I still feel like myself and I feel less alone."

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But writing about that night didn’t come easy for Lena who admits she was reluctant to include it in her book, but she’s hoping it will help others.

"The chapter about date rape in the book was a really, really terrifying thing for me to put into the world because as important as the topic is - and we are also having this massive moment of cultural awareness about campus assault, which is a very gratifying thing to see and I hope it leads to incredible change - but just sort of honestly, the idea of seeing sort of, you know, the fourth-hand UK Daily Mail headline - Lena Dunham Tells All About Rape - was - it was a nightmare to me.

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"But at the same time, I think I knew that sharing that experience was - I not only felt it was important because of what I was seeing other young women go through, I felt it was important because of what it was going to give me spiritually to not be hiding that anymore."

We have SO much respect for Lena for sharing her story and being so brutally honest about the way victims can feel when they are sexually assaulted.

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