Former Child Star Tatum O’Neal Details ‘Years of’ Sexual Assault And Abuse That Began When She Was 5

Tatum O'Neal, Assault
Tatum O'Neal attends the God's Not Dead: A Light in Darkness premiere on March 20, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Pure Flix Entertainment

Tatum O’Neal is sharing her struggles. The former child star, who recently came forward with her story of sexual assault is now opening up about what took place and why, including her parents’ struggles with substance abuse and addiction.

“When your parents are off getting drunk or high, they are not watching what happens to their children,” O’Neal, 54, explained in an interview with The Mail on Sunday published on Sunday, October 7. (She is daughter of Ryan O’Neal and the late Joanna Moore.)

The California native added that she “suffered years of abuse, both emotional and sexual.” O’Neal also told the outlet that two of her assaulters included a friend of her dad’s and another was a boyfriend of her mom’s who once attempted to rape her.

O’Neal — who won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar at the age of 10 for her role in Paper Moon, making her the youngest person ever to receive the award — came forward with her claims of abuse in an emotional Instagram post on Thursday, October 4.

“I am a woman and i have been sexually assaulted more than once !! It was not my fault when i was 5, 6 12 , 13 , 15,” she began the lengthy caption alongside a photo of herself smoking a cigarette in a scene from Paper Moon. “All by older men who i thought were safe ! I rarely have known safety and was always blamed for for the assaults and,my loudness , and curiosity.”

The Runaways star continued with a nod to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who came forward with allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and was mocked by President Donald Trump.

“It’s taken in me almost 55 years to know how to advocate for myself But I learn fast and here I go!! To see the president of US.Mock a woman, let alone a sexual assault victim. We’ve sunk to a depth of depravity that I never thought the president of the United States could ever sink to you,” she wrote. “With uproarious laughter for someone who was assaulted at 15 years old. Whether it was 35 years ago to a 75-year-old man at 15 I remember everything !! It’s time to band together.”

O’Neal concluded the post: “Let’s,lead with love and kindness and empathy Towards one another.But we , victims the victim of sexual Assault,or violence,must NOT put down our armor.It’s time to fight for one another and each other in this dark time ! America We can do better – we will be better!!”

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