Ashley Judd Reveals Sexual Abuse, Incest Suffered as Child in New Memoir

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In a shocking new memoir released today, Ashley Judd details a childhood wrought with lies, pain and sexual abuse. The title: All That Is Bitter & Sweet.

"My mother, while transforming herself into country legend Naomi Judd, created an origin myth for the Judds that did not match my reality," Judd writes.

"She and my sister were quoted as saying our family put the 'fun' in dysfunction. I wondered: 'Who, exactly, was having all the fun? What was I missing?'"

Ashley reveals that while her mother led her father, Michael Ciminella, on to believe he was the father of Wynonna, it was actually another man, Charlie Jordan.

The 42-year-old Kentucky native said that "there was always marijuana inside the house" and that her dad "was prone to taking hallucinogenics with friends."

When she was a toddler, her parents marriage dissolved, and Naomi's new man, who moved in, was an "abusive full-blown heroin addict with a criminal record."

"I was taught to believe that our lifestyle was normal and never to question it or complain. I loved my mother, but at the same time dreaded the mayhem."

Sadly, Ashley then recounts an experience with sexual abuse.

"An old man everyone knew beckoned me into a dark, empty corner and offered me a quarter for the pinball machine at the pizza place if I'd sit on his lap."

"He opened his arms, I climbed up, and I was shocked," she writes.

Then Judd adds: "He suddenly cinched his arms around me, squeezing me and smothering my mouth with his, jabbing his tongue deep into my mouth."

Shocking and depressing as this is, Ashley's candor in discussing it should help victims of similar abuse realize they are not alone, and are not to blame.

Here's a clip of Ashley discussing her past on Today this morning:

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Many people have sad, hurtful stories, however very few tell it without the 'poor me' victim stance. I take my hat off to you Ms. Judd and my high respect. Please consider the following. I say that because you are much more intelligent than I. I am merely a 48 year old student of truth. If you use phrases like "An old man everyone knew..." victim protecting abuser? When we speak out to educate others, we must be careful or it will continue. Many people speak out, but still it grows -why?
Where did it begin? What is the cause? In history, when was there another time when this was the norm?
How many are out there? What is your goal here? Self-healing or to stop it? People are aware already.
Self-healing, then I wish you many wonderful moments. Stop abuse, debate my theories and help me!
Doing what others have done before you, do not expect different results, because that would be foolish.

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I was physically and sexually abused as a child and this has impacted my ability to trust a man. My childhood was a series of horrors which I may have gotten away from but it never got away from me.
Thanks Ashley for revealing your own horror. We are kindred spirits.

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Thank you Ashley for having the courage to speak out. I have been ashamed to speak to anyone other than my mother who called me a liar when I told her of the sexual abuse as a child. Her boyfriend, one of many when I was six years old took advantage of me because my mother was drunk most of the time. To this day, I cannot forgive or forget. I am now middle aged and have a child whom I protect and ensure this will never happen to her. She knows I will always be there to believe her and respect all that she tells me and be 100% behind her for the better and worse!

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I grew up with a mom who had no concept of reality and was constantly weaving whatever truth was convenient/entertaining/expedient to her at the time. I actually wonder if the timing of Ashley's book is more to do with Ashley wanting to put some truth out there when the new "reality" show with her narcissistic and cosmetic-surgery-deformed mother and her codependent (with their mother) sister was being planned. To those who want to berate Ashley, try living with a drama addicted mother. The sexual abuse is not unique to Ashley, and while I hope it was therapeutic to her to write about it, my personal belief is that probably 90% of the population of the world was sexually abused to some extent in their youth, and most of us move on from it. I think the more pertinent point is that not everyone should be a mother, and not all moms deserve moving music, flowers and misty eyes on Mother's Day.

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Ur such a whore

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Seriously folks - abuse on any level is horrific, hoWever in this case, Ashley is trying to sell a book. Her film career is tanking (has tanked) and she sadly is now resorting to shock and awe tactics. I don't believe a word she says. Karma will not be kind to her. Now we have her sister Wynona and mother Naomi who one upped her now saying THEY were all abused. Just in time for the Judds Tour. Not a coincidence. For those people who have suffered abuse and live with those scars and memories...shame on all three of these spotlight seekers. They simply don't deserve our sympathy in any way. They are laughing all the way to the bank. Shame on these despicable women.

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all i can say-SEX IS BEAUTYFUL!!!

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Ashley, thanks for your openness & courage!!
I have always thought you were the most beautiful, sexy, and fine actresses ever.
After knowing your story, I admire you all the more!
You are so beautiful!--with that loving smile--and you are a true winner! Don't let ANYONE tell you different!
Pastor Jim

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Is her career tanking so badly that she has to come out and revile her Mother with a "Mommy Dearest" book while she is alive?
Disgusting. If it were not for her Mother, she would be a nobody without all her millions. Spare us the details, ingrate.

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I can understand Ashley writing a memoir. It will be a great help to others who have been tormented by sexual and emotional abuse from their past and hid the shame of their sufferings. At first, I was concerned that as Ashley and Wyonna's mother, Naomi would find a dislike of so many of their family secrets being exposed in yet another book,but in order to help yourself,you end up helping others when your truth is told again, as it was in Naomi's book "Love can build a bridge."

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