"Time’s Up" pins, accessories for the movement of those in Hollywood who look forward to when every single predator is exposed, were everywhere at last night’s Golden Globes.
But not everyone speaking out with #TimesUp messages was at the award show. Bella Thorne was among the actresses who shared a very personal story over social media.
And she’s revealing some chilling details of the sexual abuse that she survived as a child.
About a month ago, Bella Thorne revealed that she’s a survivor of molestation.
The revelation may have seemed casual — issued over Twitter in a terse reply — but we can only imagine the level of bravery that it took for her to send that tweet.
What led to her sharing this with the world was a fairly run-of-the-mill Bella Thorne post, in which she praised an outfit by writing: "I would f–k this suit if I could."
Someone didn’t care for Bella’s words (if you don’t like her brazen tweets, why are you following her?), and tweeted:
"What did Disney do to this girl? I think she was molested."
That’s a tasteless tweet for a lot of reasons, managing to malign Bella, all of Disney, and also every survivor of childhood sexual abuse who’s ever lived, all in one go.
And then came Bella’s reply:
"Yeah I was. So it wasn’t Disney."
That is a real punch to the gut. A grim revelation that must have taken a tremendous amount of courage to share with the world.
And now, in a #TimesUp post to Instagram, Bella Thorne is providing more details about the horrors that she survived.
Bella Thorne wrote:
"I was sexually abused and physically growing up from the day I can remember till I was 14..when I finally had the courage to lock my door at night and sit by it."
No one — and particularly no child — should have to stand vigil over their own physical safety. But that’s what Bella did.
"All damn night. Waiting for someone to take advantage of my life again."
Some kids stop being abused when they get old enough to fight back, or "too old" for their abuser to remain interested. It sounds like Bella had to free herself.
"Over and over I waited for it to stop and finally it did."
She knows, however, that she is, in our horrible world, one of the "lucky" ones — because she got out and she’s still alive.
"But some of us aren’t as lucky to get out alive. Please today stand up for every soul Mistreated. #timesup"
So Bella is saying here that she is a survivor of both sexual abuse and physical abuse, and that it went on from her earliest memories until what would have been 2011.
That she had to lock her door at night tells us that, like the overwhelming majority of survivors of abuse, the person (or people) who hurt her was known and presumably trusted by the family.
Bella’s not making a plea for pity.
She’s sharing her story to encourage others to fight for people who can’t fight for themselves.
And to fight for those who shouldn’t have to fend for themselves.
Our society and our legal system do almost nothing to protect children.
Bella Thorne isn’t the only woman, famous or otherwise, to come forward with a heartbreaking account of the unspeakable being done to her.
The entire #MeToo movement was born of that.
And from #MeToo, which built ties of sympathy and solidarity, came the #TimesUp movement, for survivors and also their friends and supporters.
Urging everyone who cares to come after those who set about ruining lives, the campaign has only just begun.
We hope that anyone who would do the evil things that Bella Thorne reports faces justice, if they have not already.
We hope that all perpetrators do.