Betty, mother to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, has expressed regrets at ignoring her daughter’s claims of suffering sexual abuse.
Ellen DeGeneres opened up recently about suffering sexual abuse from her step dad. According to the 61-year-old award-winning talk show host, her mother married a “very bad man” before she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
He told me when she was out of town that he’d felt a lump in her breast and needed to feel my breasts because he didn’t want to upset her, but he needed to feel mine.
I’m angry at myself because, you know, I didn’t — I was too weak to stand up to — I was 15 or 16.
It’s a really horrible, horrible story and the only reason I’m actually going to go into detail about it is because I want other girls to not ever let someone do that.
We [women] just don’t feel like we’re worthy, or we’re scared to have a voice, and we’re scared to say no.
That’s the only reason I think it’s important to talk about it because
there’s so many young girls and it doesn’t matter how old you are.
When I see people speaking out, especially now, it angers me when victims aren’t believed, because we just don’t make stuff up. And I like men, but there are so many men that get away with so much.
It is just time for us to have a voice. It’s time for us to have power.
In a statement to NBC News, Betty said:
I love my daughter, and I wish I had the capacity to listen to her when she told me what happened.
I live with that regret, and I wouldn’t want that for any other parent. If someone in your life has the courage to speak out, please believe them.