Demi Lovato hinted on social media that she may have been a victim of childhood sexual abuse, just hours after she admitted that she played a prank on a bodyguard – a prank that some have deemed an act of sexual assault.
As Fox News reports, the controversy began over the weekend when a Twitter fan asked her what was the best prank she ever pulled. In a tweet that has since been deleted, Lovato answered by describing what she had done to a bodyguard in Las Vegas some time ago. In the tweet, she says that the hired a “lady of the night” and sent her to her bodyguard, Max’s, hotel room. The prostitute then grabbed the man in his “area,” as she put it, causing him to “freak the f**k out.”
Almost immediately, Demi was set upon by outraged users who pointed out that what happened could be considered sexual assault.
“Let me say it louder: ASSAULT IS ASSAULT!!!!!… I can’t even imagine hiring someone to do the worst thing you can do to another human being and claim it’s a prank? MEN CAN BE ASSAULTED TOO!!”
Others pointed out that Demi’s portrayal of the act as a joke was, at best, tone deaf in the era of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements.
A little while later, according to People, Demi apologized, and also broadly hinted that she herself had been a victim of sexual abuse, as a child.
“For all of those coming at me [right now], listen to the lyrics of ‘Warrior’ and maybe you’ll have more compassion for someone who made a simple mistake. Of all people I know about sexual abuse. You don’t have to educate me.”
In the song “Warrior,” from her 2013 album Demi, the singer hints at trauma as a little girl.
“There’s a part of me I can’t get back/ A little girl grew up too fast/ All it took was once/ I’ll never be the same/ Now I’m taking back my life today.”
Neither Demi’s recent tweets nor her 2013 song are the first time that Demi has hinted at being abused as a child. Speaking to Cosmopolitan in 2013, she referred to “Warrior” and explained further that her family “knows what it’s about,” and that she would open up more about it when she was ready.
Similarly, in March of this year, she told Dr. Phil that she had been suicidal as a child and that she’d experienced things that she hadn’t talked about and may never talk about.