Stars who openly admitted that they were victims of domestic violence

Melissa Benoist

Photo credit: Kristina Bumphrey/Variety via Getty Images

In 2019 Awesome girl star Melissa Benoist talked about the domestic violence she experienced with her ex-husband, Blake Jenner.

“I am a victim of domestic violence or IPV (intimate partner violence). I never expected to say this in my life, let alone broadcast it on the air,” she said in a candid Instagram video.

In it, Benoist told how her ex’s behavior worsened over the course of their relationship, ranging from controlling to physically abusive. “In hindsight, I see that each red flag followed a very clear path in terms of violence,” she said.

“The worst truth is that I experienced what it felt like to be pinned down and slapped repeatedly, punched so hard that it knocked the wind out of me, dragged down the sidewalk by my hair, headbutted, squeezed until my skin broke, pushed against a wall so so hard that the drywall cracked and it choked,” she revealed. “I learned to lock myself in my rooms, but I quickly stopped because the doors were inevitably broken. I have learned not to value any of my possessions – replaceable and irreplaceable. I learned to underestimate myself.”

Benoist then recalled the moment Jenner threw her phone in the eye, which made her realize she had to leave.

“The impact tore my iris, almost tore my eyeball, cut my skin and broke my nose,” he recalled. “My left eye is swollen. I had a thick lip… Something inside me snapped, it was too far.

“It’s an injury that will never fully heal, my eyesight will never be the same again,” the star continued. “Whatever I thought love was, it certainly wasn’t what I was going through. I was very tired of living the way I was living, but it seemed too late to turn back. Would it be safe to leave?”

Soon after, she confided in a friend who helped her end the relationship.

“The trip was not a walk in the park. “It’s not an event, it’s a process,” she said. “I felt a complicated sense of guilt for abandoning and hurting someone I had protected for so long, and yes, (a) mournful feeling of leaving behind something familiar. But luckily, the more the people I let in, the more they empowered me, I never lost the sense of clarity that kept telling me, “You don’t deserve this.”

In 2016, she filed for divorce.