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Melissa Benoist says she is a victim of domestic violence

Press Trust of India  |  Los Angeles 

"Supergirl" star Melissa Benoist has come out as a survivor of domestic violence.

The 31-year-old actor posted a video on Instagram where she detailed her ordeal that lasted several months.

"I am a survivor of domestic violence, or IPV (intimate partner violence) which is something I never in my life expected I would say, let alone be broadcasting into the ether," Benoist said.

Though she did not name her abuser, the actor described him as "charming, funny, manipulative, devious" and younger than her.

Benoist said abuser was not violent initially but soon became one, owing to his "insecurity and depression". Still she chose to stay in the relationship out of fear that something bad might happen to him.

In one incident, the actor said her abuser threw his iPhone at her.

"The impact tore my iris, nearly ruptured my eyeball, lacerated my skin and broke my nose. My left eye swelled shut, I had a fat lip, blood was coursing down my face and I can remember immediately screaming at the top of my lungs," she added.

Benoist said the man would often tell her how to dress and made her change outfits before leaving the house.

"Work in general was a touchy subject. He didn't want me ever kissing or even having flirtatious scenes with men, which was very hard for me to avoid, so I began turning down auditions, job offers, test deals and friendships, because I didn't want to hurt him," she added.

After a while, the actor said, she got accustomed to the life she was leading at the time.

"The stark truth is I learned what it felt like to be pinned down and slapped repeatedly, punched so hard the wind was knocked out of me, dragged by my hair across pavement, head butted, pinched until my skin broke, shoved into a wall so hard the drywall broke, choked.

"I learned to lock myself in rooms but quickly stopped because the door was inevitably broken down. I learned to not value any of my property replaceable and irreplaceable. I learned not to value myself," Benoist added.

Though it took her a while, Benoist was able to come out of that abusive relationship.

She concludes the video, saying, "None of this is salacious news, it was my reality. What I went through caused a tectonic shift in my outlook on life.

Benoist is currently married to Chris Wood. She was previously married to Blake Jenner.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, November 28 2019. 10:35 IST
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