Tabitha Brown took to social media last week to reflect on an experience she says was weighing “heavy” on her heart. The 44-year-old transparently shared her experience with rape. As well as advice for anyone struggling with its trauma.
On March 29, the actress and social media personality took to Instagram to share a message with her fans.
“I don’t know why this is so heavy on my heart, but I wanted to share this now. And I talk about this a bit in my first book Feeding the Soulso it’s not new to many people, but for whatever reason, God has placed it on my heart tonight.”
Brown went on to explain that when she was 15 years old, she snuck out of her mother’s house and took her mother’s car to a hotel party, along with two friends. When Brown and her friends arrived at the location, she said she met a boy.
“And there was a guy there who I thought liked me. I thought was cute, and I had known him, but didn’t really know him.”
The actor explained that over the course of the night, she “ended up being raped” by the boy.
“It wasn’t like a brutal rape… Sometimes people hear ‘rape,’ they think that it has to be one way. It simply means I said ‘no,’ and he wouldn’t stop.”
Tabitha Brown Explained How She Pushed Past Her Trauma And “Forgave” Herself
The 44-year-old shared that “for years,” she blamed herself for the incident.
“I had snuck out my mama’s house, I had taken her car and I went to this party. And I knew better. And in my mind I convinced myself, ‘That’s what you get. You deserve that. Like that was your punishment.’”
However, in her “adult life,” Brown realized that what happened was not her fault. Additionally, she also wants other survivors to know the same.
“There is absolutely never any reason to be raped. It is never your fault. Okay? Doesn’t matter what you wore. Doesn’t matter where you went. Doesn’t matter what you did wrong, but under no circumstance is it ever your fault for getting raped.”
Brown went on to encourage others not to hold themselves “hostage” to their “guilt.”
“It was heavy on my heart that you’re holding yourself, hostage, you’re carrying this guilt, you feel like you deserved it, but you did not. You did not deserve that. Okay? No one deserves to be raped.”
The Actor Is Encouraging Others To “Release” Their “Guilt”
As Brown initially explained, she wrote about her experience with rape in her 2021 #1 New York Times Bestseller novel, Feeding the Soul. Prior to then, the actor shared that no one, outside of her two friends, knew about what happened to her.
Furthermore, she decided to divulge the secret to the world because she felt it was making her “sick,” and she “had to release it.”
“God gave me a word five years ago and He told me my secrets were making me sick, and so I had to release it. So I say to you — if you’ve been holding it in for so many different reasons, whether you think you’re guilty or that you deserved it: embarrassment, shame, whatever the case may be, it’s time to release it. Because your secret is making you sick. It wasn’t your fault.”
Brown’s message has since garnered a multitude of responses from social media users, many of whom thanked the actor for the message and also used her social media post as a space for them to share their trauma.