We're used to Stacey Dash stirring up drama with controversial statements — but now, the 49-year-old actress is opening up in a whole new way.
In her new book There Goes My Social Life, the Clueless alum reveals her personal struggle with abuse, addiction, and how her experiences shaped how she views the world.
Miz Dash told People:
"Sometimes my past is extraordinarily heavy. That's when I scream and cry until I feel like I can breathe again."
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Growing up in South Bronx, New York, Dash said she was molested for the first time when she was just four years old by a teenager. By the time she was 16, she became addicted to drugs after she was offered a line of cocaine.
The mother-of-two shared:
"I couldn't find happiness. It got to a point where I didn't even want to live anymore. The voice in my head was saying, 'There's nothing here for you.'"
Her past greatly defined how she views social welfare programs today:
"When you get stuff for free, you have no self-worth. When you have no self-worth, you become depressed, addicted and either abused or an abuser. This is what perpetuates the cycle of violence in inner cities. We don't need free stuff. We need opportunities."
"When I say there should not be a BET channel or a Black History Month, I'm saying we deserve more. I just hope people understand that I'm not judging; I'm coming from experience."
As she entered her early 20s, Dash found herself still hooked on drugs and in an abusive relationship:
"He would punch me in my body, my legs, my chest, anything that could be covered. But part of me felt like I deserved it because what I was coming from was no better. I didn't have an identity. That's why I fight for women and people in the inner cities today. I want them to know it will get better."
After mustering the strength to leave her abuser, Stacey began dating musician Christopher Williams and became pregnant shortly after:
"When I got pregnant, I was doing a lot of drugs and I didn't want to live. I wanted to die. I was going to have an abortion. I was crying and I said to God, 'Please tell me what to do.' And God told me, 'Keep your son.' I ripped the IV out of my arm and I said, 'I'm keeping my son.'"
Her son Austin is now 25 and Dash also shares 12-year-old daughter Lola with ex Brian Lovell.
At the end of the day, S.D. admitted she will always be honest with her kids about her past:
"The best way to protect my children is to be honest with them. I let them know that I survived. I'm not a victim. And there is nothing they can't overcome."
Wow. What a powerful story.
[Image via WENN.]
Tags: body, bookz, drugs, stacey dash, violence