Sally Field Opens Up About Sexual Abuse, Her Secret Abortion, & ‘Complicated’ Burt Reynolds Relationship In New Memoir
Sally Field drops not one but many bombshells in her new memoir.
The star of Gidget and The Flying Nun was at one time the poster girl for wholesome, so In Pieces is likely to blow a lot of minds when it goes on sale next week.
In an interview with The New York Times on Tuesday, she previews some of the most intimate passages in the book.
For instance, she writes about being molested at the hands of stepfather Jock “Jocko” Mahoney when she was around 6 years old:
“I felt both a child, helpless, and not a child. Powerful. This was power. And I owned it. But I wanted to be a child — and yet.”
She writes about those conflicted feelings:
“It would have been so much easier if I’d only felt one thing, if Jocko had been nothing but cruel and frightening. But he wasn’t. He could be magical, the Pied Piper with our family as his entranced followers.”
Sally waited nearly 60 years to tell her mother about the abuse. She couldn’t keep it quiet anymore.
She told the Times of her desire to speak out in her book:
“Something was growing in me, this urgency that felt gangrenous, and I couldn’t locate it. I could hardly breathe and I couldn’t settle down.”
Something else she kept secret for many years? The secret abortion she traveled to Tijuana, Mexico to get while still in high school.
Sally also writes about the sexual harassment she experienced in the entertainment industry, including an audition in which she says Stay Hungry director Bob Rafelson told her:
“I can’t hire anyone who doesn’t kiss good enough.”
So she kissed him, and he gave her the part. She writes:
“It must have been good enough.”
Sally also writes openly about her relationships in the book, including with Burt Reynolds, who passed less than a week before the book’s release — something for which Sally admitted she was grateful as some of her recollections of the time are “complicated and hurtful”:
“This would hurt him. I felt glad that he wasn’t going to read it, he wasn’t going to be asked about it, and he wasn’t going to have to defend himself or lash out, which he probably would have. I did not want to hurt him any further.”
Another ex did hear about his description in the book.
Sally writes about musician Jimmy Webb, writing that after smoking a joint, she woke up with him “on top of me, grinding away to another melody.”
She does tell the Times she doesn’t consider it “malicious” as “he was stoned out of his mind.”
Webb was asked to respond and wrote to the Times:
“I am being asked to respond to a passage in a book that the publishers refuse to let me read, even at my lawyer’s request, so all I can do is recount my memories of dating Sally in the swingin’ 1960s. Sally and I were young, successful stars in Hollywood. We dated and did what 22-year-olds did in the late ’60s — we hung out, we smoked pot, we had sex. I have great memories of our times together and great respect for Sally — so much respect that I didn’t write about her in my book because I didn’t want to tarnish her Gidget image with our stories of drugs and sex.”
Wow. This sounds like a much more controversial book than we would ever have expected from Sally Field!
Will YOU read In Pieces??
[Image via Nicky Nelson/WENN.]