Tiffany Haddish reveals that she was sexually assaulted by a police cadet as a teenager
Usually when Tiffany Haddish does an interview, she tells a hilarious story. Remember when she told us about how an actress bit Beyoncé's face at a party? How about when she bragged about hitting on Leonardo DiCaprio at a party? (She asked him if they could hook up, while he's roleplaying his old character, Gilbert Grape, a mentally challenged teenager.)
The Girls Trip star is known for her comic antics, on and off the big screen. But in a new interview with Glamour, she opened up about a traumatic episode in her past. The #MeToo movement has given countless women the courage to share stories about sexual harassment and sexual assault. Now Tiffany has come forward, revealing that she was raped by a police cadet when she was 17 years old.
"That whole experience put me in such a messed-up place for a long time, and I ended up going to counseling," said Tiffany. The author notes that at this point in the interview her voice was breaking. Tiffany says that she reported the attack to authorities, but isn't sure what real justice would look like. “Me just yelling out people’s names with no thought behind it is pointless. I need a plan. I could be a voice, but what’s a voice going to do—just keep talking? Or is there action behind it?"
The stand-up comedian first revealed she was raped in her 2017 memoir, The Last Black Unicorn. And on the podcast The Champs, she told the horrifying story in more detail. The incident occurred on the night of her high school homecoming dance. The rapist was a man who offered to give her a ride home, but drove to her place instead.
“So we get there and we get to his place and I see, like, handcuffs and a police uniform and I’m like, ’What’s that? Is that like a Halloween costume or something? And he’s like, ‘No, I’m a cadet, I’m training to be in the police force. ... Next thing I know, I’ve got one arm up in the handcuff, and he’s got me pinned down. ... He raped me, he was stronger than me. It was the worst feeling in the world."
In Glamour, Tiffany says that it was a life-altering experience that changed the way she interacts with men. "I notice that men are afraid of women that are aggressive," said the Night School actress. "So to protect myself I become semi-aggressive. You hear about, ‘Tiffany always hitting on somebody,’ but that’s to keep them from hitting on me."
Tiffany got divorced from William Stewart in 2013, and alleges that he was a physical abuser. When asked if she's seeing anyone now, she replied, "I don’t really have time. And I’ve had enough somebodies. I've done ran through 38 dudes, OK? Body count, yeah. Mine is 38. Write it down. Let them know. I’ve had 38 experiences." Well, fingers crossed that Leonardo DiCaprio as Gilbert Grape can be number 39!