The famed Baywatch actress and sex symbol delivered the statements during the launch of her animal rights charity, The Pamela Anderson Foundation, at the Cannes Film Festival in France on May 16. She attributed her love of nature and animals to helping her through her tough childhood.
Here’s what you should know about Anderson’s shocking revelations:
1. Her Female Babysitter Molested Her From Ages 6 to 10
@PamelaDAnderson is so brave for speaking out about the sexual violence she suffered as a child.
— Ash (@fibulamytibia) May 19, 2014
Anderson’s first confession in her speech is that her female babysitter repeatedly molested from the ages of 6 to 10. She said she had “loving parents” who “tried to keep her safe,” but her dad was an alcoholic and her mother worked two waitressing jobs. Anderson, who grew up in British Columbia, said she kept the abuse to herself to save her parents the worry:
My mom was always crying. Dad didn’t always come home leaving us in tremendous pain and worry. I couldn’t bare to give her any more disruptive information. I couldn’t break her heart any more than it was breaking.
2. Her First Sex With a Man Was a Rape, at Age 12
@PamelaDAnderson thank you for having the courage to tell your story about your sexual abuse. it feels good to know that your not alone
— mike cerulo (@MikeCerulo) May 19, 2014
Anderson first sexual experience with a man came at the of 12, when a 25-year-old mutual friend raped her. She says she went to a friend’s boyfriend’s house. The friend was busy, but the boyfriend’s older brother offered to teach Anderson how to play backgammon. The game led to the brother giving her a back massage, and then he raped her.
3. Her First Boyfriend Gang Raped Her
http://t.co/k7XcCfS4wK My speech at launch of my Namesake foundation. I want people to know – they can overcome and prosper with love…
— Pamela Anderson (@PamelaDAnderson) May 18, 2014
Anderson said her first boyfriend “decided it would be funny” to gang rape her with six of friends. Anderson said she “had a hard time trusting humans” after that encounter, which occurred during her freshman year in high school. “I just wanted off this earth,” Anderson said.
4. Her Love of Animals Saved Her Life
Anderson says her connection to nature and animals gave her a reason to live when “I wasn’t sure why I was alive.”
— Pamela Anderson (@PamelaDAnderson) May 19, 2014
She spoke about her loyalty to animals and not people:
My affinity with animals saved me. They came to me naturally. The trees spoke to me.
I wasn’t sure why I was alive. A burning question. A quest. My loyalty remained with the animal kingdom — I vowed to protect them and only them — I prayed to the whales with my feet in the ocean.
5. Anderson’s Sons Were Her First ‘Real Friends’
Anderson says her “only real friends” were the animals in nature before she gave birth to her two sons, Brandon Thomas and Dylan Jagger (their father is Anderson’s first husband, Tommy Lee). Her boys are now teenagers, and she’s settled down with film producer Rick Salomon.
In the speech, Anderson talks about the epiphany she came to after having children.
Then I realized humanity is suffering. Our children are born perfect. We were all struggling with right and wrong — and why?