Kenyan-born Chanel Ayan shared some of her personal history on the Wednesday, August 17, 2022, episode of “The Real Housewives of Dubai.”
Ayan and her husband, Luca Salves, who have been together since she was 17-years-old, are parents to one son named Taj. Before finding peace in love, Ayan went through a traumatizing experience that she opened up about during a filmed therapy visit.
Warning: This post contains information that may be uncomfortable to read.
“At 5-years-old, my aunt and my grandma came to pick us up to take us to another town,” she said. “And then the next morning at 6 a.m., I didn’t know where I was going whatsoever and then they took us to this man’s house and they just tied us on the bed and we were circumcised,’ she continued.
Ayan admitted that she doesn’t have many memories of her childhood. “I block things,” she told the therapist.
“The reason that I’m talking about it is to bring awareness to it and I want people to understand this happens every single day, and if that’s my mission, maybe that’s what I should be doing,” Ayan said in a confessional interview during the episode.
Here’s what you need to know:
Ayan Went on to Detail the Abuse She Suffered
The emotional segment continued as Ayan explained what happened to her after the circumcision.
“We were tied in the legs. Couldn’t pee. Couldn’t move. When we needed to pee, they would carry us and put us on the grass. I just didn’t understand what the hell was going on whatsoever and my mom didn’t know that that was happening to us,” Ayan said.
She went on to explain that she needed surgery to fix what had been done to her.
“I couldn’t have sex. And then I had to wait until I healed,” she explained.
After the episode aired, Ayan took to Twitter to share some of her feelings on speaking out against female genital mutilation (FGM).
“I am a survivor of #FGM, I felt utterly betrayed by my culture from this barbaric practice of #childabuse #endFGM,” she wrote.
“By telling my story and spreading awareness, I have taken my power back and I’m no longer a victim and I want to fight against #endFGM,” a subsequent tweet read.
Ayan Received a Great Deal of Support From Fans on Social Media
After the episode aired, several RHODubai viewers took to social media to show their support for Ayan. Many commented on the tweets that she posted on Wednesday night.
“Bless your heart. That act of barbarism should be outlawed and prosecuted,” one person wrote.
“@chanelayan thank you for being so open and vulnerable. Sharing your trauma and opening up will help so many others,” someone else tweeted.
“You are so brave. Thank you for being so open and honest. I am.sure you helped so many people,” a third Twitter user added.
“Ayan, I’m so sorry you went through such cruelty. There are no words. It makes me so happy to see you living your best life now. I wish you a lifetime of many more blessings,” read another comment.