Vanessa Williams Opens Up About Abuse, Teen Pregnancy and Abortion

Vanessa Williams Opens Up About Abuse, Teen Pregnancy and Abortion

The actress discusses troubled childhood on Nightline.

Published April 18, 2012

(Photo: Scott Kirkland/PictureGroup)

Vanessa Williams's childhood wasn't picture perfect. The Desperate Housewives star, who recently revealed she had been molested by a female family friend, tells Nightline that she also became pregnant as a teenager and had an abortion.


"Being pregnant is the most frightening thing that happens in your life," says the 49-year-old. "I knew in high school that's something that I was not prepared to do, or fight, or struggle with."


Williams blames her ordeal partly on an overly-sexualized childhood resulting from the incident of abuse.


"I think I was highly sexualized because I was in fifth grade and I had this experience," she explained. "Because it feels good, you're like, OK, well this is supposed to be normal. That's not normal for a 10-year-old to be seduced."


The former Miss World, who lost her title after a nude photo scandal, discusses her painful past further in her upcoming memoir, You Have No Idea.


Despite a rough start, the mother of four enjoys tremendous success as a singer and actress. Hopefully her brave confessions will help others overcome like she did. is your #1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music.

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Written by Evelyn Diaz


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