Jennifer Lopez‘s seniority in Hollywood makes it no surprise that she has been harassed at least once in her career, given the probability of women who have experienced sexual assault in the workplace, across industry lines.
Now, the singer/actress is ready to speak out about that moment, revealing to Harper’s Bazaar that she was once violated by a film director.
The Enough star explained in an interview with the publication that a male director asked her to undress in front of him for one of her early films.
“I haven’t been abused in the way some women have,” she said. “But have I been told by a director to take off my shirt and show my boobs? Yes, I have. But did I do it? No, I did not.”
While Lopez has commented on the movement before, extending her gratitude and excitement for the women who have publicly denounced their abusers and spoken on their truths, she has not elaborated on her own experience, until now. In the interview, she added that she found it extremely difficult, at the time, to speak up as a young emerging actress.
“When I did speak up, I was terrified,” she continued. “I remember my heart beating out of my chest, thinking, ‘What did I do? This man is hiring me!’ It was one of my first movies. But in my mind, I knew the behavior wasn’t right. It could have gone either way for me. But I think ultimately the Bronx in me was like, ‘Nah, we’re not having it.'”
Lopez joins the extensive list of actresses and entertainers including the likes of Lupita Nyong’o, Gabrielle Union and more who have spoken out about being victims of sexual assault in the workplace.