Sharing her story. Lady Gaga spoke candidly about becoming pregnant after surviving sexual assault.
“I was 19 years old, and I was working in the business, and a producer said to me, ‘Take your clothes off,’” the singer, 35, recalled during the first episode of Prince Harry’s AppleTV+ series, The Me You Can’t See, which premiered Friday, May 21. “And I said, ‘No.’ And I left, and they told me they were going to burn all of my music. And they didn’t stop. They didn’t stop asking me, and I just froze and I — I don’t even remember.”
The Grammy winner, who broke down in tears at the memory, later said that the “person who raped [her] dropped [her] off pregnant on a corner” by her parents’ house.
“Because I was vomiting and sick,” the New York native said. “Because I’d been being abused. I was locked away in a studio for months.”
The “Just Dance” singer chose not to name the producer, explaining that she never wants to face him. Gaga noted that years following the assault, she experienced a “psychotic break” after experiencing pain and numbness.
“The way that I feel when I feel pain was how I felt after I was raped,” the songwriter said. “I’ve had so many MRIs and scans where they don’t find nothing. But your body remembers.”
Gaga went on to say that she wasn’t “the same girl” for a couple of years, specifically from 2018 to 2019. The Oscar winner, however, has now started to “slowly change” and “learned all the ways to pull” herself out.
“That’s part of my healing, is being able to talk,” she explained. “I’m trying to make sure I give back with that experience, instead of, I don’t know, locking it away and faking it. … Even if I have six brilliant months, all it takes is getting triggered once to feel bad. And when I say feel bad, I mean want to cut, think about dying, wondering if I’m ever gonna do it.”
“The song is about rape, the song is about demoralization, the song is about rage and fury and passion, and I had a lot of pain that I wanted to release,” the American Horror Story alum said at the time. “And I said to myself, I want to sing this song while I’m ripping hard on a drum kit, and then I want to get on a mechanical bull — which is probably one of the most demoralizing things that you could put a female on, you know, in her underwear — and I want this chick to throw up on me in front of the world, so that I can tell them, ‘You know what? You could never ever degrade me as much as I can degrade myself, and look how beautiful it is when I do.’”
Four years later, Gaga told Vogue about trying “to erase” the rape from her brain. “When it finally came out, it was like a big, ugly monster. And you have to face the monster to heal,” she told the magazine before describing her PTSD struggles.
“I feel stunned. Or stunted,” she said at the time. “You know that feeling when you’re on a roller coaster and you’re just about to go down the really steep slope? That fear and the drop in your stomach? My diaphragm seizes up. Then I have a hard time breathing, and my whole body goes into a spasm. And I begin to cry. That’s what it feels like for trauma victims every day, and it’s … miserable. I always say that trauma has a brain. And it works its way into everything that you do.”
The pop star chose to share her story because she felt like she was “lying to the world,” she explained. “I don’t want to hide — any more than I already have to.”