Tilly Talks Frankly About Abusive Past16 October 2006
Tilly Talks Frankly About Abusive Past
The 46-year-old star turned her back on Hollywood in 1994 and moved to Canada to raise her family out of the spotlight.
Her fictional book GEMMA is based on her own experiences as a young girl, and Tilly hopes that by coming forward she can help others.
Tilly, whose sister is actress Jennifer Tilly, says, "I remember being scared when I hear the sound of the belt coming out. I said to my husband I remember wearing certain types of clothes that don't chaff against the welts I have.
"I remember not leaning back (in my chair) in school sometimes because it was too sore and very painful to sit, to lean your back against the back of the desk. I remember being scared and when he'd shake his belt at me, but I don't remember the feeling of it.
"My husband says, 'Well how do you think you got the scars on your back?' I know, but sometimes I wonder if all this actually happened especially when you get older and older but it did and other people (in my family) remember it too.
"There are scars you can't explain and you do remember the before and the after. It's so important to acknowledge it because you're always told that's in your imagination."
Tilly also reveals how her behaviour changed dramatically as she entered her teenage years.
She says, "I was 13 and acting out (against) all the bad things that were happening to me I started drinking and smoking pot and telling teachers, 'F you' and thinking I was this hot shot.
"I was out back behind the gym and getting drunk and coming to class staggering around and barfing into garbage cans. I started to act with boys. I smoked pot with some guys who I thought were my friends and they tried to gang bang me and it was a wake up call.
"I thought, 'What am I doing?' The more bad things were happening (at home) and I drank five glasses of red wine and then saw something disturbing with my parents and ran out on the beach just running and running and everything was spinning. I just sat there for a long time and I got cold."
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