As moving and emotional as Lady Gaga's Oscars performance of “Til It Happens to You" was for millions of strangers, it was even more so for Lady Gaga’s extended family, who did not know she had been a victim of rape until they watched the performance. On Tuesday, the superstar shared how her aunt and grandmother called her once they discovered she had been sexually assaulted at 19.
My grandmother (in the middle) and my Aunt Sheri (on the right) both called me the day after the Oscars because I never told them I was a survivor. I was too ashamed. Too afraid. And it took me a long time to even admit it to myself because I'm Catholic and I knew it was evil but I thought it was my fault. I thought it was my fault for ten years. The morning after the Oscars when I talked to my grandmother Ronnie, with tears in her eyes I could hear them welling through the phone she said to me "My darling granddaughter, I've never been more proud of you than I am today." Something I have kept a secret for so long that I was more ashamed of than anything-- became the thing the women in my life were the most proud of. And not just any women, the ones I look up to the most. #BeBrave #speakup #tilithappenstoyou
A photo posted by Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) on
"I thought it was my fault for ten years," Gaga wrote in her Instagram post. "The morning after the Oscars when I talked to my grandmother Ronnie, with tears in her eyes I could hear them welling through the phone she said to me 'My darling granddaughter, I've never been more proud of you than I am today.'"
Gaga composed the song with Diane Warren for a CNN documentary called The Hunting Ground. The film analyzes sexual assault at colleges in the United States. In case you missed it, watch Lady Gaga’s full Oscar performance below.