Madonna: I Was Raped 35 Years Ago

In an essay, the pop star talks about her struggles in New York before her big break

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Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Madonna at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards

In an essay in the November issue of Harper’s Bazaar, Madonna recounts being raped at knife-point when she was 20 years old and struggling to make it as a singer in New York City.

“The first year, I was held up at gunpoint,” the artist writes. “Raped on the roof of a building I was dragged up to with a knife in my back, and had my apartment broken into three times.”

The essay focuses on the Madonna’s struggles before she made it big. Now 55, still calls New York City home.

[Harper's Bazaar]

38 comments
WaltKienia
WaltKienia

and she liked it so much she started bangin every swingin richard that walked by.

PaulMitchell
PaulMitchell

oh we all have been raped. put a lid on it skank

JCChuta
JCChuta

Funny how a rape victim would use sex (abundantly) throughout her career. Even one of her music videos went out of its way to offend the Catholic Church. Victims avoid most sexual inuendos the rest of their lives. Apparently, it did not have much negative effect on Madonna.

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

...........I'M IN THE CAB NOW, AND YOUR COMMENTS?????????????.........KA-OOOOOL......HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA..........AIN'T NOTH'IN TO IT THE WAY YOU DO IT, PRINCESS...............WHY RIDE WITH THE REST WHEN I CAN RIDE WITH THE BEST.................YYYYYYYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.........................:)...HERE "WE" GO----------->*

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

I'VE JUST LANDED, BE THERE IN A BIT------------------->* C5

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

Steven Darling, should you log-on?, scroll down to see my comments. There are some people WE must all pray for. Madonna XO:)

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

Thanks Steven for you wonderful words and support. I love You and I am here when you get back. Forever, Madonna.

UnniN
UnniN

What explains the urge of many of us to rush to judgement? Why delve into motives, why dissect the statement, why make unsavoury comments about her personality, life, and every thing else if you disagree with what she says? How is it important to the critics whether what she says is true or not? Madonna wrote something about her past ... fine. True or not it does not require us to take it apart and turn up the zoom on it. She relates to the public as a singer- why not leave it at that?

mandrews445
mandrews445

As much as I enjoy Madonna and believe that she is a true success, hasn't she reached a point in her life and career where she doesn't have to talk about how bad she had it. I heard about her struggles in the eighties, the nineties, the 2000s, and now once again. Yes, you had if really, really, really bad to reach where you are at now, but you don't have to keep updating us every decade. Some of us from the eighties are still alive.

PeesNSync
PeesNSync

Richard Pryor too was sexually assaulted as a youth...

He said he was sexually messed up as an adult - for a while, because of it.

It's real.

It happens to the blessed and the cursed...

AllenSaintJames
AllenSaintJames

What kind of insensitive animals attack a rape victim for being brutalized simply because she became an icon! She was a twenty year old girl just a girl and if she revealed in an essay her own truth about her early struggles andrt he media picked up on that detail thats your problem not hers. Human kind is going to hell in a social media hand basket. Hatr hte judge judge all day every day. By the way famous people are people.

NicoleRescuer
NicoleRescuer

Hard to read the articles with pop up adds stuck on top of them as it blocks 85% of it.

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

..........CORRECT...HOW DARE MADONNA BE MADONNA, HOW DARE SHE USE HER TALENTS TO HELP PEOPLE................HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH...WHA??, WHA????, SHE DID NOT GET PERMISSION TO DO ALL OF THAT FROM HER CRITICS..........HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA............30 DEMERITS.................HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA........I DON'T SEE THE CRITICS NOT TRYING TO GET ATTENTION, I DO NOT SEE THE CRITICS "HELPING" PEOPLE, AND?, WITH ALL THEIR NEGATIVE, ONE MUST WONDER JUST HOW BAD THE CRITIC'S CHILDREN TURN OUT................MY POINT IS AND IT IS SO TRUE, THE CRITICS AND THE HATERS CANNOT AND WILL NOT STOP HER........HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA..........:):):):):)...........HERE "WE" GO----------->*

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

.........AND THE HATERS????, THEY GIVE ALL US GOOD PEOPLE SOMETHING TO DO, IT GIVES US A CHANCE TO HELP THE ONES THAT NEED HELP, IT KEEPS US IN CHECK SO TO IMPROVE OURSELVES AS WELL AS EVERYONE ELSE......POSITIVE IS A GIFT, IT IS A TOOL IN WHICH TO HELP ALL THE NEGATIVE-HATERS......IT IS MY JOB TO MAKE ALL AS GOOD AND BETTER THAN ME, THIS? IS THE CHALLENGE, THIS IS THE GAME, THIS IS THE WIN.

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

..........THAT IS CORRECT MALONSON.............COURAGE DOES INVITE CRITICS...........THERE ARE THOSE WHO-CAN-DO-THINGS, AND THOSE WHO CRITIC THAT CANNOT DO THINGS.............HAHAHAHAHAHA, AND HERE IS ANOTHER ONE THAT IS SO TRUE HERE IN THAILAND: "COURAGE IS FEAR THAT HAS SAID ITS PRAYERS".............YYYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAA:):):):):)

CHOPPERFIVE
CHOPPERFIVE

MADONNA WORKS HARD FOR EVERYTHING SHE HAS EARNED......SHE DOES THIS TO HELP HERSELF SO TO HELP THE ONES SHE LOVES AND THE ONES THAT NEED HELP........ ANYONE WHO DARE CONDEMN HER ARE THE LAZY ONES, THE ONES THAT ARE TOO LAZY TO KEEP UP, THE ONES WHO  WON'T TRY HARDER............SHE CANNOT  EVEN HELP THEM.............GOD CANNOT EVEN HELP THEM..............EVERYTHING VERONICA HAS SHE HAS EARNED IT............ A MESSAGE TO ALL FROM THIS OBSERVER?, "TRY HARDER"............ WORK-DRIVE-DO-SOLVE-CHANGE-ACT-TEAM???, "YOU"............NUFF SAID. 2014 HAS SPOKEN.

SabrinaOConnor9
SabrinaOConnor9

You have to expect the usual comments from trolls who hide behind their internet connections and spout sexist, misogynist hate. Madonna is a true feminist hero in my book.

mullershmidt
mullershmidt

Madonna, your life seems to be all about pleasing yourself. All I hear is I, I, I...In my book every ordinary mother and father and family member out there ARE the daring people trying to be responsible, intelligent and loving people. And it's a lot harder for them because they don't have the millions you do. You can't compare your life with other people--you haven't been living in the real world since who knows when. Shock therapy(at least in your youth) is mundane these days because of YouTube, Twitter, etc. We're trying to protect our kids from a lot of crap out there, and you are basically condoning it--free expression, you'd say. Start by making your life about your kids, take on social responsibility, and then we might be listening...

RodneyVero
RodneyVero

Feminists everywhere will use this article to justify the "abnormal" behaviors of all women now.  "Well, of course (take your pick: Patty Hearst; Pelosi; Madonna; Kartrashian of your choice) acts that way - she MUST have been raped by some MAN-PIG at some point in her life!"

sr500xa7
sr500xa7

i feel sorry for that poor rapist.

cjensen
cjensen

Oh, Maddona, your desperate grab for attention makes me feel so violated.

Vereneth
Vereneth

@RodneyVero And people like you will use this article to bash feminists, so everyone has their own agenda and it's not like your's is that much better.  And I don't really see how or why feminists would even come out and say all women act abnormally because every woman has been raped.  Do you even realize how asinine your comment is?

SabrinaOConnor9
SabrinaOConnor9

@cjensen She admitted to being raped years ago. It's just making headlines now. There are those that do and those that just criticize others.