Actor Isabella Rossellini says she is not comfortable telling her #MeToo story as she does not believe there is any value in naming the man who raped her as a teenager.
The 65-year-old actor, in an interview with Vulture, said she is a supporter of the #MeToo movement, which shows the many obvious and subtle ways women are diminished.
“I do understand the value for some people to talk about their experiences, but for me, there is no value. The person that raped me I was 15 or 16, he was a year older than I, why would I dig out this story 48 years later? What if people start to say, No, you have to say the person’s name?’ I don’t know what happened to him. He might be married. He might have children. I am a superstar in Italy. If I said who did this, I would destroy him,” the actor said.
Rossellini said date rape was a common occurrence among young men and women in Italy while she was growing up.
“This man hurt me in the context of a culture that we are all trying to change. I don’t think that pinpointing one person and destroying their life because they made a sin in the context of that culture I don’t have the heart for it.”
The actor believes the movement, started in the wake of Harvey Weinstein scandal, has been helpful in making men realise that they can no longer mistreat women.
“Yes, for me, the interesting thing is how the #MeToo movement has shown us all the subtle ways women can be diminished. Rape is a way of being hurt that everyone can recognise. There are other ways. It could be your boss saying, ‘I like your skirt on you.’ It’s a compliment, but it makes you feel diminished. It’s like when people say to me, ‘You look so good for your age.’ To hear other women express their stories and to show how devious some men can be that is what has been so helpful to see.
“I’m happy that we are talking about these issues because all women have been harassed, but it was never discussed before. We just lived with it. Even if you didn’t have anything violent happen to you, there was always a way for a man to belittle you. This is changing, I think. Men have to see they can’t behave in these ways.