Over the last few months, countless celebrities have opened up about their experiences with sexual harassment and assault in Hollywood. The #MeToo and Time’s Up movements have extended well past the entertainment industry, giving voice to those who have experienced sexual abuse in any capacity. Now, another famous voice is speaking up: Monica Lewinsky. Though many parts of her story are already painfully public, she penned a very personal essay to explain how #MeToo and Time’s Up have made her feel less alone. The essay, as you imagine, is a powerful read.
Lewinsky, a former White House intern who had an affair with then-president Bill Clinton in the mid-late ’90s, expressed that these movements have helped her see what happened with Clinton through a “new lens.”
“Until recently (thank you, Harvey Weinstein), historians hadn’t really had the perspective to fully process and acknowledge that year of shame and spectacle. And as a culture, we still haven’t properly examined it. Re-framed it. Integrated it. And transformed it,” Lewinsky’s essay reads. “My hope, given the two decades that have passed, is that we are now at a stage where we can untangle the complexities and context (maybe even with a little compassion), which might help lead to an eventual healing—and a systemic transformation.”
The Clinton impeachment hearings happened 20 years ago. Though Monica Lewinsky is still dealing with the trauma of the invasive investigation, she credits the #MeToo movement for helping her feel less alone.
Monica Lewinsky also said that if the scandal had happened today, because of the movement, her recovery may have been different.
She credits social media as being a “savior” in many ways, because it helps women find others who have experienced the same things.
Lewinsky’s essay ended by thanking those who have already come forward with their stories.
Thank you, Monica, for continuing to speak up.