'Supergirl' Star Melissa Benoist Reveals She Is A Survivor Of Domestic Violence In Powerful Video
The hashtag #IStandWithMelissa is trending on Twitter after 'Supergirl' star Melissa Benoist revealed the violence she experienced in an abusive relationship.
Trigger warning: content related to domestic violence, intimate partner violence.
Benoist posted a 14-minute video to her Instagram TV page in which she read out a prepared statement, writing under the clip, "Life isn't always what it seems".
"So, I don't normally do things like this but I've written something that I want to share and I wanted it to stay in my words and not have to edit it before publishing," she began, adding that she was "quite nervous".
Benoist explained that she is a "survivor of domestic violence or IPV (Intimate Partner Violence" -- something she "never expected" that she would be saying aloud or broadcasting to her followers.
The actor went on to say that her former partner (whom she does not name) was "magnanimous" and "charming" throughout their friendship but that he began exhibiting violence against her when they started dating.
"It was a zero to 60 catapult," she said, explaining that the abuse first appeared in the form of jealousy and controlling behaviour after which she found herself turning down job opportunities and friendships because she "didn't want to hurt him".
Benoist said that her former partner turned physically violent five months into their relationship when he threw a smoothie at her face and that she learnt to keep similar incidents hidden out of fear and shame.
"I learned what it felt like to be pinned down and slapped repeatedly, punched so hard I felt the wind go out of me, dragged by my hair across pavement, head-butted, pinched until my skin broke, slammed against the wall so hard the drywall broke, choked," she said.
A turning point in their relationship arrived after an incident where Beniost's partner threw an iPhone at her face which tore her iris, nearly ruptured her eyeball, lacerated her skin and broke her nose.
While Benoist told hospital staff and police that her injuries were the result of a fall down a set of stairs, the severity of the incident pushed her to open up to a close friend, and eventually leave the relationship.
"None of this is salacious news, it was my reality. What I went through caused a tectonic shift in my outlook on life."
Fans and supporters have reached out to Beniost on Twitter, applauding her bravery in speaking up about her personal experience with domestic violence using the hashtag #IStandWithMelissa.
A range of domestic and family violence resources based around the country can be found here.
For further information about depression contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636 or talk to your GP, local health professional or someone you trust.
Main Image: Instagram.