Many times, we have talked about how domestic violence and sexual assault can happen to anyone, there is not a single profile of a victim or an abuser. In order to shed light on the issue of domestic violence, celebrities have come forward with their stories. They hope to encourage others who face violence in the home to reach out and get the help they need.

Remember: We define domestic violence as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner.  Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone.

If you or someone you know is experiencing violence in the home, The Shelter has a confidential 24/7 hotline with trained advocates waiting to help, 800-931-7233.

In an Emergency dial 9-1-1.

Celebrity Survivors



This story of domestic abuse shocked the world, as pictures of Rihanna came to the surface after being beaten by her boyfriend at the time, Chris Brown. Rihanna got much backlash during this time because she initially got back together with Chris Brown, this decision led to her being blamed and publicly shamed. People all around the world began to ask familiar questions, why did she go back? Was she stupid?

Later, Rihanna shared her experience dealing with the situation,

“‘I was that girl, the girl who felt that as much pain as this relationship is, maybe some people are built stronger than others. Maybe I’m one of those people built to handle s**t like this’”

“‘A lot of women, a lot of young girls, are still going through it. A lot of young boys too. It’s not a subject to sweep under the rug, so I can’t just dismiss it like it wasn’t anything.’”


There are many reasons why a person being abused stays in the relationship, others share the reason Rihanna gives. Abusers are manipulative and known exactly how to keep their partner around. In the end, abuse is a choice made by the abuser.


Charlize Theron

Charlize is a well-known celebrity from South Africa, but what is now well known about her is that she is a survivor of childhood domestic violence. Growing up she lived in a home with a verbally abusive alcoholic father. One night her father came home after drinking with his brother and began shooting into their home. He threatened to kill her and her mother then fired a shot into Charlize’s room and in self-defense her mother shot him dead.

“‘I think, for me, it took a long time to sink in, what had really happened because you just don’t think stuff like that will ever happen to you, you always think it happens to somebody else.’”

Her mother was never prosecuted because it was ruled that she acted in defense of herself and her daughter. Now, Charlize has a positive outlook on life, considering herself very lucky to have survived such a traumatic childhood and situation.

Many people experience childhood domestic violence, to learn more read our blog.



Contact The Shelter to speak with a trained advocate 24/7, 800-931-7233




Neate, P. (October, 2015). Rihanna’s brave domestic violence interview is a triumph for women. Retrieved from:
ABC News. (January 8). Charlize Theron’s Family Tragedy. Retrieved from:
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