'Black-ish' Star Jenifer Lewis Recounts Painful Sexual Abuse She Experienced As a Child
Jenifer Lewis is beloved as the sassy matriarch on Black-ish. Her sass extends beyond the camera as she’s a natural comedian. But just as many comedians, she has a history of pain. As a child, Lewis was sexually abused, which she says triggered mental health issues and addictions.
Lewis always sought stardom. The Black Mother of Hollywood author had a love of performing arts growing up and loved to be the center of attention. As a child, Lewis was a member of her church choir. She often traveled to other churches to perform. During one trip to another church, her pastor allowed her to ride with him to their performance.
During the ride, Lewis says he stopped the car, leaned toward her, and began kissing her. She resisted as he began to touch her breasts. She says she pushed him off of her as he assaulted her.
As a result, Lewis says her faith was tested. The experience was so harrowing she did not believe in God for many years. For Lewis, her pastor served as a symbol of what God was, giving her conflicting views on faith and religion.
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Furthermore, her relationship with her mother became estranged. She told her mother about the abuse but her mother found it difficult to believe her because of the pastor’s influence in their community. Lewis also admits to losing her passion for performing.
Lewis says of the experience during her ...
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