Mena Suvari is best known for her roles in American Beauty and American Pie. She’s recently shared the extremely difficult struggles she faced through the years. In her new book, The Green Peace, the 42-year-old actress revealed that she was raped by her older brother’s friend when she was 12. Everything changed after that.
“I never was all right again,” Suvari wrote in the memoir. “It feels strange when I experience second-guessing myself when I would like to choose the word ‘rape.’ I didn’t end up in the hospital. I didn’t end up unconscious. But isn’t it just enough that I said no?”
Soon after the assault, she began her substance abuse. She consumed anything from alcohol and marijuana to crystal meth.
“I took drugs to numb myself from the pain,” she explained. “Alcohol. Pot. Coke. Crystal meth. Acid. Ecstasy. Mushrooms. Mescaline. It was my way of detaching from the hell of my existence – and surviving.”
Suvari recalled how meth “become my life, then it took over my life” throughout her time in school.
“The hours I was at school were spent thinking about getting out of school and doing some lines,” the Rhode Island native wrote. “I stayed up until late at night, slept a couple of hours, then repeated the day. Before long I was pulling out my small gold lacquered butterfly embossed compact mirror and snorting a line in the school bathroom during a break.”
In talking about her memoir she says, while it’s “still uncomfortable” to talk about her past, Suvari added that it’s a process she’s happy to continue working through.
“I just want to have conversations about it, like what can we do about it. Because I’ve sat in those moments, I’ve been I don’t want to feel bad for myself anymore. I don’t want to give that power away.”
Suvari’s memoir is available now.