Duck Dynasty’s Jep Robertson is the latest reality star to come forward and reveal he was sexually abused as a child.
In his new book, The Good, the Bad and the Grace of God: What Honesty and Pain Taught Us About Faith, Family, and Forgiveness, which the father-of-four co-authored with his wife, Jessica, the 37-year-old reveals he was molested by an older female student.
(Photo Credit: Thomas Nelson Publishing)
“I was six and it was on a school bus and it was an older girl,” the Duck Dynasty star tells Entertainment Tonight.
“Back then the high school students would ride on the same bus as the grade school. There was this girl there that was just real mean… A lot of things took place — scary stuff. It was tough.”
He goes into more detail about the incident in his memoir. He writes:
An older girl started sitting next to me. She seemed sweet at first. She’d come sit beside me, like a motherly figure almost. I remember her being sweet and taking care of me. I liked to sit in the back so she’d come sit with me.
After a while the girl started doing strange things. She’d take my hands and push them up her shirt and tell me I was tickling her. Then she started making me pull down my pants. It was awkward. I didn’t know what was going on, but I knew something wasn’t right.
Jep tells Entertainment Tonight that he kept the abuse a secret for a long time, but had “a lot of absences” because he didn’t want to go to school. Eventually, he opened up about his past to his wife — though he says he always struggled with talking about it openly with his parents.
“I don’t know if I necessarily consciously wanted to [keep it a secret],” he explains.
"I was more embarrassed. I think in the end I didn't want my mom and dad to think they did anything wrong, and they didn't. It was just one of those things that happened, and I think it took me a long time to realize what had happened and how it affected me…It's a tough thing to go through, but you just kind of live and go through it and make the most of it."