Just three days ago, Gabby Douglas got called out by her former teammate Simone Biles for seeming to victim-shame Aly Raisman. After accusing Olympic doctor Larry Nassar of sexually abusing her, trolls pointed to the fact that Aly took nude photographs for ESPN's Body Issue, claiming she was "asking for it." Gabby seemed to agree in an offensive tweet, but in a shocking turn of events, she admitted on Nov. 21 that the doctor also abused her.
"I didn't view my comments as victim-shaming because I know that no matter what you wear, it never gives someone the right to harass or abuse you," she began. "It would be like saying that because of the leotards we wore, it was our fault that we were abused by Larry Nassar." Gabby went on to explain that she never revealed what happened before because it was "extremely painful," and "we were conditioned for years to stay silent." Here is her full statement:
"It is our responsibility as women to dress modestly and be classy," Gabby wrote on Nov. 19 in response to Aly saying that women shouldn't be expected to dress a certain way to avoid men wanting to harm them. "Dressing in a provocative/sexual way entices the wrong crowd." This lead Simone to lash out at her, saying "Honestly seeing this brings me to tears bc as your teammate I expected more from you & to support her."
Gabby seemed to foreshadow her abuse when she originally apologized to Aly on Nov. 19 with the hashtag #metoo, which woman have been using to show that they have been harassed or assaulted before.
With Gabby's new revelation, it makes sense that she would feel the need to protect herself, even if her approach was technically victim-shaming. We can't forget that these girls are very young, and dealing with the trauma they went through in their own way. We hope Gabby can start to heal now that she's told her story!
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