Tatum O'Neal sexually assaulted as a child

Tatum O’Neal
Tatum O’Neal

NEW YORK • Former child star Tatum O'Neal blames her parents for not protecting her from sexual predators.

"When your parents are off getting drunk or high, they are not watching what happens to their children," the now 54-year-old told The Mail On Sunday.

The daughter of actors Ryan O'Neal and Joanna Moore, she said the men who preyed on her included her dad's friend and her mum's boyfriend, who attempted to rape her.

Last Thursday, she opened up to her previous ordeals when she wrote on Instagram: "I am a woman and I have been sexually assaulted more than once,

"It was not my fault when I was 5, 6, 12, 13, 15 - all by older men whom I thought were safe.

"I rarely have known safety and was always blamed for the assaults and my loudness and curiosity.

"It's taken me almost 55 years to know how to advocate for myself. But I learn fast and here I go."

Tatum, a mother of three who was once married to tennis ace John McEnroe, bagged a Best Supporting Actress Oscar at 10 for her role in Paper Moon, the youngest person to earn the honour.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 09, 2018, with the headline 'Tatum O'Neal sexually assaulted as a child'. Print Edition | Subscribe