WNBA star Breanna Stewart says she was sexually abused as a child.
The Seattle Storm forward describes the abuse in an essay posted Monday on the Players’ Tribune website.
Stewart says she was first molested at a relative’s house in upstate New York when she was 9 by a man who continued the abuse for two years.
Stewart says she eventually told her parents, who called police. She says the man was arrested and confessed but doesn’t indicate what happened to him.
Her essay is titled “Me Too,” a nod to the social media movement started following allegations of abuse against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
She says her father told her that what happened to her is not a “dirty little secret” and that when she was comfortable telling her story, it might save someone’s life.
Stewart, a 6-foot-4 forward, wrote that basketball served as a refuge from the trauma of the abuse.
“I’ve never been to therapy,” Stewart wrote. “I didn’t want to talk about it. I didn’t want to relive it. It’s something I’ve tried to tuck away as far back on the shelf as I could. But that only works to an extent.”
Stewart led UConn to four national championships, was the No. 1 pick in the 2016 WNBA draft and was the WNBA rookie of the year.