Ellen DeGeneres’ mother has told of her regret at not believing her daughter when she confided in her she was being raped.
At age 15 Ellen confided in her mother that she was being sexually abused by her stepfather.
Ellen, 61, made the claims on Netflix’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman where she said that her stepfather groped her breasts several times when she was a young teenager by claiming to be looking for lumps.
Her mother Betty, who is a breast cancer survivor, did not initially believe her when she told her and stayed with him for 18 years.
She did not name her stepfather during the interview.
In 1973, when Ellen was the age she was when she says the attack happened, her mother married Texas salesman Roy Grussendorf. He died in 1997.
I know now that one of the hardest things to do is speak up after being sexually abused.
I love my daughter, and I wish I had the capacity to listen to her when she told me what happened.
‘I live with that regret, and I wouldn’t want that for any other parent.
If someone in your life has the courage to speak out, please believe them,’ she told NBC