Reese Witherspoon Explains Finding ‘Strength In Power’ When ‘Bad Things Happened’: &#8

Reese Witherspoon is opening up about her life in the spotlight! Ahead of the release of her new Hulu series Little Fires Everywhere, the 43-year-old is sharing her story with Vanity Fair.

As you may recall, Witherspoon revealed in 2017 that she was sexually assaulted by a director at age 16. Her ability to come forward with her story changed thanks to the #MeToo Movement, she told the outlet:

“Bad things happened to me. I was assaulted, harassed. It wasn’t isolated.”

Her Apple TV+ series The Morning Show also tackles issues of sexual harassment and misconduct in the workplace, and the Oscar winner said some questioned her because of when she chose to share her story:

“You tell your story in your own time when you’re ready… There wasn’t a public reckoning 25 years ago when this stuff happened to me. There wasn’t a forum to speak about it either. Social media has created a new way for people to express themselves that I didn’t have. That’s the great strength in power and numbers.”

She continued:

“I think we have a lot of judgment and that’s unfortunate because we’re all tender-footed in these new times. We’re trying to find our identity.”

And aside from encouraging other women to come forward with their stories, the Legally Blonde star has also been a champion for equal pay in the TV and film industry. The Elle Woods portrayer recalled one impactful story:

“An actress came up to me at a party and said, ‘Do you know what you’ve done?’ I had no idea what she was talking about. The day after the HBO equal pay thing went through, they called her agent to rewrite her contract. She was then paid twice as much as she had been.”

The 43-year-old explained how she did not want to build her career on sex appeal and has carefully chosen projects and auditions as not to compromise this:

“I always had a thing about exploiting sexuality. When I came up in the business, there were all these men’s magazines we were told to cater to. I was never in Maxim. I was never picked as a GQ girl, and I’m okay with that because that’s not how I wanted to be viewed. That’s not how I see myself.”

Instead, the mom of three explained to VF how she has defined herself with humor:

“I always say, ‘Funny doesn’t sag.’ I always just wanted to be funny, you know? And you can’t be rendered obsolete if you just keep being funny. Guess what gets rendered obsolete? Your boobs go south, your face goes south, your ass goes south, but you can always be funny.”

Meanwhile, Reese has and always will be ageless — and hilarious!! Take a peek at her cover and spread (below):

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