Six weeks after she first began to tell her story of surviving being kidnapped and sexually assaulted, Duffy is sharing details of her traumatic experiences.
The 35-year-old singer, whose real name is Aimee Anne Duffy, first took to social media at the end of February to explain that her decade-long break from the spotlight came on the heels of being kidnapped and raped. She’d previously never revealed that she was “drugged and held captive” around 10 years ago, but after sharing her story with an unnamed journalist last summer, she found that it “felt so amazing to finally speak.”
In her initial Instagram post, Duffy did not elaborate on the details of the abduction and assault, and did not name her alleged captor. However, the Welsh artist posted a lengthy essay on her website this week, delving into her story.
“It was my birthday, I was drugged at a restaurant, I was drugged then for four weeks and traveled to a foreign country. I can't remember getting on the plane and came round in the back of a travelling vehicle,” she wrote. “I was put into a hotel room and the perpetrator returned and raped me. I remember the pain and trying to stay conscious in the room after it happened.”
The following day, she was “somewhat conscious and withdrawn,” she said, and her captor did not look at her. She contemplated trying to escape while he was sleeping, but she had no money, and was afraid that he would call the police and that they would bring her back to him, she explained. She eventually “flew back home” with him.
“I stayed calm and as normal as someone could in a situation like that, and when I got home, I sat, dazed, like a zombie,” she wrote. “I knew my life was in immediate danger, he made veiled confessions of wanting to kill me. With what little strength I had, my instinct was to then run, to run and find somewhere to live that he could not find.”
She went on to say that her captor drugged her at her home for four weeks, but that she does not remember if he raped her during that time. She ended up “fleeing,” but she did not elaborate on how she got away. She went on to say that she did not feel that it was safe at first to go to the police to report what had happened to her.
“I felt if anything went wrong, I would be dead, and he would have killed me,” she explained. “I could not risk being mishandled or it being all over the news during my danger. I really had to follow what instincts I had. I have told two female police officers, during different threatening incidents in the past decade, it is on record.”
She was forced to share what happened to her when an unnamed person blackmailed her by threatening to “out” her story, she said. She also told police about it after three men tried to break into her home. She said she eventually began to heal from the trauma with the help of a psychologist.
“Without her I may not have made it through. I was high risk of suicide in the aftermath,” she wrote. “She got to know me, saw me as a person, learned about me and navigated me. She did it very gently. I could not look her in the eyes for the first eight or so sessions, eye contact was something I struggled with. The thought of recovering was almost impossible.”
Duffy’s February post likely came as a revelation to her fans, many of whom must have been wondering about her whereabouts following her sudden disappearance from the spotlight. Her 2008 single “Mercy” catapulted her to international fame, but her second album, released in 2010, was not as successful, and she embarked on a hiatus a year later.
In her recent website post, she addressed the question of whether she will ever make a return to music, writing, “I know this much though, I owe it to myself to release a body of work someday, though I very much doubt I will ever be the person people once knew.”
“My music will be measured on the merit of its quality and this story will be something I experienced and not something that describes me,” she continued.
Her latest Instagram post, which directs followers to her website, has amassed more than 46,000 likes in the single day since it was shared. However, her more than 205,000 followers may have a while to wait for new content from the “Mercy” singer. As she explained in her post, she intends to once again retreat from the public eye, and “return to quietness.”
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