From celebrating her so-called imperfections on Instagram to broadcasting her workouts on Snapchat, Ashley Graham shares everything with her fans. 

Ashley Graham
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

But with the release of her new memoir, "A New Model: What Confidence, Beauty, and Power Really Look Like," we're learning how little we actually know about the most famously curvy supermodel the world has ever seen. 

In a Facebook Live to promote the book, she emphasized her desire to keep editing to a minimum. It's 100% her voice and her story, and at times, it's heartbreaking. 

Here are some of the most painfully honest admissions Graham makes in her book. 


Graham was molested at age 10.

The model wrote that she was sexually molested by a family friend at age 10. After they'd been swimming, the 18-year-old male friend forced her to touch his erect penis while they were drying off in the laundry room.

Graham wrote that she was frightened by the man's advances and fled from the room, but the incident left her "with so many lingering questions.”

"'That's what you did to me,'" Graham recalled the man saying before he made her touch his erection. "I was scared and quickly ran away. Did I do something to make that happen?" she wrote.


She was called a "blow job with handles" at age 12.

Two years after she was molested by a family friend, preteen Graham was wearing her hair in pigtails when two older male models called her "a blow job with handles."

The models — who were both five years older than her — continued to make sexual comments toward Graham, trying to get her alone in the hot tub with them. Sadly, Graham wrote that her confidence was at an all-time low and she actually didn't mind the attention.

"It didn't matter how inappropriate, unsolicited, or confusing it was, any male attention was good attention as far as I was concerned," she confessed.


She was dumped by her first boyfriend for being "fat" and a virgin.

Ashley Graham dumped memoir
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

Because of the confusing sexual advances she received as a child, Graham found herself dealing with intimacy issues at a young age. She was hesitant to sleep with her first boyfriend, who promptly dumped her.

According to Graham, he snapped. "I have to break up with you because you won't have sex with me," he told her. "And I'm afraid you're going to be as fat as my mom."


She ultimately lost her virginity to the first guy who gave her attention.

The painful breakup led to a string of meaningless sexual relationships. After years of waiting, Graham ended up losing her virginity to the high school quarterback. When he rejected her immediately after they slept together, Graham said she felt worthless.

"The next day at school when I went up to say hi to him in the hall, he ignored me," she remembered. "He never called me once. He didn't want anything to do with me. Thus started a pattern of going out with anyone who thought I was hot or my body was attractive."


As an adult, Graham found herself in constant "sex-and-no-third-date" situations.

Ashley Graham
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

The up-and-coming model quickly found "rhythm to my interactions that went something like this: a guy would take me out; we would have sex the next time we saw each other; and then I wouldn't hear from him ever again."

By that point, Graham, who was raised in a strict religious household, says she didn't care if she was labeled a slut. "That was the moment, when I was the sole focus of a man's attention, when I was happiest," she wrote. "And if it meant I had to be slutty in the eyes of some, so what?"

When she finally decided to enter her first "real" relationship, it quickly turned abusive.

Graham met Carlos — a "muscular, Dominican web designer" — when she was 19.

Carlos was 10 years older than Graham, but the two made their relationship work by having "lots and lots of sex." Eventually, the "dysfunctional" relationship turned into an abusive one: Graham recalled the time he flipped a couch upside down in a drunken rage while she was still sitting on it. 


Her boyfriend threatened her with a butcher knife.

During one explosive fight, Carlos chased her around their apartment with a butcher knife. Graham said she had to lock herself in her bathroom because she was terrified he was going to kill her. 


She later met the love of her life — a considerate, successful man named Justin Ervin — but her family refused to accept him.

Ashley Graham husband Black
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

She wrote, "When my grandparents met Justin, my grandmother was cordial but cold. She greeted him and immediately walked away. When it came time for them to leave, my grandparents didn’t even acknowledge him ... I had never seen my loving, hardworking, and wonderful grandma be so hurtful and so racist. I was in shock.”

Ervin, who Graham dedicated her memoir to, finally won over her grandparents by giving them a call on their 60th wedding anniversary.


When Graham first moved to New York City, she experimented heavily with cocaine and ecstasy.

She writes about partying with older men just to score free Champagne. During one of her wild nights out, the model was taken to the hospital after she collapsed on the street while partying. 


To fund her partying habit, Graham blew through $100,000 of her modeling earnings.

Ashley Graham memoir
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

Her guilty pleasures almost put an end to her career before it even started. She said she didn't hit "rock bottom" until she missed a flight for a shoot because she had overslept after a night of drinking. 


Modeling agents literally told her to "put the Snickers down."

Agents went out of their way to make her feel unwanted in the fashion industry. Graham said she was — and sometimes still is — brutally body shamed at nearly every casting call. 


Her father was verbally abusive.

She describes having major "daddy issues" due to her father's "dark presence." She writes that he would often scream at her, spank her, and spew insults that would cut her to the core.

"His insults hurt way more than any of his slaps," Graham recalled. "My father was a master of the cutting insult."


Graham loves her nude body, but her mom was modest.

Ashley Graham
photo: Instagram/@theashleygraham

"My mom's prudishness has a lot to do with her growing up Mennonite," Graham wrote. "I didn't see my mom's breasts until three years ago, when we were in a hotel room and someone started banging on the door, which I'd forgotten to lock. She jumped out of bed and grabbed her shirt, and I got a full view. 'I've never seen your boobs!' I shrieked. She was mortified."

But it was her mother's encouragement and constant support that pushed her to pursue modeling. 

Although Graham has been through a lot of hurt, she harnessed it and learned from it to become the confident, successful Ashley Graham we know and love (and read about) today.